‘Our pilgrimage brought us closer’

Primah and Alfred Byabagambi say since they started the pilgrimages, they have seen God’s hand in their lives. PHOTOS/ESTHER NAKALYA

What you need to know:

For these couples, the act of supporting each other during their pilgrimages was on its own a sign that God would answer their prayers. Although they faced many challenges, they are glad they took this leap of faith.

Primah and Alfred Byabagambi

Primah and Alfred Byabagambi who have been married for 10 years took their maiden pilgrimage in 2022. This year, the couple started their journey on May 16 from Kabira village, Mitoma District in western Uganda and it took them 10 days to arrive at their destination in Kampala.

Primah says she enjoys these spiritual walks with her husband because he always lends a helping hand and takes care of her throughout the journey.

“I am usually slow and often left behind by other pilgrims. However, Alfred will always come back for me and will offer words of encouragement when I feel like giving up,” she explains.

Her husband, she recalls, was not keen on religion until they started taking these journeys together. The couple reveals that since they started the pilgrimages, they have seen God’s hand in their lives and marriage and encourage others to follow suit.

“I have no doubt that even this year, God will grant us our wishes,” Primah adds.

 Honest and Denise Tugume Kyomukama

Honest and Denise walked down the aisle on April 3, 2004 at Emmanuel Cathedral in Rukungiri District. 19 years later, they have been blessed with three children.

The couple love serving God and Denise is the Father’s Union secretary at their local church. This year, however, he supported his wife by staying back to take care of their children while she walked with other pilgrims.

“Although he stayed back to take care of our children, I know he was also praying for me to have a safe journey. He has promised to take me on a holiday when I return home and this will be our chance to share about the journey and pray for each other and our marriage,” she shares.

Except for her feet that started swelling on the fourteenth day, Denise says she enjoyed connecting with God throughout the journey. For pain relief, she had a number of stopovers along the way that enabled her to rejuvenate before continuing the journey.

She encourages couples to accept salvation for a lasting union and is hopeful that this walk will move mountains in her life and that of her family.

“I expect that God will provide for my family and give my children wisdom as they carry on with their studies so that they are able to take care of themselves and us,” she says.

Issac and Fiona Tumwebaza

From the get-go, Isaac knew that Fiona was the one for him.

“We met in 2016 in Bukoto, Kampala, and at the time, and although Fiona was still studying, I purposed to wait for her,” Isaac says.

Fiona was also smitten because Isaac was not only handsome, he was God-fearing, qualities she had always wanted in her future husband. The couple are in ministry in Butawata Church of Uganda in Mubende District and believe that their pilgrimage this year has made their faith stronger.

“We left Mubende on May 24 and arrived in Kampala five days later. We moved at a slow pace since we did not want to tire ourselves out before completing the journey,” the couple says. They are happy that they finally made it inspite of the many challenges they encountered such as swollen and painful feet.

“The beauty about us moving together was the ability to share routines in carrying the bags which made the journey manageable,” says Fiona, adding that hopefully, God will answer their prayer to formalise their relationship.

Isaac tips other couples to make such commitments for the benefit of their relationships.

“It is better to seek God than hoping God will look for you. A pilgrimage is not a marathon. Couples can move slowly and together, they will be able to encourage each other to keep going,” Isaac says.

Denise and Patricia Ainembabazi Twesigye

The couple from Bushenyi District in wester Uganda started their maiden walk to Namugongo on May 20. Since Denise is a church leader at St Luke Church of Uganda, Bushenyi District, this is his eighth pilgrimage.

“This time around, I was excited to walk with my wife as we spent more time together for a good cause. We were also able to offer each other support and learnt that together, we can do anything,” Denise says.

He urges other couples to support each other spiritually and connect on a deeper level through taking these spiritual walks together.

“The journey was hectic but we enjoyed every bit of walking it together. We pray that God rewards us with good jobs and a peace of mind,” says Patricia. 

Rev Mephibosheth and Suzan Atwire Asiingwire

On May 23, Mephibosheth and Suzan embarked on their pilgrimage from South Ankole Diocese to Namugongo in Kampala.

According to the couple, they decided to give themselves to God in prayer on behalf of their family.

“We knew that if we join our hands in prayer, we will achieve greater things together. Whenever we got tired, we would pray and gain strength to keep moving,” says Suzan.

The couple says their walk will strengthen their faith as ministers to do God’s work faithfully and diligently since God had already started revealing himself to them along the journey.

Tips for praying as a couple

 •Choose a consistent time of day; before going to bed, after dinner, when you wake up. Choose the time that works for you.

•Spend time sharing requests as often as seems fit. This gives you specific things to pray about.

•Be encouraging and appreciative, many people can be shy about praying in front of others, even their spouse.

•Keep it simple. You do not earn points with God by making your prayers long winded, nor will your spouse appreciate it.

•Read scripture as part of your prayer if you are not sure where to start.

•Commit to praying together every day for a month.

Source: leadersgolast.com