to head it by Pope John Paul II on April 27, 1990.
Bishop Korir’s book has some of the most chilling episodes in a missionary’s work. An example is when in 1997 he visited Endo in Marakwet at the height of the battles between the Marakwet and the Pokot communities.
“We were having tea. Suddenly a shootout broke out. When fighting finally died down, we found many dead people lying on the ground and numerous others injured. We provided first aid and helped take casualties to the hospital,” says he says in his book.
The incident served as an eye opener and a wake-up call for the young bishop who promptly begun holding a series of peace meetings to bring the warring communities together.
In 2015, Bishop Korir managed to bring together leaders from the banditry prone counties in the North Rift for peace caravans where they traversed the battle fields preaching calm, patience and tolerance.
The peace meetings dubbed peace caravans brought together governors, MPS, Members of the County Assembly (MCAS), religious and opinion leaders from Baringo, Turkana, West-pokot and Samburu counties.
“He was an unsung hero whose selfless actions touched many lives. With his passing on, humankind is the poorer,” said chairman of the council of governors Josphat Nanok.
Former Industrialisation Minister Henry Kosgey recalled how Bishop Korir comforted him after he was named by the International Criminal Court as one of the six individuals suspected of having been the masterminds of the 2007/2008 post-election violence.
Former US Ambassador to Kenya Michael Ranneberger paid tribute to Bishop Korir who he described as a hero and patriot.
For his peace-building efforts, Bishop Korir was in 2006 awarded the Moran of the Burning Spear by President Mwai Kibaki. He had earlier earned the Milele Lifetime Award from the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights.
In 2012, Moi University conferred upon him the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Letters.
Until his death, Bishop Korir was the Chairman of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB) and the Catholic Justice and Peace Commission (CJPC). He was also the chairman of the interfaith communities under the umbrella of the Dialogue Reference Group (DRG) which comprises top leadership of the Catholic Church, National Council of Churches in Kenya, Supreme Council of Kenya Muslim, National Muslim Leaders Forum, Hindu Council of Kenya, Evangelical Alliance of Kenya, Organization African Instituted Churches, Seventh Day Adventist and the Shia Ithna-asheri.
It is under these auspices that Bishop Korir was in the forefront of calling for a credible election in 2017. In the run up to the August 8 General Election, he summoned leaders from the North Rift and urged them to be careful with their utterances to guard against dividing the country.
“He reminded us of the 2007/2008 events and told us to ensure the region does not go back there,” said Jackson Mandago, the Uasin Gishu governor.
Before his death, bishop Korir was agitating for county governments in conflict prone regions to set aside budgets for peace building, calling on them to come up with alternative income generating activities for pastoralists to pave the way for sustainable peace.
In his book, Bishop Korir warns that land remains an emotive issue in the North Rift and suggests that the government deals with Agenda Four of the national accord, which deals with issues of land and inclusivity. Bishop Korir during a joint thanksgiving service for officers from various forces in the North Rift at the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ Cathedral Catholic Church in Eldoret in August 2011.