Assumption of Mary Catholic Church stands on a massive piece of land in Umoja estate phase 1 (Umoja 1) near the Umoja Health Centre and popular pub Egesa Generations.
Its story begins in 1976 when Umoja Estate was a largely bushy area.
Umoja was populated mainly by young people, and the history of the Assumption of Mary Umoja Catholic Parish is traceable to the pioneer inhabitants who immensely contributed to the prominence of both Umoja estate and the Assumption of Mary Umoja Parish.
Initially, the majority of Catholic Christians of Umoja estate had three options pertaining to where they attended mass, including Jericho, Buruburu I, and Kariobangi Catholic Church depending on the proximity from their particular location in Umoja.
Mass at Umoja Primary classroom
Then Jericho and Buruburu I Catholic Church were under Mary Knoll Fathers while Holy Trinity Parish Kariobangi (Marura) was under Verona Fathers. In Mid 1977 Verona Fathers of the Holy Trinity Kariobangi established Embakasi Outstation.
In 1977 the Rev. Fr. Romeo, who was a Comboni Priest, in cooperation with some volunteer Christians including Mary Maina and Lazarus Maigua invited a Catholic Christian Community to celebrate Mass at Umoja I Primary School of the City Council of Nairobi.
The invitation to celebrate the pioneering mass in Umoja estate was through a written message which they delivered in a period of two weeks to every house they knew was inhabited by a Catholic.
A few Catholic Christians responded to the invitation and the first Congregation of Umoja celebrated Mass at a classroom of Umoja I Primary School.
A couple of more masses were held at this location till 1978 when the priest in charge, a Reverend Father Romeo applied to the City Council of Nairobi for land allocation to create Umoja Catholic Church Community Center.
This move was due to the increasing competition by other churches to use Umoja 1 Primary premises.
Through thick and thin, the church constructed a mabati building which they used for some time. The new development also got to be named a Sub-Parish.
“With the revelation of a Sub-Parish the congregation started mobilizing resources for the envisioned construction of the Church building”, the website of the church notes.
In 1980 the first Christmas Mass was celebrated in the main church building that was still undergoing construction works. In 1981 the congregation convened a major raffle to raise more funds to support the ongoing construction of the main Church building.
The church’s website documents the successive leadership of the church since the 1970s to date.
In 2020, having undergone many more transformations over the year one of which is buying huge chunks of land (in Umoja Estate standards) and constructing houses for church workers, Assumption of Mary church used the lull in church activities caused by Covid-19 containment measure to expand the church.
Its expansion is currently ongoing as seen in the photos below.
Covering news about Eastlands especially Umoja, Kayole and Buruburu estates