Archbishop of the Church of Uganda, Dr Stephen Kaziimba

Despite suspension of communal prayers as a government measure to mitigate the spread of the deadly Coronavirus in the country, believers can still worship and make offerings and tithes to their God through various means.

The Archbishop of the Church of Uganda, Dr Stephen Kaziimba asked the believers not to neglect worshipping God through their tithes and offerings.

He said it is possible for people to travel within their respective districts; “So, please bring your tithe and offering to your local church. Those churches which have not yet gotten mobile money numbers, we encourage you to do so as soon as possible.”

Addressing the media at his Namirembe palace on Monday morning, the archbishop said “while it is not the same as taking your offering to God during worship, when you send via mobile money, God knows it is your offering and receives it as your offering to him. Please do not neglect this!”

The address followed the Sunday night pronouncement in which President Museveni announced the decision by government to suspend communal prayers in all places of worship, including churches, for 42 days. 

Archbishop Kaziimba also wooed the believers to reach out in as many ways as possible – phone calls, text messages and social media to one another in order to continue encouraging one another in our faith.

“This is especially important for the elderly and those who may be isolated. Please make sure they have the practical, emotional, and spiritual support of the Christian community. Weddings and funerals may be limited to only 20 people, but there are other ways to express your solidarity and I encourage you to utilize them,” he added.

According to the head of the Anglican Church in Uganda, in the last lockdown, some churches developed the capacity for online streaming of worship services.

He asked priests to continue using communication channels like YouTube, Facebook, and Zoom to reach out to people revealing that he will continue to offer worship from his home at his Palace in the coming weeks, and it will be broadcast on local Television stations and the Church of Uganda’s Facebook and YouTube channels.

“Radio Church should also continue. We are asking all radio stations to collaborate again with the church under these extraordinary circumstances and provide air time on Sunday mornings to broadcast local language worship services,” said Dr Kaziimba adding; “We also encourage all Bishops to link with local TV stations for ways to broadcast a local language Sunday service through television.” 

He also asked the Church and diocesan staff to re-organize themselves so that only 30% of staff are in the office at the same time but also use the same opportunity to adopt more digital and online technology for how we do our work and conduct meetings.

Church loans

About the church loans, the Archbishop said that the “Yes, We Can!” Church House Love Gift Fundraising campaign will continue.

“Worship will continue online, and contributions can be made at any Equity Bank, or through MTN or Airtel Mobile Money. Please continue to give. The Church is not closed. God’s Word is not closed. We will not slow down. The mission will continue. Please don’t be discouraged by the lockdown. Let’s keep moving forward,” 

Kaziimba has since asked believers to contribute towards raising Shs60 billion to pay off bank loans that the church took to construct Church House.  

The 16-storyed Church House building on Kampala Road is under threat of being auctioned to Equity Bank to recover its loan money advanced to the church during construction.

Dr Kaziimba asked 1,000,000 Ugandans to contribute at least Shs60,000 by the end of July this year as a Love Gift to the Lord in thanksgiving for 60 Years of Self-Governance.