Late Ugandan Archbishop "lived his earthly life according to beatitudes": Catholic Bishop

Requiem Mass for Archbishop Denis Lote Kiwanuka, the Archbishop Emeritus of Uganda’s Tororo Archdiocese who died on the morning of Sunday, April 24. Credit: UEC

Archbishop Denis Lote Kiwanuka, the Archbishop Emeritus of Uganda’s Tororo Archdiocese who died on the morning of Sunday, April 24 has been described as a Catholic Church leader who lived his life fully in accordance with the beatitudes.

Archbishop Emmanuel Obbo of Tororo Archdiocese announced the death of his 84-year-old predecessor saying Archbishop Kiwanuka passed on at Uganda’s Nsambya Hospital where he had been admitted since April 12.

The late Ugandan Archbishop had been at the helm of Tororo Archdiocese since September 2007 after he was transferred from Uganda’s Kotido Diocese where he had ministered since his Episcopal Ordination in August 1991.  

"Archbishop Kiwanuka has lived his earthly life according to the beatitudes as enumerated in the Gospel,” the President of the Uganda Episcopal Conference (UEC), Bishop Joseph Anthony Zziwa said during the Requiem Mass Tuesday, April 26.

Bishop Zziwa added in his homily at Sacred Heart Lubaga Cathedral of Kampala Archdiocese, “It was those attributes of the good Christian that Jesus mentioned have been lived faithfully by Archbishop Kiwanuka."


Archbishop Kiwanuka "loved his flock" and served with humility for the glory of God, the Local Ordinary of Uganda’s Kiyinda-Mityana said.

Throughout his life as a Priest and a Bishop, he has been working not for his own popularity but for the glory of God,” Bishop Zziwa went on to say about the late Catholic Church leader, adding that Archbishop Kiwanuka "has always been humble, simple, a man with good humor, kind and listening to all opinions of others."

While the late Uganda Archbishop was not an "imposing figure", Bishop Zziwa said, "he could also exert himself, even if he kept a low profile."

Born in Pallisa District in the Archdiocese of Tororo, Archbishop Kiwanuka was ordained for the same Archdiocese in December 1965. 

He served as the first Bishop of Kotido Diocese from August 1991 to June 2007 when he was appointed to succeed the late Archbishop James Odongo as the Local Ordinary of Tororo. 

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In his homily, the President of UEC recognized Archbishop Kiwanuka's efforts in seeking for an end to the Karamoja conflict. 

“He has been a peace lover. In Kotido Diocese, Archbishop Kiwanuka worked for peace for all people, those living in Karamoja, those who are passing through Karamoja, even their neighbors,” Bishop Zziwa said.

Archbishop Kiwanuka “has done his role here on earth," Bishop Zziwa further said during the Eucharistic celebration that was concelebrated by Archbishop Paul Ssemogerere of Kampala among other Catholic Bishops in Uganda. 

In his message during the Requiem Mass, Archbishop Ssemogerere said the late Prelate's leadership "was marked by advocacy, especially in education and preservation of the environment." 

"He saw education as the key to changing the mindset of individuals and thus transforming society for better," the Ugandan Archbishop who has been at the helm of Kampala Archdiocese since January 25 said. 


He added that the late Archbishop's  advocacy for the environment was in line with Pope Francis' Encyclical Letter, Laudato Si'. 

Archbishop Ssemogerere called on Ugandans to keep Archbishop Kiwanuka's legacy alive by conserving the environment and giving education the "seriousness it deserves". 

More Eucharistic celebrations in honor of the late Ugandan Archbishop have been slated to take place on Wednesday, April 27 at the Pallisa Catholic Parish and at the Uganda Martyrs Cathedral of Tororo Archdiocese. 

Archbishop Kiwanuka is expected to be laid to rest in the Uganda Martyrs Cathedral of Tororo Archdiocese on Thursday, April 28.

Magdalene Kahiu is a Kenyan journalist with passion in Church communication. She holds a Degree in Social Communications from the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA). Currently, she works as a journalist for ACI Africa.