Thousands pray at Namugongo to celebrate Martyrs Day

Monday June 3 2013

Pilgrims at Namugongo

Pilgrims near the Catholic Martyrs Shrine, Namugongo. Photo by Abubaker Lubowa 

By Monitor Reporter

Prayers are underway at Namugongo as thousands of Christians commemorate the day the Uganda Martyrs were killed some 127 years ago.

The martyrs who refused to reject their faith in Jesus Christ were killed on the orders of Kabaka Mwanga in 1886.

At both the Roman Catholic and the Anglican Martyrs shrines, prayers started at 10 am.
Police and other security agencies have been deployed to ensure safety at the shrines and all pilgrims to the annual event are subjected to detailed checks before accessing the prayer grounds.

The mass at the Catholic Shrine is led by Archbishop Paul Bakyenga of Mbarara Archdiocese. Members of the clergy and the laity from the same archdiocese are assisting him.

At the Anglican shrine, the main celebrant is Rt. Rev. Timothy Yahaya, a bishop from Nigeria. He is being assisted by a team from the Uganda Christian University, Mukono.

A sizeable number of pilgrims came from Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo.