He emphasized, making reference to Pope Francis' Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation, Christus Vivit, “The world has never benefited, nor will it ever benefit, from a rupture between generations.”
“When intergenerational relationships exist, a collective memory is present in communities, as each generation takes up the teachings of its predecessors and in turn hands on this legacy to its successors,” the Local Ordinary of Kasana-Luweero who doubles as the Apostolic Administrator of Kampala Archdiocese explained.
Pope Francis established the World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly, to take place annually on the fourth Sunday of July, close to the feast of the grandparents of Jesus, Saints Anne and Joachim.
This year, the theme of the event is, “I am with you always,” taken from Matthew 28:20.
“Grandparents are often forgotten and we forget this wealth of preserving and passing on the roots. For this reason, I have decided to establish the World Day of Grandparents and the Elderly,” Pope Francis said in the library of the Vatican’s Apostolic Palace January 31.
In his homily, Bishop Ssemogerere called upon “younger generations” to be at the aid of the elderly who have borne the brunt of COVID-19 pandemic.
“Younger generations are called to help the elderly and grandparents especially in this period when the pandemic has hit them so hard. Many elderly persons and grandparents face challenges such as social isolation and marginalization, abandonment, loneliness and diminishing of social contacts, among others,” the Ugandan Bishop said.
In Uganda where there have been at least 92,724 reported cases of COVID-19, including 2,579 deaths and 77,171, he said, “Many elderly persons fell ill, some passed away, and many experienced extended periods of isolation because their relatives did not want them to contract the disease.”
“Those who are still sick and frail need special attention to help them on the road to recovery. Those that are lacking, need our special attention,” the Bishop further said.
The elderly people have a contribution to make in society, Bishop Ssemogerere went on to say, faulting those who see senior citizens as socially inadequate.