News from Uganda
The 2nd of August was God’s blessing for the Province of St. Francis in Africa, Madagascar and Mauritius because 9 of the novices made their First Profession with great joy and enthusiasm. These novices come from different countries, Rwanda 2; Burundi 2; Kenya 1; Uganda 4.
"May you feel rich in God's love this Christmas. 'For God so loved the world he gave his only begotten Son.'"
On the 2nd of August 2009, the Feast of Our Lady of the Angels of Portiuncula, during a Eucharist celebration that was held in front of the Novitiate’s chapel at Kakoba in Mbarara, Uganda, 8 novices made their First Profession into the hands of the Minister Provincial, Fr. Sebastian Unsner. They were: Carilus Onyango Kowanga (Kenya), Jean Claude Bakundukize (Burundi), Serge Bigirimana (Burundi), Peter Mburu Mwangi (Kenya), George Nintunze (Burundi), Samuel Njuguna (Kenya), Raphael Dunga (Malawi) and Conrad Mutayoba (Tanzania). The joyful and colorful celebration was attended by a large number of Christians, especially those living near the Novitiate.
In our Novitiate Kakoba – Uganda, Lent was a good time and penitential season of prayer. Before we started this season, our novice master helped us to understand better what lent is by giving us an assignment. To research on the history of Lent, Ash Wednesday and forty days; the themes and structure of Lent; the paschal Triduum especially on the themes, scripture passages, key points of each day and briefly state five areas of our personal focus during this Lenten season. This assignment helped us to get more information from different books of our library. What was remaining was to put it into practice.
I feel privileged to be in the novitiate in the year 2009 because of the importance of this year for our Order. Any visitor to our novitiate will believe me just by entering our small San Damiano Chapel. One will at once be struck by the big writings surrounding the San Damiano crucifix; “Dare to live the Gospel; the Grace of our Origins…” I have come to believe that Novitiate is the best place to ponder on these origins so that when I finally vow to observe the Rule and life of the Friars Minor, then I will indeed be sure that our origins are full of Graces.