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Sunday reflections

Sunday reflections (267)

Find all the sunday reflections by our priests at the parish here.

Christking

Theme: Jesus is a king of my heart

Each year as we come to the end of our Liturgical Year, the Church invites us to celebrate this great feast of Christ the King at the end of our yearly cycle of feasts and festivals that have manifested different events in the life of Jesus, Mary, and the other Saints. We are reminded that Jesus Christ is Lord and King. This Feast was instituted by Pope Pius XI in 1925 to deter growing secularism and atheism of that generation. The Feast declares that Christ is king and thus sovereign over all persons, families, nations and the whole universe.

WAR1

Theme: The future is embraced in the present

After a stint of several years in Africa, a European missionary went on home visit and returned after a few weeks with a fine set of colorful posters that he used to illustrate his sermons. As he had hoped, the pictures proved to be a great success. Each Sunday after the liturgy, many in the congregation would linger around the posters and discuss what they had learned. One day, near the end of the liturgical year, the missionary chose to preach on the end times and the consequences, both good and bad, that would coincide with Jesus’ return as judge and Savior of all. Before the celebration of word and bread, he set up the appropriate poster at the door of the Church and then went to prepare for Mass.

Sedducees

Theme: Our Father is God of eternal life

One of the saddest of all human experiences is the death of a child. Whether that child is four or forty years, the grief of the parent who suffers such a loss is spiritually and psychologically staggering to the extent that mourning may continue for years. As difficult as such a death is; even more unbearable is the death of a child or other loved one among family and friends who are not sustained by any belief in an afterlife. Once I was present at the funeral of such a child; a young boy in our rural area. He was an only child who was hit by the only car in the entire village. His family’s grief was too much to the point beyond consolation.

zacchaeus1

Theme: God waits patiently for sinners to repent

Here is a story that complements that of Zacchaeus in today’s Gospel. A lawyer with a well-earned reputation for arrogance and ruthlessness was married and he had one daughter. But this lawyer’s workaholic lifestyle left little time for his family and he further jeopardized his home life by doing whatever came to his mind. One evening, this lawyer walked into a Mall where a robbery was in progress. He was shot twice and critically wounded. When he regained consciousness, he had amnesia and was paralyzed. Slowly and with great effort, the lawyer was rehabilitated, not only physically and emotionally, but spiritually. As he gained a sense of himself, he became aware of the damage he had caused to his family, his clients and himself.

priestcollector

Theme: What is your perspective of life?

Christians often ask why God does not speak to them, as he is believed to have done in former days. When I hear such questions, it always makes me think of the people of the Israelites who often asked how it could be that God often showed himself to people in the olden days while nowadays nobody ever sees him. The answer is simple and here it is, ‘Nowadays there is no longer anybody who can bow low enough’. We need to keep in mind that the human psyche is by nature religious and to explore this idea in depth we have to put our finger on the prayer-pulse of human beings much in the same way that the Jesus does today in his parable of two men at prayer. One man approached God humbly. Aware of no one else except God, he prayed simply, quietly. So clear was his perception of the all-holy and wholly other God that his own sinfulness was revealed, and in the clarity of that moment he prayed for mercy. As always, when the sacred texts are read, we have to make choices. Will I pray in truth before God like the tax collector or will I preen before God and others and come away empty from the encounter?

mission

Theme: Stand in prayer and the Lord will bless you

We are what we think. A glance at today’s scripture, both Moses and the widow provide us with vivid illustrations of the quality of prayer which believers are to cultivate. From Second Timothy, there is another theme at work: ‘all Scripture is inspired of God and is useful for teaching, for reproof, correction and training in holiness’. In the Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation, Dei Verbum, Vatican II agreed that the books of Scripture are inspired and normative in that they teach firmly, faithfully and without error that truth which God communicated through the Sacred Word for the sake of our salvation.

dogs

Theme: Wealth, an opportunity for justice

What is the meaning of running after wealth for the majority of people in the world today? We may assume that people’s reasons for seeking wealth are universal, yet it turns out that there are some regional variations regarding wealth and the freedom it enables. Some of the wealthy people concur that their monetary status allows them to buy the best products and that wealth is a deserved reward for hard work. With wealth, some are able to earn respect, to be charitable, to be happy and to walk on the road to success. With these findings in mind, we turn to the ancient Near Eastern world, the home of Amos, Jesus and St Paul in his 1st letter to Timothy.

mustardtree

Theme: Have faith!

There comes a time in everyone’s life when one plays a game of cards against faith. It is the oldest of all games: You and Faith sit across the green table of Earth facing one another. The rule is that you go first. You sit and stare across the table at the backs of her cards. But you have a strong hand; you hold the uncertain cruelties of nature, the sinfulness of humankind, the sad facts of addiction, insanity and disease and the misery of the unemployed. As you play card after card, hoping to weaken and eventually breach her defenses, faith, nevertheless remains unperturbed. Faith holds in her hand certain cards you will never beat. She is a seasoned and skillful player. Be careful to keep your temper throughout the game, and remember that you play not for money but for love. While this may be an unusual way of speaking about faith, this description rings true in its insistence that faith can be our constant partner in life’s entire occurrences. We, for our part, are to be willing to accept her companionship, her guidance and her strength.

10lepersedit

Theme: Faith cleanses

To prevent prejudice, people who use politically correct language have attempted to eradicate potentially offensive terms, with mixed results regarding the value and application of these terms. With a little imagination, we can even envisage some of these notions of political correctness into the ancient Middle East world to see how the persons featured in today’s readings might have been regarded. Most of the peoples of Israel and Judah would have regarded Naaman, who was a Syrian, as outside the pale of God’s concern. Not only was he a foreigner; he also suffered from leprosy. His disease signified physical and moral imperfection to those who interpreted suffering as a consequence of sin. Considering these factors, the Israelites would not have found it politically correct for Elisha the wonders of God’s favor to a foreigner. By the same token, as is revealed in the rest of Naaman’s story, he initially regarded having to wash in the Jordan rather than in the rivers of Syria Tigris/Abana and the Euphrates/Pharphar as quite politically offensive and incorrect. Nevertheless, God, who is not bound by any human convention decided to include a foreigner, a soldier, a leper in the divine scheme of salvation. Elisha’s behavior, at God’s direction, anticipated that of Jesus, who seemed determined to ignore the artificial barriers that separated people.

prodigalson

Theme: Forgiveness

Is there forgiveness for Adolf Hitler, who led the Nazi regime in the systematic extermination of millions of innocent people? Is there forgiveness for the butchering that took place between the Tutsi and the Hutu in Rwanda a few years ago? Is there forgiveness for those who operated the killing fields of Luwero in Uganda, where regime after regime piled the thousands of bodies of those suspected of being invisible enemies? Is there any chance for forgiving Saddam Hussein, who ordered the torture and slaughter of untold numbers of men, women and children? Is there forgiveness for those who look away and do nothing to help all the victims of injustice, violence and hatred? Can there be forgiveness for the horrors resulting from the bombing of Hiroshima or Nagasaki? If anything in this long litany of questions has evoked a negative response from us, then the powerful message of today’s sacred texts has yet to take hold of us and find a home in our hearts and minds. If we had absorbed the message, we would have no doubt that it is essential to the very character of God to be forgiving. God forgives all who seek this gift of divine healing, regardless of the sin, however grave or however unconscionable.

moneyslave

Theme: Stewardship

Too often, the rich and even the not-so-rich are too attentive to their possessions to hear, to care and to act. Therefore, it is good for us to be here once again in the company of the sacred texts, whose living words are asking us: will you be stewards of your own wealth, or stewards of one another? Will wealth be the source of blessing for both givers and receivers, or will wealth and our use of this world’s possessions deafen us to the needs of others? If our wealth is our greatest treasure here and now, it may also be our deepest regret for all of eternity. These words may appear harsh, but they are not unique.

Jesus1

Theme: The truth in the cost of discipleship

The cost of discipleship is set of truth before us as the praying assembly every time we gather around the word of God. This truth, told through many generations and in various accents, has been shaped and colored by a multiplicity of different experiences and motivations. Because the truth is often hard to hear, quite difficult to assimilate and challenging to translate into words and deeds, it is sometimes rejected, is regularly ignored and even more frequently is relegated to a sort of waiting room of our lives until such time as that truth might become more convenient or less disturbing. But despite our every attempt to avoid it, the truth continues to speak. Like the proverbial 2,000 Kilograms elephant in the room that we would rather talk around, the truth remains. The decision to listen and to heed that truth is the daily challenge of every would-be disciple of God, of Jesus.

invite-the-poor

Theme: Contract or Covenant?

When he hosted high-ranking guests, former U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt was fond of taking them on evening walks on the grounds of the White House. Inevitably, he would point skyward and recite, ‘that is the Spiral Galaxy of Andromeda. It is as large as our Milky Way. It is one of a hundred million galaxies. It is 2,500,000 light-years away. It consists of one hundred billion suns, many larger than our own sun’. Then, after a brief silence, Roosevelt would grin and say; ‘now I think we are small enough. Let’s go in’. Roosevelt, even though he was the President, he was aware that in order for people to work together effectively and for truth to prevail, they needed a certain perspective regarding their position in the grand scheme of things. He realized that self-importance or a lack of the truthfulness we call humility militates against personal growth and interpersonal exchanges. When Aurelius Augustinius better known as Augustine the bishop of Hippo was converted to Christ in 387 AD, he was happy to share his experience with others.

door1

Theme: Living in Light

A young boy of 10 was excited as he told his mother about his interesting Sunday school and about all the new friends he had made. The boy was in class with Indians, Europeans and children from different African tribes, proud to have learned a few words in the languages of his friends. As his birthday was coming, the boy asked his parents if his friends from Sunday school could come to the party. When they objected, he became upset. Attempting to explain their decision, the mother said, ‘But those children are all so different; they’re not like us’. When the boy continued to argue, the father explained, ‘Well, it is fine to be together in Sunday school, but this is our home!’ As this little story affirms, even the best of us, the most loving and well-intentioned are continuously challenged to make our convictions portable, not just for an hour on Sunday or only for certain situations. The convictions that arise from faith in Jesus and in the Gospel must carry over into the rest of our lives in a practical, honest and realistic way. Otherwise we who profess to live in the light that has been brought into this world by God in Jesus will continue to live in the dark recesses of our own prejudice and fear. Today’s sacred texts call us to name those weaknesses for what they are and dare to live in the good light of truth, justice and unconditional inclusivity.

Mary 2016

Theme: Mary our Mother Most Admirable

This Sunday helps us pause a while to celebrate a woman who stands out as a model of discipleship for every believer. In order to truly appreciate the role and the person of the Blessed Virgin Mary, we contemporary Christians need no other source than the Christian scriptures. The evangelist Luke, in particular, presents Mary in a manner that encourages us to sidestep the maudlin sentimentality that has accrued to her through the ages. In Luke and Acts, believers encounter a woman who is simultaneously a mother and mentor. Mary is mother not only in the sense that she agreed to give birth to Jesus, through whom God has become incarnate in human existence. Mary is also mother in that she welcomed the living Word of God into her life and allowed herself to be inspired and directed by that Word in all she said and did. Even before she fully understood the consequence of the word God spoke to her and perhaps more significantly; even when she did comprehend the impact God’s word would have in her life and in the lives of those she loved; she agreed to mother the Word, to ponder it, as Luke tells us and to bring it to birth in her words and deeds cf. Luke 2:19, 51. For both of these mothering roles, Mary is blessed. “Blessed is the womb that carried you … blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it” Luke 11:27, 28.

oillmap

Theme: Keep moving

It is a common belief that a person consists of his faith, although religion which is cause of faith is so common the fact remains that faith is a rare commodity. Faith is the in-between space where you are not sure you will make it to second level. You have to let go of one thing, even if you haven’t yet latched on to the other.

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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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