popePope John Paul II visited Kenya in September 1995, where he among other things called for an end to the killings in Rwanda.

His visit was also at the height of a debate on the use of condoms to stop the spread of HIV. Catholic activists in Kenya had stepped up campaigns against the use of condoms, with priests all over the country warning their congregation against the ‘evils’ of condoms. Cardinal Otunga was at the forefront of the campaign against family planning and use of contraceptives. In a pro-life rally just before the Pope’s visit, some activists displayed condoms and told the gathered crowd that its use was a sure way of getting HIV.

Anyway, Pope John Paul largely avoided the topic during his mass at Uhuru Park.

As Kenya prepares to host another Pope later this year, there’s much concern about security, but Inspector General Joseph Boinett yesterday said that we should not expect a lockdown like during Obama’s visit.

He said that roads will not be closed, and actually encouraged Kenyans to line up the streets to welcome the Pope.

On this throwback Thursday, we look back at Pope John Paul’s visit in 1995.