St. Paul’s National Major Seminary celebrates 25 yrs.

Saturday 11th November, 2017, St. Paul’s National Major Seminary Kinyamasika celebrates 25yrs in existence.
Homily by His Grace John Odama.

Your Excellency, the Apostolic Nuncio
Your Graces, the Archbishops
Your Lordships here present
Our brother Bishop Servilien from Byumba
(Bishop Reuben Kisembo from Kabalore Diocese)
Hon. Ministers and Members of Parliament
Priests
Superior Generals
Religious men and women
Students, Staff and all members of St. Paul’s Family
Dear Brothers and Sisters

I bring you warm greetings from “heaven” (Gulu), and cordially welcome you all to this celebration.
I am particularly delighted to be here once again to thank God with you for the Silver Jubilee of this Seminary, just after one year and a half when I was here to bless that beautiful new Chapel (19th May 2016).

Giving thanks, is something spontaneous and shows appreciation and gratitude. It is also a sign of good manners and civility. The history of St. Paul’s National Seminary leads us exactly to this. We, your Bishops and proprietors of this seminary know very well the journey it has made. Much as the duty of fostering vocations falls on the whole Christian Community (OT no. 2), we bishops have the obligation to train priests, who are to serve in the vineyard of the Lord.
The increase in the number of vocations (for which we thank God), led the Episcopal Conference to start this new seminary in 1992. I thank my predecessors, i.e.: Cardinal Emmanuel Wamala who was the Chairman of the Conference by then, and Archbishop Paul K. Bakyenga who was the Chairman of the Commission for Seminaries when St. Paul’s was opened.

We are very glad today to mark and celebrate the 25 years of existence of this Seminary. We are proud and happy for the so many priests who have been trained here. We have a reason to smile, to praise and thank God for what this seminary is today and for what it has produced.
We have heard the prophetic invitation to the people of God in the first reading:
- Shout for joy, o daughter of Zion
- Sing joyfully o Israel
- Be glad, exult with all your heart
- The king of Israel is in your midst, a mighty savior
I am sure that such words express everybody’s sentiments today; especially for Kinyamasika community. You are bursting with joy for the great things the Lord has done for you. We are here to thank God with all our voices, to sing to him praises. God has been and is in the midst of Kinyamasika. We acknowledge that what we have and what we have achieved is purely from divine benevolence. This Seminary has grown tremendously over the past 25 years. It has grown in structures, numbers more than 557and fruits (so many priests trained for the Church). The works of the Lord are indeed great. We are thankful to him and that is why in this holy liturgy we sing him songs, hymns and spiritual songs of gratitude.

Our heavenly father has given to this seminary much more than what we could imagine, as we have heard in the Gospel. In the three imperatives: “ask”, “seek” and “knock”, Jesus is commanding us to ask for what we need, to seek God’s reign and righteousness. St. Paul’s National Seminary is not a mere human enterprise, it is not an initiative to attain our own goals. But it is a fruit of God’s plan for which we have prayed and many people today continue to desire and pray for. Jesus himself commanded us that pray therefore the Lord of the Harvest, that he will send forth laborers into his harvest (Matt 9,38). With the so many prayers offered in this community every day and those of so many friends and well-wishers, this seminary has achieved what we see and celebrate today.

In the same spirit of appreciation I thank all those who have been behind this great achievement. In mind I have the very first Rector, Fr. Peter Isingoma and the staff he served with, Bishop Francis Aquirinus Kibira, who headed this Seminary for a long time as its second Rector (19yrs) and all the former and current Staff members. Thank you for your fruitful service to the Church.
Since the responsibility to fostering and nurturing vocations begins with parents, it starts in the families, I would like also to thank all the parents who offer their children for seminary training. I also thank the Foster Parents. Thank you for collaborating with God and the Church, to raise up shepherds. Your contribution is particularly important to laying a good foundation for credible, relevant and responsible future minsters of the Church.

As we mark the 25 years of St. Paul’s Seminary, let us renew our commitment and responsibility to form priests. Each one of us has a part to play. Let us support our seminaries and candidates. Jesus’s observation is still as valid as ever: “the harvest is plentiful but laborers are few” (Matt. 9, 37). The Church is still in need of priests, but good and holy priests who are ready to dedicate themselves to the cause of the Gospel, serve selflessly and lead many to the Good Shepherd.

Congratulations once again to Kinyamasika Seminary. We are here to pray for you as you embark on the next 25 years. May God continue to shower his blessings on this house of Formation, so that the good work which was begun way back in 1992, may continue with bountiful fruits. Amen.

The occasion is graced with the presence of H. E. The Apostolic Nuncio to Uganda, Their Graces J. b Odama, C. K. Lwanga’s, and E. Obbo. Their Lordships, J. B Kaggwa, E. Nkaijanabwo, J. A. Zziwa, P. Ssemogerere, M. Ssekamanya, L. Bainomugisha, J. S. Mugenyi, F. Giuseppe, D. Guzetti, M. Luluga. L.S. Wanok, and the former Rector of Kinyamasika for 19yrs-Francis Kibira.

Priests, religious men and women, politicians, foster parents from The Archdiocese of Gulu.

Hits: 432

Quick Contact

Please, enter your name
Please, enter your phone number
Please, enter your e-mail address Mail address is not not valid
Please, enter your message