The Important Role of Christian men in Modern Society

More than 15 cooperators and friends of the Work recently participated in a Cooperator’s Seminar at the Tigoni Study Center in Kenya. The seminar from 21 to 23 October 2022 looked at the opportunities and risks that come with navigating modern complexities in family and community life.

The speakers discussed ways in which men can effectively lead their families and communities amidst the huge cultural and technological shifts we’re witnessing in modern society. Some of the subjects that were explored by the speakers and participants included: Dealing with the generation gap (leading millennials, Gen Zs and, Gen Alphas); How technology is killing or building your family; Thinking about legacy; When questions of gender identity and same-sex attraction come up in the family; and the role of fathers in building intergenerational wealth and passing on the faith.

Dr. George Njenga of Strathmore Business School, in his session on the generational gap, emphasized that men in the family and community needed to be the “coaches of virtue” for the kids. “Do your kids see you doing what you say?” He posed.

John Muthiora, the Principal at Strathmore School, said there’s a growing problem of young people being addicted to internet-connected gadgets. Mr. Muthiora, however, noted that despite the need to prevent and confront addictive behavior, the internet could also be used positively for talent development and learning, as was the case at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Luis Borrallo, the Director of the Community Service Center at Strathmore University, referenced a Swiss government study conducted in 1994 showing that attendance of religious services fell drastically from one generation to the next when men in the family stopped regularly attending services. “Christian men have an important role to play in passing on the faith,” he said, noting that men of faith may need to play the father figure to the increasing number of boys and young men who do not have a father in their lives.

In between the sessions, the participants had a chance to network and take part in Holy Mass, meditations, and the Holy Rosary, which was said each afternoon after lunch. In the meditations, the priest reminded the men present that “Obeying God will often mean leaving our selfishness behind” and that “grace is given to each of us”.