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St. Janani Luwum Day: Dioceses to Host Separate Events

Jackson Omona, the chairperson of the local organizing committee of the St. Janani Luwum memorial, told Uganda Radio Network that the decision was made during a meeting between the local and national organizing committee of the celebration on Tuesday this week.
28 Jan 2022 09:45

Audio 3

The commemoration of St. Janani Luwum Day will be conducted both scientifically and physically, the local and national organizing committees of the event have decided. 

The day commemorated every year on February 16, is dedicated to the life and service of Janani Luwum, the former archbishop of the Anglican Church of Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and Boga-Zaire, one of the most influential leaders of the modern church in Africa and a leading voice in criticizing the excesses of Idi Amin's regime

He was killed on February 16, 1977, shortly after delivering a note of protest to Amin against arbitrary killings and unexplained disappearances of civilians and soldiers. Shortly afterwards, the Archbishop and other leading churchmen were accused of being agents of the exiled former president Milton Obote, and for planning to stage a coup. 

The next day, Radio Uganda announced that Luwum and three others, among them two government ministers; Charles Oboth Ofumbi and Lt. Col. Erinayo Oryema, had died in an accident in Kampala. In his memory,  thousands of pilgrims from across the country trek to Wii Gweng in the Mucwini sub-county, in the Kitgum district, where St. Janani Loum was buried. 

The pilgrimage preceding the annual St Janani Luwum Day aims at tracing Janani Luwum’s final journey from Kampala to his gravesite in Mucwini, Kitgum district.  But this year, because of the restrictions that came with the spread of COVID-19, authorities have taken a decision to split the event, to avoid having people crowded in one place.

Jackson Omona, the chairperson of the local organizing committee of the St. Janani Luwum memorial, told Uganda Radio Network that the decision was made during a meeting between the local and national organizing committee of the celebration on Tuesday this week.

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Besides the two major events, each of the 37 dioceses of the Church of Uganda will be expected to celebrate the event from their own diocese. However, Omona says this year, pilgrims will be restricted to between 1000-2000 only and all will be from within the district. He says this is to ensure that people follow the Standard Operating Procedures of fighting coronavirus.  

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Omona says there are a few activities such as pilgrimage and sharing the word of God among Christians, but all will be restricted to areas near the site of the event at Wii Gweng.

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The theme of this year’s celebration is; “Hope beyond affliction,” and it was taken from the book of Lamentations 3:21-25.