Cyclone Times Uganda has compiled for you a full biography of the Catholic Holy Uganda Martyrs… Therefore ensure you share this piece of information with your loved ones…
ST. JOSEPH MUKASA BALIKUDDEMBE
He is the Ugandan pro-martyr in the history of Uganda Martyrs. He was born at Lusinga, Mitala Maria Parish in 1860. His father was Njubeseeta Mugerere Bakirabye of Kayozi and his mother was Maria Sara Kajwaayo a munyamwenge from Tooro. Brought up by his paternal uncle, Mazinga, he finally stayed in the enclosure of Chief Lukayi Kifuko Kabazzi from where he was taken as a page to King Muteesa I palace at Nabulagala aged about 14 years.
He was tall, very brown, strong and stout, very handsome and dignified with a clear and strong voice. In addition, he was a skilled wrestler and accomplished runner too. He first went to the protestant missionaries for instruction and then joined the catholic missionaries on 2nd October 1880. He was baptized on 30th April 1882.
Because of his great human and Christian virtues and dedication and commitment to both the King and Christianity, he was given several names ( Mugasa.
In addition, the useful one, Balikuddembe (Christians are at peace), Batuuka (he never forgot his friends when he received a place of honor in Palace, Kirimaanyi, the strong one.
He was an exceptionally gifted leader who organized the neophytes and catechumens and kept the faith alive during the self-imposed exile of the missionaries. MUKASA BALIKUDDEMBE was a strong and courageous defender of the rights of others like in the case of Bishop Hannington. He had no scruples in telling the king the evils he did. He was a great planner and organizer. JOSEPH MUKASA was a very deeply convinced catholic, teacher of the faith, defender it, and a strong apologist of the faith.
He served faithfully the two kings, Muteesa I and Mwanga until due to the jealousies and malice of Kintu the Prime Minister; JOSEPH MUKASA was handed over to him by Mwanga to be killed. Balikuddembe was beheaded and his body burnt on Sunday, November 15, 1885, at the age of twenty-six. He was the first Catholic Martyr. Balikuddembe is Patron of politicians and chiefs.
ST. DENNIS SSEBUGGWAWO WASSWA
Wasswa is one of the Uganda Martyrs, and he is the second martyr to be killed. He was born at Kigolooba, Wakyaato, in Bulemeezi, Kijjaguzo Parish around 1869. His father was Kajjansi Ssebuggwawo of the Musu clan and his mother was Maria Nsonga Nabalongo from Busoga. He was calm, relaxed, rather quiet but jolly, gentle, and acting maturely, free from vulgar language.
He had a very good voice and good at singing. WASSWA was taken to the palace to serve as Mwanga’s page when he was about 14 years old. He was baptized on 17th November 1885. He was a very pious and zealous Christian, always willing to teach others the catholic faith, an example of which is Muwafu whom he was teaching and that became the source of his brutal death on 25th May 1886. Severely scourged by King Mwanga, he was killed the following morning at Munyonyo. He was very humble and zealous for the faith. He is the Patron of singers, musicians, and others.
ST. ATHANASIUS BAZZEKUKETTA KIZZA
He was the fifth to be martyred. He was born at Mukuma Bulemeezi in Mulajje Parish around 1866. His father was Kafeero Ssebaggala Kabaalu of the Nkima clan and his mother was Namukwaya of the Mbogo clan. He was very trustworthy. He was a clean, orderly, faithful, and obedient person. KIZZA was in charge of the King’s ceremonial robes and ornaments.
He was also in charge of the King’s treasury and ivory. In addition, he joined Catholicism and became an ardent catechumen. KIZZA was baptized on 17th November 1885. When he was arrested, he was eager and happy to die for Jesus Christ. The next morning on their way to Namugongo, Mukaajanga asked, “Who would like to be killed here where your Christian leader Balikuddembe was killed?”
At once Athanasius answered: “Here I am. Why delay me and take me all the way to Namugongo as if death cannot be met here?” He was then speared to death at Nakivubo on May 27th, 1886, aged twenty. He is the Patron of those in charge of finance, treasury, and banks.
ST. GONZAGA GONZANGONZABATO
He was the sixth to be martyred. GONZANGONZABATO was born around 1862 in Busoga, the son of Gonzabato. In addition, he was kidnapped when still a child and brought to Buganda and grew up in the family of Nkambo Buluusi who treated him as his own son. Gonzaga behaved well and was obedient, exceptionally kind, trustworthy, intelligent, and hardworking. He was taken to King Muteesa’s palace aged about 12 years.
He first professed Islam, the Protestantism, and later became a catholic being baptized on17th November 1885. Gonzaga was a zealous and pious Catholic. He decided to go to prison on behalf of Namulabira who had been falsely accused of befriending princesses and Nakya, one of the king’s wives.
Gonzaga was arrested at Munyonyo and spent the night in chains. The executioners failed to remove them. But Gonzaga was determined to drag the chains fastening his bleeding legs to Namugongo. On the way, he collapsed and was speared to death by Mukajanga and died on May 27th, 1886 at the age of twenty-four. Gonzaga is the Patron of prisoners, travelers, the ill-treated, and those in trouble.
ST. MATTHIAS KALEMBA MULUMBA WANTE
He was the seventh martyr. He was born at Kyebando in Bunya, in Busoga around 1836. His father was Nandigobe. He was kidnapped when he was about 10 years and brought to Buganda. He was adopted by Mr. Tomusange that made him his own son. He was tall, with a deep voice, kind and humble. Before he died Tomusange had told foretold the coming of white messengers of true religion and asked his son to follow them.
With this on the back of his mind Kalemba from Islam, to Protestantism, until he settled with Catholicism. Because of his faithfulness and sense of justice, he was soon promoted to various posts. He had many wives but fought hard to remain with one as his legal wife. Mulumba was faithful, courageous, penitent, and a powerful leader. He loved the faith, lived it exemplarily, taught it to others, and defended it. MULUMBA was an ascetic. He was very much devoted to the Blessed Virgin Mary.
MULUMBA brought Catholicism to Ssingo and Mityana and also taught it in Buddu. He was baptized on 28th May 1882. However, he died the most brutal 4 and lingering death at Old Kampala from May 27 to 30, 1886. His limbs were cut off first, strips of flesh cut from his back and he remained in that condition without a complaint for three days, praying for his country and executioners. He was about 50 years of age. MULUMBA was the ideal chief and follower of Jesus Christ, meek and humble. He used to fast and make mortifications. Mulumba is the Patron of chiefs and families.
ST. NOAH MAWAGGALI
He was the eighth martyr. He was born at Nkazebuku, Bujubi, Kiyinda Parish around 1852. His father was Musaazi of the Ngabi clan and his mother was Valeria Meeme. Mawaggali was kind, honest, trustworthy, just and industrious with an incredibly good working ethic that made him learn types of work like pottery, backcloth making, simple carpentry, and leathering.
Due to his skills in pottery, trustworthiness, orderliness, and cooperation, Noa Mawaggali was popular. He came to know about Christianity through Matia Kalemba who taught him Protestantism, but when the catholic missionaries came, they both became Catholics. Mawaggali was baptized on 1st November 1885 by Pere Mapeera. One early morning on May 31st, 1886, during the hunt for Christians in Mityana – Singo, Noa Mawaggali was arrested and speared to death.
His body was afterward tied to a fig-tree, where dogs bit him up, and finally, his wounded body was thrown into the road junction to frighten the Christians. He had special virtues of humility, mortification, courage in professing the faith, defending and teaching it, and committed to work. He is the Patron of the poor, the technicians, and the artists.
ST. CHARLES LWANGA
He was the ninth to be martyred. Charles Lwanga was born between 1860-1861 at Kasanje Birinzi. He is a real Munnabuddu, the son of Mr. Mabingo of Ngabi Clan and Mrs. Gwokiiya of Kasimba. He was the last born of his siblings and grew up in the Enclosure of chief Mawulugungu of Kyaato that had married his paternal aunt Mukangula Batamiivu.
Here he learned the art of governance and administration. Between 1878-1879, Lwanga and his friends used to be sent to the capital by chief Mawulugungu and in so doing they came into contact with the Catholic missionaries. This contact became more frequent when chief Mawulungungu was transferred to Singo.
Lwanga was handsome, brown, tall, strong and stately, kind, industrious, and committed to duty.
CHARLES LWANGA was taken into service by King Mwanga by Mukasa Balikuddembe in 1882. Above all, he was an excellent and gifted leader full of creativity and initiative. In addition, he was humane, honest, trustworthy, cultured, and full of civility. Lwanga, however, helped to dig the Kabaka’s lake and governed the pages with incredible wisdom.
He was baptized on 15th November 1885. Also, he was an exceptional leader of the Christians. Lwanga is admired for his strong faith, his piety, and practice of the virtue of religion, his concern for the salvation of others, and untainted virtue of chastity. CHARLES LWANGA was a man of unshakable faith and bravery sustaining and strengthening his brothers during the persecution period.
CHARLES LWANGA was brutally and bizarrely murdered by his avenger, Ssenkoole, separating him from the group and burning him in a slow fire from foot to head at Namugongo Busaale to give him maximum pain on 3rd of June 1886 towards noon. He was only twenty-five years old. He died praying for the conversion of the executioners and the King. St. Charles Lwanga is the Patron of the African youths and Catholic Apostolic Action, a mission in which all Christians participate.
ST. LUKE BAANABAKINTU
He was born in Ntolomwe in Butambala, Mitala Maria Parish around 1852. His father was Mukwanga of the Mmamba clan and his mother was Kusuubiza of Nvuma clan. LUKE BAANABAKINTU was prudent, friendly, trustworthy, and calm. He was a backcloth maker and blacksmith. He was in charge of the fishermen on Lake Wamala and the wood-cutters.
Therefore Luke was a cheerful, alert, and respectful person. The Christians of Mityana used to send him on foot to Kampala, a distance of forty miles, for the Priest’s Sunday sermons, which he would commit to his memory and relate the same to Matthias Mulumba who would repeat it to the Sunday congregation there at his home. He was baptized on 28th May 1882. He died at Namugongo on June 3, 1886, at the age of thirty. St Luke Baanabakintu is the Patron of fishermen, sailors’ mechanics, students, and blacksmiths.
He was the youngest of all the Uganda Catholic Martyrs who died at the age of 14, having been born around 1872 at Waluleeta, Bulemeezi in Nandere Parish. His father was Lukomera of King Mwanga ‘s palace in 1884 where he served in the king’s private apartment.
Kizito was a very good boy in all aspects, smart, witty, intelligent, committed to work, always jolly, friendly, kind, a quick at executing tasks, good at sports mainly swimming and wrestling. He was also good at music, particularly playing the xylophone. All this made him popular with his companions. Kizito was very much loved by the king just as he was much loved by Pere Mapeera.
Meanwhile, Kizito resisted and was protected from the sexual vices in the palace by Charles Lwanga who baptized him on 26th May 1886, early in the morning of the day of judgment at Munyonjo. In addition, he was given the name John Baptist. It must be noted that when Charles Lwanga intuited the danger of killing Christians, he asked the children in the palace to go and hide but Kizito refused to go.
He stayed with Charles Lwanga ready to die for Jesus Christ. He was burnt alive at Namugongo together with the others on Thursday, June 3rd, 1886. His calmness, joy, and prayerfulness and ability to strengthen the others during the whole week of persecution and even during the holocaust are very striking. They only come from the spirit of a martyr as a grace given by God. He is the Patron of children particularly those below the age of fifteen.
ST. ANDREW KAGGWA (KAHWA)
He was the third person to be martyred. Kaggwa was born at Kkooki Bugangazzi Bukuumi Parish around 1856. His father was Kahawa Kabijenge and his mother’s name remains unknown. Kahawa was captured as a child during the Buganda raids brought to King Muteesa I’s palace where he grew up. He was very much loved by the king.
He was creative, kind, very jolly, and a wonderful conversationalist. The King had him trained by Toli, a madagacan who had come with his band and used to play for the king, and Kaggwa became a professional police officer, a skillful shooter and a great bandmaster. ANDREW KAGGWA learned how to read, speak, and write Arabic and Swahili. He was made head of the Police. Kaggwa learnt also carpentry and cleaning guns from Toli.
ANDREW KAGGWA is understood to be the first formal teacher in Uganda with a training home at Nateete. He first followed Islam but later joined the protestant faith and finally settled with the catholic faith at the arrival of the catholic missionaries. Andrew was a very committed catechumen and was baptized on 30th April 1882 by Pere Mapeera. He was very kind and committed to teaching others the faith in words and actions.
He was a pious and zealous catholic. Kaggwa also served both King Muteesa and King Mwanga. He was highly trusted by both kings, however, due to the jealousy of Kintu the Prime Minister; ANDREW KAGGWA was beheaded after his hands had been chopped off on 26th May 1886 in the Banana plantation of Kintu. Andrew is the Patron of teachers, catechists, and families.
ST. PONSIAN NGONDWE
He was the fourth of the Uganda Martyrs to be killed. He was born at Bulimo in Kyaggwe Naggalama Parish between 1846-1851. His father was Birenge Mbaziira of the Nyonyi clan and his mother was Mukomulwanyi of the Mbogo clan. He was taken to King Mwanga’s palace when he was about 10 years and when he grew up he worked first as a policeman and was a brave soldier.
Tradition holds it that before becoming a Christian, he was exceptionally cruel, merciless, and full of anger, but when he became a catholic, he radically changed and turned into a kind, understanding, and peaceful person. He was baptized on 16th November 1885.
He was assiduous in his profession of faith and constant in living it so much so that when Mwanga had condemned the Christians, he quickly remembered him and asked the executioners to pick him from prison where he had been imprisoned because of the false accusation of stealing the king’s cattle.
The king ordered them to burn Ponciano Ngondwe because he was also a Christian. When Mukajanga, the chief executives, asked Ndongwe whether he was a Christian, he replied that he was; upon which Mukajjanga pierced him in the chest three times, killing him instantly. His body was dismembered in bizarre cruelty and left to the scavenging birds and wild animals as the others continued to Namugongo. He is the Patron of soldiers, policemen, and militia.
ST. AMBROSE KIBUUKA KATIKAMU
Ambrose Kibuuka was born at Butuzzaliiso Ssingo around 1868. His father is Kisuule Balamaze and his mother is Wampera, the only boy who survived for the other boys died soon after birth. His father, an official of the King’s Band known as “Mujaguzo” very much loved his son whom he named Katikamu and Mulundaggana.
Kibuuka was taken to the palace as a page at fifteen years of age and also entrusted to Joseph Mukasa who in turn entrusted him to Charles Lwanga. Kibuuka was social, very kind, talented in games, always cheerful, and charitable. KATIKAMU would work for long hours without showing any signs of fatigue. He became an ardent catechumen and was baptized by Pere Mapeera on 16/11/1885. When the Christians were arrested, his friend Kigongo went to inform his parents of the arrest. He was burnt to death at Namugongo on June 3, 1886. He is the Patron of societies and youth movements such as scouts.
ST. ACHILLES KIWANUKA
He was among the Uganda Martyrs and was born at Lulagala in Mityana Ssingo around 1869. His father was called Kyazze and his mother was called Talidda Nassaza, daughter of Mukwenda Ddumba. In addition, his father was an efficient deputy County Chief for a long time. KIWANUKA’s son soon became famous like his father and at 15 he was selected to serve the King as a page.
KIWANUKA was brown handsome, jolly, and polite. Above all, he was courageous, kind, trustworthy, obedient, composed, and responsible. He soon converted to Catholicism and destroyed the amulets he had all along carried to protect him. But the parents and relatives got very angry with him for doing that. The boy was determined to follow Jesus Christ.
He had a very deep faith and heroically lived and defended the virtue of chastity. Kiwanuka was interested in learning how to read and write. Sometimes he served as a messenger. KIWANUKA was a good singer. He died a martyr at Namugongo on June 3, 1886, at the age of seventeen. In conclusion, he is the Patron of journalists, press, writers, printers, and artists.
ST. ANATOLI KIRIGGWAJJO
He was born at Kinyiira, Bubango, Buyaga in Bujuni Parish in 1860. His father is Siita but his mother’s name is unknown. He was named Karubagira. He grew up in chief Rugelwa’s enclosure at Nyakabango. During the Buganda raid of 1876, Karubagira was captured and brought to Buganda.
Kisomose who took him as his slave, gave him the name Kiriggwajjo, saw his giftedness and wonderful virtues, and took him to King Muteesa to serve in the palace. He was placed under Mukasa Balikuddembe. It is during his service in the place that he began learning the catechism. He was baptized on 16 November 1885. Kiriggwajjo was a skilled hunter and a good herdsman. He used his talents whenever he had a chance to.
He also served under King Mwang the inner palace as a page, and the King, who loved him, promoted him to a post of catering princesses. Anatoli found out that the post would endanger his noble virtue of chastity. He, thus, dared to decline the post though he was sure that it would result in the loss of his life. Although at this material time the King got annoyed, he did not order his death.
But when the Christian persecution began, the King singled him out and said: “This Munyoropage refused the post I gave him, thus despising me”. Anatoli loved his faith, lived it happily, sought to understand it better, and then teach it to others. Together with Charles Lwanga, they strengthen their brothers to be strong in witnessing to their faith until death. He was burnt to death on June 3, 1886. He is Patron of hunters and herdsmen.
ST. JAMES BUUZABALYAWO KALUMBA SSEBAYIGGA
He was born in Ggoli Kiswa, Mawokota, Ggoli Parish around 1861. His father was Ssebikejje Kibazzi of Ngeye clan ad his mother was Lwambuzabugyo of the Nsenene clan. He was named Kalumba in his childhood. He was taken to King Muteesa I palace by princess Namukabya. Here is first frequented the Muslim, when the protestant missionaries came he went to them, and finally, when the Catholics came he joined them and became a serious catechumen under the instruction of Andrea Kaggwa.
He became a Catholic mainly after admiring the celibacy of the Catholic Missionaries and the behavior of Catholics. He was one of the able leaders of the King’s band. On Tuesday, May 25, 1886, when the King Mwanga broke into a rage and tortured Denis Ssebuggwawo, he proceeded to Buuzabalyawo’s place. He ordered his arrest for being a Christian. He was burnt to death on June 3, 1886, at Namugongo. St James Buuzabalyawo is the Patron
ST. MUGAGGA LUBOWA
He was born around 1869 at Jjalamba Mawokota, Mitala Maria Parish. His father was Mazinga of the Ngo clan and his mother was Munnagulinnyemu Nassubwa of the Mbogo clan. His clan name is Lubowa but his mother gave her son the name “Mugagga” expecting him to amass some wealth in the future. He was taken to King Mwanga’s palace by his uncle Sseddu who was the chief backcloth maker of the king.
Mugaga had also learned the art of blacksmithing. Here he met Charles Lwanga who taught him the catholic faith. MUGAGGA was a page in the private section of the palace. He had to fight hard for his virtue of chastity against blandishments and threats by the King. Lubowa was kind, intelligent, cooperative, trustworthy, and always ready to help others without caring for himself. Lubowa Mugagga was strong in the body and was determined in faith. He was baptized on26 May 1886. He was interested in games, handicrafts, etc. Mugagga died at Namugongo on June 3, 1886, at the age of about seventeen. In conclusion, he is the Patron of clubs, community development, culture, and home craft.
ST. JOHN MARY KIWANUKA MUZEEYI
He was born at Kisomberwa, Minziiro between 1852-1857. His father was Bunyaga of the Mbogo clan and his mother was Kabejja Mukaatunzi Namalawo of the Nkima clan. While he was the only child of his mother from his father, he had almost a hundred siblings as his father was a polygamist. KIWANUKA MUZEEYI was calm, human, peaceful, and peace-loving, with incredible ability to reconcile others.
John first professed the Islamic faith from which he got the name Jamari, then later joined the Protestants and finally became a catholic at the arrival of the catholic missionaries. Muzeeyi was baptized on 1 November 1885 by Pere Mapeera. in addition, he was exceptionally intelligent, and it took him only three days to learn all the prayers and the whole catechism that took an average learner four months.
Muzeeyi had exceptional devotion to and knowledge in traditional medicines of various diseases. He treated and care for many sick people during the Small Pox plague. KIWANUKA MUZEEYI was, however, devoted to teaching others the faith, he was selfless and altruistic, he was committed to redeeming others from slavery and exceptionally committed to chastity. He was killed on 27th February 1887. He was the last to be killed among the martyrs in Buganda. Muzeeyi is the Patron of the religious, doctors, nurses, hospitals, and learners.
ST. MBAAGA TUZINDE
He was born at Buyonga or Lumuli in Naddangira Parish around 1869. His father was Waggumbulizi Katamiiza of the Mmamba clan as Msgr Timothy Ssemwogerere testifies who refutes the claim that he belonged to the Ngeye clan as Fr. Ddiba had claimed. He was named Tuzinde.
MBAAGA TUZINDE was known as the son of a soldier because he came from Mukajjanga’s home to join the palace. He was a very strong, handsome, trustworthy, friendly, and cheerful person. He always carried the royal flag whenever the king was on the lake. Tuzinde also served in the audience hall in-charge of catering for the visitors. Lwanga put him in charge of the meat to give to the visitors. He could not give away a piercing even to his friends.
He was free from corruption. Whenever his friends would ask him to give them some meat entrusted to them he would say “nze mbaaga? ( I am I a butcher). That is how he came to be called Mbaaga by the pages in the palace.
Mbaaga became interested in the Catholic religion due to the good examples of the Catholic pages. He was baptized on 26th May 1886. At Namugongo, Mbaaga spent a week with his relatives who exerted last minutes pressure on the boy in a bid to make him change his mind and abandon the catholic religion, but all in vain. The boy was hit on the head and his body thrown on the pyre, and he died on June 3, 1886. Mbaaga is the Patron of Vocations, mainly the seminarians, aspirants, postulants, and novices.
ST. BRUNO SSERUNKUUMA
He was born at Masaka around 1856. His father was Kizza Kibuuka Majalya Namujulirwa. His brother Mbugano is the one who took him to the palace as a page. Here he met Mukasa Balikuddembe who taught him the catholic faith. He was baptized on 16 November 1885 by Pere Giraurt. Before he embraced the Catholic faith, Sserunkuuma was a violent, hot-tempered, cruel, imprudent, drunkard, and led a loose life.
He, however, strove bravely to master his temper and control his passions. The King gave him two girls for wives in appreciation for his good services. He took them home. But his fellow Catholics pointed out to him that the new religion they had embraced did not allow more than one wife. He repented and did spend much time in prayer, penance, and did works of charity.
On his way to Namugongo, his brother Bbosa gave him a beer. But remembering the thirst of Jesus Christ on the cross, he refused it. He constantly and bravely encouraged others not to give up. He died a martyr on June 3, 1886. Sserunkuuma is the Patron of those tempted to excessive drinking, lust, and those not properly married in the Church.
ST. GYAVIIRA MAYANJA MUSOKE
Gyaviira was born at Sseguku in Busiro between 1869-1870. He was the son of Ssemalago, the traditional priest of Mayanja, and belongs to the Mmamba clan. His mother is unknown. His father gave him the name of Musoke and later on Mayanja, while his friends at the palace nicknamed him Gyaviira. He was taken to the palace as a page immediately after Mwanga had become king around 1884.
His father was a famous priest of the traditional god, Mayanja. He gave this name Mayanja to his son, in a gesture of preparing him to take over his office. But when Gyaviira was taken to the palace to be a page, he converted to Catholicism and burnt up all witchcraft charms. He was baptized by Charles Lwanga on 26th May 1886 and was burnt at stake together with others at Namugongo on June 3rd, 1886, at the age of seventeen. St. Gyaviira is the Patron of traffic, communications, and those troubled by witchcraft.
ST. ADOLPHUS MUKASA LUDIGO
He was born at Misazi, Myeri, Kyenjonjo, Butiti Parish. He is the son of Bamwesekesa and Kyote the mother with whom Mukasa Ludigo Tebyalirwa was kidnapped and brought to Buganda where he grew up. In Buganda, he was given the name Mukasa and later nicknamed Ludigo because of his resemblance to the Mutaka Ludigo from Busoga. He was in charge of the King’s gardens where the pages were supposed to work.
He started frequenting Catholicism in 1881 but was not baptized until 16th November 1885 by Pere Mapeera. Adolf Ludigo was exceptionally calm, intelligent, and thoughtful. He despised no work and he often cooked for his fellow Christians to whom he was very kind and generous.
MUKASA LUDIGO was very proud of being a catholic so much so that when summoned at the palace to defend themselves, he put on his best attire and after condemnation walked to his death in majestic fashion until his beautiful dress was removed from him at Ssezibogo tree as custom demanded. Ludigo was burnt to death at Namugongo on June 3, 1886, at the age of twenty-four. He is the Patron of farmers, herdsmen, etc.
ST. MUKASA KIRIWAWANVU
He is born at Mbale in Mawokota in Katende Parish. He is a son of Lumanyika Kirwamukyaayi and Malokuvaawo a mother from Busoga. His father was a very good wrestler. Mukasa was a very handsome man, a giant of exceptional strength. He was alert and humorous and full of jokes. He was taken as a page to King Muteesa I As a page, Mukasa Kiriwawanvu was in charge of serving food to the visitors and his fellow pages.
Mukasa is the only Martyr out of all the Uganda Martyrs who received the Baptism of blood. He was not baptized since on the day when Charles Lwanga baptized the catechumens on 26th May 1886, he was in prison because of the case of having hit his fellow page Gyaviira. The king ordered him to be burnt together with the other Christians. When he was asked whether he was Mukasa, the Christian, he fully professed his faith before them and thus was taken with the rest of the others and burnt at Namugongo on 3rd June 1886. He is the patron of hotels, bars, and restaurants.
BLESSED DAUDI OKELLO
He was born at Ogom-Payira Village in Kitgum around 1902. His father was Lodi and his mother was Amona. He embraced Catholicism and was instructed and subsequently baptized by Fr. Cesare Gambaretto on 1st June 1916. He was enrolled as a catechist after receiving Holy Communion and being confirmed on 15th October 1916 at Kitgum Mission.
When Antonio the Catechist of Paimol died in 1917, Daudi Okello offered to replace him regardless of the dangers of in the place. But replied that he was ready to die for Jesus Christ, upon which fr. Cesare Gambaretto allowed him to go. He taught the people of Paimol for about a year.
He is remembered as peaceful, rather shy but intelligent and very dedicated catechist and loved by all. During the weekend of 18-20 October 1918, five intruders attacked the station and demanded that Daudi renounces the teaching of catechism and upon refusing they speared him to death.
His body was then left unburied until a few days later some people, tying a rope around the neck, dragged the body over a nearby empty termite hill. The mortal remains, collected in February 1926, were later placed in the mission church of Kitgum, at the foot of the altar of the Sacred Heart.
BLESSED JILDO IRWA
Jildo Irwa was born around 1906 in the village of Bar-Kitoba, North- West of Kitgum. His father was Ato and his mother was Okeny. He embraced Catholicism and was instructed and baptized by Fr. Cesare Gambaretto on 6th June 1916 and confirmed on 15th October 1916.
Jildo was lively, gentle, intelligent, and fast in doing things. Blessed was humorous and had a rare art of organizing children for activities. He offered to accompany Daudi Okello to the Paimol mission and acted as an assistant catechist.
However, Jildo was killed the same day Daudi Okell was killed. When he was told to leave after Daudi had been killed he said to his killers: “We have done nothing wrong, for the same reason you killed Daudi you must also kill me, because together we came here and together we have been teaching God’s word”. Having said this, somebody grabbed him, pushed him outside the hut and, placing him at a distance of two steps, pierced him through with a spear. Then one of them struck Jildo’s head with a knife. He was about 14 years old.
As compiled by Musisi Frank using the archives of the Archdiocese of Kampala
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