Nebbi Diocese Launches Sh1bn Fundraising Drive for Preparation of Uganda Martyrs Day 2024

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Nebbi Catholic diocese has launched the fundraising of sh1bn for the preparation of 2024 Uganda Martyrs’ day celebrations at Namugongo.

Catherine Mavenjina, the chairperson of the organising committee says this money will cater for everything needed for the successful event.

Mavenjina says they expect millions of people to attend this year’s Martyrs’ day pilgrimage at Namugongo, adding that from Nebbi diocese alone, they expect more than 500 pilgrims.

Nebbi diocese is led by Bp. Raphael P’mony Wokorach. Last year’s Martyrs’ day was organised by Jinja diocese. According to records, more than three million people attended the event at the Catholic Shrine.

Brief facts about the Uganda Martyrs

The Uganda Martyrs’ day is celebrated in memory of the 22 Catholic and 23 Anglican Christians who refused to denounce their faith and were condemned to death by burning at the stake on June 3, 1885, on Kabaka Mwanga’s orders.

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Mwanga, who was the Kabaka of Buganda perceived the new Christian converts to be  disobedient when they chose to follow “foreign” religion.

The converts have since then been regarded by many Christians around the world as martyrs and heroes of their faith.

The martyrs became so significant to the Christian faith worldwide that in 1920 the 22 Catholic martyrs were beatified by Pope Benedict XV. In 1964, they were canonised by Pope Paul VI, making them the first African saints in Christian history. In 1993, Pope John Paul VI made a pilgrimage to Namugongo and officially declared the shrine a minor Basilica.

Among the canonised Ugandan martyrs are Noel Mawaggali, Adolf Mukasa, Mbaaga Tuzinde, Achilles Kiwanuka, Anatoli Kiligwajjo, Baanabakintu Luke, James Buuzabalyawo, Gonzaga Gonza, Pontiano Ngondwe, Denis Ssebugwawo, Andrew Kaggwa, Mathias Mulumba, Mukasa, Kiriwawanvu and Mugagga Lubowa. Pilgrims to the Namugongo shrines usually pray to God through these saints.


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