Tributes to Jade Kenyamanyara

We are deeply saddened by the sudden passing of our dear friend and co-worker in ministry, Jade Kenyamanyara, who passed away in Nairobi, Kenya, on November 30, 2020 (read our update). Our thoughts, support, and prayers continue to be with Julius and their three boys, Ezra, Gabriel and Josiah.

If you would like to send a message to Julius and the boys, please fill out the form at the bottom of this post.

In times likes these, we are reminded in scripture:

“Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me so that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.” John 14:1-4

Jade was deeply loved by all of us at VOH Africa. It is our desire to honour Jade with the following tributes, written with love, by some of her co-workers in ministry.

Jade Kenyamanyara was a much-loved part of the VOH Africa family, serving as Administrator at VOH Mwanza in Tanzania alongside her husband Julius. Jade did everything with excellence and we knew that we could always depend on her. Jade’s love for the children that she ministered to was evident and was always at the forefront of all that she did and every decision that she made. Although her work was very demanding, Jade always had time for others, asking how they were doing or sending words of encouragement. Jade had a great sense of humour which made the difficult aspects of ministry easier to manage. It was evident that the children and staff all loved Jade. On many occasions, Jade opened up her home and always made everyone feel welcome. Jade’s ministry was very demanding but she juggled family, friends and ministry well. Jade was an excellent example of unconditional love and how to be a Godly mother, wife and friend which was so essential to her ministry role with Village of Hope. The tributes that Jade’s VOH family shared together upon hearing about her passing were a testimony to her character, kindness, compassion and commitment to the ministry. Jade was an inspiration to those that she worked with daily at VOH Mwanza and she will be greatly missed by us all. We know that her spirit will live on in the lives of every child that she ministered to and in the lives of her VOH Africa ministry family.

Sergio & Nancy Bersaglio, Directors of VOH Africa

For all the times you used to help me improve my working skills (computer, bookkeeping, operations) and so many more, I thank you. You have been and will always be a blessing. Rest in Eternal Peace Jade. 

Aloyce Lugaila, Assistant Administrator VOH Mwanza

Jade was a very loving and caring person. She was sensitive to the feelings of others and always wanted to ensure that the feelings of others were not hurt. She was a very organized and smart person. Her smile was bright and lovely, and everyone at VOH Mwanza loved her so much. We are so grateful to God for the opportunity to have worked with Jade.

Boniface Mrosso, Finance Manager VOH Mwanza

Thank you for teaching me to be kind and calm even when things don’t go as I wish. Thank you for being so supportive even at times where i couldn’t figure my way out. You will always be an inspiration and a loving memory that i cherish. Till We Meet Again❤️❤️❤️.

Mary Vincent, Head of Shelter & Reintegration VOH Mwanza

Jade had a big heart for all that crossed her path and was always very hospitable to anyone who visited the Village of Hope in Mwanza. I remember the time that we as leaders were all in Mwanza for VOH Africa leadership meetings and she Invited us all to join her family for a meal when her parents and family members were also in Mwanza. The invitation touched me and made me really appreciate her for who she was in life. I saw that she cared for people. From now onwards, I will be conscious of the fact we are writers of epistles that others read. What will others say when I am gone? We draw comfort from the knowledge that she is definitely in the Presence of the King of kings. May God bless Julius and their Children and the entire family. 

Everlyn Chitente, Director VOH Kitwe and VOH Luongo

As one of the newest members of the VOH Africa family, Jade welcomed me with open arms. She was one of my first points of contact, working tirelessly to get me a Tanzania visa so I could join them in Mwanza. Even though it didn’t work out, we had become friends through it all. I’m forever grateful. Truly Jade is one of the kindest, most selfless, grateful people I have ever met. In the short time, I knew her, she made a lasting impression on my life… Christlikeness personified, with the fruit of the Spirit overflowing! We will miss her beyond words.

Jeanette Shaheen, Administrator VOH Africa

In the few interactions I’ve had with Jade, it was so clear that she had such a love for God and an overflowing love for His children. She had a peaceful presence about her that radiated God’s love. It is heartbreaking to say goodbye to such a hero in the faith, but we know that the life she lived has opened the door of hope and opportunity to thousands of children in Tanzania. Future generations will be blessed because of Jade!

Matt Mackie, Director VOH Mongu

Jade was a special person in so many ways. The one time I visited Mwanza I had no doubt In my mind that she loved the people and the place. I particularly enjoyed Jade’s hospitable and open spirit. Spending time with her and Julius in their home was special. I remember playing a few games of scrabble with Jade, she had a great mind.  Jovial all the time… Articulate and attentive. Dedicated to serving others. Encouraging to be around. We will all miss JADE.

Munetsi Zowa, Director VOH Zimbabwe

Jade had a very friendly and golden heart💗 She came to Burundi to visit Village of Hope with Julius and the boys and they called me so that I could come and say hello in person. This touched my heart so much as I was not so familiar with her but she made me feel so close. Her heart was priceless and we will never forget about her🌹

Odette Niyibigira, Administrator VOH Bwiza

Jade has been a good friend for a number of years. She was always warm and understanding. She was a listening ear for laments, trials, and joys. During this covid season, we became much closer and chatted on a regular basis. We supported each other in our shared role and I will miss her deeply.

Renatta Walton, Administrator VOH Malawi

Jade has left a big gap in the Village of Hope family. She was a friend to all of us . The first time I met her , she welcomed me and made me feel like I had met her before. I will always love to remember her smiling face and her love for the children in Tanzania.

Shaline Mwenya, Director VOH Chongwe

The Bouquet

 a poem by Jef Walton, VOH Malawi Director

Words on a page written line upon line 

Penned with precision and love intertwined 

Standing like mourners to pay last respects 

Remaining like sentinels that none may forget 

Word after word each one slowly approaches 

They carry their meaning and lay them like roses 

Each word its own colour together convey 

The life we now honour a breathtaking bouquet 

Jade, you are gone, and it’s hard to let go 

Jade, you are gone, and we cherished you so 

The bouquet of your life shall not wilt nor wither 

It grew in the soil nigh the everlasting river 

And though we’re without you. Your time here is done 

We will join you in Glory in the life yet to come 

So lay we our words at the place where you rest 

We mourn and we grieve because we were so blessed 

To share the same time to share the same era 

As our beloved sister Jade Kenyamanyara 

It can truly be said of Jade, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. (2 Timothy 4:7)

If you would like to send a message of condolence to Julius and their boys, please fill out the form below:

    Note: your message will not be posted publicly. It will be sent privately to Jade's husband Julius.