Friday 14 October 2016

Assisi 2016: a Religious Babel

Assisi 2016: a Religious Babel

Assisi 2016 a Religious Babel, PDF format
The 2016 abomination
1986: The Start of It All
  Way back on October 27, 1986, members of many different religions came together at Assisi, birthplace of the Roman Catholic “saint”, Francis, for a day of prayer for “peace”.  This massive interfaith gathering was at the instigation of the pope of Rome, John Paul II.    Such was the power and authority of this man that at his call, not only did leaders of various religions gather from around the world to “pray”, but three governments, and terrorist guerillas in 11 lands, held a 24-hour truce![1] 
  How well we remember that event!  Although inter-religious dialogue had been going on for decades already, and even meetings between various religious leaders, nothing like this had ever been seen before.  There was the pope of Rome, right at the centre of the greatest assembly of religious leaders in history!  It was an interfaith Babel of epic proportions, an abomination in the eyes of the Lord.
The 1986 abomination
  The representatives of each religion prayed according to their own rites.  The so-called “Christian” service was led by John Paul II, the Anglican archbishop of Canterbury, Robert Runcie, and Eastern Orthodox patriarchs.  These men, the whole lot of them, were not, by any biblical criterion, true Christians.  John Paul II, the biblical Antichrist, head of the most iniquitous religious system to ever disgrace the earth; Runcie, head of the effeminate, spineless, facing-both-ways religious system which arrogantly and erroneously calls itself “the Church of England”; and leaders of the Eastern Orthodox branch of the false, paganised “christianity”, icon-worshippers, Soviet stooges.  The god they were praying to was not the sovereign God of the Bible. 
  Elsewhere in the city of Assisi at the same time, Buddhists prayed mantras in a Roman Catholic “church” building, while Shinto priests chanted outside.  Four Indian religions prayed together: Hindus, Sikhs, Zoroastrians, and Jains.  At two other locations, Muslims and Jews prayed.[2]  And various others.
  The Word of God commands true Christians to be separate from the world and from false religions, and not to unite with those still in darkness.  “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? and what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? and what agreement hath the temple of god with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.  Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, and will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty” (2 Cor. 6:14-18).
assisi3  Not only were John Paul II, Robert Runcie, and all those other so-called “Christian” leaders participating in a religious event with the leaders of the dark, satanically-inspired religions of the world such as Hindus, Buddhists, Muslims, and all the rest, but they themselves – these men claiming to be “Christians” – were unbelievers, unrighteous, in darkness, servants of Belial, infidels, and part of the temple of idols!  They were not part of the true Church, the temple of the living God; God did not dwell in them, nor walk in them; they were not His people!  They had not “come out from among them”, they were not separate from them, because they were as much a part of this world’s night, and of false religion, as all those idol-worshipping Hindus or Mohammed-serving Muslims!  What happened at Assisi all those years ago was not  Christians sinfully uniting with people of other religions to pray, but heathens pretending to be “Christians” uniting with other heathens to pray! 
  There were no true Christians at that iniquitous event.
2016: Three Decades On
  Well, thirty years have passed.  And during all this time great strides have been made in inter-religious dialogue and inter-religious “unity”.  And so, John Paul II’s successor in the Vatican, the Jesuit pope, Francis I, decided to do it all again in 2016, and to re-create that moment when the devil’s religions got together and said to the world, “See?  We’re all praying together for peace!”
  And thus it was that Francis called for another “Assisi” – another “World Day of Prayer” – to be held in the same city.  And representatives of various religions again heeded his call, assembling in Assisi in 20 September 2016 to relive the glory days.  And if it didn’t quite match the hype of 1986, this was only because what was so novel and momentous back then has now become far more commonplace around the world, with “mini-Assisis” being held in all kinds of venues.  Tragically, the abomination of witnessing so-called “Christians” praying together with people of various religions just doesn’t raise that many eyebrows anymore.

How far the world has fallen.
  But even so, let us not under-estimate the 2016 Assisi event.  It was still an interfaith Babel, an assembly of the world’s top religious deceivers.
  So who was there?
Francis Embraces Eastern Orthodox Leader
Francis Embraces Anglican Archbishop Welby
  There was the Eastern Orthodox patriarch, Bartholomew I of Constantinople; the Syriac Orthodox patriarch of Antioch, Ignatius Aphrem II; representatives of the Eastern Orthodox institution of Albania; the Anglican archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby; the Grand Dukes of Luxembourg; the chief Jewish rabbi of Rome, Riccardo Di Segni;  the chief rabbi of Turkey; the chief rabbi of Brussels; the deputy head of Al-Azhar University in Egypt (possibly the most important university of the Islamic world); the Muslim emir of Nigeria; a Muslim from Indonesia; representatives of the Muslim grand mufti of Lebanon; various other representative of Islam; Hindus; Buddhists; Yazidis, and other victims of persecution by the Islamic State terrorists; and representative of other religions.[3]
  In total, over 500 people participated, including United Nations representatives.  All eager to be seen, all eager to be commended for “making a difference”, for “praying for world peace”. 
  All equally lost, dead in their sins, and utterly impotent in their prayers, for they were praying to false gods.
  The purpose of the Assisi event, the world was told, was to express what (supposedly) “unites” all religions, which (supposedly) is the desire for peace.  This in itself was ludicrous: since when have religions of the world longed for peace?  Has Islam ever desired peace?  Certainly Popery itself never has!  Their histories reveal what a lie it is to claim they “long for peace”.
The Grand Entrance
  Always one to make a grand entrance, Francis arrived in his helicopter after the other representatives had done so, and were waiting for him.  This theatrical gesture made him the focus of all attention, giving the impression that his own arrival was the highlight of the event.  As indeed it was.  “The pope entered the courtyard of the convent where other participants were waiting for him”; “His arrival caused much emotion among the main leaders participating in this event”.[4]  Always, always, at any inter-religious gathering, the Jesuits see to it that the pope is the sun around which all other religious leaders revolve like orbiting planets, important perhaps in their own way but as nothing compared with “His Holiness”.  Always, always, the impression must be given that Roman Catholicism is the world’s most important religion, the most powerful, the greatest in every way.
  Upon arriving, Francis proceeded to greet each and every one of those present – some 500 participants.  This just made him rise even higher in the estimation of the media.  There were probably dozens of those very religious leaders who were thinking to themselves, “Why didn’t I think of doing that?  Why does the pope always manage to upstage the rest of us?”  He does so, because no other religious leader, no matter how influential, has the Jesuits working for him, those masters of the importance of gestures, symbolism, and the perfectly-timed photo-op.
Jesuit Sophistry
  As at the first Assisi event in 1986, during this one in 2016 the representative of each religion prayed separately, according to their own rites.  This enabled the false “Christian” representatives to return to their own people and assure the more conservative and nit-picky among them that they did not disobey Christ’s command to pray only to God the Father in the Name of God the Son.  They did so, they were able to say; they did not participate in prayers to the Muslim Allah, to the Hindu gods, or to the deities of any other religion represented.  They merely prayed in the vicinity of all those other religious leaders, who were praying in their own way to their own gods.
  This is how the interfaith movement is sold to the people.  But it is Jesuitical sophistry.  The fact remains that, at the instigation of the man millions claim to be the most important “Christian” on earth, representatives of many religions gathered to pray at the same time, in the same vicinity, for the same purpose.  And the fact remains that representatives of various false “Christian churches” were deliberately, and by arrangement, praying at the same time, in the same vicinity, and for the same purpose, as the representatives of all those heathen religions.  It just shows, yet again, that none of those representatives calling themselves “Christians” were true Christians at all!  This was nothing less than an abomination before God, an inter-religious prayer meeting whichever way one cuts it.  True Christian prayer is only to the Father, in the Name of the Son (Jn. 14:13,14; 16:23,24), and only offered by true Christians.  “Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve” (Matt. 4:10). To join with the heathen in prayer is an act of worship, and it is the worship of false gods, which is nothing less than the worship of devils; and the Bible is clear: “I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils” (1 Cor. 10:20).  Not only did Francis and the other deceivers falsely calling themselves “Christians” have fellowship with the devils of those other religions that day at Assisi, but their own worship was the worship of devils as well!  For any and all false religions, including the ones calling themselves “Christian”, are involved in the worship of devils – it doesn’t matter what names they give to their gods.
  After all these men and women had all prayed separately, they gathered outside the Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi, where speeches were made.  And just as Francis I was the last to arrive, so he was the last to give a speech.  This ensured that his speech would be the one most remembered, and it also gave the impression that he was the most important religious leader present.  As, indeed, he was.

Excerpts from the Official “Declaration of Assisi”
  Here are some excerpts from the “Declaration of Assisi”, the official text approved for the occasion:[5]
  “Men and women of various religions, we gather as pilgrims in the city of Saint Francis.  Thirty years ago in 1986, religious representatives from all over the world met here at the invitation of Pope John Paul II.  It was the first such solemn gathering that brought so many together, in order to affirm the indissoluble bond between the great good of peace and an authentic religious attitude.  From that historic event, a long pilgrimage was begun which has touched many cities of the world, involving many believers in dialogue and in praying for peace.  It has brought people together without denying their differences, giving life to real interreligious friendships and contributing to the resolution of more than a few conflicts.”[6]
  Did the Lord Jesus Christ ever say anything even remotely along these lines – that Christians should have such inter-religious meetings so as to “bring people together without denying their differences”?  Never!  He made it clear, in no uncertain terms, that He is the only way to the Father (Jn. 14:6).  As for “bringing people together”, He only does this when people from different nations and false religions are converted to Him, forsake their false religions and are united into one body, the Church.  In the true Church “there is neither Jew nor Greek… for ye are all one in Christ Jesus” (Gal. 3:28); but He did not come to bring peace in the world: “Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword” (Matt. 10:34).  Meaning, as He goes on to say, that whenever someone is converted to Him, becoming a true Christian, the people of the world hate him, even at times the members of his own family, and persecute him (vv. 35,36; also vv. 21,22).
  The official text went on: “This is the spirit that animates us: to bring about encounters through dialogue, and to oppose every form of violence and abuse of religion which seeks to justify war and terrorism.  And yet, in the years that have followed, numerous populations have nonetheless been painfully wounded by war.”[7]
  Oh, one could laugh out loud at this if it were not so tragic: apart from declaring that those who justify war and terrorism in the name of religion are abusing their religions, which is manifestly false as any study of either Roman Catholic or Islamic history will prove – they are simply living up to what their religions teach and demand – this text had just made the statement that praying for peace in the world had been going on since the first Assisi event thirty years previously; yet now the admission is made that “in the years that have followed [Assisi 1986], numerous populations have nonetheless been painfully wounded by war”! 
  Thirty years of interfaith prayers for “peace” – and what do they have to show for it?  Nothing.  There are wars everywhere, the world is being ripped apart by violence, and three decades of earnest inter-religious prayer and inter-religious dialogue haven’t made a dent in the way the world behaves! 
  And no wonder.  For the Lord does not hear the prayers of wicked people, uniting with the prayers of other wicked people, worshipping in whatever way they feel like, every man doing what is right in his own eyes, a religious smorgasbord which the Lord hates.  The sovereign Lord of heaven and earth has sent His own dear Son into the world to save sinners, and yet the men of the world think they can ignore the Son, and invent all kinds of ways to try to reach God, doing as they see fit, in their own arrogant and haughty eyes!  “Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little.  Blessed are all they that put their trust in him” (Psa. 2:12).  Well, these men do not kiss [reconcile with] the Son of God.  They reject Him, and follow the imaginations of their own hearts, worshipping as they see fit; and He is angry with them.  “God is angry with the wicked every day” (Psa. 7:11).
  The text also said: “May a new season finally begin, in which the globalized world can become a family of peoples.  May we carry out our responsibility of building an authentic peace… capable of preventing conflicts through a cooperation that triumphs over hate and overcomes barriers through encounter and dialogue.”[8]
  Of course, all decent men want peace in the world.  It would be wonderful if there were no wars and conflicts.  It would be great if nations co-operated instead of going to war with one another.  But in this present fallen world, this is simply never going to happen.  All men are sinful, war is in their hearts, and as long as the world lasts there will be conflicts.  No man, or group of men, will ever achieve world peace.  And Christ did not come into this world to create world peace either.  He came to save His people out of the world.  He gives them peace in their hearts, peace in Him, and it is a peace which the people of the world know nothing about, and can never know anything about (Jn. 16:33; Phil. 4:7). 
  The text then said: “Nothing is impossible if we turn to God in prayer.”[9]  Yet this is only true with regards to the prayers of true Christians.  Men who worship false gods do not turn to the true God in prayer.  The god of Francis I, and the gods of all the other representatives of false religions gathered at Assisi, are false gods.  Their prayers, then, are meaningless.  They are offered to heathen deities.
Excerpts from Francis I’s Speech at Assisi
  Let us now look at some of the things which Francis I said in his address on the concluding day of the four-day gathering in Assisi:
  He said: “Our religious traditions are diverse.  But our differences are not the cause of conflict and provocation, or a cold distance between us.  We have not prayed against one another today, as has sometimes unfortunately occurred in history.  Without syncretism or relativism, we have rather prayed side by side and for each other.”[10]
  “Our differences are not the cause of conflict and provocation”?  Tell that to the multitudes massacred by Rome through the centuries because they were not Papists and did not worship the false gods of Roman Catholicism.  Tell that to those being brutally killed by Islamic fanatics all over the world today.  Tell that to those being persecuted by rampaging Hindu mobs in India, just because they are not Hindus.
 “We have not prayed against one another today, as has sometimes unfortunately occurred in history.”  Well, he would know: his vile religious system prayed against all whom it termed “heretics”, century after long century.  Now he says it was only “sometimes”, and that it was “unfortunate”; but he knows he is lying through his teeth.  It was often, very often indeed, and his predecessors on the papal chair saw nothing unfortunate about it.  They saw it as a holy cause, a crusade.  And in truth, so does Francis.  It’s just that different times demand different measures. 
  As for saying that this religious Babel occurred “without syncretism or relativism”, that was an outright falsehood.  But in true Jesuit fashion he could say this, because the various religions had prayed separately according to their own rites.  This aspect has already been examined above.
  He then warned them about the danger of a “special paganism”, which infiltrates between religions, saying: “It is a virus that paralyzes, rendering us lethargic and insensitive, a disease that eats away at the very heart of religious fervour, giving rise to a new and deeply sad paganism: the paganism of indifference.”[11]
  Isn’t this rich?  This man heads up the religious system that has been well described as nothing but “baptized paganism”[12] – and he warns of a “special paganism”?  Here he was, leader of a massive pagan religion masquerading as “Christianity”, and addressing the leaders of many other pagan religions – and he warns about a “special paganism”?  He calls it “the paganism of indifference”, and with that he passes over the paganism of worshipping idols, the paganism of offering sacrifices, the paganism of praying to many gods and goddesses, the paganism of temples and mosques and cathedrals.  Surrounded by the priests of one pagan religion after another, high priest of a pagan religion himself, he ignores all that and focuses on “the paganism of indifference”!  Truly, this man is spiritually blind and dead in his sins.
  He also said: “We must never tire of repeating that the name of God cannot be used to justify violence.  Peace alone, and not war, is holy!… Our future consists in living together.  For this reason we are called to free ourselves from the heavy burdens of distrust, fundamentalism and hatred.”[13]
  And yet this is precisely what has been done, time and time again throughout history, and most especially by his own religious system, Roman Catholicism: the name of God has been used to justify violence.  But now, because it suits her in this day of ecumenism and interfaith, the persecuting Harlot on the seven hills wears a smiling face!  Now, its pope can say piously, “We must never tire of repeating that God’s name cannot be used to justify violence”!  His predecessors used it precisely in that way through many, many long centuries. 
  And then came the denunciation of “fundamentalism”.  Today, thanks to what the media labels as “Islamic fundamentalism”, most people in the world tend to think of fundamentalism as something evil, dangerous, vicious, the domain of wild-eyed, gun-toting fanatics who kill in the name of their religion.  But true Christians are fundamentalists, in the sense that they hold firmly to the great fundamental truths of Christianity.  These truths have nothing to do with violence.  But very subtly, with the subtlety of the serpent himself, true Christians have now become labelled alongside Muslim madmen and other dangerous religious crackpots.  And so, whenever the pope of Rome condemns “religious fundamentalism”, he and his servants make sure that people understand him to be meaning evangelical Christians as well!
  Slowly but surely, true Christians are being depicted as being part of the lunatic fringe of society, dangerous foaming-at-the-mouth religious fanatics who must be stopped at all costs, men and women who are seen to be a threat to society on all kind of levels.


  And so the Assisi interfaith abomination came to an end.  The people of the world were satisfied: they saw religious leaders “doing something” about world peace.  The adherents of the various religions were satisfied: they saw their leaders acting in concert to “pray for world peace”.  The Jesuits were satisfied: they saw their own man, Francis I, exalted even higher in the world’s esteem, and in the esteem of leaders of other religions.  Francis himself was satisfied: he had yet another opportunity to show off and to ride the wave of global popularity that has swept him along ever since he became pope.
  But as for prayers for “world peace”?  All those prayers were just so many noises, uttered from the mouths of men who have set themselves against the Lord, and against His Christ.  They were no better than the vain mutterings of the priests of Baal of old, recorded in 1 Kings 18:26, who “called on the name of Baal from morning even until noon, saying, O Baal, hear us.”  And the very next words say:
  “But there was no voice, nor any that answered.”
September 2016
Shaun Willcock is a minister, author and researcher.  He runs Bible Based Ministries.  For other articles (which may be downloaded and printed), as well as details about his books, audio messages, pamphlets, etc., please visit the Bible Based Ministries website; or write to the address below.  If you would like to be on Bible Based Ministries’ email list, to receive all future articles, please send your details.

[1]. The Bible Based Ministries Newsletter, No. 21, November 1986.
[2]. The Southern Cross, November 9, 1986.
[3]. Rome Reports, “Pope Arrives to Assisi: Greets 500 Participants of Interreligious Meeting One-by-One”, September 20, 2016; Rome Reports, “Pope Francis in Assisi: ‘Peace Alone, and Not War, is Holy!”  September 20, 2016; Rome Reports, “Meeting of Assisi: a Mosaic of Religions and Nationalities, All United for Peace”, September 20, 2016.
[4]. “Pope Arrives to Assisi: Greets 500 Participants of Interreligious Meeting One-by-One”.
[5], 20 September 2016.  Urbi et Orbi Communications, New Hope, Kentucky, USA.
[6]., “Pope’s Appeal for Peace at Closing Ceremony of Assisi Event”, September 22, 2016.
[7]. “Pope’s Appeal for Peace at Closing Ceremony of Assisi Event”.
[8].  “Pope’s Appeal for Peace at Closing Ceremony of Assisi Event”.
[9]. “Pope’s Appeal for Peace at Closing Ceremony of Assisi Event”.
[10]. “Pope Francis in Assisi: ‘Peace Alone, and Not War, is Holy!”
[11]. “Pope Francis in Assisi: ‘Peace Alone, and Not War, is Holy!”.
[12]. Alexander Hislop, in his monumental work, The Two Babylons, which proves that Roman Catholicism is nothing but ancient paganism disguised as “Christianity”.
[13]. “Pope Francis in Assisi: ‘Peace Alone, and Not War, is Holy!”
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Is God De-voodoolising the witchcraft of the Catholic Church in Uganda?? More Catholic priests rebel against Archbishop Lwanga: Gunfire at Ediofe cathedral, Christians attack bishop’s home

Archbishop Cyprian Kizito Lwanga

The Roman Catholic Church in Uganda is facing a tough test as more priests walk away from the mainstream, threatening the harmony and discipline it has always been associated with.
At Lubaga, the seat of Kampala Archdiocese, there are fears that the growing resentment among priests towards Archbishop Dr Cyprian Kizito Lwanga’s leadership could lead to an Arua-like scenario.
A source at Lubaga told The Observer on Friday that the number of disenchanted priests has grown over what they call the archbishop’s high-handedness.
“What happened in Arua is not far from happening at Lubaga because of the way the archdiocese is being managed,” the source said.
On September 22, a combined force of regular and military police fought running battles with angry Christians at Ediofe cathedral in Arua. The Christians who converged overnight wanted to evict the Arua diocesan bishop Sabino Ocan Odoki who they accuse of mismanaging the diocesan affairs.
Bishop Odoki too has a trail of bad relations with priests under him. Some rebel priests in Kampala archdiocese have chosen to take a low profile while others have defected and joined charismatic preacher Fr Jacinto Kibuuka, who was suspended from the Catholic Church in July.
Notable among the defectors is Fr Dr Vincent Kibuuka Byansi, who previously headed Caritas Kampala, a church organisation involved in socio-economic development activities. Others are Fr Deogratius Ssonko and Fr Anthony Ssewanyana.
Byansi, Ssonko and Ssewanyana are openly working with Kibuuka at his Mamre ministries, which subscribes to the Antiochian (Eastern) rite of the Catholic Church as opposed to the Western rite to which the Roman Catholic Church subscribes.
On September 22, Byansi, Ssonko and Ssewanyana escorted Fr Kibuuka to Kibuku district where he opened his first upcountry prayer centre at Kagumu. The session drew thousands of people and galvanized Fr Kibuuka’s following.
Byansi’s defection shocked many at Lubaga because he was known to be close to Lwanga. The two worked together in Kasana-Luweero diocese before Lwanga was appointed Kampala archbishop. Speaking to The Observer on Saturday, Byansi accused Lwanga of misusing his powers under the church’s canon law.
“The major weakness of the code of canon law is giving too much power to a bishop and when a bishop misuses such power, it causes problems like what we saw in Arua,” Fr Byansi said. 
“When talking about dictators, we should not only talk about African presidents but also leaders in other institutions and organizations; this is what the archbishop has become, and that is why he is taking decisions that can be bad for the church,” Fr Byansi added.

A cross section of Christians that turned up for the launch of Fr Kibuuka’s (circled) centre at Kagumu, Kibuku district

Byansi disagreed with Lwanga over the suspension of his colleague, Fr Kibuuka. He told The Observer that before Lwanga announced Kibuuka’s suspension from all priestly duties, he (Byansi) had been pushing for dialogue.
“The decision [to suspend Fr Kibuuka] was influenced by a small clique around the archbishop, which we didn’t agree with because we believed that this matter could have been resolved through dialogue,” Byansi said.

Interviewed on Saturday, the chancellor of Kampala archdiocese, Rev Fr Joseph Mary Ssebunya, said the archdiocesan leadership was not aware of priests joining Fr Kibuuka.
“We don’t have that information because they have not officially communicated to us, but the church is not a prison; it is a pity [that they have left] but we pray for them that at some time they will come back,” Ssebunya said.
He prayed that what transpired in Arua does not come to Kampala.
“The church wants peace and wouldn’t want to see a repeat of that (Arua protests)…if it happens, it will of course be unchristian because that is not what the church preaches,” Ssebunya added.
Apart from his leadership changes that left some priests not impressed, Archbishop Lwanga is also accused of frustrating independent-minded priests. Some priests are reportedly unhappy with the new policy that requires those who receive donations from their foreign benefactors to remit at least 15 per cent to the church.
According to the source, some foreign benefactors, unhappy with the policy, have decided to keep their donations, leaving many priests broke.
“Besides, the archbishop wants all [bank] accounts for schools, hospitals and all projects to be centralized and put under his watch,” our source said.
To stamp out dissent, Archbishop Lwanga has been making changes, replacing priests he suspects to be disobedient.
“There is a feeling among priests that some priests were posted to ‘juicy’ parishes while those that are seen to be disloyal were sent to poor parishes,” said the source.
Among the appointments that raised suspicion was that of Monsignor Lawrence Ssemusu Lugoloobi, who has been elevated to second vicar general responsible for shrines, worship and priests.
He has been the episcopal vicar for education and also the moderator of the archdiocesan curia (top officials of the archdiocese). Some insiders saw this appointment as a step towards quashing the charismatic movement within the church.
With more priests joining him, Fr Kibuuka has embarked on expanding his ministry. Kibuuka is reportedly planning to open another centre in Kasese soon.

Police was today forced to fire bullets in air and teargas at an angry mob that attempted to raid the home of Rt Rev Sabino Ocan Odoki, the Bishop of Arua diocese near Ediofe cathedral.

The mob accuses Bishop Odoki of ‘neglecting’ the late Bishop Fredrick Drandua, who succumbed to high blood pressure and diabetes on September 1. The chaos is said to have started yesterday evening when police moved in to arrest Christians who were ‘guarding’ the grave of the late Bishop Fredrick Drandua and calling for the transfer of Bishop Odoki.

James Okuni, a parishioner of Ediofe parish, says police arrested over 16 suspects, prompting Christians to ring the church bells - attracting even more angry people.
As a result, the residents moved in and smashed the windowpanes of the parish block, burnt documents and destroyed the temporary prayer structure as the cathedral is still under renovation.

They tried to raid the bishop's house, prompting military and police guards to open fire leading to running battles.  Currently, more officers from the police and army have deployed at the cathedral to contain the situation.

Some of the destroyed properties at the parish. Photo: @PMLiveRadio 

In the morning, a group of Christians armed with placards calling for the removal of Bishop of Odoki attempted to march to Arua central police station to demand the unconditional release of their colleagues in police custody but were blocked by the army and police.

Monsignor Casto Adetmi, the Ediofe parish priest has called for dialogue with the warring parties to address their concerns.
“Of course we were all in the same compound with the bishop. We shall also see how we can relate this to the general security of the place of Ediofe. Certainly, we shall do something. As I said, we are still yet to meet and see what we can do. Right now there is a lot of insecurity, it is also difficult for people to come in. So we wait for this situation quell first. Of course we are open to dialogue, that is the mature way of solving problems, to listen to all sides of the problem and try to solve. But we are not encouraging mob action because with mob, it is very difficult to dialogue”, Adetmi said.

Haji Ibrahim Saiga, the West Nile regional police commander and Arua district police commander, Jonathan Musinguzu declined to comment on the attack, saying are still busy coordinating the operations to protect church property from further destruction.

Today's chaos, comes a few days after Saiga penned a letter to the inspector general of police, Kale Kayihura saying there is need for the Vatican and Catholic church in Uganda to move Bishop Odoki from the diocese given the rising hostility towards him. 

He also asked the authorities to neutralize Martin Andua, the leader of the group opposed to the Bishop if the tension in the diocese is to be addressed. According to police reports, Kayihura flew to Arua today morning in a bid to quell the tensions.