KAMPALA MAY 15, 2018 (CISA)-Over 7,000 pilgrims from Catholic Archdiocese of Tororo have registered to visit Uganda Martyrs Shrine Namugongo ahead of June 3 celebrations.
According to the Uganda Episcopal Conference, Tororo Archdiocese will animate the celebrations on behalf of Tororo Ecclesiastical Province which comprises of the Dioceses of Jinja, Kotido, Moroto, Soroti and Tororo.
In preparation for the celebration, the host Archbishop Emmanuel Obbo will lead special prayer dedicated to the martyrs. A Novena will start on May 25 at Uganda Martyrs Shrine and will end on June 2. The Martyrs walk will be on May 26 from Munyonyo Martyrs Shrine to Old-Kampala.
Speaking at the Catholic secretariat in Nsambya, Archbishop Obbo said preparations are already ongoing.
“You are aware Christians, especially those paying pilgrimage on foot, start trickling in before the D-day, so committees have been formed to make the pilgrims feel comfortable and safe,” he said.
He also advised pilgrims to do medical checkups before embarking on the journey, and to maintain discipline and focus.
Earlier, Dr. Sam Orach of Uganda Catholic Medical Bureau, one of the heads of the health committee, said there will be free medical services available at Namugongo to handle emergencies.
According to Robert Kamiza, the Chairperson of Martyrs Kampala Chapter 2018 a budget of USh720million has already been drawn.
The Uganda Martyrs Day celebration attracts millions of pilgrims from countries across the world including East Africa, United States of America, Nigeria, Mexico, Malawi, Italy, Zambia, Australia, Singapore, South Africa, India, Ireland, United Kingdom, Germany, and Canada among others.
The theme for 2018 celebrations will be “Let us walk in the light of God as a family (1 John 1:5-10)”.
This annual celebration marks the commemoration of the heroic faith of the Martyrs, both Catholic and Protestant, who were burnt to death on the orders of Kabaka Mwanga II, the then king of Buganda between 1885 and 1887, for refusing to denounce their faith.