The Kigezi Kampala Catholic Residents Association (KKCRA) Youth on Saturday August 19, 2023 had their one on one meeting with Rt. Rev. Callist Rubaramira, Bishop of Kabale Diocese at Kitante Primary School in Kampala. In their sharing, the youth requested to have more of the talks about their religion e. g Catholic Answers so that their knowledge about religion is deepened, more about behavioral change, economic empowerment, among others.
One of the youth Lilian Nkamwesiga, a professional counselor noted that the youth have limited listening skills and appealed to them to develop listening skills, so that the package given to them can have an impact in their lives. She noted that some youth are living a reckless life because they do not listen and appealed to them to always be careful with their lives.
Mr. Daniel Tusimukye, the publicity secretary of KKCRA youth and founder of the Iconic Publications outlined some challenges faced by the youth ranging from youth mobilization challenges, Peer pressure, threat from other religious denominations that sweep the youth away because of music, unemployment and economic related challenges. He called for parental support so that their children can remain focused. He also called on the church to avail the different opportunities and make them known and have more relevant programs for the youth e. g, empowering the youth leadership. He urged the youth to build a sense of community and belonging since no man can live as an island, share opportunities without forgetting where they have come from, where they are and where they are going.
As Catholic youths, what have you done for your Church? Do you participate in Church activities? Do not create many excuses for not being in Church but consistency and patience will lead them to where God wants them to be. Mr. Daniel Tusimmukye,
Ms. Nshabohurira Doreen, a youth and representative of Mbarara Ecclesiastical Province on the social Communications Commission of Uganda Episcopal Conference shared her experience as a youth leadership since 2005. She thanked the Bishop that finally her dream of him meeting the youth has finally come to fulfilment. She thanked him for the time he spent with the youth for being available and sacrifice. She informed the youth of the need to sacrifice some things.
She advised the youth: “Unless you get out of the comfort zone, you will remain behind and others will leave you. You will never stay a youth, but how you positioned yourself as a youth will determine what you will be as an adult. Have mentors because the journey is tough when you walk it alone”. She also advised the youth especially the working class to be professional. She said; “after campus there are many ambitions but be professional in your work and add value, so that when you are absent from duty, your absence be felt. This is from the feedback you get, and the people you meet will tell you. Through this, you will be earmarked for promotions, benefit, scholarship, etc” said Ms. Doreen. She also advised the youth to be trustworthy, for opportunities will always skip them if you don’t, and that other people may lack opportunities because of one’s untruthfulness.
Ms. Lilian Nkamwesiga, a youth and professional counselor noted that the youth have limited listening skills and appealed to them to develop listening skills, so that the package given can have an impact in their lives. She also noted that some youth are living a reckless life and appealed to them to be always careful with their lives. Mr. Akampa Davis, also a youth implored the youth to use social media responsibly and use it to share more about religion. Mr. Ansinguza Davis commended the Diocese for the projects initiated and executed, and thanked the Bishop and diocesan administration for the BAAF initiative which has resulted into a number of projects like Radio Maria, Centenary bank Kabale, Kisoro and Rukungiri buildings and now the university project.
Ms. Ninsiima Precious, a 4th Year student of Law thanked the youth for sacrificing the time to have an audience with the Bishop. She asked to hear how St. Ignatius University was establishing itself to be the leading university in the region and how this University will be publicized far and wide since the youth prefer to join universities that are popular. Fr. Max Ngabirano, the Vice Chancellor of St. Ignaitus University Kabale used the occasion to inform the youth of the updates about St. Ignatius University. In June 2022, an interim letter of authority was granted to Kabale Diocese to set up structures and mobilize resources. On Tuesday, August 22, 2023, there will be a meeting by NCHE to discuss the establishment of St. Ignatius University and subsequent granting of license to operate. The University will be organized on colleges and schemes (academic, research and policy), and the university will be used as a link to the society.
In his speech, the chairperson of the KKCRA Youth, Dr. Asasira Ignatius thanked the Bishop for sparing his precious time to meet the youth to encourage them and listen to them. He reminded his fellow youth that when talking of the Church, it means the people, the community of believers, and the youth should regard themselves as the Church not merely buildings. Some of the activities accomplished by the youth include: Appointment of new leaders including university representatives, One month’s seminar held weekly on topics of Responsible dating, relationships and marriage, Animation of KKCRA Youth Sunday and with invitation to MEPA sister dioceses, Enrichment of the KKCRA main choir with the Youth choir members, a contribution of 5.8M BAAF 2023. Future plans include: Social event; KKCRA Youth Day out, Spiritual retreat, Business and financial literacy seminar, Establishment of youth Email System with updated member CVs, Mentorship alignation to Elder members of KKCRA.
Hon. Dr. Chris Baryomunsi who is the patron of the KKCRA youth, a parent, and political leader thanked the Bishop for sparing some time to listen to the youth. He implored youth to lead and live a disciplined and responsible life. “Of all the creatures of God, it is the human being that is able to think, and this helps your to distinguish good from bad, right from what is wrong. So, the youth must have a responsible life. You are always responsible for your actions and life especially at campus. if you choose wrongly, you will regret. if your live irresponsibly, you can die prematurely. Many youth come from humble background, but with perseverance, you will reach where God wants you to be. Do not be taken up by the material pleasures because they may distract you from your destination”. As patron, Dr. Chris promised to meet the executive of the youth and plan to organize more seminars with guest and motivational speakers.
Bishop Callist Rubaramira for his part thanked the youth for organizing the encounter with them. He said the youth are a great value to self, family, church and society and they will live accordingly if they value themselves. “You are created in the image and likeness of God and that value which you have and nobody can take it from you. It’s you to care for it or destroy that value. Whatever you do will be influenced by that value you have in yourself.”
He said the more you interact and relate with each other, the more opportunities will open for you. He thanked the youth leadership for organizing such an interactive encounter with the youth, but urged the youth especially girls to always come out and not be shy, because that is how they lose opportunities. He encouraged the youth to do mindset change and be creative but not be taken up by the worldly pleasures.