KAMPALA–The Archbishop of Kampala, Dr Cyprian Kizito Lwanga, on Tuesday evening cleansed the parliamentary catholic chapel, a month after security forces were deployed inside the house of prayer.
The mass was attended by several MPs, including Leader of Opposition Winnie Kiiza and State Minister for Youth and Children Florence Nakiwala Kiyingi.
As part of the spiritual cleansing, the Archbishop helped by the Chaplain of the Catholic Chapel, Reverend Father Phillip Balikuddembe, sprinkled holy water in the chapel and corridors as MPs, Staff of Parliament and journalists who were covering the consecration ceremony looked on.
Basing his homily on a theme, ‘Reconciliation with God and Fellow Human Beings’, Dr. Lwanga forgave whoever abused the chapel and appealed to them not to ever do it again.
He also urged MPs to always carry out their deliberations using reason and wisdom rather than exchanging blows.
The Catholic and Anglican Chaplaincies are located in the basement of Parliament building and can be accessed through a new entrance to the East wing adjacent to the National Theatre.
Dr. Lwanga in December last year declined to officiate at the end of year mass of the Catholic community and also light a Christmas tree citing the invasion of the Catholic chapel making the sacred place unholy, hence unworthy for use in worship.
The Archbishop then directed that the Catholic Chapel should not be used for worship until it is consecrated again – a process of spiritual cleansing.
His decline came just a day after it emerged that security personnel had secretly deployed in Parliament, hours before the House commenced the debate on the Constitutional Amendment Bill that sought to remove presidential age limits.
Dirty plates, cups and used mineral water bottles had been found in both the Catholic and Anglican chaplaincies with MPs, especially from the Opposition protesting what they called the desecration of the Houses of Prayer, forcing Speaker Rebecca Kadaga to adjourn the House briefly.
This was after the Amuru Woman MP Lucy Akello who also doubles as the lay leader of the parliamentary Catholic community, raised the matter on the floor of parliament.
Angry legislators confiscated cups and plates from the officers, saying that the presence of soldiers, and the serving of meals in the chapels, was disrespectful.
The controversial Bill that caused the invasion of the house of prayer was late December 2017 passed into law paving way for the amendment of Article 102(b) which caps the presidential age at between 35 and 75 years.