The month of October brings with it a wealth of blessings. As a country, October 9th 1962 goes down memory lane as Uganda’s independence day. As we commemorate the day, it comes to mind that there are many unanswered questions. Rhetorically, do Ugandans care anymore about celebrating the day? It goes a long way searching for the answer. However, the answer seems knit in Dennis Muhumuza’s article on Uganda’s Independence who while quoting John F. Kennedy: “Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country,” urges the nation to breed ‘right-beings’ to see the country to greater heights. Thus, there is need for complete metamorphosis; a turnaround in our ways and doings; bottom up; men and women of action and integrity who will inspire the best in their followers. This is our mission as countrymen.
This month, the church is blessed to have many shepherds of the Gospel as we hold onto St. Daniel Comboni’s words, “where the Gospel is planted, it transforms hearts.” A missionary, as Fr. Paulino Mondo exemplifies to Comboni missionary sisters novices while celebrating their first Religious Profession at the Novitiate in Namugongo, has no boundaries as the whole world is our community because ‘you have no limits – God will take you everywhere.’ As missionaries, we are reminded to always fix our eyes on Christ who was crucified that we can love him tenderly.
Fr. Anthony Kibira writes in the article on the impact of mission that the success of the Church’s mission will depend on our witness to the radicality of the Gospel manifested not by the eloquence of words but the eloquence of a form of life characterized first by continuous conversion.
We are therefore to manifest a readiness to be transformed by the Gospel; indeed, as Pope Francis always invites us all to go to the margins and peripheries of societies in order to hear the cries of the poor. Pope Francis, while meeting the leaders of the Middle East in Bari, explained the impact of the Gospel: “The Gospel moves us to a daily conversion to the plans of God in order to find in Him security and consolation and to announce Him to all.”
Fr. Kibira while citing the Second Vatican Council, in its Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, Lumen Gentium, that “the Church is in Christ like a sacrament or as a sign and instrument both of a very closely knit union with God and of unity of the whole human race” (Lumen Gentium 1) reminds us all in our mission as Church to witness to the true and living God.
We want to thank God for the gift of missions in our country and the entire world. As Pope Francis reminds us all “that religious who take vows in this era and time are supposed to be bill boards of the Gospel values,” as missionaries, our lives take a life of prophetic witness.
We in particular thank Fr. Sebhatleab Ayele who has been an inspiration to the readers and family of Leadership Magazine. You have been able to witness Christ to all through Leadership Magazine. You have been a gift of faith and contributed to a just and caring society. As you take on the next mission, we can only wish you God’s endless blessings to touch many lives.
In the same breath, we want to congratulate and welcome Fr. Anthony Kibira who has taken on the shepherdship of Leadership Magazine. As a true missionary, you surely heard God’s calling to be sent; ‘whom shall I send and who will go for us? I answered, ‘here I am Lord send me’(Is 6:8-10).
In your answer, always relive the words at the Second Vatican Council, in the Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, that encourages the Church to be present in order “to share the joys and hopes, the griefs and anxieties of the men of this age, especially those who are poor or in any way afflicted…” (Gaudium et Spes 1). We shall surely share in God’s loving kindness while witnessing to all.
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