Brother Lawrence Obiko is the 14th Superior General of the Brothers CMM, a Congregation founded in Tilburg, the Netherlands, in 1844, by Bishop Joannes Zwijsen, who was sometimes called the ‘Vincentius of Tilburg’.
Brother Lawrence was born in Bomatara – Kisii, Kenya, on 31 October 1962. He is the fourth son of Mr. Patrick Omwaga Maosa, a supervisor at a coffee plantation and a concierge at a mission school and Mrs. Veronica Bisieri Kinanga, a homemaker and mother of seven children, six boys and one girl, who died shortly after birth. Brother Lawrence’s father died in 1993 and his mother is still living in their parental home. His brothers are married and live with their families in Kenya.
After attending St. Joseph’s Primary School in Nyabururu and Cardinal Otunga High School in Mosocho, a school founded and managed by the Brothers CMM, Brother Lawrence entered the Congregation in Oyugis in 1987 and made his profession for life in 1995. He studied Agriculture at Baraka Farmers Training College in Molo, Religious Formation at Tumaini Center and Spiritual Direction at Mwangaza Jesuit Training Center, both in Nairobi. This was followed by an ICT study at Strathmore University in Nairobi. He speaks Ekegusii, Swahili, English, Dutch and commands sign language. In his sporadic spare time he enjoys taking up the artist’s brush.
Brother Lawrence served the Congregation in Kenya as treasurer, community superior, postulant-master, novice-master and for 12 years as a member of the Provincial Board. As novice-master he was especially instrumental in the establishment of the new noviciate in Sigona, and in Urambo, Tanzania, he supervised the building activities of St. Vincent de Paul Secondary School, where he taught Computer Sciences. In 2008 he was elected member of the General Board and on 5 June 2014 he was elected Superior General. Since 2008 he has been living in Tilburg, the Netherlands, from where he makes canonical visits to his fellow brothers in eight different countries promoting the congregational charism of brotherhood and mercy. Since 2016 he is a member of the Vincentian Family Executive Committee and attended the official opening of the Vincentian Family Office in Philadelphia, U.S.A., on 6 January 2017.