The Church of Uganda is a Jesus-loving, Bible-believing, Spirit-filled Anglican Church engaged in the mission of Jesus Christ in today’s world.
CHRISTMAS MESSAGE 2008
The Most Rev. Henry Luke Orombi
“GLORY TO GOD IN THE HIGHEST AND ON EARTH PEACE AMONG THOSE WITH WHOM HE IS PLEASED.” (LUKE 2:14)
Christmas comes only once a year and all must stop and pay attention whether they know it or not. The atmosphere changes, the buying and selling fever is at its peak, those who pick-pocket are equally busy in the streets of Kampala. The question worth asking is whether the majority of us are aware that 2000 years ago in a small town of Bethlehem God chose to enter our planet. His coming was humble and quiet yet unsuspecting shepherds, men of no reputation had a visitation from an angel announcing this great news to them – “GLORY TO GOD IN THE HIGHEST …”
The Christmas message is about the glory of God. He who is not approachable, invisible and awesome has become manageable in a human form. He has come to the ones he loved from eternity and wanted to dwell among them so that they may know him. He did not want to remain in his majesty above but came to dwell with the commoners so that he can promote them to his family, “Glory to GOD.”
“PEACE AMONG THOSE WITH WHOM HE IS WELL-PLEASED …” Peace a commodity in short supply in our world. From homes up to international levels, there is a desperate cry for peace. Many look for it but fail to obtain it. Some pay for it but can’t get their money worth of it. Others sit down to agree on it and it seems to slip away quietly as they watch it go. Finally the announcement from heaven through the mouth of angels is “PEACE, PEACE, PEACE …”
Early December, I visited the districts of Amuru and Gulu. I saw what peace can bring to the attitude of people. There was ease in walking, joy in voices, firm steps in dancing and energy in singing. All these are in the context of moving from IDP camps to start life over again. Although there is very little available but there was peace and so people have confidence in the future.
The challenge is: Will the rebels (LRA) come out openly and sign the PEACE AGREEMENT?” Will the people in the region receive back their children who have been in the bush for all these years? Will there be forgiveness and a chance to start life again? Will peace be given a chance? I call upon all Ugandans to allow the Prince of Peace – Jesus to have his rightful place in our lives to bring hope out of the despair.
On the other hand many are the crying mothers who have lost their children to child sacrifices. Some think: If I sacrifice human blood I shall have money – then have peace and happiness. God is grieved by such ignorance. Innocent blood is a curse to the Nation and brings barrenness to social achievements.
Many in our society have lost their peace because of greed. The desire to have more creates imbalance and those without resent those who have more than their fair share. God never blesses corruption and stealing. The Prince of Peace has been born that your hearts may know contentment and learn to give rather than take. It is time for this country to face and deal with the ugly face of corruption if health should come to the nation. You are created to give glory to God alone and find in him your joy, fulfillment and peace.
I call upon all Ugandans to rise up this Christmas with confidence and celebrate the truth of EMMANUEL – “God with us” to bring PEACE in our circumstances. There is need for change in the way we treat one another. We must pursue love and not violence in our streets. Peaceful movement and not damage to our bodies on our roads through accidents!
I send greetings to His Excellency the President, Maama Janet and the family; The Vice President and his family; The Prime Minister and his family.
I send Christmas greetings to the Council of Presidents of Inter-religious Council of Uganda. Co-chairs of Uganda Joint Christian Council and all Church Leaders. I send Christian greetings to His Highness the Kabaka of Buganda and Nabagereka.
To all people of Uganda, I pray that the Peace of God will prevail in every area of your life wherever you are. Happy Christmas and a Prosperous New Year!
The Most Rev. Henry Luke Orombi
ARCHBISHOP OF CHURCH OF UGANDA.