A total of 201 pilgrims on Tuesday started their journey from Rushoroza Cathedral in Kabale Municipality to Namugongo Martyrs Cathedral for this year’s Uganda Martyrs Day celebrations slated for 3rd June 2019.
The group comprises of Catholic pilgrims that include 86 from Kisoro district, 22 from Rubanda district, one from Kanungu district, 64 from Kabale district, 13 from Rukiga district and 12 from the Church of Uganda.
They hope to walk 416 kilometres to Namugongo Martyrs Shrine within 13 days.
The pilgrims were seen off after a Mass held at Rushoroza Cathedral at 6 am, presided over by the Parish Priest Rev. Fr. Balthazar Ndyomugabe.
Fr. Ndyomugabe said that walking to Namugongo will remind the Christians of the suffering which was faced by the Uganda Martyrs who were burnt to ashes after they refused to denounce religion.
He asked the pilgrims to cooperate during the whole exercise for God’s blessings.
“This pilgrimage makes more meaning if you work closely with other members in the group. Share all you have with others in need so that you all successfully make it to Namugongo,” he said.
The Kigezi Regional Police Commander Richard Ecega asked the pilgrims to be disciplined and respect traffic rules and regulations to avoid accidents.
Fuderisi Kanyamunyu, one of the pilgrims and a tour operator from Kisoro, says he intends to pray for peace in the country and the stabilisation of tourism.
“We have experienced some kidnaps in the country before and others are scaring tourists from visiting our country. My prayer is that all this gets sorted by Christ as soon as possible,” he said.
Topista Tibenderana who is on her 9th pilgrimage, says she has had several blessings from previous treks.
“I have registered untold blessings through these pilgrimages. Every time I go to Namugongo and pray, God answers my prayers and that is what has kept me moving,” she said.
The Archdiocese of Gulu was chosen by the Uganda Episcopal Conference to animate the 2019 Uganda Martyrs Day Celebrations that will run under the theme: “Obey God Always and Everywhere delivered from based on Acts.4:19.