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During Uganda visit Francis dedicates Anglican shrine to the Ugandan Martyrs

During Uganda visit Francis dedicates Anglican shrine to the Ugandan Martyrs

Archbishop Stanley Ntagali, Primate of the Church of Uganda.

Between NOV 1885 and JAN 1887 a number of Christian converts were executed by order of the King of Buganda, Mwanga II. In all there were 23 Anglican and 22 Roman Catholic Christians executed, including the English bishop for Eastern Equatorial Africa, James Hannington, on 29 OCT 1885. Historians point to much occurring in Africa at the time the 19 year old king sat on the Bugandan throne. Anglicans, Roman Catholics and Muslims vied for converts. And Great Britain and Germany both had the king nervous about European invasion of his realm. Attached to the back story for the executions is the claim that the king was angered by young men with whom he wished to have sexual relations but who refused his advances because of their conversion to Christianity.

Separate Anglican and Catholic shrines to the Ugandan Martyrs exist in near proximity in Namugango Unganda. On Saturday, 28 NOV 2015, +Francis visited and blessed the newly renovated Anglican Shrine Museum. The Pope arrived around half past 8 in the morning and was greeted by well-wishers who had started gathering in anticipation earlier. He was received by the Primate of the Church of Uganda, the Most Revd Stanley Ntagali. +Francis unveiled a plaque commorating the renovation, toured the museum and knelt to pray at a tableau of the martyrdoms. The Pope left soon after, escorted by local Catholic officials to the nearby Roman Catholic shrine.

The main image by Dominic Bukenya was published with the original story in the Saturday Monitor.
The image of Archbishop Ntagali is from the Church of Uganda website.


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Ross Warnell

Transated from the Latin:

Holy Martyrs of Uganda, pray for us

Philip B. Spivey

Gratis tibi ago. (Thank you.)

Jos. S. Laughon

Martyres Sancti ex Uganda, pro ora nobis

Philip B. Spivey

Lovely sentiment, I’m sure Jos., but would you be so kind as to translate for those of us who are not bilingual.

Jos. S. Laughon


Thank you. My Wheelock’s Latin is a bit rusty these days.

Gregory Orloff

“Martyres Sancti ex Uganda, pro ora nobis” is sort of Latin for “Holy Martyrs from Uganda, pray for us,” though “orate pro nobis” seems more in order, since the second person plural “orate” matches the plurality of “martyres” (“ora” applies to one person only), and the preposition “pro” (for) usually precedes not a verb, but a noun or pronoun — in this case, “nobis” (us).

Philip B. Spivey

Has anyone considered the possibility that THIS Pope, unlike any Pope since John XXIII, just may be the still, small voice of God?

Are we listening to this mortal who extols from the mountain top of the Papacy and who speaks of peace, forgiveness and love-in-action at a critical moment in the life of this planet?

Pope Francis offers us no parables to translate, just plain-speech which, like Jesus’, may go unheeded.

Except now, we don’t have another 2,000 years to get it right.

Ann Fontaine

I am glad to see that the Pope did not use this as an opportunity to demonize gay men which is often how this event is cast.

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