African Bishops launch Golden jubilee celebrations, invite Pope Francis to Uganda

Archbishop Gabriel Mbilingi of Lubango, Angola and President of SECAM launching the celebrations at Lubaga Cathedral, Kampala on Sunday (PML Daily PHOTO)

KAMPALA – Uganda will in July 2019 be a beehive of activities after Symposium of Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM) bishops launched the year-long Golden jubillee celebrations to climax in Kampala on July 29, 2019.

Pope Francis has been invited for climax of the celebrations in Kampala, Archbishop Charles Gabriel Palmer-Buckle told journalists on Sunday.

Presiding over the inaugural launch mass at Lubaga Cathedral in Kampala on Sunday, July 29, Archbishop Gabriel Mbilingi of Lubango, Angola and President of SECAM, acknowledged with appreciation the initiative of the Church leaders in Africa to speak with one voice as they gathered to share ideas for the successful celebration of the SECAM Golden Year which will be climaxed in 2019.

Bishop Mathieu MadegaLebouakehan of Mouila Diocese, Gabon,and first vice President of SECAM and COMITHEOL Chairperson reiterated the need to engage the clergy, religious, and especially the laity in the activities of SECAM Jubilee explaining that such engagement of all Church members is a sure move toward the promotion of the growth and progress of the Church in Africa.

Archbishop Charles Palmer-Buckle, says Pope Francis has been invited to preside over the climax of the celebrations (PML Daily PHOTO)

“Unity and collegiality is significant so that dioceses, national and regional conferences strive to have common activities in living through the jubilee year,” Bishop Lebouakehan emphasized.

Welcoming the SECAM hierarchy to Uganda, the Archbishop of Kampala, Most Rev. Cyprian Kizito Lwanga said Uganda was proud to be associated with SECAM since its inception in 1969 and warmly welcomed the celebrations to the country, where SECAM was launched at Lubaga Cathedral in 1969.

Archbishop John Baptist Odama, the President of the Uganda Episcopal Conference, described the “obligation” to organise both SECAM’s inauguration and the forthcoming Golden Jubileecelebrations as “Uganda’s honour.”

His Holiness Blessed Pope Paul VI was welcomed to Kampala (Uganda), the first-ever visit of a Pope to Africa in July 1969 on a visit that was used to officially launch SECAM.

So, it is now 50 years since that historic moment in Kampala in 1969.

According to Msgr. John Baptist Kauta, Secetary General of the Uganda Episcopal Conference, the preparations for the celebrations of the Golden Jubilee will be headed by the Uganda Episcopal Conference. The Secretary General of SECAM, Fr. Joseph Koma-Koma says theme chosen for the Golden Jubilee celebrations is: “Church, Family of God in Africa, Celebrate your Jubilee! Proclaim, Meet and Welcome Christ your Savior.”

Fr. Koma-Koma says that, “the objective of the Jubilee is to celebrate in thanking God for His wonders and marvelous deeds, the gift of Baptism and of the Church, to ponder on the progress made so far, with the aim of deepening our roots in Christ and to engage ourselves resolutely in faith in proclamation of the mission of the Gospel in words and actions.”



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