By Gideon Peter Ssebulime
09th May 2023
The Institute of the Little Sisters of St. Francis Nkokonjeru celebrated 100 years of existence at their Mother House in Nkokonjeru, Lugazi diocese in Buikwe district.
The function held on 6th May 2023 was graced by the Pope Nuncio to Uganda His Excellence, Archbishop Luigi Bianco who in his homily credited the religious sisters of this institute for the enormous service in caring for the whole person in body and soul.
The institute has cared for the sick and championed education especially of the girl child whom Mother Mary Kevin Kearney wanted to bring from the backyard and from abuse.
To this Archbishop Bianco said for the last 100 years many hospitals and schools have been started which is giving chance to all people of God to live a meaningful life.
Humility and humbleness are virtues based on while delivering these services making the dream of Mother Mary Kevin Kearney, realized.
He further noted the contribution of Mother Kevin a servant of God was true evangelization through giving hospitality to the neglected, treatment to the sick, shelter to the homeless and fighting paganism among others.
He co-celebrated with the Bishop of Lugazi Diocese Rt. Rev. Christopher Kakooza where the institute is found, Archbishop of Kampala His Grace Paul Ssemogerere, Bishop Emeritus of Lugazi Rt. Rev. Mathias Ssekamanya, and several other priests.
The Institute of the Little Sisters of St. Francis was started by Mother Mary Kevin Kearney in 1923 at Nkokonjeru where their Mother House is located and has since extended to Kenya and Tanzania with at least 800 religious women.
The function has been attended by the Vice President Jessica Alupo, who represented President Yoweri Museveni who also donated Ugx 60 million towards the construction of the millennium building at Nkokonjeru, the State Minister without Portfolio in the Office of the Prime Minister, Justine Lumumba Kasule, the Buikwe South MP, Dr. Lulume Bayiga and hundreds of people.
President Museveni hailed the little sisters for their stand to fight against poverty, disease and ignorance in the communities and the Catholic Church for always a cordial working relationship with the government.
He implored the religious leaders to encourage people to select profitable enterprises in the four sectors; Commercial agriculture, Industries, Service and ICT, from where families and households can generate job and income.
The Little sisters of St. Francis Nkokonjeru run a chain of schools, hospitals and care homes for the vulnerable in the three countries; Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania and in Boston US where they have a convent called a mission.