June 3, 2013

Archbishop Bakyenga Urges Christians to Emulate Uganda Martyrs

Archbishop Bakyenga, who is reading mass at the Catholic Martyrs Shine in Namugongo, picked on the Uganda National Anthem and the national Motto which both place the country in God’s hands to deliver his homily as Christians remember the day the Uganda Martyrs were killed some 127 years ago.

Archbishop Paul Bakyenga of Mbarara Archdiocese is Today's Main Celebrant at the Catholic Martyrs Shrine
Archbishop Paul Bakyenga of Mbarara Archdiocese is Today’s Main Celebrant at the Catholic Martyrs Shrine

Archbishop Paul Bakyenga of Mbarara Archdiocese has challenged Christians to emulate the life of Uganda Martyrs and be friends of Christ and the Church.

Archbishop Bakyenga, who is reading mass at the Catholic Martyrs Shine in Namugongo, picked on the Uganda National Anthem and the national Motto which both place the country in God’s hands to deliver his homily as Christians remember the day the Uganda Martyrs were killed some 127 years ago.

Archbishop Bakyenga says the example of the martyrs, who gave up their lives for the love of their faith in Jesus, teaches people to avoid worldly and wicked practices such as homosexuality and corruption among others.

Bakyenga said the Uganda Martyrs and their country hold a special place in the church, noting that Jesus Christ and his parents drunk the waters of the Nile while hiding in Egypt, which river starts its journey in Uganda.

Archbishop Bakyenga also prayed for Father Charles Lwanga Mugisha, a priest from Mbarara Archdiocese who was knocked by a speeding commuter taxi yesterday. He died later at Mulago Hospital. Mugisha was among the organisers of today’s event and had just escorted some pilgrims from outside countries to the shrine when he was killed.

The Archbishop invited Pope Francis to emulate his two predecessors, Pope Paul VI and John Paul II, to visit the home of the Uganda Martyrs. Paul VI visited Uganda in July 1969 while John Paul II came in February 1993.

The 22 catholic and 24 Anglican converts were killed between May and June 1886 on the orders Kabaka Mwanga of Buganda. In October 1964, Pope Paul VI canonized the Uganda Martyrs.

Bakyenga had a word of thanks for the media for the support during the preparations for today’s event, but challenged media houses to hire religious correspondents.

At the Anglican shrine, the main celebrant is Right Reverend Timothy Yahaya, a bishop from Nigeria, being assisted by a team from Uganda Christian University, Mukono. The theme for this year is being “Faithful Witnesses to the End”, a scripture drawn from the book of Revelations chapter 7 verses 8-17.

There is heavy police deployment at both shrines and along the road from Kyaliwajala trading centre. Vehicles are not allowed beyond Kyaliwajala and pilgrims have to walk to the respective shrines. Jinja Road Police Commander Wesley Nganizi, who spent the night in Namugongo in charge of security says they had to deploy to protect thousands of pilgrims, some of whom are from Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Enable Notifications    Ok No thanks