UGANDA: CATHOLIC CHURCH SEEKS US$250000 TO ORGANIZE UGANDA MARTYRS’ DAY CELEBRATION 2019

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Archbishop Dr. John Baptist Odama and Vicar General Msgr. Mathew Odong, addressing the press on February 27, 2019.

“I am here to let you know officially that Gulu Archdiocese is to animate Uganda Martyrs’ day celebration 2019 at Namugongo where millions of pilgrims from all over the world will converge to pray for intercession of the martyrs”

“It is an opportunity to learn from the Martyrs’ faithfulness and obedience to Jesus Christ (Mathew 24:13) and to seek their intercession. It is a moment of spiritual renewal as we strive to preach the gospel and fight the evils in our society today”

“The money is here in Uganda; even in Gulu we can raise this money from our Christians. Do you have some millionaires among you who can offer the nine hundred million shillings? This is project of God and God will make it succeed. Let the Kingdom of God be heard”

GULU-UGANDA:Gulu Archdiocese has drawn up a budget of UGX900, 000,000 (about US$250,000) to organize and animate the 2019 Uganda Martyrs’ day celebrations at the Namugongo Catholic shrine located outside the capital city, Kampala.

“I am here to let you know officially that Gulu Archdiocese is to animate Uganda Martyrs’ day celebration 2019 at Namugongo where millions of pilgrims from all over the world converge to pray for intercession of the martyrs”, says Archbishop of Gulu Archdiocese, Dr. John Baptist Odama.

He made these remarks on Wednesday, February 27, 2019 when meeting members of the press from his residence which is located about three kilometers west of Gulu town.

Gulu Archdiocese was chosen to organize this year’s annual event, which falls on every June 3, by the Uganda Episcopal Conference in June 2018. It is organizing on behalf of the Gulu Ecclesiastical Province which consists of the dioceses of Arua, Gulu, Lira and Nebbi.

The Archbishop says the money needed to organize the event can be raised locally from Christians in Uganda without thinking of money from donors.

“The money is here in Uganda; even in Gulu we can raise this money from our Christians. Do you have some millionaires among you who can offer the nine hundred million shillings? This is project of God and God will make it succeed. Let the Kingdom of God be heard”, says Archbishop Dr. Odama.

The Catholic Church in Uganda has four Ecclesiastical Provinces, they are: Kampala (the oldest province), Mbarara, Tororo and Gulu Ecclesiastical Provinces. They organize the Uganda Martyrss Day celebrations on rotational basis.

The Archdiocese of Gulu last animated the celebrations at Namugongo in 2003 soon after the beautification of Blessed Daudi Okello and Jildo Irwa in 2002 by Saint Pope John Paul II at the Vatican.

The two catechists were killed in 1918 and they are celebrated at local level on October 20 ever year at the Wi Polo Paimol Martyrs’ shrine in Kalongo Parish, Agago district in Gulu Archdiocese.

The original martyrs (23 Anglicans and 22 Catholics) were killed between January 31, 1885 and January 27, 1887 for converting to Christianity on orders from Kabaka Mwanga II, the then King of Buganda. The twenty-two Catholic Martyrs were beautified on June 6, 1920 by Pope Benedict XV, and canonized on October 18, 1964 by Saint Pope Paul VI.

“It is an opportunity to learn from the Martyrs’ faithfulness and obedience to Jesus Christ (Mathew 24:13) and to seek their intercession. It is a moment of spiritual renewal as we strive to preach the gospel and fight the evils in our society today”, says Archbishop Dr. John Baptist Odama of Gulu Archdiocese.

The Theme guiding the celebration this year is “OBEY GOD ALWAYS AND EVERWHERE”.  It was taken from the episodein the book of Acts of the Apostles, Chapter four, and verse nineteen: “Judge for yourselves whether it is right in God’s sight to listen to you rather than obey God”.

“Loyalty to God is a priority to every believer in God. I was inspired by these words of the Blessed Apostles to the Sanhedrin, which had ordered them to stop speaking in the name of Christ” says Dr. Odama.

An account has been opened in the Centenary Bank, Gulu Branch, where people can donate money: Account Name: Archdiocese of Gulu Namugongo Martyrs’ Day Celebrations 2019. Account Number: 3100059093.

About 400 African Catholics bishops are expected to grace the day.

 

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