The church has decried a spiritual loss of two years with no pilgrimage to commemorate the 3rd June Martyrs Day.
For the second time in a row, there will be no celebrations, no spiritual blessings and no pilgrimages trekking long distances to Namugongo.
Speaking to NBS TV, Fr. Joseph Muwonge, the in-charge of devotion matters at the Catholic Shrine said that the spiritual loss is unbearable.
“Making a pilgrimage involves nourishment, it involves spiritual growth of the believers involved and we really miss that,” Fr. Muwonge said.
Fr. Muwonge, however, said that unlike last year where they had no celebrations at all, this time they will try and improvise with a scientific celebration where a few dignitaries will be invited.
The spiritual leader however noted that despite these efforts, the physical event can never be unmatched.
On 3rd June, 2019, the Namugongo shrine hosted over 2 million people from across the world who came to pay homage to both the Catholic and Anglican martyrs who were killed fo their faith on orders of Buganda Kingdom’s Kabaka Mwanga between 1885 and 1887. At the time, no one knew that this would mark the last physical event before the Covid-19 pandemic ravaged the world.
Ochieng Bradford, the deputy chief executive officer of the Uganda Tourism Board said that as a country, Uganda has not only lost spiritual but economically as well in terms of foreign exchange.
Speaking to NBS, Ochieng said that: “We used to earn over USD 1.6 billion and if we are to compare this with the current forex exchange rates, you can see that we have lost a lot of money.”
The Anglican and Catholic church are expected to announce plans on how the scientific celebration will be held.