Highlights from the Centenary Inauguration and thanksgiving

On Tuesday, 7th September 2021, the Senatus of Uganda had Mass to thank God for the 100 years of the founding of Legion of Mary and to also inaugurate the celebrations that will last one year.

Legion of Mary Altar
Legion of Mary altar with a Vexillum brought by Edel Quinn to the first meeting of the first Praesidium in Nsambya

The order of songs and the readings on that day can be downloaded from HERE.

We have also shared the homily of His Lordship Bishop Paul Ssemogerere, the main celebrant on that day.

After Mass, we had a few speeches;

  • The President of the Senatus of Uganda in her speech thanked the Church Hierarchy for the continuous guidance, support and encouragement received from Bishops and Priests more so the Spiritual Directors. She recognized the contribution by the past members and officers of the Legion of Mary and thanked the current officers for the great work they are doing to keep the candle of Legion of Mary burning. Click HERE to read the full speech is here.
  • The President of UNCCLA (Uganda National Council of Lay Apostolate), a body that brings together the Laity in Uganda, Mr. Gervase Ndyanabo congratulated the Legionaries on behalf of the Lay faithful in Uganda for the work they were doing for the Church. He reminded the Legionaries that the celebration is not just about the passing of time but the milestone of the many achievements through the Legion of Mary apostolate. He thanked the Legionaries for being a perfect example of what the bishop described in the homily, “the love of God and the love of neighbor”.
  • The Senatus Assistant Spiritual Director, Rev. Fr. Ronnie Mubiru welcomed and introduced all the 20 Spiritual Directors present. They included priests from all ecclesiastical provinces in Uganda and a priest from South Sudan. Fr. delivered the messages from the Apostolic Nuncio to Uganda, H.E. Luigi Bianco and that of H.E. Emmanuel Cardinal Wamala. (These and other messages from the bishops will be reflected in the Centenary memorial magazine). The Spiritual Director extended the gratitude to the late Archbishop Kizito Lwanga and Fr. Walakira for the contribution to the Legion of Mary.
  • The Executive Secretary of the Lay Apostolate Department at the Catholic Secretariat, Rev. Fr. Fred Tusingire congratulated the Legionaries upon the Centenary and thanked the officers for working closely with the Uganda Episcopal Conference through the Lay apostolate department whose commission, the main celebrant heads. He emphasised the fact that Legion of Mary is not for the old or for the illiterate-it is for everyone. He gave examples of the past presidents of the Legion of Mary that include Professors, Lawyer among others.
  • Bishop Paul Ssemogerere thanked everyone present and following the celebration and more especially the Spiritual Directors from different parts of the Country. He thanked the Legionaries for praying for the Priests and requested them to also pray for the society especially the moral decadence that is in the society. He made a special request to the Legionaries to continue the culture of visiting hospitals. For those who visit homes, encourage them as it is very important for the evangelisers. He also requested Legionaries to support in giving catechisis to the children especially in these trying times of CoVID-19 emulating the Uganda Martyrs that continued the work after the departure of Fr. Simeon Lourdel Mapeera and Br. Amans Delmas. He reminded us in this Centenary, the words of St. John Paul II, Pope, “Let us remember the past with gratitude, live the present with enthusiasm, and look forward to the future with confidence”.
Centenary of the Legion of Mary in Uganda
Some of the Spiritual Directors after Mass

Centenary theme song

The Centenary theme song that was composed by Br. Adulfu Abaho, a student at Mulago Paramedical and sang by the DDC Cassettes is available on our Youtube channel on this LINK.

Centenary Candle

The Centenary Candle was lit by the bishop and handed over to the officers of the Senatus of Uganda. The Candle will be moved to all the dioceses in Uganda during the celebration of the Centenary of the Legion of Mary.

Legion of Mary Centenary Candle
The Bishop lighting the Centenary Candle

Centenary memorial tree

In memory of the Centenary, a tree was planted by Bishop Paul Ssemogerere at the Legion of Mary house in Nsambya Parish.

Legion of Mary Centenary Memorial tree in Uganda
Bishop planting the Centenary Memorial tree

Diocesan Celebrations

Each of the 19 Dioceses in Uganda should organise Mass of thanksgiving (with the Bishop in attendance, where possible) between September 2021 and September 2022. At that Mass, the souls of the departed legionaries from that diocese will be prayed for.

Comitia at the dioceses are requested to organise. For the dioceses without the Comitia, the Curia should organise otherwise a Praesidium at the diocese.

A Social and light refreshments served afterwards would mark the occasion.

Endeavor to notify the organising Committee or send an email to senatusofuganda@gmail.com regarding the preparations.

The Mass at the diocese will be the climax of the Centenary Celebrations.

The Centenary Inauguration and thanksgiving Mass recording is available on our youtube Channel this LINK. We shall prepare a few DVDs with the recording of the Mass.

Senatus of Uganda Officers
Senatus of Uganda Officers and some of the past Presidents