Ugandan visitors light up Bristol West Deanery

First published 16th July 2012

Bristol West Deanery hosted Bishop Johnson Gakumba and two other visitors from the Diocese of Northern Uganda for 18 days in May 2012.

Bishop Johnson was accompanied by his chaplain, Rev Willy Akena and the new MU worker in Gulu, Rev Norah Afridi.

Between them they visited nine parishes and nine schools, met with representatives from Christian Aid and Motivation and George Kovoor welcomed them to Trinity College. Particularly significant was a visit to Red Maids School where the Bishop and Willy Akena were able to meet the 18 girls and staff who were going to visit the Diocese of Northern Uganda in July 2012.

Norah was able to visit a number of MU projects, including Friends for Parents at the children hospital and the Hartcliffe / Withywood Teen Mothers project. A trip to Mary Sumner House, London provided a special highlight for her.

St Marys, Stoke Bishop hosted the Uganda Fire Choir with over 270 people of all ages enjoying the music and testimonies. Bishop Johnson was also able to show pictures of the work of the Diocese of Northern Uganda and to share stories of what God is helping them to accomplish.

The visit was an opportunity for mutual learning and encouragement. Bishop Johnson remarked on the deep history of Christian faith arising from over 1000 years of history in the UK. He was also grateful to learn more about the challenge of secularism and different ways of doing mission work through things like street pastors and workplace chaplaincies. Across the deanery people were inspired and challenged to deepen their commitment.

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