Thursday, 9 November 2017


It is a great feeling to be with people. Many individuals prefer being in the company of friends whom they understand each other to greater extends. However, the people whom we surround ourselves with, always have a way to our day to day life. Their influence comes to us in both positive and negative bearings, but because it is happiness that matters, I find more heft in the positives rather than the negatives. I cannot imagine being in a society where persons exist in individualistic communities among themselves; people who consider their own affairs vivacious to the others.

It was not until when I come to experience the joy of being together, the warmth that comes with friendship, brotherhood that I show the meaning of togetherness. Belonging to each other is a possible experience but hard to find most often outside our homes. Survival in a community with a completely different setup from ones family is a challenge to many. A challenge which is possible to overcome if only one will recognises the beauty that comes with the presence of the other in whatever circumstance one maybe in.

Seeing the other as special and whose presence is as a gift from the creator, is the starting point of recognising the importance of togetherness.  It is through togetherness that we derive the meaning of our own lives as having the mystic power of Him who brought us into existence. The joys and sorrows we share as a people keep us going. In one’s low moment, he/she needs the other for consolation and in high moments still the presences of someone to share the joy which is very invigorating.

Friendship in any society is of great importance. It is unity that creates harmony and respect of each other. A community built in the spirit of love and togetherness lives in peace and happiness. Members in such a community experience that sense of belonging and of responsibility to one another. Living with concern of each other, love each and respect of one another establish a strong and firm community. Hence to have a potent community, we are entitled to work towards the building of a community/ society in the spirit of oneness.  For we all belong together.


The world today is experiencing a remarkable technological advancement. Due to technology, peoples’ life styles have greatly improved. Aspects such as industrialization, transport and communication have been simplified. However, it is important to acknowledge the negative effects of technology such as excessive noise. I will focus my attention on the counter part of noise, silence. In fact, silence is the absence of noise. Many of us associate quietness to events such as death and sorrow. Personally, I consider it as a precious gift from God because it is not only important for the religious, but for all humanity. Silence is essential in listening to one’s self, paying attention to others and above all listening to God.

Silence helps us to look deep into our selves. When one looks at calm water, it acts as a mirror. Like calm water, silence is a procedure to introspection. In Lavigerie community, we have retreats, monthly recollections as well as daily meditations. These aspects are vital for our personal reflections as a Christians. It is through quietness that we may come to a deeper understanding of ourselves. We then recognize our worth in the eyes of God, as his beloved children, though we have shortcomings. Aware of ourselves, we can control our feelings, emotions and share them more freely with our brothers and sisters. If a stone is thrown into calm water, it ceases to act as a mirror. Noise therefore hinders our inward journey.

We need to pay attention to our brothers and sisters whom we encounter in our places of apostolate. Before going for ministry, Jesus had a retreat when he fasted in the desert for forty days and nights (Mt 4:1-11). A desert is a place of lack of food, water, communication, music and friends. It is a place to listen to God’s voice. As aspirants to Missionary life, we are invited to go out and encounter our fellow Christians. Equally, as I go out, whose message am I carrying? Therefore, this is an invitation to listen to the Lord who sends us. Effective listening involves meditative silence.

Silence provides a favorable environment for encountering God (1Kgs 19:11-13). We can discern God’s message in our lives if we can listen to him. However, we are not Monks to live in silence but a few minutes of silence everyday makes a difference in our lives. A lot can be discussed about silence.  As St. Augustine says “You made us all for you, Oh Lord! And our hearts remain restless until they rest in you.” May God bless us all.  
By Kunta Philip.


A community is a group of members who share common resources with the same vision or goal. The perfect community is that of the trinity and a natural community is one to which everybody belongs. Community living started long ago from the creation where God was with the word and the spirit. It is also in the letter to the Hebrews to stay as community (10:25) which also applies to the Acts of the Apostles (4:32). Here at Lavigerie house community life covers three aspects that include: pastoral work, academic life, and prayer life. Lavigerie house is a community with various nationalities and cultures united by Caritas and understanding of each other’s personality. Our greatest concern is to remain in God’s love which flows from the spirit. I will try to share my experience at Lavigerie.

Prayer life is very fundamental as the common say: “A missionary who does not pray is a dead one”. It bridges our relationship with God. This is in two parts: community prayer and personal prayer. Community prayer guides personal prayer and the reverse is true. Prayer is all about changing our minds not God’s mind because prayer helps to listen to ourselves, reflect on our lives, and time to check on areas which need attention. St Ignatius of Loyola also said that “we are created to serve, love, and revere God” which can only be done in prayer. Jesus himself constantly prayed to the father and as his followers, we need to imitate him. Furthermore in John it is written that “never can you bear fruits without Christ” (15:4-9) whom we encounter in the Eucharist today.

Pastoral work helps us to connect with God’s people. This takes place in different areas such as out stations, orphanages, homes of people with disabilities, and prisons. We experience God’s love through the encounter of these people. This requires quality of presence to the people. Pastoral work helps us to share experiences of life among God’s people since some are abandoned from the communities. We give them hope, courage, and the body of Christ especially the sick.

To sum up everything, life is what you make it.  Community life requires humility, patience, love, trust, respect, attention, and openness to listen to each other. Mother Theresa remarked that “I can do something which you cannot do and you cannot do what I do”. This suggests the different gifts of each individual in the community. Let us accept the giftedness of each other since no one person has ever made a community. All this, works well in love, without love you are nothing (1 Corinthians 13:1-3).

By JohnBosco Magezi


Choice. How exactly can this term be defined? In the Oxford student’s dictionary, “a choice is an act of choosing between two or more people or things”. Jean Paul Sartre, A French philosopher, speaks about the freedom of Choice. According to Sartre, human beings are free to choose. We are not determined, which implies that we are what we make of ourselves or what we choose to be. However Sartre was an atheist, his philosophy can apply to many, if not to all human beings. It is good to keep in mind that the presence of choice is parallel to commitment. When one makes a choice, he/she should be committed to it.

Whatever one chooses, it is good. But let it be clear on the other hand. By saying individual’s choices are good; one should also consider the other person. This is very evident to us. By the fact that we are striving each day it shows that we make choices including the choice to planning the future.

We can all agree that being in Lavigerie house it is a choice. Choosing to follow Christ is a choice. We are all invited to follow Him but it is upon oneself; each one of us to accept Him into our lives. We believe that God called us to proclaim his gospel to the entire nations and this choice invites us to be committed and responsible for all involved.

Monday, 2 October 2017


Being guided by the Apostolic zeal and the call for service, as trainees to lifetime service to the people of God, we went forth to commit ourselves to right time inauguration. As they say ‘practice makes perfect,’ I feel it is necessary to add some things to the phrase: ‘a well done practice, makes perfect.’ Why does it need some flesh added to it? If we critically would like to serve the people of God as Missionaries of Africa, we need to put more effort and be more effective in the preparation for the ministry.

With the drive to serve the nation of God in different areas around Jinja, we hastened to be commissioned and be well equipped to commence.

“We, (NAME) and (NAME) O Lord, would like to bring your love, compassion and to make known the glorious splendor of your name to the people of (PASTORAL APPOINTMENT).”These were the words of commitment to Christ whom we believe He called us to serve Him as M.Afr. It is our prayer we may achieve our goal of reaching out to all and make known to all the Word of God. Amen.

Thursday, 28 September 2017


Image result for mercy of godHave you ever sat down and think of the Mercy of God? It is the very question to ask oneself every now and then.

In the monthly recollections as the Lavigerie family, we were blessed to be with Sr. Mourine, facilitator, who prompted us to reflect on the involvement of God in our lives. He always intervenes in order to bring us back on track whenever we go astray. This is the mercy of God.

Being the Supreme perfect being, the Substance, He is caring and always wants His attributes, we the human beings, to be close to Him. However much we sin, He does not delight on being angry as the Prophet Micah 7:18 puts it, "but rather shows mercy." He neither counts the number of times we go against Him nor the number of times He manifest His mercy to us.
Image result for mercy of god 

This is a challenge to the whole humanity, to be merciful in all aspects as He is to us. The act of being merciful and that of forgiveness are inseparable. As the Lord's Prayer ascribe, "and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us," we are invited to do to others as we ask God to do to us. One should forgive others as God forgives him/her and at the same time be merciful to others as God is always merciful to him/her. Matthew challenges us in Mt 5:7, "Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy."
Fr. Didasio, Sr. Mourine and the students.

Monday, 25 September 2017


Prison refers to the building in which people are held while serving sentence for crimes they have committed or while waiting for trial. This way of punishing originated from Greece Athens and it was known as a place for detention. Later the Romans adopted it as a form of punishment. This is the way people who have offended society were punished in those countries. In Africa such a person would face the elders and the society itself and answer the charges verbally and physically in front of everyone. In the northern Uganda we had the ‘Matoput’ which was meant for the criminal but administered by the elders of the society and the victims. In this way justice would be done. This kind of prison has been brought by the colonialists. The question now is, is prison helpful or not? Because it involves separation of the criminal instead of handling them communally.

I do pastoral work in Kirinya prison where most of the inmates are waiting for trial. They have spent a lot of time there. There are four main purposes of prison which include; retribution, incapacitation, deference and rehabilitation. These are the purposes for having prisons around and in this sense, the question is, are they helping? And what is their effect?

Retribution means punishing the criminal for an offence done against society. It is meant to deprive the criminal and make them powerless and learn in fear of doing other crimes. I see this being done in kirinya remand prison. These people are taught discipline, for example to never talk to any official while standing. They are also taught to be respectful of one another. But all this is done in fear not by will because if they do not do it, they are beaten or put in a room with cold water and eating a half of the meal for seven days. So we find them disciplined but out of fear.

Another purpose is incapacitation which refers to removing the criminal not to harm other innocent people. This is true in terms of the murderers, defilers, robbers, etc. In this case we find several inmates who say that if they go back they start from where they stopped and so for them being there is helpful. This was lacking in the African way of handling crimes because the criminal would stay and have possibility of harming others.

Another purpose is deference which refers to prevention from future crime. This makes the inmate be free from the same conditions he was in before he committed the crime. To protect the similar crime and its consequences a person is put in prison.

Lastly and most important is the rehabilitation. Unfortunately this is not found in Kirinya, all the above purposes are put in practice except this one. This is where this prison lacks credibility and helpfulness. In this prison, there is no concentration on attitude which can be handled in rehabilitation, instead there is focus on the behavior. That is why they look disciplined but with fear, they look smart but full of fear. They are also denied what they deserve to have as inmates. They are supposed to be catered for medically but they are only provided with what is available instead of what they need. They are only given a small piece of soap and a razor blade to use for four months, yet they need to clean their uniform, take a shower and shave their hair every day and every week respectively.

When we talk to them, we feel they are missing a lot. Several of them have been on remand for more than four years and others are innocent and others are criminals. They are full human beings with every human need which severally they miss. They are traumatized, depressed, with low or negative affection. These cause them sicknesses like pressure, ulcers and many other diseases. They need psychological help than physical help. The only hope they have is the presence of the religious that is; sisters who visit them, priests who go for mass and us the seminarians. We only reach the Catholics who come to pray with us. What about those we cannot manage to join us? Many of them are dying in the wards, it is not an easy life to be in.

Let us not condemn them but instead love them. It is true that some of them are serious criminals but others are innocent. This does not remove their humanity or make them less human. They are human beings like us. What is surprising is that most of the crimes (like one who was working in a shop and lost money) they talk of, some of us could have been victims but it is only by luck that we are not there. Some of them are there because of hatred, because they are shielding others, defilement, suspected murder because the dead person was near them. We are also inmates of the love of God, let us also share that love with them by praying and supporting them.

As we continue reflecting about the life in prison we need to think of the inmates as our brothers, fathers or even our friends whom we treasure. Today it could be there turn to be indoors but tomorrow we may not know where we will be. My encounters with the inmates have taught me patience. Each time we encounter them, they normally ask us to pray for them as they prepare to go to court regardless of some been aware they have four years before going to court. This challenges me in my daily activities and leads me to question my capacity to wait. This depicts the reality that the inmates not only wait to receive from us but have something to offer us in return. Each Sunday I get an opportunity to give a smile to my brothers who somehow have been labeled as outcasts by the society. This gives me much joy and helps me to reflect about the love of God which is unconditional and His readiness to forgive us whenever we turn back to Him. The question we ought to ask ourselves today is whether we can allow ourselves to experience happiness in whatever hardships we encounter in our life time?  


Saturday, 26 August 2017


What is a retreat or a recollection? “Retreat or recollection is a vacation with the Lord.” The facilitator said. It is during this time we relax with the Lord, we are able to sit back and reflect. Just like being in front of a mirror, not to close to obstruct the full portray of oneself, the vivid look deserve to be worked upon. Believing that each and every person is a rational being, one is capable of progressively grow and mature.

Humbleness is one of the aspects he highlighted and stressed on. Following example of our saviour, we are called upon to be humble. In the book of Phil 2:6, The Christ gave us a perfect example to follow.

Being silent is another important aspect during the time of vacation with the Lord. Jesus, though received severe torture, he kept the silence. On the Cross, he was silent and opened up to say good words and of encouragement, that is, He forgave the whole crowd, then to the repentant thief the same. And lastly He said “Father, into your hands I commend my spirit,” Lk 23:46.
Fr. Francis Kangwa with the students after the Mass.
Lastly, we should not forget who our Creator is. He is a merciful and a loving Father, just like the prodigal son’s father. Even though we relatively not faithful to Him, He still loves us unconditionally. In Rom 8:31-39, we are all brought together and made inseparable by the love of Christ and He is always there for us and nothing can stand against us.
Song: God is love
And He who
Abides in love,
Abides in God
And God in him

Thursday, 24 August 2017


For a long time religions have been perceived to be consultants on matters pertaining peace in our States. However, with this era the cup seems to have turned upside down pouring honey which was source of sweetness. This aspect is losing its meaning from day to day with religions remaining to be more of political arena chasing after their opponents. It goes beyond my expectations to think of conflict among those who are expected to be elements and preacher of peace. The big question for reflection remains, what will happen when the predator becomes the prey of the prey? This is a call for both religious leaders and the followers to read the signs of time and make a step towards transformation.

This leads me to question our motivations of following Christ as Christians in the first place. St. Paul in his first letter to Corinthians is categorical about the slogans that “I am for Paul, I am for Apollos, I am for Cephas, or I am for Christ” (1Corinthians 1:10-13). I have a feeling that this is what is happening today and cause of our divisions as Christian. Some of the shepherds do take an advantage of their ignorant and naïve flock to impose their view about other denomination. The aim may be to keep the flock in that denomination, but in the long run the consequences may be unbearable. There is a danger once the flock starts to perceive other denominations to be practicing idolatry or demonic. With our generation, I see a serious threat to our salvation and search for Christ I a sense that, a number of us Christians are losing our goal of search for Christ and instead invest much of our time running after our fellow human beings and especially those of other denomination and whom we consider to be our enemies, which is a shame. I do think that there is a state of emergency and which call us all to awake from our slumber and reexamine our directions and conscious. As St. Paul challenges us, we ought to question whether it was our priest or pastor and who instils in us the spirit of divisions, who died for our salvation? Answering this question may help us to make good choices in life.

On the other hand, there is a need of inter-religious dialogue in our current generation. Looking on the rate at which the world is changing with advancement in technology, it really affects all of us regardless of our religion. For example, the global warming is not selective of religion and hence, it implies that whether Christian, Muslim, Jew or of any other religion do suffer in the same way. Therefore, we need to embrace the dialogue for social action. It remains a big pity for our brothers and sisters who knowingly or unknowingly decide to give a blind eye to the fact that we share humanity. In some situations, it is not hard to find a Muslim and a Christian who are neighbors but do not dare to meet and discuss issues which concern them as neighbors on bases that they do not belong to the same religion. The fact that one prays on Friday, another one on Saturday and the other on Sunday does not deny the fact that we share humanity. It is always encouraging to find a Muslim and a Christian collaborating in different activities.

The central aim of engaging in inter-religious dialogue or ecumenism should not be to convert people to our religion or denomination (proselytism), but ought to respect each other’s choice of religion. This can in fact widen the gap between the parties and create more tension than understanding. Entering in inter-religious dialogue with a wide-minded can be of help in coming out of our naïve perception and stereotypes about the other religions. It really beats my understanding as to why we should be having misunderstanding when I venture on each religion’s golden rule because they all target at promoting harmonious human relationship. I do think that most are the times when we are driven by our stereotypes without first listening or reading about the other religions’ golden rules and so think ours is the only one which is human. If we enter in a dialogue with the other religions and dispose ourselves to knowledge we will be able to speak one voice. In the dialogue we should aim at unity but not uniformity of all human beings. I have a feeling that all religions can co-exist provided they are in the spirit of love for one another and in it our creator will be glorified and His will done.