On Saturday, August 1, Deacons Arnold Jawiambe, C.S.C., and Linus Nviiri, C.S.C., were ordained to priesthood at St. Augustine’s Institute in Kampala, Uganda, by the Most Rev. Robert Muhiirwa, Bishop of the Diocese of Fort Portal. It was certainly a festive occasion with not only the men’s family members and fellow Holy Cross religious present, but also many other friends of the Congregation and lay faithful.
“I was pleased to welcome Fr. Arnold Jawiambe and Fr. Linus Nviiri as newly professed religious to McCauley Formation House in Nairobi, Kenya, in July of 2010,” said Fr. Patrick Neary, C.S.C., Superior of the District of East Africa (Kampala, Uganda). “I had just arrived in Nairobi a month prior to their arrival. It has been a personal joy and privilege to accompany these two gifted men, to see their growth, and to witness their joy and zeal as they begin their priestly service in Holy Cross. Their personal warmth and humor are infectious.”
Also present at the Ordination Mass was the Most Rev. Albert Edward Baharagate, the Bishop Emeritus of the Diocese of Hoima. Both he and Bishop Muhiirwa are great friends of the Congregation.
Bishop Muhiirwa was taught by Holy Cross brothers as a young man and is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame in Notre Dame, Indiana, in the United States. He is also a regular visitor at Holy Cross Novitiate, Lake Saaka, in Western Uganda, which is close to Fort Portal, the cradle of the Holy Cross mission to East Africa.
Bishop Baharagate has promoted devotion to Servant of God Patrick Peyton. In fact, a miracle took place when a mother and child were cured of HIV/AIDS on the same day. The mother prayed a novena to Fr. Peyton that she received from Bishop Baharagate. The Vatican has confirmed the validity of the miracle.
As if their shared connection to Holy Cross were not enough, the two bishops present for the Ordinations also share a personal connection. At the close of the liturgy, Bishop Muhiirwa informed those in attendance that he had been baptized by Bishop Baharagate.
Both newly ordained priests are members of the Congregation of Holy Cross’s District of East Africa, which serves Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania. Fr. Arnold Jawiambe has been assigned to St. Brendan’s Parish in Kitete, Tanzania, in the Diocese of Mbulu. Fr. Linus Nviiri has been assigned to Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish in Arusha, Tanzania, in the Archdiocese of Arusha. Holy Cross just received pastoral responsibility for Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish in July of this year.
“Both of these new priests are truly men for others, and I expect great things from them for Holy Cross and for the people they will be called upon to serve,” said Fr. Neary. “I wish them a lifetime of happiness in God’s service after the heart of Blessed Basile Moreau, our founder.”