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Sunday reflections

Sunday reflections (278)

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

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.

Jesus1

Theme: Vanity of human happiness

In most cases financial difficulty can cause moral conflicts. On the other side, though money may be the husk of many things, but is not the most essential belonging. Money brings you food but not appetite; medicine but not health; acquaintances but not friends; servants but not faithfulness; days of joy but not peace and happiness. In fact one’s life does not consist of possessions. Qoheleth had grown weary of the futility of a life spent accumulating more things. He asked: In the end, what does it all amount to? His commentary on the human condition remains timeless in a world that continues to listen for the cash register as if it is a lovely symphony.

christ-teaching1

Theme: Thy will be done

Why do we pray? This question, asked by believers and nonbelievers throughout the centuries, speaks to one of our most essential human needs. Some argue that if God is omniscient He already knows all our desires; so why speak them in prayer? God also knows every human suffering and is aware of every act of violence, injustice, war and hatred, so why do we petition Him to help the tragedies of the human condition? God knows the future; therefore, what purpose do we serve by praying about what lies ahead? God certainly doesn’t need our praise, gratitude or repentance, so what good are such prayers? By the same token, why gather for liturgy? How is God served by our coming together? Some of our liturgies are more like performances than prayer, while others are devoid of passion and purity of heart. Amos even suggested that God was perturbed by what believers put forth as liturgy: “I hate, I spurn your feasts; I take no pleasure in your solemnities, away with your noisy songs” Amos 5:21-23.

Martha

Theme: Hospitality

You may often hear people saying, ‘let’s do lunch’ ‘don’t be a stranger in my house!’ ‘Come over for supper sometime soon!’ While we may have the best intentions, these casual interchanges often remain unrealized. Our lives are busy and socializing has become yet another activity to be squeezed into our already overscheduled calendars. Of course we like to gather and celebrate together; we are eager to reciprocate with an invitation to those who have hosted us in their homes. But how many of us offer hospitality to complete strangers as Abraham did? And how many of us feel burdened by what we perceive as an obligation as Martha did? How many of us are truly aware that our salvation hinges on hospitality? Unfortunately, some among us have come to think of the art of hospitality as an option that we can choose when it is feasible, but not as a necessary function of our spiritual, social and economic survival.

goodsamaritan

Theme: Wounded Healers

Here is a story that opens our reflection. Once upon a time a poor villager came to town to earn money for dowry. He made money, made his purchases and was returning home at nightfall with his donkey and wagon heavily laden. Suddenly, his wagon fell into a swampy pit created by the spring rains. A wealthy shrewd businessman passing by heard his cries, and he and his servant worked together to rescue the villager and his belongings. Then he roped the poor man’s belongings to his carriage and took him to his home. When the shrewd businessman saw the abject poverty in which the man and his family lived, he gave them a large sum of money and went on his way. Years later, when the shrewd businessman man died and was brought before the heavenly tribunal, he was reminded that some of his business dealings had been so shady that he would be sentenced to eternal punishment. Then an angel of mercy appeared with the heavenly scales to determine whether the good deeds of the rich man outweighed his sins. The angel placed on the side good deeds the poor villager and his family, whom the rich man had saved from misery.

priesthood

Theme: Mission!

There is one thing stronger than all the armies in the world: ‘an idea whose time has come’. Jesus came among us with such an idea. It can be distilled into seven short words: “the kingdom of God is at hand” Mark 1:15. In all his words and through all his works, Jesus clearly communicated this idea to any who would listen, telling them about God’s care and concern for every human hurt and need. In order to spread his message to as many as possible, Jesus developed a method of preaching and style of mission that reached out to the needy wherever they were. His was an effort characterized by mobility and those who followed him were also to forego the security and comfort of home. They went forth rooted only in the word that he preached, which they had allowed to find a home in their hearts. It is significant that Jesus did not delay the mission of the first disciples until their formation was complete. On the contrary, their mission was an integral part of the process through which they would grow into their vocation. The experience of those first disciples calls out to us as we strive to follow Jesus as they did. ‘Ours is an idea whose time has come, we are called to be on our way.

plowTheme: Discipleship

Discipleship is a costly commitment. It requires disciples to put Christ and the Gospel first, even before family, friends and the security of a place to call home. Discipleship is not a part-time job. Nor do a few hours of weekly volunteer work substitute for what should be an entire way of life, one that is so profoundly impacted by the person and mission of Jesus that he is reflected in every thought, word and deed of the believer. If we were willing to learn the meaning of real discipleship and actually to become disciples, the Church around us would be transformed and the impact on society would vivid.

jesustalks

Theme: Who is Jesus?

At the heart of this liturgy and at the heart of each one of us is the question asked today by Jesus: ‘Who do you say that I am’? We are well aware of Peter’s response: ‘the Christ of God’. We are also aware that the full implications of his response would only become clear to Peter and the others as they looked back on this moment with eyes enlightened by Easter faith. We know, too, that we speak our own responses to this same question not only with our lips that say the words but also with the lives we live, which show the world who Jesus is for us. In addition to this very important question, there is another life-altering question deserving of our serious consideration: ‘Do you think Jesus is dead or alive’? When someone we once knew is dead, we do not hear directly from them again. We may hear about them from others who knew them, but the information is only an echo of the past and not a new word in the present.

Jesusheals

Theme: Restoring us to life

A question that I have often used to guide a person in considering their own purpose in life is: For what reason do you take up space on this earth, consume its resources, breathe its air and do so for all the years of your life?  In answering that question, we find ourselves drawn to God’s purpose for creating us in the first place. We see several statements in scripture that provide guidance in answering this very complex and profound question. 

Consider “Every one who is named as mine, whom I created for my glory, I have formed and made” Isaiah 43:7. God created mankind for His own glory, for His own purpose. Most people go through life without any concept that this is fully God’s intent for every individual whom He created.  People tend to live lives that are fully intended to fulfill entirely their own desires, striving to get all that is possible out of this life for their own benefit, only to find that the gathering of the things of this world do not satisfy that deep and basic need for purpose. 

womanwash

Theme: Your sins are forgiven

Most of the time when people are arrested red handed in crime, after remand, when brought before the judge; the usual sentence pronounced is ‘not guilty’. This is the initial response given often by political and public personalities accused of crime. The web that is created by lies heaped upon lies, no matter how convincingly they are told, usually unravels at some point. Even then, however, some continue to cling to the fiction of innocence. What is lacking in each of these minds of wrongdoing is a humble integrity that leads sinners to own their actions and decisions and admit their guilt. British historian and politician Thomas McCauley once described integrity as the measure of a good person who does the right thing, even when no one would know whether you did it or not. People with integrity are those whose words match their deeds and whose behaviors mirror their values. Their honesty and ethics can be trusted. They honor commitments; they are known for doing the right things for the right reasons, at the right times. While numerous instances of integrity take place in public settings, the most powerful acts are often performed in those quiet moments when no one else is looking.

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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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