The Bishop of Ruwenzori Diocese, Reuben Kisembo, has pardoned three priests who were suspended in 2017 on allegations of sex scandals and abuse of office.
The pardon came during a church service at St Elizabeth Chapel of Kyembabe Girls yesterday in Fort Portal Town.
The priests are Rev Joel Manyindo, Rev Felix Bataligaya, and Rev Paul Mbusa Kinyerere. They all appeared in church to ask for forgiveness before Christians and the bishop.
“The Rwezori Diocese tribunal (under Church of Uganda) that sat on November 28 received the request of three suspended priests and decided to pardon them but they will be working under probation,” Bishop Kisembo said.
Since 2017, the priests have been requesting the diocesan tribunal and the church for a pardon.
Bishop Kisembo said the priests will work for unspecified probation in the newly appointed places but would not be allowed to conduct church baptism and weddings.
The bishop asked Christians to welcome the priests saying since they had been forgiven by the Church, they need to keep watching them as they serve their probation.
“The Saints according to the Church are forgiven sinners, welcome them back in the church,” Bishop Kisembo said.
Rev Manyindo was serving in Rwimi while Rev Bataligaya and Rev Kinyerere were serving in Bundibugyo District.
In the same church service 10 priests, nine deacons and 57 lay leaders were ordained.
Bishop Kisembo also cautioned the priests to avoid getting involved in partisan politics.
“As we are getting closer to elections, I want our priests to champion free and fair elections in 2021,” Bishop Kisembo added.