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Maurice M. Otunga, 80; African Cardinal Served Archdiocese of Nairobi

September 09, 2003|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Cardinal Maurice Michael Otunga, 80, who served the archdiocese of Nairobi in Kenya, died Saturday in Nairobi after a long illness.

Pope John Paul II sent a telegram of condolence assuring the Kenyan people "of my prayers to the good shepherd that, in his tender love, he will bring this dedicated servant speedily to the place prepared for him at the heavenly banquet.

"With heartfelt condolences to all who mourn the loss of this devoted pastor," the pope said, "I cordially impart my apostolic blessing as a pledge of comfort and peace in the risen savior."

Born in Chebukwa, Otunga was ordained in 1950 and held several posts in Kenya before becoming a cardinal in 1973. He retired as archbishop of Nairobi in 1997.

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