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Aug 16, 2014 Written by 

A brief history of birthday Of Our Lady of Africa Mbuya Parish Be the first to comment!

The history of a parish Church is not the history of the Parish Community. But both histories, like many other great stories, hence a great deal in common; they are written by the personal stories of a great number of people. The Parish Church of an alive Christian community however, becomes the core where the drama of life unfolds and the different aspects of a hard but fascinating experience become a celebration.

The humble but steady beginning

In 1960 a group of missionaries took up residence at Mbuya Hill. They were known as Verona Fathers who are now known as Comboni Missionaries. They came to Kampala at the invitation of the Bishop of Jinja-Kampala with its Cathedral at Nsambya, the Rt. Rev. Vincent Billington who donated 8 hectares of land east of the City to them to set up a mission.

Bishop Daniel Comboni, their founder, had died in Khartoum in 1881. Two weeks before his death, he had written: “I have to confess that I have never been better endowed than now with true tested missionaries and sisters. They are all steadfast solid and unshakable in trials for this reason my plan which is a plan of God is to take the Gospel to the area of Great Lakes and Mountains that touch the Moon.” 

Comboni’s dream of reaching the Great Lakes which was part of his vast vicariate of central Africa will only become true through his missionaries. Descending along the river Nile they will enter Uganda in February 1910 and establish themselves in the Northern part of Uganda where they ended up becoming the first agents of evangelization. Comboni and his missionaries had a great passion for the African people because they were indeed among most abandoned of that time.

Fifty years after establishing the Mission in Northern Uganda, they land in Kampala to fulfill the same dream. The house they built at Mbuya was to offer Procure service in favour mainly of the distant missions in the north and Southern part of the greater Sudan.  All these place which were mere Mission Stations now are large Dioceses among the Acholi, the Langi, the Alur, Lugbara, Kakwa and Madi of West Nile and the Karamojong. The Fathers are soon requested to offer spiritual assistance also to the many people especially from the North and Eastern Uganda who had by now flocked to the Capital in search of employment. A very small chapel was put up attached to the house that housed the Procure. Few neighbours and friends began to attend Mass on Sundays. The Fathers also assisted the faithful especially of Luo origin in the Cathedral Church at Nsambya and at Christ the King.

Providentially in 1961, Fr. Tarcisio Agostoni, a Comboni Missionary was elected Secretary General to the Uganda Episcopal Conference and National Assistant to the Laity. He took residence at Mbuya. At that time Mbuya was part of Naguru Parish when Uganda was getting ready for its independence. More and more workers moved to the Capital looking for employment more so, working with Uganda Railways Cooperation. The little Chapel on Mbuya Hill could not contain the congregation that had gradually grown up. The Italian Community present in Kampala wanted a Church where to gather. A sum of 30,000/= (an equivalent at the time to the cost of five Volkswagen cars) was handed over to Fr. Agostoni. But the wave of enthusiasm brought by the 1962 declaration of Independence and the expectations of a newly born Nation went beyond the needs of a group. If a Church was to be built in a cosmopolitan town it had to be a Church for everybody. The idea of a Parish Church at Mbuya begins to loom.

Meanwhile, in 1966 the boundaries of Nsambya and Rubaga dioceses were changed. Mbuya becomes now part of Rubaga. Emmanuel Nsubuga, the new Archbishop of the newly named Kampala Archdiocese on 7th October 1967 wrote a prophetic letter addressed to Bishops, priests and Christians writes; “My Archdiocese has more than half a million Catholics out of a population of one and half million people; out the half million, about 300,000 people are located in  the  Capital City which has only five parishes. Because of this I have to create more Parishes with  Our Lady of Africa Mbuya being on the priority list because  the people in Mbuya are ready and the need it…” what had been sensed as a sign of the times is now felt as a needed challenge. From that moment this place where we are now became canonically raised to the level of a Parish. The current Church building which has now been expanded three times was a gift of God that we are privileged to have and cherish. In 1969 Pope Paul VI blessed its corner stone and indeed it became a like the stone which seemingly had been abandoned by builders now has become the “corner stone” cf. Psalm 118 in the history of the Catholic Faith in Uganda  and beyond.  What we are today as the Christian family who are happy to be identified as members of Our Lady of Africa Mbuya is but a marvel in our eyes that only God can accomplish. Today the 15th August 2014 we celebrate 50 years on the first baptisms that marked the humble beginning of this great miracle of faith.  Coincidentally this Golden Jubilee of Baptism is also the Golden Jubilee of the Canonization of the Holy Martyrs of Uganda. What a joy in our life. Like our Mother Mary and our Patron we can sing that “My soul glorifies the Lord and my Spirit exalts in God my Saviour” Luke 1: 46-47

21630 Last modified on Saturday, 16 August 2014 08:15
Fr John Mungereza

As the Parish Priest Our Lady of Africa Mbuya Church, I am responsible for serving the community. I ensure that the Mbuya Catholic community is vibrant and God fearing. I call upon you to join me in achieving this role. Together, we can make a big difference. 

Website: www.ourladyofafrica.org

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Sunday Masses

Luganda: 7:30 am.  English: 9:00 am, 11:00 am and 5;00 pm.

Crowd possible, please don't be late! May God bless you!

About Our Church

Welcome to Our Lady of Africa Parish Mbuya. We are located near Bugolobi Township in Nakawa Division. It is about 5 kms from the City Centre of Kampala. Mbuya Catholic Parish is a vibrant and diverse community made up of people from different parts of Uganda. We welcome you warmly and joyfully.

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