Christians from all over the Archdiocese of Gulu gathered on February 6th, 2008 to commemorate the fifteenth anniversary of the visit of His Holiness Pope John Paul II. It was in 1993 that Pope John Paul II visited Uganda and celebrated a mass at Kaunda ground in Gulu Town. The late Pope brought message of hope and encouragement to a people troubled by years of insecurity and suffering. He rekindled the hope of the people as he reminded them of God's care and concern expressed in the figure of the Good Shepherd.

Fifteen years later, the people of the Archdiocese of Gulu gathered to celebrate Ash Wednesday at the very grounds on which the Holy Father celebrated the Eucharist. The Archbishop (His Grace John Baptist Odama) officiated at the Eucharistic celebration that was concelebrated by Bishop Sabino Odoki, the Auxiliary Bishop and many priests and was attended by Christians from the different parishes in the Archdiocese.

In his homily, the Archbishop reminded the congregation gathered that without God "we are nothing"; all are called to be the image of God's holiness that brings glory to the world. Recalling the wisdom of the ancients, His Grace reminded those gathered that the glory of God is humanity fully alive. He called on all the people to listen more deeply to the Word of God during the weeks of lent, and to remove the hardness of heart that does not love God and neighbour. The Archbishop challenged all to look into the eyes of the brother and sister and see their needs such as the trauma they have experienced - and reach out to help them. He prayed that each one may be transformed to be like God as with the sign of the ashes on the forehead we seek God's forgiveness, mercy and kindness.

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