The Greek Orthodox Church of Uganda, the Christian church that has helped in so many and different ways the people of this African nation, celebrated the Holy week with splendor and devotion.
On Good Friday, April 30, hundreds of faithful Christians gathered in the Cathedral of Saint Nicholas of Kampala. There, the procession with the Tomb (the Epitaph) of Jesus Christ was held, with all its splendor.
Last year, the pandemic deprived a multitude of Orthodox believers from taking part in this procession but this year, due to the lifting of the measures by the local authorities, many people graced this event.
In his message, His Eminence Metropolitan Jonah Lwanga, the Orthodox Archibishop of Kampala and All Uganda, spread the joyous message of Jesus’ resurrection that the Orthodox Christian world will soon celebrate.
”Standing somewhere on earth, a certain Christian community is calling, chanting the theme of the Easter feast, the Resurrection of Christ from the dead, and the glorification of His human nature. By these events, all humanity is invited. Every human being is called. To come out, from the terrible darkness, from the ignorant and sinful state, regarding the nature and true end (destiny) of mankind. For, all over the earth, it is the true end of the mankind-the common good of mankind, that constitutes the number one puzzling question. Why am I existing? As a self and hetero conscious being? This is the foundational question of every person; to which, the Risen Christ from the dead and glorified is the international answer,” the Archbishop’s message notes.
”In the light from Christ the risen and glorified, we examine all the acts (history) of our country-Uganda, as a dominantly Christian country. And we prophetically proclaim that, in the name of the Lord God, we disagree with the “Absolutism of Relatives” followed by Politics,” he continued.
The inspiring religious figure of the Church of Uganda also noted that ”Brutality, defrauding, delusion, avarice, swindling, falsehood and all forms of disrespect to the human person, (debasement and killings), all these are vices generated by Political Absolutism of Relatives or Individualism.”
”Uganda is a beautiful and rich country (pearl), both in physical and cultural riches. But if we insist developing her on the foundation of vices, without building virtues, then we clearly demonstrate that, we have no ability (free will!) of choosing the Kingdom of God, instead of the kingdom of the Evil-one. Building our country on the foundation of virtues is at the same time a struggle to eliminate all vices from our midst (Mt 6:10).
However, eliminating all vices from our midst is not simple work. It cannot be realized only by spreading guns everywhere and security personnel in every place. Yet, neither the production of codices of laws and rules upon every matter does not also eliminate vices from our midst (Ps 127:1). The most important requirement in the process is to cultivate diligently the “free will” power within the Ugandan citizens. All of us we may become free persons to choose the virtues leading to the common good for mankind, instead of choosing the evils,” he concluded.
Greek Orthodox Church of Uganda recently celebrated a century of vital work
“We are Greeks because we got educated in Greece,” Jonah (Lwanga), the Metropolitan of Kampala and All Uganda said in 2019, the spiritual leader of more than 100.000 Ugandans who are Greek Orthodox Christians.
Speaking to the Greek Reporter‘s Anastasios Papapostolou, he proudly mentioned that his Church in Central Africa, under the Eastern Orthodox Church of Alexandria, celebrated a century of important work in the country.
“We celebrate the centenary of Greek Orthodoxy in Uganda. Starting in 1919, and with God’s help, we managed to convince many native Ugandans that there is a different faith called Orthodoxy,” the Metropolitan related in a 2019 documentary of Greek Reporter.
The Church has grown exponentially over the last century in this verdant sub-Saharan country. Today, “the clergy consists of about 80 priests, 105 Orthodox communities, schools, and a hospital.”