O God, whose Son the Good Shepherd laid down his life for the sheep: We give you thanks for your faithful shepherd, Janani Luwum, who after his Savior’s example gave up his life for the people of Uganda. Grant us to be so inspired by his witness that we make no peace with oppression, but live as those who are sealed with the cross of Christ, who died and rose again, and now lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Today we remember the life and witness of Janani Luwum, Archbishop of Uganda You can read about his life and martyrdom by clicking on his name, which will take you to a blog run by the Standing Liturgical Commission of my denomination, The Episcopal Church.
Most of us know the stories of people like Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Oscar Romero. Perhaps fewer know the story of Steve Biko (unless they are Peter Gabrielle fans.) But I suspect that in the U.S., far fewer outside of the church continue to remember and tell the story of Arbishop Luwum. Yet his courage in the face of evil was no less great.
If you do go to the site I've suggested, you may see the questions at the bottom: How did this person’s life witness to the Gospel? How does this person inspire us in Christian life today? I can hardly find the words, except to say that it most surely did bear witness the gospel, and it makes me truly want to live (with God's help) as one "sealed with the cross of Christ."