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Juggling between being a mortician and a pastor

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Winning souls and ushering them to heaven with dignity are two roles that Mr Samuel Thairu juggles with ease.

On a normal working day, you will find Mr Thairu donning a green uniform, hand gloves and white gumboots at the JM Memorial Ol Kalou Hospital mortuary in Nyandarua County, busy taking care of dead bodies.

At the facility, which is one of the biggest in the county, Thairu’s main work is to ensure that he ushers the dead to heaven with dignity by ensuring that they are well preserved before their interment.

But every Sunday, you will find Pastor Thairu at the Kenya Assemblies of God Church in Ol Kalou town, where he ministers as a pastor busy winning souls for heaven.

Mr Thairu says he handles the two jobs with ease as they are related.

When the Saturday Nation visited him at the hospital, he was inside his office doing some Bible study. “This is what I usually do when I am not working or while waiting for some work to do. The word of God gives me motivation to work and handle my work with ease,” he said as he ushered us inside the morgue.

DESIRED JOBS

However, he said working as a mortician was never one of his desired jobs.

“I used to work as a casual at the Nyahururu County Referral Hospital when they announced a vacancy at the mortuary department. That is when I decided to apply for the job,” said Mr Thairu.

He said he, just as any ordinary person, was initially afraid of dead bodies, but financial constraints left him without an option.

“When I was new in this job, I had fears and challenges handling the dead, but I asked God to give me strength to tackle what awaited me in my new job — that is taking care, preserving and handling dead bodies on a daily basis,” says the man of God.

He said that it was after working for several months at the Nyahururu County Referral Hospital, then known as Nyahururu District Hospital, as a junior staff that a position came up at the JM Memorial Ol Kalou Hospital.

“I applied for the position and I was hired for the post. By then, I had already adapted to the job and I was comfortable,” he said.

BEREAVED FAMILIES

The 38-year-old father of three says that he also fills a gap at the morgue because in many cases there is usually no one to console the bereaved families when they come to pick the body for burial.

“Most families usually don’t have anyone to console them during bereavement, especially while taking their loved ones for interment from the morgue. As a man of God, I knew I would comfortably fit in the shoe,” he said.

He said his parents and his family supported him when he took up the job.

“When I told them that I was taking up the job, they had no problem with it. To date, they take my job just like any other job. My congregation, too, does not seem to care much about what I do at the mortuary. I interact with them freely without any fear,” he said.

Pastor Thairu added that contrary to many people’s belief that morticians often use hard drugs before getting down to work, he has never abused drugs.

“I have never abused any drugs. I have never tasted alcohol. Some morticians are said to rely on drugs to perform. I believe that having a sober mind allows the families of the deceased respectable preservation of the bodies,” he said.

And like any other person who prays before leaving for work in the morning, Mr Thairu says he prays for his work every morning.

“When going to work every morning, an umbrella hawker prays that it rains so that he can make some money. I, too, pray for my job while leaving the house. However, I don’t pray that people die so that I can get some work to do.

RECEIVING BODIES

“In the morning, I pray that God protects His people, gives them long lives and grants them strength and serenity in case they lose a loved one,” added Mr Thairu.

His job entails receiving bodies and cleaning them; ensuring that they are correctly and properly labelled for easy identification and preservation.

He also prepares the bodies for postmortem examination and has to be present when the bodies are released for burial.

Pastor Thairu has challenged fellow pastors to not only depend on offerings and tithes from their faithful but their own sweat.

“Even the word of God clearly states that one should eat from his own sweat. This will kill the narrative that pastors only depend on offerings and tithes from their congregation,” he added.

By Nation.co.ke

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Business

The road less travelled

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According to a June 2020 study by Flone Initiative, women make up 10 per cent of the work force in the public transport industry in the country, 85 per cent of them being matatu conductors in Nairobi; it is no longer a male-dominated job. However,

“I used to ride the so-called nganyas to school every day, and being that I am a social and open-minded person, I would interact with the accomodating personnel and with time, I deeply fell in love with the unique culture that is the Kenyan matatu industry,” she tells PD Wikendi. A daughter of Italian parents who met and got married in Kenya, Lucia is thankful to have been born and bred in this country with an atypical public transport sector, which would become her biggest passion.

After completing high school, she joined Montessori College in Nairobi to pursue teaching, a course she did not complete, as what she desired was to work as a tout. However, she would again proceed to pursue a certificate in pharmacy, which is her mother’s profession. In 2015, Lucia ditched her pharmacy career and decided to follow her heart, becoming a full-time makanga in Kitengela, a route she says she felt comfortable in, being that she was serving people she grew up around.

Lucia recalls how at first, residents of Kitengela, seeing a mzungu on the matatu door calling on passengers to board, were certain it was a prank. “In my first days, people were dumbfounded, wondering if it was a stunt. They even became reluctant to board the vehicle, as they thought that maybe there was a hidden camera somewhere recording the ‘prank’. No one believed a mlami could take this job, but, eventually, they realised it was for real and got used to it,” she recounts.

The venture was fraught with challenges for her; not only was she a woman in a rough man’s world, but also a ‘foreigner’. “Some commuters felt they could get aggressive towards me, for example when disgruntled by what they found to be high fares. Dealing with a rude passenger who does not want to cooperate and respect my hustle is still among my worst moments while in the line of duty. Some passengers like to show that they are allknowing. Again, there were instances where people thought I don’t understand Swahili or sheng, which I speak fluently, so they would throw jabs at me, but I never let it get to me. If you are a strong woman who respects herself and you understand that this is a job like any other, there is no situation that would be too difficult to manoeuvre. Women are many in the industry these days, and people now take it as a normal thing,” adds Lucia, who currently works in Crisis of Wamasaa Sacco.

PANDEMIC STRUGGLE
At the moment, the Covid-19 pandemic, which has really hamstrung their work, is

it is still unusual to meet a woman nganya crewmember. It is even rarer to meet one from a different race. But, the well known Lucia Alessandra Murotto, a Caucasian woman conductor, never saw these as barriers to stop her from following her passion. Walking along Nairobi’s Railways bus terminus, where Kitengela matatus are stationed, you will likely meet the 29-year-old shouting herself hoarse calling for passengers, a job she has now served in for over five years.

Growing up in Kitengela, Kajiado county, Lucia, famously known as Mlami by the area residents owing to her Italian origin, never prayed for something bigger in her future than serving in the matatu industry. Her desire to join the sector grew while she was still in high school, when the single mother of one used to commute daily to school, boarding the renowned decorated matatus of the vibrant route 110 Kitee, and got to interact with the friendly crews.

FALLING IN LOVE

the biggest issue that, like others in the sector, she’s dealing with on the job. “We are only carrying 60 per cent of the bus capacity, so, hitting the profit target becomes an uphill task. To cope, investors have sadly been forced to send some crewmembers home, and we’ve also had to raise fares so as to at least remain afloat,” she explains.

Challenges aside, what Lucia loves the most about her job is how the crews she works with are humble and understanding. “We live like one big family, sticking by each other through thick and thin. We are always there for one another, be it during funerals, weddings, when one of our colleagues gets a child, even birthdays, we come together and offer support,” she beams.

When not filling matatus with passengers and collecting fares, the last-born in a family of two daughters helps her mum out at her pharmacy in Kisaju. Meanwhile, the nganya culture enthusiasm has rubbed of on her nine-year-old son, who she says knows almost all the Kitengela hot mats by name.

For now, it appears Lucia is in it for the long haul. “I have been dreaming of investing in the matatu industry since I was 16. I would love to take my matatu to Kitengela, Rongai or even Eastleigh, since I have worked on the three routes and I know their ins and outs, ” she concludes.

By PD.co.ke

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Business

Our Thrilling Two Hours Tour at Victory Gardens Phase 3, 4 & 5 on the 18th of September 2020

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It was a very electrifying afternoon as we mentored our social media followers on how to build positive and remarkable relationships.

We touched on various life issues including how to laugh with a confident and deliberate abandonment, how to build extraordinarily positive relationships in families, workplaces, with God and in our social lives.

We also spared a cool 30 minutes to point at plot beacons for our customers, showing them how trees at this gated community are flourishing plus showing customers how Optiven has done the drainages.

Oh! We even had great fun crawling through one of the drainage culvert, which easily accommodated Optiven Team Leader as he easily crept to the other end. You can catch up with the Facebook Live here: (https://web.facebook.com/watch/?v=776150606288508&extid=GOZRywQJbqSrzSDM)

You can also catch up with the entire episode on You Tube right here: https://youtu.be/apZ14dvBg_g

What’s more, we prayed and prophesied for more customers to start building their dream homes in this gated community; to live victorious, joyfully and peacefully, in this extraordinary project that is located at the heart on Kitengela in Nairobi Metropolis.

If you want to join this remarkable and amazing project or to refer someone, just get in touch with us today. (Every person who refers someone will be mentioned on our next show)

*Call us now on: 0790 300 300 or 0723 400 500
Visit our website:* www.optiven.co.ke

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Business

Shekinah Gardens Gets Surprise Bonus Value Additions

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Optiven Engineers have now camped at Shekinah Gardens to start the fencing of the entire property (concrete poles & wire mesh). The concrete poles will be painted green as a sign of customer’s prosperity.

What’s more, Optiven has entered into a contract with Weberworks to do the construction of a 15 meters tall water tower that will be holding 40, 000 liters at a go.

This additional Value Additions will allow customers to experience Value for their properties as it was not part of the initial promise, but as an additional token of love to our Shekinah Gardens customers.

In addition, the roads will be spruced up to make this project the very best in Kajiado Township.

The project is located only 1 Mile from Kajiado Town and less than 0.5 m from the Highway

If you want to join the Shekinah family 👪

Call us on: 0790300300 or 0723400500
Website: www.optiven.co.ke

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