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Theme: A true Conversion

At any given minute across this vast earth of ours, someone is committing a crime. Those who are apprehended must account for their actions in a court of law, judged by a jury of their peers. Usually justice is meted out fairly and the guilty reap the consequences of their actions, while the innocent are exonerated. However, there have been instances when despite the best efforts of law enforcement and the judicial system, it has been determined that a fair trial is not possible. If we apply, albeit loosely, this same legal strategy to the spiritual life and to the judgment that every sinner rightly deserves; it becomes clear that throughout salvation history that God has provided sinners with a Spiritual Jury. Called out of sin into a place of reconciliation, we should be able to make a new start instead of remaining in our guilt, sinking into despair and hopelessness. Without this burden, forgiven sinners are graced with new hope that leads to growth and wholeness.

Theme: Let God do

Have you ever had a burning bush experience? Have you ever known a moment in which you were so profoundly in touch with the presence of God that your life from then on was totally transformed by that encounter? Moses’ experience of God, as shared today in Exodus was such an encounter. There at the bush that burned but was not consumed, Moses knew the awesome presence of God and from within that ambience of fear and fascination he began to realize his true identity and his purpose in life. Burning bush experiences are fraught with absolute truth. There is no dissembling in that moment; there is only the sheer terror but also the great thrill of realizing who God is and who I am before God. This realization is followed by a further incredible awareness that despite who I am and who I am not, despite what I have done and what I have neglected to do, God chooses to be present to me, to call me, to grace me, to call and grace others through me. Paul’s burning bush experience happened on the Damascus road and the passionate faith in Jesus that took root in him that day is palpable in all his writings today. Samuel and Isaiah discovered their bushes burning in the temple. Each went forth from that experience resolute in his desire to serve God and God’s people as best he could despite the personal cost.

In his annual Lenten message, Pope Francis warned the “proud, rich, and powerful” that if they ignore the poor at their door — who represent Christ himself — they’ll end up in the solitude of hell.The pope’s annual message was an appeal for all Christians to use the 40-day season that starts Feb. 10 leading up to Easter to “overcome our existential alienation” by listening to God and practicing the spiritual and corporal works of mercy.

Theme: Changed from within

Most transformation experiences whether good and bad are an inherent aspect of the human condition. Transformations are clearly observable in nature as one season yields to another; natural processes are sometimes beautiful, sometimes frightful. When human beings participate in the process of transformation, the results can be similarly remarkable and equally ambivalent. For example the transformation of a baby to a child to an adult can be amazing to witness, but when that same human being is ravaged by a debilitating illness; one must look much deeper to find the person’s true loveliness.

Theme: Temptations

Humanity has always struggled with the question ‘where can I Find God?’ Some attest that God can be found in the faces of the poor and the struggling people. Others mention of finding God in silence and others in reflection. These six weeks of Lent is an opportunity for rediscovering God in a more organized manner not because the sense of God has been lost or forgotten but because this liturgical season offers an opportunity of deepening the ever evolving relationship which each of us shares with God. In her continuing effort to assist believers in their individual and collective efforts at finding God, the Church keeps us in touch with the living Word of God.

From the time we were children, our first question for Lent was often, “What are you giving up for Lent?”  Giving something up for these 40 days is a custom that, when we were younger, helped us enter into the season with a sense of purpose and a greater awareness of self.

As adults, we might want to consider looking at Lent in a deeper way.  We are probably much more settled into our behaviors and patterns of life and sometimes giving up something is where we begin -- and end -- our reflections on Lent.  It can be tempting to say “I am giving up meat, alcohol, movie watching or even all sweets and mobile phone attachments. But without more reflection, it can become simply a way I show God how strong I am.  It is more about me than any conversation with God.

To fast is to do without food.  Its purpose is to experience the effects of not eating.  It also serves to be a penance or a sacrifice - for the purpose of strengthening us.  When we don't eat, for even a little while, we get hungry.  When we get hungry, we have a heightened sense of awareness.  If, when we eat too much, we have a sluggish feeling, when we fast, we have a feeling of alertness.  Fasting is a wonderful exercise whenever we want to sincerely ask for an important grace from God.  It is not that our fasting "earns" God's attention, but by fasting, we clarify our thinking and our feeling.  It is purifying and prepares us to pray more deeply.

“I desire mercy, and not sacrifice” (Mt 9:13).

The works of mercy on the road of the Jubilee

1. Mary, the image of a Church which evangelizes because she is evangelized

In the Bull of Indiction of the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy, I asked that “the season of Lent in this Jubilee Year be lived more intensely as a privileged moment to celebrate and experience God’s mercy” (Misericordiae Vultus, 17). By calling for an attentive listening to the word of God and encouraging the initiative “24 Hours for the Lord”, I sought to stress the primacy of prayerful listening to God’s word, especially his prophetic word. The mercy of God is a proclamation made to the world, a proclamation which each Christian is called to experience at first hand. For this reason, during the season of Lent I will send out Missionaries of Mercy as a concrete sign to everyone of God’s closeness and forgiveness.

Theme: Here I am Lord, send me

This week, we are invited to consider the spiritual astonishment of three of the great ones within our Judaeo-Christian tradition, Isaiah, Paul and Peter. Each of the readings details the special call of these three men as a life-changing event. While considering the vocational experiences of these, our ancestors in the faith, we are also challenged to examine our own personal calls to conversion and discipleship. Although the circumstances of each vocation are unique, there are some discernable characteristics which seem to be common to all vocations. Because these characteristics are so rudimentary, perhaps they could be referred to as ‘the three Rs’, which are, realization, repentance and readiness. When a divine proposal is initially recognized, the person to whom it has been proffered enters into a process of realization whereby he/she becomes aware of God as all holy, all good, all loving and all giving. By the same token and as a result of realizing who God is; one also becomes aware of self before God as a person fully undeserving and yet totally in need of all that God is. This self realization issues forth in a spirit of repentance that looks to God for a healing that will bring both holiness and wholeness to the believer. The third characteristic of the vocational experience flows quite naturally from the first two. In full realization of God and of self and in full recognition that his/her need for repentance can always be met and answered, the believer stands in readinessto be and to do all that his/her vocation will require.

A few days ago, good size Cross has been unveiled at Mbuya in the compound of Our Lady of Africa Parish Church which is one of the places frequented by a good number of Catholics in and around Kampala. This Cross which stands at 35 feet above the ground and 15 feet under the soil; with a well sculptured image of the Crucified Jesus that weighs approximately two tones, has been built to commemorate two important events in the life of Mbuya Parish in particular and Uganda in general. The first baptism in Mbuya took place on 11th July 1964 which should be counting fifty year by now. The second reason is to honor our Holy Martyrs of Uganda who were canonized on 18th October 1964. The Golden Jubilee of these two invents was the drive behind this common but meaningful visible sign in a form of the Cross. The Cross and Jesus are inseparable.

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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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