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UGANDA: New Primate Lays Out Mission and Challenges

NEW UGANDA PRIMATE LAYS OUT MISSION AND CHALLENGES

CHARGE by the Most Rev. Henry Luke Orombi 7th Archbishop of The Church
of the Province of Uganda

Sunday, January 25, 2004

St. Paul's Cathedral, Namirembe

Greetings of Dignitaries

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, all God's people here present,
ladies and gentlemen:

This day is of special significance to the Church of Uganda Christians
as well as people of Uganda. The significance extends to the worldwide
body of the Church. Today the 7th Archbishop of this Church is
installed. It seems like yesterday when the outgoing Archbishop
Livingstone was installed. His leadership was clear-headed, productive,
people-oriented and sound. I have many things to copy from him. I am
coming to build on the same foundation. I do thank my fellow bishops who
trusted me to lead this Church together with them for the next ten
years. I salute all Archbishops who have gone ahead of me with blazing
examples.

PROVINCIAL MISSION STATEMENT

The Church of Uganda is an independent Province of the Anglican
Communion worldwide, which subscribes to the Holy Scriptures. It is part
of the Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church worshipping the one true God,
the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. The Church is commissioned to
carry out Christ's mission of preaching, teaching, healing and nurturing
her people so that they may have abundant life and build an
evangelistic, living, caring, worshipping, peaceful and just community.

CHALLENGES

I will mention only five challenges among many others:

1. Towards a Sustainable Church

The Church has some physical resources such as land. This land is spread
all over. I urge that every Diocese have Title Deeds for every property
available. Do we know how much land there is? How can we use these
properties to generate the much-needed funds? Can we develop a very
deliberate plan for these properties? When we do so, we will be good
stewards of God's property entrusted to us.

Human Resources. The Church of Uganda has between 8-9 million members.
This number is strong when properly utilized. Many of these are capable
intellectuals. We have resourceful people in other areas as well. I urge
our leadership to use these people where they should be so that maximum
benefits can be derived from their expertise.

Social Goodwill For a long time the people of Uganda have held Church
leadership in high esteem. Can we provide consistent leadership to meet
the people's expectations? In the coming years, let us guide and
shepherd people accepting changes with open minds. The Holy Spirit is in
business in His Church.

2. Church House

I thank Archbishop Livingstone for reviving the Church House vision. It
is a noble and practical vision. We have not yet raised enough money to
get started. We have under one billion [$500,000] of the five billion
[$2,500,000] needed for phase one. I am taking over this gigantic
challenge. You and I can move it forward. I am willing. Meanwhile, I
thank the people who worked hard to bring us this far. May the God of
Creation help us to move forward. Together we shall get there and do not
ask me how as yet.

3. HIV/AIDS

The Church has a responsibility to the people of Uganda to warn them
beforehand to avoid burying many of them. We also need to care for the
suffering with compassion. The orphans and widows need our practical
assistance as a demonstration of our Christian commitment. I commend
those who are involved in the particular ministry of feeding, clothing,
treating and paying school fees of these orphans. Thanks you for caring
for the widows as well.

4. Uganda Christian University (UCU) Mukono

I thank Archbishop Livingstone for initiating this higher institution of
learning. This University has a role in building an intellectually,
morally sound and forward-looking citizenship for Uganda and Africa. The
demand for space for students is big. One word of caution: please do not
take more than you can manage; otherwise the high standard of excellence
can diminish due to overflow. I shall work with the University Council
and management in order to offer credible opportunities for our people.
I thank Professor Stephen Noll and his team for work well done so far. I
do seek the President's support when we shall bring to your attention
issues that need your intervention.

5. Loss of Spiritual Direction

Many of our Christians have gone away from practical Christianity. There
are cases of Corruption, Witchcraft including human sacrifices,
Overwork to make money without taking rest, Commercializing
Christianity, the attempt to come to faith for what you can get out of
it. It is like a "give me" club. Church attendance by convenience, i.e.,
Christmas, Easter, Funerals, Weddings only.

These are some of the symptoms of Loss of Spiritual Direction. I call
upon such Christians to revive their commitments.

MY PASSION

I desire to create room for the younger generation of our church. They
need: Acceptance and understanding from the Church. Involvement in
decision-making Guidance in their choice of career, marriage
partners and mentoring. Need for assurance that there is safety and
stability within the Church. The Church must practice honesty and integrity.

I am pledging my service to this end.

2. I desire to see the Church rise and shine: Isaiah 60:1 "Arise, shine
for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you." I
believe that the Church has a message of wisdom to guide the people of
this nation. We can live wisely and so make a difference. We can
strengthen our networking effort from Diocesan-Congregational levels by
sharing information, using technology, i.e., radios, newspapers,
television, e-mails, etc., to mobilize our people. We need to further
strengthen our positive contribution in health, education, counselling
and other voluntary services. We need to recapture our missionary
calling championed by Apollo Kivebulaya, the great missionary to the
Congo, a vision later shared by the late Bishop Festo Kivengere. He was
one many I greatly admired and I try to emulate. I desire to see prayer
becoming central in the life of our Church. The more we pray, the
humbler we become. When we humble ourselves, God will exalt us and heal
our land.

3. I desire to see the Church promote Christian values:

By appreciating our local music and intensify our worship as Africans
dedicated to Jesus. Our Africanness must be valued. By instilling
gospel-transformed cultural values refined by the fire of revival in our
current generation who are facing cultural crisis today. By teaching
true Christian family values, biblically based and traditionally proven.
Families governed by love. Co-habitation and other lesser marriage ties
erode the beauty of marriage.

PARTNERSHIP

1. With other Churches: The Christian Church has rainbow colours. No one
Church contains it all. Our riches depend on recognizing each other. Let
us share each other gifts and contribution. Let us learn from each other
out of humility. Let us participate together in the Great Commission of
our Lord to proclaim the Good News. Churches together should bring unity
to the nation. The future of this Nation depends on us for better or for
worse.

2. With the Global Church: We need the world-wide body of the Church. We
need teachers and technology from the outside Church. We also can teach
the Global Church passionate proclamation of the Gospel and Practical
Faith. This Church pledges to stand firm on the Apostolic Faith where
many Churches today lack confidence in the power of Jesus which we take
for granted here. Please humbly learn from us. At this time in the
Anglican Communion, we are willing to take the leadership role to
demonstrate that JESUS IS ALIVE.

3. With Government: Church and government have co-existed in
complementary roles in our society. This has brought harmony,
development and peace in many places. The Church is called to work for
reconciliation especially in conflict areas. To this end, I call upon
the Government and the Lord9s Resistance Army (LRA) to seek the way of
peace and reconciliation in order to weed out deep mistrust in the North
and North-East. This war must come to an end so that as a country we can
realise national political health. I commend Government efforts and that
of the Acholi Leaders Peace Forum seeking to bring peace. We need this
peace and God must give us this peace.

APPRECIATION

I want to thank the Government of Uganda for the freedom of worship we
have in this country. I commend the leadership of President Yoweri
Museveni for this. The Gospel has been proclaimed widely through mass
media as never before. Thank you for the degree of freedom for the press
in this nation. I thank the people of Uganda and the international
community for changing the face of Uganda.

I thank the retired Archbishop for his focused, exemplary and
enthusiastic leadership. I am grateful and shall continue to following
his footsteps and build on the same foundation.

I thank the Kabaka of Buganda for being the symbol of unity in the
Central Region. Sir, your wise leadership has brought peace to this
region and prosperity. May God continue to bless you in your leadership.

I thank the Central Organizing Committee members who worked so hard to
prepare for this occasion. Bishop Samuel Ssekkadde has been an able
leader. Thank you.

I have appreciated the overseas partners who have joined us today. Many
wanted to come but space and time would not allow it. Among them are
people who trained me: Dr. Christina Baxter, Bishop Colin Buchanan,
Bishop Harold Millar. Others have encouraged our ministry. There are
those who gave materially to the work of God we have been involved in. I
thank you all.

I thank Bishop Wilson Turumanya and Sayuni his wife for leading our
Retreat. They did the same when I was being made Bishop in 1993. I also
thank Rev. Sandy Millar and his wife Annette for preaching at this
occasion. His love for Christ has always attracted me. Thank you for
coming to Uganda.

I also thank my wife Phoebe for always being by my side. I also thank
our children who because of studies cannot be here today. They patently
bore the burden with us as we moved into more responsibility each time.
Members of our extended family have also made our home beautiful to live
in. Thank you.

Finally, thank you for your physical presence today. This function is
special because you have come. I commend each one of you into the hands
of the God of grace and the God of surprise who is personally here with
us today to grace this day. To Him alone be Glory, now and for ever.

AMEN.

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