By Sahamim Nateebwa & Cissy Makumba
The Archbishop of the Church of Uganda, Stanley Ntagali has urged Ugandans to celebrate Archbishop Janani Luwum whose courage and vision will live for generations.
The country today commemorates the 41st anniversary to mark the martyrdom of Janani Luwum Day, a special time designated to remember the life of the church leader who was killed by operatives of the Amin regime on 16 February 1977.
Archbishop Ntagali says Luwum’s courage should be celebrated because he stood firm in tough times and preached the gospel uncompromisingly.
He adds that this day was declared public holiday to give an opportunity for young people who did not see Luwum to celebrate his life.
In the same stride, the State Minister for Ethics and Integrity Father Simon Lokodo, is urging all institutions including schools to respect the day.
Luwum became Archbishop of Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and Boga-Zaire in 1974.
The main celebrations are held in Mucwini, Kitgum district, at Luwum’s ancestral home where more than 5,000 Christians from different walks of life are expected to attend the event.
The Chairperson organizing committee also the Kitgum District Chairperson Jackson Omona says all preparations have been made to ensure the day is celebrated colorfully.
“We are ready and set to host more than 5,000 Christians from different walks of lives. We expect this year’s ceremony to be unique and colorful,” Mr Omona said.
He says more than 1,000 pilgrims from Acholi sub region under the Northern Uganda Diocese, Bukedi, Karamoja and Lango sub-regions have already made their way to the memorial grounds.
According to Omona security at the memorial grounds has been heightened to ensure the safety of the pilgrims and guests who will attend the memorial prayers.
The Kitgum Diocese care taker Bishop John Charles Odur Kami said this year’s commemoration has been drawn from the book of Isaiah Chapter 43:18-19.
He noted that the commemoration will be to celebrate St Janani Luwum’s life and legacy but not a day of mourning.
“We are not going to mourn St Janani Luwum, we are going to celebrate his life. He has done some of the amazing things for this country that few others did, he liberated our country through his sacrifice…,” he said.