Feast of the Ugandan Martyrs
Last month featured the Feast of the Ugandan Martyrs, commemorating 22 faithful young men who sacrificed their lives for their Faith. As a part of the oft-mentioned "Catholicism Project", Fr. Robert Barron and the Word on Fire team recently made a trip to the site of the martyrdoms.
The team was joined by 500,000 other people, all celebrating the great sacrifices of these 22 men. Upon his return to America, Fr. Barron wrote an invigorating article about the martyrs and his recent Ugandan trip:
In the article, Fr. Barron echoes Tertullian's declaration that, "the blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church", specifically highlighting the group's most famous seed, Charles Lwanga. Barron celebrates the explosive effects of Lwanga's martyrdom by proclaiming, "Charles Lwanga, you won!"
Lwanga perfectly exemplified the counter-intuitive, paradoxical way of Jesus: To find your life, give it away. To truly live, die to yourself.
Lwanga believed that the illogic of Jesus was logical.
In today's Gospel reading, Jesus offers the mustard seed as an example for the Christian life, the smallest of seeds that grows into a large plant with many branches.
Charles Lwanga was such a seed, strengthened by Light, watered by sacrifice, and beautifully bloomed. One man planted in death inspired a whole nation to blossom with life.
May we be simple enough to embrace this crazy Way.
May we play the game that Charles won.
May we be seeds that grow into forests of Faith.
Charles Lwanga, pray for us!