WAKISO – Archbishop of Mbarara Dioceses – His Grace Lambert Bainomugisha has tipped the Christians across the country to imitate the courageous Uganda martyrs if they are to live a purposeful life.
He noted that the martyrs were never cowards and stood their ground amidst arrest, and torture but chose to rather die than to transmigrate the Lord over their ancestors.
The Archbishop was on Sunday preaching at the Annual Pilgrimage of Mbarara Ecclesiastical Province Kampala Residents Association (MEPA) to Namugongo Catholic Shrine.
MEPA is a group of Catholics from the five Dioceses in the Mbarara Ecclesiastical Province who live in and around Kampala, including Mbarara Archdiocese, Kasese Diocese, Kabale Diocese, Fort Portal Diocese, and Hoima Diocese.
Animated by the Archdiocese of Mbarara Development Association (AMDA), this year’s Pilgrimage was held under the theme “Growing Together, Inspired by the Martyrs”.
“We are gathered here to honor a gift of Uganda martyrs and we reflect on the theme. We have been taught over the years that the blood of the Uganda martyrs is the seed of Christians. This is not only a preaching but it has been realized in our midst. This teaching resonates well with the word of God,” said Archbishop Lambert.
He added. “We are indeed blessed! It is a blessing to be back in this holy place to remind ourselves of the Uganda martyrs. Let’s harvest what the blood of the martyrs sow in this place in good heart, we go with them and they guide us in sowing a guide seed in our fellows.”
He said that many people in Uganda and beyond have been prosecuted for the sake of righteousness, “may the Uganda martyrs make a seed for us to endure through our life situations and be counted among the blessed.”
The Chief Pilgrim, the Deputy Speaker, Thomas Tayebwa said “It is very good that we come together to renew our faith in Christ. I have personally achieved a lot good things in pilgrimage. Pilgrimage is a very good thing because it renews us.”
He challenged that being a good Ugandan you must be a good Christian first because the relationship between God and Government is so huge.
“What God asks us to do is what the Government requires us to do.”
Tayebwa appealed to the clergy to not only pray for the Government leaders but also guide them in their service delivery.
“At times we use Christianity to climb to positions and after we throw it and do our own things. We fail to be fair and trustworthy, we become thieves and fail to fight corruption, so you have put a lot of effort on us. Sit us down and tell us and if we fail to change, shame us in public.”
He also urged the Catholics to serve and respect all the people.
Tayebwa appealed the clergymen to encourage Ugandans to work hard “because there’s a lot of poverty among people.”
MEPA Chairperson – Dr. Patrick Birungi thanked the bishops for having honored their invitation to join them in this pilgrimage.
In a special way, he thanked the animating diocese, the Archdiocese of Mbarats Development Association (AMDA) for the leadership provided.
On behalf of MEPA leadership, he committed to delivering on their promises.
He revealed that they have now taken a step to establish the CEO’s Forum – of public and private sector entities that hail from ecclesiastical province to create a platform for interaction, coordination, and partnerships in development. “The first event will be next year at an appropriate time agreed with the bishops.”
In his message, Mr. Chris Gumisiriza, AMDA Chairman said that there is power in numbers.
“Unity is important to us as AMDA. We believe that a cord of three strands is not quickly broken.”
Over the past year, he noted that AMDA has been actively engaged in various activities that revolve around the seven pillars of Unity, Spiritual Development, Leadership Economic Development, Empowerment, Education, Health/Wellness, and Environmental Protection.