Friday, June 3, 2022

The Martyrs of Uganda: Discovering Their Heroic Witness

The Uganda Martyrs are commemorated today, the anniversary of the burning-to-death of Saint Charles Lwanga and his fellow royal pages on June 3, 1886. There are also other martyrs during this period who are grouped into today's feast. Each one has an awesome story that was carefully recorded from eyewitness testimony for the Beatification proceedings in the 1920s. They are the heroes of the new Catholic churches and peoples of East Africa who have emerged within the past 150 years. If you want to read a vivid, “page-turner” narrative of these events - with deeply human portrayals of many of the 22 Catholic martyrs, who included not only the court pages, but also adults, husbands and fathers, pillars of the community - then read THIS BOOK which is on sale for Kindle for $2.99! 

The original 1962 print edition by Mill Hill Missionary Father John Faupel used to be difficult to find “in the olden days.” Cheers for electronic media, for making rare out-of-print books widely available. An inspiring account of inspiring witnesses to Christ!

The martyr pictured here (not a picture from the book) is Saint Joseph Mukasa Balikuddembe. 

He was the King's personal attendant and head of the royal household. He was able to obtain religious freedom for Christians, and his teaching and example strengthened the faith of many converts. But he also fearlessly rebuked the King for his superstitious and immoral life and in particular for the execution of a Protestant missionary bishop. Joseph Mukasa was brutally executed for teaching the Christian faith and for his defense of Christians, November 15, 1885. 

He is a patron saint of politicians.