Sunday, June 9, 2013

Monday, June 3, 2013 - Litany Lane Blog: Saint, Psalms 112, Tobit 1:1, 2; 2:1-9, Mark 12:1-12, Pope Francis Daily Homily - Sinners and Saint , St. Charles Lwanga, Namugongo Uganda, Kingdom of Buganda, Catholic Catechism Part Two: THE SEVEN SACRAMENTS OF THE CHURCH - Chapter 4 Other Liturgical Celebrations Article 1 Sacramentals and in Brief

Monday,  June 3, 2013 - Litany Lane Blog:

Saint, Psalms 112, Tobit 1:1, 2; 2:1-9, Mark 12:1-12, Pope Francis Daily Homily - Sinners and Saint , St. Charles Lwanga, Namugongo Uganda, Kingdom of Buganda, Catholic Catechism Part Two: THE SEVEN SACRAMENTS OF THE CHURCH - Chapter 4  Other Liturgical Celebrations Article 1 Sacramentals and in Brief
Year of Faith - October 11, 2012 - November 24, 2013

P.U.S.H. (Pray Until Serenity Happens). It has a remarkable way of producing solace, peace, patience and tranquility and of course resolution...God's always available 24/7.

The world begins and ends everyday for someone.  We are all human. We all experience birth, life and death. We all have flaws but we also all have the gift of knowledge and free will, make the most of these gifts. Life on earth is a stepping stone to our eternal home in Heaven. The Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit: wisdom, understanding, wonder and awe (fear of the Lord) , counsel, knowledge, fortitude, and piety (reverence) and shun the seven Deadly sins: wrath, greed, sloth, pride, lust, envy, and gluttony...Its your choice whether to embrace the Gifts of the Holy Spirit rising towards eternal light or succumb to the Seven deadly sins and lost to eternal darkness. Material items, though needed for sustenance and survival on earth are of earthly value only. The only thing that passes from this earth to the Darkness, Purgatory or Heaven is our's God's perpetual gift to us...Embrace it, treasure it, nurture it, protect it...~ Zarya Parx 2013

"Raise not a hand to another unless it is to offer in peace and goodwill." ~ Zarya Parx 2012


Prayers for Today: Monday in Easter

Rosary - Joyful Mysteries


 Papam Franciscus
(Pope Francis)

Pope Francis June 3 General Audience Address :

Sinners and Saints

(2013-06-03 Vatican Radio)
Sinners, the corrupt, and saints: Pope Francis focused on these three groups in his homily for Mass Monday morning in at the Casa Santa Marta. The Pope said the corrupt do great harm to the Church because they are worshipers of themselves; the saints, on the other hand, do great good, they are lights in the Church.

What happens when we want to become the owners of the vineyard? The parable of the wicked tenants in Monday's Gospel reading provided the starting point for Pope Francis’ homily, which focused on “the three models of Christians in the Church: sinners, corrupt persons; and the saints.” The Pope noted that “there is no need to talk too much about sinners, because we are all sinners." "We recognize this from the inside,” he continued, “and we know what a sinner is. If any one of us does not feel that way, he should make a visit to a spiritual doctor” because “something is wrong.” The parable, however, presents us with another figure, the figure of those who want “to take possession of the vineyard, and who have lost the relationship with the Master of the vineyard,” a Master who, “has called us with love, who protects us, but who then gives us freedom.” Those who would take possession of the vineyard, “think they are strong, they think they are independent of God”:

“These, slowly, slipped on that autonomy, that independence in their relationship with God: ‘We don’t need that Master, who shouldn’t come and disturb us!’ And we go forward with this. These are the corrupt! These were sinners like all of us, but they have taken a step beyond that, as if they were confirmed in their sin: they don’t need God! But it only seems so, for in their genetic code there is this relationship with God. And since they can’t deny this, they make a special god: they themselves are god. They are corrupt.”
“This is a danger for us, too,” he added. In the “Christian communities,” he said, the corrupt think only of their own group: “Good, good. It’s about us - they think - but, in fact, ‘they are only out for themselves”:

Judas [was the first]: from a greedy sinner, he ended in corruption. The road of autonomy is a dangerous road: the corrupt are very forgetful, have forgotten this love, with which the Lord made the vineyard, has made them! They severed the relationship with this love! And they become worshipers of themselves. How bad are the corrupt in the Christian community! May the Lord deliver us from sliding down this road of corruption.”

The Pope spoke also of the saints, remembering that today is the fiftieth anniversary of the death of Bd Pope John XXIII, “a model of holiness.” In the day's Gospel, he added, the saints are those who “go to collect the rent” on the vineyard. “They know what is expected of them, but they must do it, and they do their duty”:

“The saints are those who obey the Lord, those who worship the Lord, those who have not lost the memory of the love with which the Lord has made the vineyard: the saints in the Church. Just as the corrupt do so much harm to the Church, the saints do so much good. The apostle John says of the corrupt that they are the antichrist, that they are among us, but they are not of us. About the saints, the Word of God tells us they are like light, ‘that they will be before the throne of God in adoration.’ Today we ask the Lord for the grace to understand that we are sinners, but truly sinners, not sinners broadly, but sinners with regard to this, that, and the other thing, concrete sins, with the concreteness of sin. The grace to not become corrupt: sinners, yes; corrupt, no! And the grace to walk in the paths of holiness. So be it.”


Liturgical Celebrations to be presided over by Pope: Summer

Vatican City, Summer2013 (VIS)
Following is the calendar of celebrations scheduled to be presided over by the Holy Father for the Summer of 2013:

16 June, 11th Sunday in Ordinary Time: 10:30am, Mass for “Evangelium Vitae” Day in St. Peter's Square.

29 Saturday, Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul: 9:30am, Mass and imposition of the pallium upon new metropolitans in the papal chapel.

The Prefecture of the Papal Household has released Pope Francis' agenda for the summer period, from July through to the end of August. Briefing journalists, Holy See Press Office director, Fr. Federico Lombardi confirmed that the Pope will remain 'based ' at the Casa Santa Marta residence in Vatican City State for the duration of the summer.

As per tradition, all private and special audiences are suspended for the duration of the summer. The Holy Father's private Masses with employees will end July 7 and resume in September. The Wednesday general audiences are suspended for the month of July to resume August 7 at the Vatican.

7 July, 14th Sunday in Ordinary Time: 9:30am, Mass with seminarians and novices in the Vatican Basilica.

14 July Sunday , Pope Francis will lead the Angelus prayer from the Apostolic Palace of Castel Gandolfo.

Pope Francis will travel to Brazil for the 28th World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro from Monday July 22 to Monday July 29.  


  • Vatican News. From the Pope. © Copyright 2013 - Libreria Editrice Vaticana. Accessed 06/03/2013.


June 2, 2013 Our Lady of Medjugorje Message to the World: "Dear children, in this restless time, anew I am calling you to set out after my Son - to follow Him. I know of the pain, suffering and difficulties, but in my Son you will find rest; in Him you will find peace and salvation. My children, do not forget that my Son redeemed you by His Cross and enabled you, anew, to be children of God; to be able to, anew, call the Heavenly Father, "Father". To be worthy of the Father, love and forgive, because your Father is love and forgiveness. Pray and fast, because that is the way to your purification, it is the way of coming to know and becoming cognizant of the Heavenly Father. When you become cognizant of the Father, you will comprehend that He is all you need. I, as a mother, desire my children to be in a community of one single people where the Word of God is listened to and carried out.* Therefore, my children, set out after my Son. Be one with Him. Be God's children. Love your shepherds as my Son loved them when He called them to serve you. Thank you." *Our Lady said this resolutely and with emphasis.

May 25, 2013 Our Lady of Medjugorje Message to the World:“Dear children! Today I call you to be strong and resolute in faith and prayer, until your prayers are so strong so as to open the Heart of my beloved Son Jesus. Pray little children, pray without ceasing until your heart opens to God’s love. I am with you and I intercede for all of you and I pray for your conversion. Thank you for having responded to my call.”

May 2, 2013 Our Lady of Medjugorje Message to the World: "Dear children; Anew, I am calling you to love and not to judge. My Son, according to the will of the Heavenly Father, was among you to show you the way of salvation, to save you and not to judge you. If you desire to follow my Son, you will not judge but love like your Heavenly Father loves you. And when it is the most difficult for you, when you are falling under the weight of the cross do not despair, do not judge, instead remember that you are loved and praise the Heavenly Father because of His love. My children, do not deviate from the way on which I am leading you. Do not recklessly walk into perdition. May prayer and fasting strengthen you so that you can live as the Heavenly Father would desire; that you may be my apostles of faith and love; that your life may bless those whom you meet; that you may be one with the Heavenly Father and my Son. My children, that is the only truth, the truth that leads to your conversion, and then to the conversion of all those whom you meet - those who have not come to know my Son - all those who do not know what it means to love. My children, my Son gave you a gift of the shepherds. Take good care of them. Pray for them. Thank you."


Today's Word:  saint  saint [seynt]  

Origin:  before 1000; Middle English  (noun and v.) < Old French  (noun) < Latin sānctus  sacred, adj. use of past participle of sancīre  to consecrate, equivalent to sanc-  (akin to sacer sacred) + -tus  past participle suffix; replacing Old English sanct  < Latin,  as above
1. any of certain persons of exceptional holiness of life, formally recognized as such by the Christian Church, especially by canonization.
2. a person of great holiness, virtue, or benevolence.
3. a founder, sponsor, or patron, as of a movement or organization.
4. (in certain religious groups) a designation applied by the members to themselves.
verb (used with object)
5. to enroll formally among the saints recognized by the Church.
6. to give the name of saint to; reckon as a saint. 


Today's Old Testament Reading -   Psalms 112:1-2, 3-4, 5-6

1 Alleluia! How blessed is anyone who fears Yahweh, who delights in his commandments!
2 His descendants shall be powerful on earth, the race of the honest shall receive blessings:
3 Riches and wealth for his family; his uprightness stands firm for ever.
4 For the honest he shines as a lamp in the dark, generous, tender-hearted, and upright.
5 All goes well for one who lends generously, who is honest in all his dealing;
6 for all time to come he will not stumble, for all time to come the upright will be remembered.


Today's Epistle -  Tobit 1:1, 2; 2:1-9

1 The tale of Tobit son of Tobiel, son of Ananiel, son of Aduel, son of Gabael, of the lineage of Asiel and tribe of Naphtali.
2 In the days of Shalmaneser king of Assyria, he was exiled from Thisbe, which is south of Kedesh-Naphtali in Upper Galilee, above Hazor, some distance to the west, north of Shephat.
1 In the reign of Esarhaddon, therefore, I returned home, and my wife Anna was restored to me with my son Tobias. At our feast of Pentecost (the feast of Weeks) there was a good dinner. I took my place for the meal;
2 the table was brought to me and various dishes were brought. I then said to my son Tobias, 'Go, my child, and seek out some poor, loyal-hearted man among our brothers exiled in Nineveh, and bring him to share my meal. I will wait until you come back, my child.'
3 So Tobias went out to look for some poor man among our brothers, but he came back again and said, 'Father!' I replied, 'What is it, my child?' He went on, 'Father, one of our nation has just been murdered; he has been strangled and then thrown down in the market place; he is there still.'
4 I sprang up at once, left my meal untouched, took the man from the market place and laid him in one of my rooms, waiting until sunset to bury him.
5 I came in again and washed myself and ate my bread in sorrow,
6 remembering the words of the prophet Amos concerning Bethel: I shall turn your festivals into mourning and all your singing into lamentation.
7 And I wept. When the sun was down, I went and dug a grave and buried him.
8 My neighbours laughed and said, 'See! He is not afraid any more.' (You must remember that a price had been set on my head earlier for this very thing.) 'Once before he had to flee, yet here he is, beginning to bury the dead again.'
9 That night I took a bath; then I went into the courtyard and lay down by the courtyard wall. Since it was hot I left my face uncovered.


Today's Gospel Reading - Mark 12:1-12

Jesus went on to speak to the priests, the scribes and the elders in parables, 'A man planted a vineyard; he fenced it round, dug out a trough for the winepress and built a tower; then he leased it to tenants and went abroad. When the time came, he sent a servant to the tenants to collect from them his share of the produce of the vineyard. But they seized the man, thrashed him and sent him away empty handed. Next he sent another servant to them; him they beat about the head and treated shamefully. And he sent another and him they killed; then a number of others, and they thrashed some and killed the rest. He had still someone left: his beloved son. He sent him to them last of all, thinking, "They will respect my son." But those tenants said to each other, "This is the heir. Come on, let us kill him, and the inheritance will be ours." So they seized him and killed him and threw him out of the vineyard. Now what will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come and make an end of the tenants and give the vineyard to others. Have you not read this text of scripture: The stone which the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; this is the Lord's doing, and we marvel at it?' And they would have liked to arrest him, because they realised that the parable was aimed at them, but they were afraid of the crowds. So they left him alone and went away.

• Jesus is in Jerusalem. It is the last week of his life. He has returned to the portico of the Temple (Mk 11, 27), where he now begins the direct confrontation with the authority. Chapters 11 and 12 describe the diverse aspects of this confrontation: (a) with the men buying and selling in the Temple (Mk 12,11-26), (b) with the priests, elders and the Scribes (Mk 11,27 and 12,12), (c) with the Pharisees and the Herodians (Mk 12,13-17), (d) with the Sadducees (Mk 12,18-27), and (e) once again with the Scribes (Mk 12,28-40). Finally at the end the confrontation with all of them, Jesus comments on the widow’s mite (Mk 12, 41-44). Today’s Gospel describes part of the conflict with the priests, elders and the Scribes (Mk 12,1-12). All these confrontations make the disciples and us understand more clearly which is Jesus’ project and which is the intention of those who have power.

• Mark 12, 1-9: The parable of the vineyard: the direct response of Jesus to men of power. The parable of the vineyard is a summary of the history of Israel. A beautiful summary taken from the Prophet Isaiah (Is 5,1-7). Through this story, Jesus gives an indirect response to the priests, Scribes and elders who had asked him: What authority have you for acting like this? Who gave you authority to act like this?" (Mk 11,28). In this parable Jesus (a) reveals the origin of his authority: he is the Son, the heir (Mk 12,6); (b) he denounces the abuse of the authority of the tenants, that is, of the priests and of the elders who were not concerned about the people of God (Mk 12,3-8); (c) He defends the authority of the prophets, sent by God, but massacred by the tenants of the vineyard! (Mk 12, 2-5); (d) He unmasks the authority which manipulates religion and kills the son, because they do not want to lose the source of income which they have succeeded to accumulate for themselves, throughout the centuries (Mk 12, 7).

• Mark 12, 10-12: The decision of men of power confirms the denunciation made by God. The priests, the Scribes and the elders understood very well the meaning of the parable, but they were not converted. Rather, they maintained their own project to arrest Jesus (Mk 12, 12). They rejected “the corner stone” (Mk 12, 10), but they do not have the courage to do it openly, because they fear the people. Thus, the disciples have to know what awaits them if they follow Jesus!

The men of power at the time of Jesus: In chapters 11 and 12 of the Gospel of Mark we see that there are some men today: priests, elders and Scribes (Mk 11, 27); not of tomorrow: Pharisees and Herodians (Mk 12, 13); not of day after tomorrow: Sadducees (Mk 12, 18).

-Priests: They were the ones in charge of the worship in the Temple, where the tenth part of the income was collected. The High priest occupied a central place in the life of the people, especially after the exile. He was chosen among the families who had more power and who were richer.

-Elders or Chiefs of the people: They were the local chiefs, in the villages and in the cities. Their origin was the heads of the ancient tribes.

-Scribes or Doctors of the Law: they were those in charge of teaching. They dedicated their life to the study of the Law of God and taught the people how to observe the Law of God in all things. Not all the Scribes followed the same line. Some of them were with the Pharisees, others with the Sadducees.

- Pharisees: Pharisee means: separated. They fought in order that by means of the perfect observance of the Law of purity, people would succeed to be pure, separated, and holy as the Law and Tradition demanded! By means of the exemplary witness of their life within the norms of the time, they governed in almost all the villages of Galilee.

-Herodians: this was a group bound to Herod Antipas of Galilee who governed from 4 BC until 39 AD. The Herodians formed part of an elite class who did not expect the Kingdom of God in the future, but who considered it already present in Herod’s kingdom.

- Sadducees: They were an elite aristocratic class of rich merchants or owners of large estates. They were conservative. They did not accept the changes defended by the Pharisees, for example, faith in the Resurrection and the existence of the angels.

- Synedrium: This was the Supreme Tribunal of the Jews with 71 members among high priests, elders, Pharisees and Scribes. It had the role of great power before the people and represented the nation before the Roman authority.

Personal questions
• Some times, as it happened to Jesus, have you felt controlled by the authority of your country, at home, in your family, in your work or in the Church? Which was your reaction then?
• What does this parable teach us concerning the way of exercising authority? And you, how do you exercise your authority in the family, in the community and in your work?

Reference: Courtesy of Order of Carmelites,


Featured Item of the Day from Litany Lane


Saint of the Day:  St Charles Lwanga

Feast DayJune 3

Patron Saint:  n/a
Attributes: n/a

Saint Charles Lwanga (also known as Karoli Lwanga) (1860[1][2] or 1865–June 3, 1886) was a Ugandan Catholic catechist martyred for his faith and revered as a saint in the Catholic Church. He was born in the kingdom of Buganda in the southern part of modern Uganda, and served as a page and later major-domo in the court of King Mwanga II. As part of the king's effort to resist foreign colonization, he had begun to insist that Christian converts abandon their new faith, and executed many Anglicans and Catholics between 1885 and 1887, many of whom were officials in the royal court or otherwise very close to him, including Lwanga.


The persecution started in 1885. After a massacre of Anglican missionaries, which included Bishop James Hannington, the leader of the Catholic community, Joseph Mukasa – who was then major-domo of the court, as well as a lay catechist--reproached the king for the killings, against which he had counseled him. Mwanga had Mukasa beheaded and arrested all of his followers. This took place on November 15th. The king then ordered that Lwanga, who was chief page at that time, take up Mukasa's duties. That same day, Lwanga sought baptism as a Catholic by a missionary priest.

On May 25, 1886, Mwanga ordered a general assembly of the court while they were settled at Munyonyo, where he charged two of the pages, whom he then condemned to death. The following morning, Lwanga secretly baptized those of his charges who were still only catechumens. Later that day, the king called a court assembly in which he interrogated all present to see if any would renounce Christianity. Led by Lwanga, the royal pages declared their fidelity to their religion, upon which the king ordered them bound and condemned them to death, directing that they be marched to the traditional place of execution. Two of the prisoners were executed on the march there.

When preparations were completed and the day had come for the execution on June 3rd, Lwanga was separated from the others by the Guardian of the Sacred Flame for private execution, in keeping with custom . As he was being burnt, Charles said to the Guardian, "It is as if you are pouring water on me. Please repent and become a Christian like me."

Twelve Catholic boys and men and nine Anglicans were then burnt alive (another Catholic, Mbaga Tuzinde, was speared to death for refusing to renounce Christianity, and his body was thrown into the furnace to be burned along with those of Lwanga and the others[3]). The ire of the king was particularly inflamed against the Christians was because they refused to accede to demands to participate in sexual acts with him.[4] Charles Lwanga, in particular, had protected the pages from King Mwanga's sexual advances.[5] The executions were also motivated by Mwanga's broader efforts to avoid foreign threats to his power. According to Assa Okoth, Mwanga's overriding preoccupation was for the "integrity of his kingdom," and perceived that men such as Lwanga were working with foreigners in "poisoning the very roots of his kingdom". Not to have taken any action could have led to suggestions that he was a weak sovereign.[6]

Charles Lwanga and the other Catholics who accompanied him in death were canonized in 1964 by Pope Paul VI.[7] Although the Anglicans could not be canonized, they were named "with the others, also deserving mention" for enduring "death for the name of Christ".[8]

History of Uganda Martyrs Created by Apostleship of Prayer


  1. ^ Charles Lwanga's profile from Retrieved on 2008-08-17.
  2. ^ Charles Lwanga's profile from Dictionary of African Christian Biography. Retrieved on 2008-08-29.
  3. ^ Mbaga Tuzinde's profile from Retrieved on 2008-08-17.
  4. ^ Breviarium Romanum, Office of Ss. Matthias Murumba, Charles Lwanga and Companions, Lesson v.
  5. ^ Dictionary of African Christian Biography: Charles Lwanga
  6. ^ Assa Okoth (2006). A History of Africa: African Societies and the Establishment of Colonial Rule, pp. 86–87. East African Publishers. ISBN 9966-25-357-2.
  7. ^ "Charles Lwanga". Patron Saints Index. Retrieved 2007-12-04.
  8. ^ Vatican Archive

Featured Items Panel from Litany Lane


Today's Snippet I:  Namugongo Uganda

Basilica of Uganda Martyrs
Namugongo is the name of a township in Central Uganda.  Namugongo is in Kira Municipality, Wakiso District, Central Uganda, approximately 16 kilometres (9.9 mi) northeast of Uganda's capital Kampala. Wakiso District is a district in Central Uganda that encircles Kampala, Uganda's capital city.

It is bordered by Nsasa to the north, Sonde and Bukeerere to the east, Bweyogerere to the southeast, Naalya and Kireka lie directly south, Kyaliwajjala lies to the southwest and Kira lies to the west and northwest of Namugongo. The coordinates of Namugongo are 0° 23' 6.00"N, 32° 39' 0.00"E (Latitude: 0.3850; Longitude: 32.6500).[1]

As of 2 August 2010, Uganda is divided into 111 districts and one city (the capital city of Kampala) across four administrative regions. Most districts are named after their main commercial and administrative towns, known as 'chief towns'. Since 2005, the Ugandan government has been in the process of dividing districts into smaller units in order to prevent resources being distributed primarily to chief towns and leaving the remainder of each district neglected

Archdiocese of Kampala

The Archdiocese of Kampala is the Metropolitan See for the Roman Catholic Ecclesiastical province of Kampala in Uganda.

When the Catholic White Fathers came calling in 1879, they were allocated land near Lubaga Hill. Eventually they were given land on Lubaga Hill itself where they built St. Mary's Cathedral, beginning in 1914 which was completed in 1925, with the assistance of monetary contributions from Roman Catholic congregations abroad. The early missionaries had problems pronouncing the word Lubaga. They instead pronounced it with an "r" as in Rubaga. In Luganda, there is no word that starts with an "R". (Other Bantu languages from western Uganda and the African Great Lakes Area have words starting with "R".)

Later, the missionaries built a hospital and a nursing school on the hill. Today, Lubaga remains the seat of the headquarters of the Catholic Church in Uganda. It is the seat of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Kampala.

The remains of the first African Catholic bishop in Uganda, Bishop Joseph Nakabaale Kiwanuka and those of the first African Catholic Cardinal, Cardinal Emmanuel Kiwanuka Nsubuga are kept in the Catholic Mission on the hill.

Church landmarks

  • St. Mary's Catholic Cathedral
  • Administrative centre of the Kampala Archdiocese
  • Residence of the Archbishop of Kampala Archdiocese
  • Lubaga Hospital: A 300-bed community hospital administered by the Catholic Archdiocese of Kampala
  • Lubaga Nurses School
  • Lubaga Miracle Center: A Pentecostal Congregation church
  • Pope Paul VI Memorial Community Center
  • Headquarters of Lubaga Division: One of the five administrative divisions of the city of Kampala.
  • Lubaga Campus of Uganda Martyrs University, whose main campus is at Nkozi in Mpigi District.

Special churches

The seat of the Archbishop is St. Mary’s Cathedral in Lubaga Division, in Kampala. There is also a Minor Basilica, the Basilica of the Uganda Martyrs at Namugongo in Wakiso District.

Uganda Martyrs

On 3 June 1886, thirty-two young men, pages of the court of King Mwanga II of Buganda, were burned to death at Namugongo for their refusal to renounce Christianity. Some of the men were Anglican and others were of the Catholic faith. Annually, on June 3, Christians from all parts of Uganda, East Africa and other parts of the world congregate at Namugongo to commemorate the lives of the Uganda Martyrs and their dedication to their religious beliefs. Crowds have been estimated in hundreds of thousands in some years.[2]


Twenty two of the Catholic martyrs were canonized by Pope Paul VI on October 18, 1964 and are regarded as saints in the Catholic Church. A basilica has been built at the spot where the majority of them were burned to death. A church stands at the place where the Anglican martyrs met their death, about 2 miles (3.2 km) further east from the Basilica of the Uganda Martyrs. Documentation is available on forty five martyrs but it is believed that many more believers met their death at the command of Kabaka Mwanga II between 1885 and 1887.[3]

Uganda Martyrs Senior Secondary School

Namugongo is the location of Uganda Martyrs Senior Secondary School, one of Uganda's leading high schools. The mixed boarding school is a partner with the Stephen Shames Foundation, based in Brooklyn, New York State in the instruction of Information Technology methods and applications to high school students in Uganda.[4]

Stephen Shames and L.E.A.D (ADI) Foundation

Stephen Shames (born 1947, in Cambridge, Massachusetts) is a veteran American photojournalist who for over 45 years has used his photography to raise awareness of social issues, with a particular focus on child poverty, solutions to child poverty, and race. He testified about child poverty to the United States Senate in 1986. Shames was named a Purpose Prize Fellow in 2010 by for his work helping AIDS orphans and former child soldiers in Africa as founder of the Stephen Shames Foundation.[5]


Shames is the author of five photography monographs: Outside the Dream: Child Poverty in America (Aperture 1991), Pursuing the Dream: What Helps Children and Their Families Succeed (Aperture 1997), The Black Panthers (Aperture 2006), Transforming Lives: Turning Uganda’s Forgotten Children Into Leaders (Star Bright Books 2009), and Bronx Boys (FotoEvidence, 2011). Shames wrote and directed two videos: Friends of the Children and Children of Northern Uganda. He produced a video with Ascencion Films: Sanyu & Ronald. Shames is affiliated with Polaris Images photo agency in New York. Shames’s images are in the permanent collections of the International Center of Photography, New York; National Portrait Gallery, Washington, D.C.; Museum of Photographic Arts, San Diego; University of California’s Bancroft Library, Berkeley; San Jose Museum of Art; and Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. He is represented by and has had two solo shows at the Steven Kasher Gallery in New York. [6] He has received the Kodak Crystal Eagle Award for Impact in Photojournalism, and awards from Leica, International Center of Photography, Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards, World Press, and the New York Art Director’s Club.[9]

Child poverty work

From 1984 to 1989, with support from the Children's Defense Fund and the Alicia Patterson Foundation, Shames traveled across America photographing the lives of the one out of five children in the United States who live below the poverty line. The photographs were published by Aperture in 1991 in a book entitled Outside the Dream: Child Poverty in America with an introduction by Jonathan Kozol. Shames' work documenting child poverty was also featured in the New York Times[10], as well as the Los Angeles Times.[7]

Senator Bill Bradley said the following about the work, “Just as Walker Evans’ photographs helped America see the poverty of Appalachia, the vivid images in Outside the Dream will open our hearts to the deprivation that today afflicts not a region, but an entire generation.”[13] In 1993, copies of Outside The Dream were distributed to every member of Congress, the governors of all 50 states, selected state legislators, and the chief executive officers of the Fortune 500 companies.

From 1994 to 1996, with support from the Ford Foundation and the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, Shames worked on a follow-up project to Outside The Dream that focused on community solutions to child poverty in America. The work was published by Aperture in 1997 in a book entitled Pursuing the Dream: What Helps Children and Their Families Succeed and includes a preface by Michael Jordan. Shames traveled across America documenting families participating in neighborhood programs where parents were empowered to learn the skills they needed to become better parents, get better jobs, and become role models for their children. President Jimmy Carter wrote about the book: “Stephen Shames has captured the spirit of thousands of programs across our country that are quietly but stubbornly making the lives of children and families better in spite of the bleak circumstances in which they live. … This book can inspire all of us to seek out the many opportunities already available in their own communities to make a difference in the lives of others.”[12]

Humanitarian work in Africa

In 2006, Shames founded L.E.A.D Uganda, an NGO in Africa that locates forgotten children (AIDS orphans, former child soldiers, child laborers, and children living in Internally Displaced Person camps) and molds them into leaders by sending them to the best schools and colleges. One of the students was highlighted in a People Magazine feature in 2007. [13]In 2012 Shames retired as Executive Director and returned to photography full time.

The African Dream Initiative (ADI) provides promising children an opportunity to attend the most prestigious schools in the region, where their students( 90% of ADI students are orphaned child laborers who lost a parent to the AIDS epidemic and/or victims of  two decades of war in Uganda) gain the skills and confidence to become leaders. But they do more than pay for school:
  • ADI partners with local psychologists and social workers to heal wounds of the past.
  • ADI offers medical care and nourishment to ensure that students can focus on school.
  • ADI provides mentorship and the support of a family – our staff is local and understands the everyday struggles our children face.
  • ADI teaches children to see beyond religious and tribal differences.
Above all, the African Dream Initiative creates a cycle of success by encouraging our students to use their education and leadership skills to give back to their communities.


  1. ^ Location of Namugongo At Google Maps
  2. ^ About Uganda Martyrs Day
  3. ^ The Christian Martyrs of Uganda
  4. ^ Namugongo High School partners with Stephen Shames Foundation
  5. ^ "Stephen Shames". Encore Careers.
  6. ^ "Civil rights photographer frames experiences". Western Courier. 2011-03-30. Retrieved 2011-04-20.
  7. ^ "The Black Panthers Portfolio". Aperture Foundation.
  8. ^ "Foto Evidence, The Jury". FotoEvidence.
  9. ^ "Heritage city in N China a paradise for world's photographers". China Central Television. 2009-09-21. Retrieved 2011-04-20.
  10. ^ Hagen, Charles (1993-07-30). "Poverty Among America's Children". New York Times.
  11. ^ Freudenheim, Susan (1992-06-20). "Young Faces of Little Hope". Los Angeles Times.
  12. ^ "Stephen Shames". Steven Kasher Gallery. Retrieved 2011-04-20.
  13. ^ "Educating Sarah". Los Angeles Times.


Today's Snippet II: Kingdom of Buganda

Flag of Buganda
Buganda is a subnational kingdom within Uganda. The kingdom of the Ganda people, Buganda is the largest of the traditional kingdoms in present-day Uganda, comprising all of Uganda's Central Region, including the Ugandan capital Kampala. The 5.5 million Baganda (singular Muganda; often referred to simply by the root word and adjective, Ganda) make up the largest Ugandan ethnic group, representing approximately 16.9% of Uganda's population.[1]

Buganda has a long and extensive history. Unified in the fourteenth century under the first king Kato Kintu, the founder of Buganda's Kintu Dynasty, Buganda grew to become one of the largest and most powerful states in East Africa during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. During the Scramble for Africa, and following unsuccessful attempts to retain its independence against British imperialism, Buganda became the centre of the Uganda Protectorate in 1894; the name Uganda, the Swahili term for Buganda, was adopted by British officials. Under British rule, many Baganda acquired status as colonial administrators, and Buganda became a major producer of cotton and coffee.

Following Uganda's independence in 1962, the kingdom was abolished by Uganda's first Prime Minister Milton Obote in 1966. Following years of disturbance under Obote and dictator Idi Amin, as well as several years of internal divisions among Uganda's ruling National Resistance Movement under Yoweri Museveni, the President of Uganda since 1986, the kingdom was finally restored in 1993. Buganda is now a kingdom monarchy with a large degree of autonomy from the Ugandan state, although tensions between the kingdom and the Ugandan government continue to be a defining feature of Ugandan politics.

Since the restoration of the kingdom in 1993, the king of Buganda, known as the Kabaka, has been Muwenda Mutebi II. He is recognised as the thirty-sixth Kabaka of Buganda. The current queen, known as the Nnabagereka, is Queen Sylvia Nagginda.


Buganda's boundaries are marked by Lake Victoria to the south, the River Nile to the east, Lake Kyoga to the north and River Kafu to the northwest.[2] To the west, Buganda is bordered by the districts of Isingiro, Kiruhura, Kyenjojo, Kibale, Hoima and Masindi.

The counties are then divided into a variable number of sub-counties or gombolola(s) and each gombolola is then divided into parishes called miluka (singular: muluka). Two or more villages make up on muluka.


The Luganda language is widely spoken in Uganda, and is the most popular second language in Uganda along with English.[3] It is also taught in some primary and secondary schools in Uganda and at Makerere University, Uganda's oldest university and it has an exhaustive dictionary. The Luganda language was also used as a means of instruction in schools outside the region of Buganda prior to Uganda's Independence in 1962.

In literature and common discourse, Buganda is often referred to as Central Uganda. [4] It may be argued that this nomenclature does not refer to Buganda's geographical location, but to its political prominence, and to the fact that Kampala, the nation's capital, is located in Buganda.

Geography and Environment

Ganda villages, sometimes as large as forty to fifty homes, were generally located on hillsides, leaving hilltops and swampy lowlands uninhabited, to be used for crops or pastures. Early Ganda villages surrounded the home of a chief or headman, which provided a common meeting ground for members of the village. The chief collected tribute from his subjects, provided tribute to the Kabaka, who was the ruler of the kingdom, distributed resources among his subjects, maintained order, and reinforced social solidarity through his decision-making skills. During the late 19th century, Ganda villages became more dispersed as the role of the chiefs diminished in response to political turmoil, population migration, and occasional popular revolts.

History of Buganda

The kingdom of Buganda is situated in a swampy hillside that served as a refuge for those escaping rivalries in neighboring Bunyoro. One faction fleeing Bunyoro, under the leadership of Prince Kimera, arrived in Buganda toward the last quarter of the 14th century. The prince molded the already existing refugees in the area into a unified state and became the first Kabaka (ruler) of Buganda.

By the 18th century, the formerly dominant Bunyoro kingdom was being eclipsed by Buganda. Consolidating their efforts behind a centralized kingship, the Baganda (people of Buganda) shifted away from defensive strategies and toward expansion. By the mid 19th century, Buganda had doubled and redoubled its territory conquering much on Bunyoro and becoming the dominant state in the region. Newly conquered lands were placed under chiefs nominated by the king. Buganda's armies and the royal tax collectors traveled swiftly to all parts of the kingdom along specially constructed roads which crossed streams and swamps by bridges and viaducts. On Lake Victoria (which the Ganda called Nnalubale), a royal navy of outrigger canoes, commanded by an admiral who was chief of the Lungfish clan, could transport Baganda commandos to raid any shore of the lake. The journalist Henry Morton Stanley visited Buganda in 1875 and provided an estimate of Buganda troop strength. Stanley counted 125,000 troops marching off on a single campaign to the east, where a fleet of 230 war canoes waited to act as auxiliary naval support.

At Buganda's capital, Stanley found a well-ordered town of about 40,000 surrounding the king's palace, which was situated atop a commanding hill. A wall more than four kilometers in circumference surrounded the palace compound, which was filled with grass-roofed houses, meeting halls, and storage buildings. At the entrance to the court burned the royal gombolola (fire), which would only be extinguished when the Kabaka died. Thronging the grounds were foreign ambassadors seeking audiences, chiefs going to the royal advisory council, messengers running errands, and a corps of young pages, who served the Kabaka while training to become future chiefs. For communication across the kingdom, the messengers were supplemented by drum signals.

The British were impressed with government of Buganda. Under Kabaka Mwanga II, Buganda became a protectorate in 1894. This did not last and the Kabaka declared war on Britain in on July 6, 1897. He was defeated at the battle of Buddu on July 20 of the same year. He fled to German East Africa where he was arrested and interned at Bukoba. The Kabaka later escaped and led a rebel army to retake the kingdom before being defeated once again in 1898 and being exiled to the Seychelles.

While in exile, Mwanga II was received into the Anglican Church, was baptized with the name of Danieri (Daniel). He spent the rest of his life in exile. He died in 1903, aged 35 years. In 1910 his remains were repatriated and buried at Kasubi. [5]

Kabaka Mwanga II Buganda was allowed near complete autonomy and a position as overlord of the other kingdoms.

The war against Kabaka Mwanga II had been expensive, and the new commissioner of Uganda in 1900, Sir Harry H. Johnston, had orders to establish an efficient administration and to levy taxes as quickly as possible. Sir Johnston approached the chiefs in Buganda with offers of jobs in the colonial administration in return for their collaboration. The chiefs did so but expected their interests (preserving Buganda as a self-governing entity, continuing the royal line of kabakas, and securing private land tenure for themselves and their supporters) to be met. After much hard bargaining, the chiefs ended up with everything they wanted, including one-half of all the land in Buganda. The half left to the British as "Crown Land" was later found to be largely swamp and scrub.

Johnston's Buganda Agreement of 1900 imposed a tax on huts and guns, designated the chiefs as tax collectors, and testified to the continued alliance of British and Baganda interests. The British signed much less generous treaties with the other kingdoms (Toro in 1900, Ankole in 1901, and Bunyoro in 1933) without the provision of large-scale private land tenure.

Following Uganda's independence in 1962, the kingdom was abolished by Uganda's first Prime Minister Milton Obote in 1966. Following years of disturbance under Obote and dictator Idi Amin, as well as several years of internal divisions among Uganda's ruling National Resistance Movement under Yoweri Museveni, the President of Uganda since 1986, the kingdom was finally restored in 1993. Buganda is now a kingdom monarchy with a large degree of autonomy from the Ugandan state, although tensions between the kingdom and the Ugandan government continue to be a defining feature of Ugandan politics.

An attempt by some Banyara in Kayunga to secede

In September 2009, some of the Baanyala tribe announced that Bugerere had seceded from the Kingdom of Buganda. His Majesty, the Kabaka of Buganda, was prohibited by the Ugandan government from travelling to Bugerere, leading to riots and the killing of 30 people.[6]



The family in Buganda is often described as a microcosm of the kingdom. The father is revered and obeyed as head of the family. His decisions are generally unquestioned. A man's social status is determined by those with whom he establishes patron/client relationships, and one of the best means of securing this relationship is through one's children. Baganda children, some as young as three years old, are sent to live in the homes of their social superiors, both to cement ties of loyalty among parents and to provide avenues for social mobility for their children. Even in the 1980s, Baganda children were considered psychologically better prepared for adulthood if they had spent several years living away from their parents at a young age.

Baganda recognize at a very young age that their superiors, too, live in a world of rules. Social rules require a man to share his wealth by offering hospitality, and this rule applies more stringently to those of higher status. Superiors are also expected to behave with impassivity, dignity, self-discipline, and self-confidence, and adopting these mannerisms sometimes enhances a man's opportunities for success.

Authoritarian control is an important theme of Ganda culture. In precolonial times, obedience to the king was a matter of life and death. However, a second major theme of Ganda culture is the emphasis on individual achievement. An individual's future is not entirely determined by status at birth. Instead, individuals carve out their fortunes by hard work as well as by choosing friends, allies, and patrons carefully.

Ganda culture tolerates social diversity more easily than many other African societies. Even before the arrival of Europeans, many Ganda villages included residents from outside Buganda. Some had arrived in the region as slaves, but by the early 20th century, many non-Baganda migrant workers stayed in Buganda to farm. Marriage with non-Baganda was fairly common, and many Baganda marriages ended in divorce. After independence, Ugandan officials estimated that one-third to one-half of all adults marry more than once during their lives.

Social structure

Ganda social organization emphasized descent through males. Four or five generations of descendants of one man, related through male forebears, constituted a patrilineage. A group of related lineages constituted a clan. Clan leaders could summon a council of lineage heads, and council decisions affected all lineages within the clan. Many of these decisions regulated marriage, which had always been between two different lineages, forming important social and political alliances for the men of both lineages. Lineage and clan leaders also helped maintain efficient land use practices, and they inspired pride in the group through ceremonies and remembrances of ancestors.

Most lineages maintained links to a home territory (butaka) within a larger clan territory, but lineage members did not necessarily live on butaka land. Men from one lineage often formed the core of a village; their wives, children, and in-laws joined the village. People were free to leave if they became disillusioned with the local leader to take up residence with other relatives or in-laws, and they often did so.

The traditional Ganda economy relied on crop cultivation. In contrast with many other East African economic systems, cattle played only a minor role. Many Baganda hired laborers from outside Buganda to herd the Baganda's cattle, for those who owned livestock. Bananas were the most important staple food, providing the economic base for the region's dense population growth. This crop does not require shifting cultivation or bush fallowing to maintain soil fertility, and as a result, Ganda villages were quite permanent. Women did most of the agricultural work, while men often engaged in commerce and politics (and in precolonial times, warfare). Before the introduction of woven cloth, traditional clothing was manufactured from the bark of trees.[9]

Clans of Buganda

As of 2009, there are at least fifty two (52) recognised clans within the kingdom, with at least another four making a claim to clan status. Within this group of clans are four distinct sub-groups which reflect historical waves of immigration to Buganda.[7]


The oldest clans trace their lineage to the Tonda Kings, who are supposed to have ruled in the region from about 400 AD until about 1300 AD. These six clans are referred to as the Nansangwa, or the indigenous:[8]
  1. Lugave(Pangolin)
  2. Mmamba (Lungfish)
  3. Ngeye (Colobus monkey)
  4. Njaza (Reedbuck)
  5. Ennyange (Cattle Egret)
  6. Fumbe (Civet cat)

Kintu migration

The Abalasangeye dynasty came to power through the conquests of Kabaka Kato Kintu, which are estimated to have occurred sometime between 1200 and 1400 AD.
Thirteen clans are purported to have come with Kintu:
  1. Ekkobe (Liana fruit)
  2. Mbwa (Dog)
  3. Mpeewo (Oribi antelope)
  4. Mpologoma (Lion)
  5. Namuŋoona (Pied Crow)
  6. Ngo (Leopard)
  7. Ŋonge (Otter)
  8. Njovu (Elephant)
  9. Nkejje (Sprat)
  10. Nkima (Vervet monkey)
  11. Ntalaganya (Blue duiker)
  12. Nvubu (Hippopotamus)
  13. Nvuma (Pearl)

Kimera migration

Around 1370 AD another wave of immigration assisted by Kabaka Kimera, who was the son of Omulangira Kalemeera. Kabaka Kimera was born in Kibulala, and returned to Buganda with Jjumba of the Nkima clan and other Buganda elders.

These eleven clans are:
  1. Bugeme
  2. Butiko (Mushrooms)
  3. Kasimba (Genet)
  4. Kayozi (Jerboa)
  5. Kibe (Fox)
  6. Mbogo (Buffalo)
  7. Musu/Omusu (Edible rat)
  8. Ngabi (Bushbuck)
  9. Nkerebwe (Jungle Shrew)
  10. Nsuma (Elephant-snout fish)
  11. Nseenene (Edible grasshopper)

Other clans

Since Kabaka Kimera twenty further clans have either immigrated to Buganda, or been created internally (largely by kings). These clans are:
  1. Abalangira(Descendants of male Royalty from Buganda)
  2. Babiito (Descendants of male Royalty from Bunyoro)
  3. Basambo
  4. Baboobi (Millipede)
  5. Kasanke (Finch with black wings and white chest)
  6. Kikuba (A pad used to brush aside morning dew when walking through tall grass)
  7. Kinyomo (Type of ant)
  8. Kiwere (Purple dye plant)
  9. Lukato (Stiletto or awl)
  10. Mbuzi (Goat)
  11. Mpindi (Cowpea)
  12. Mutima (Heart)
  13. Nakinsige (Brown grass finch)
  14. Ndiga (Sheep)
  15. Ndiisa (small basket used for coffee berries)
  16. Ŋŋaali (Crested Crane)
  17. Njobe (Marsh antelope)
  18. Nkebuka (Red Finch)
  19. Nkula (Rhinoceros)
  20. Nsunu (Kob)
  21. Nte (Ox or cow)
  22. Nswaaswa (Monitor lizard)


  1. ^ Baganda are the largest Ethnicity in Uganda
  2. ^ Boundaries of Buganda according to the 1900 Agreement
  3. ^ Languages Spoken in Uganda
  4. ^ Buganda Often called "Central Uganda"
  5. ^ The History and Life of Kabaka Mwanga II
  6. ^ Kampala hit by renewed violence, BBC, 2009-09-11
  7. ^ Kyazze, Jones Yosia: The Ganda Clan System
  8. ^ Abalasangeye (Baganda) Dynasty starts around 1300AD
  9. ^ Baganda manufactured and wore bark cloth


 Catechism of the Catholic Church

Part Two: The Celebration of the Christian Mystery, 

Section Two: The Seven Sacraments of the Church 





Article 1
1667 "Holy Mother Church has, moreover, instituted sacramentals. These are sacred signs which bear a resemblance to the sacraments. They signify effects, particularly of a spiritual nature, which are obtained through the intercession of the Church. By them men are disposed to receive the chief effect of the sacraments, and various occasions in life are rendered holy."SC 60; Cf. CIC, can. 1166; CCEO, can. 867

The characteristics of sacramentals
1668 Sacramentals are instituted for the sanctification of certain ministries of the Church, certain states of life, a great variety of circumstances in Christian life, and the use of many things helpful to man. In accordance with bishops' pastoral decisions, they can also respond to the needs, culture, and special history of the Christian people of a particular region or time. They always include a prayer, often accompanied by a specific sign, such as the laying on of hands, the sign of the cross, or the sprinkling of holy water (which recalls Baptism).

1669 Sacramentals derive from the baptismal priesthood: every baptized person is called to be a "blessing," and to bless.Cf. Gen 12:2; Lk 6:28; Rom 12:14; 1 Pet 3:9 Hence lay people may preside at certain blessings; the more a blessing concerns ecclesial and sacramental life, the more is its administration reserved to the ordained ministry (bishops, priests, or deacons). Cf. SC 79; CIC, can. 1168; De Ben 16, 18

1670 Sacramentals do not confer the grace of the Holy Spirit in the way that the sacraments do, but by the Church's prayer, they prepare us to receive grace and dispose us to cooperate with it. "For well-disposed members of the faithful, the liturgy of the sacraments and sacramentals sanctifies almost every event of their lives with the divine grace which flows from the Paschal mystery of the Passion, Death, and Resurrection of Christ. From this source all sacraments and sacramentals draw their power. There is scarcely any proper use of material things which cannot be thus directed toward the sanctification of men and the praise of God."SC 61

Various forms of sacramentals
1671 Among sacramentals blessings (of persons, meals, objects, and places) come first. Every blessing praises God and prays for his gifts. In Christ, Christians are blessed by God the Father "with every spiritual blessing."Eph 1:3 This is why the Church imparts blessings by invoking the name of Jesus, usually while making the holy sign of the cross of Christ.

1672 Certain blessings have a lasting importance because they consecrate persons to God, or reserve objects and places for liturgical use. Among those blessings which are intended for persons - not to be confused with sacramental ordination - are the blessing of the abbot or abbess of a monastery, the consecration of virgins, the rite of religious profession and the blessing of certain ministries of the Church (readers, acolytes, catechists, etc.). the dedication or blessing of a church or an altar, the blessing of holy oils, vessels, and vestments, bells, etc., can be mentioned as examples of blessings that concern objects.

1673 When the Church asks publicly and authoritatively in the name of Jesus Christ that a person or object be protected against the power of the Evil One and withdrawn from his dominion, it is called exorcism. Jesus performed exorcisms and from him the Church has received the power and office of exorcizing.Mk 1:25-26; 3:15; 6:7, 13; 16:17 In a simple form, exorcism is performed at the celebration of Baptism. The solemn exorcism, called "a major exorcism," can be performed only by a priest and with the permission of the bishop. The priest must proceed with prudence, strictly observing the rules established by the Church. Exorcism is directed at the expulsion of demons or to the liberation from demonic possession through the spiritual authority which Jesus entrusted to his Church. Illness, especially psychological illness, is a very different matter; treating this is the concern of medical science. Therefore, before an exorcism is performed, it is important to ascertain that one is dealing with the presence of the Evil One, and not an illness.CIC, can. 1172

Popular piety
1674 Besides sacramental liturgy and sacramentals, catechesis must take into account the forms of piety and popular devotions among the faithful. The religious sense of the Christian people has always found expression in various forms of piety surrounding the Church's sacramental life, such as the veneration of relics, visits to sanctuaries, pilgrimages, processions, the stations of the cross, religious dances, the rosary, medals,Council of Nicaea II: DS 601; 603; Council of Trent: DS 1822 etc.

1675 These expressions of piety extend the liturgical life of the Church, but do not replace it. They "should be so drawn up that they harmonize with the liturgical seasons, accord with the sacred liturgy, are in some way derived from it and lead the people to it, since in fact the liturgy by its very nature is far superior to any of them."SC 13 # 3

1676 Pastoral discernment is needed to sustain and support popular piety and, if necessary, to purify and correct the religious sense which underlies these devotions so that the faithful may advance in knowledge of the mystery of Christ.ohn Paul II, CT 54 Their exercise is subject to the care and judgment of the bishops and to the general norms of the Church.

At its core the piety of the people is a storehouse of values that offers answers of Christian wisdom to the great questions of life. The Catholic wisdom of the people is capable of fashioning a vital synthesis.... It creatively combines the divine and the human, Christ and Mary, spirit and body, communion and institution, person and community, faith and homeland, intelligence and emotion. This wisdom is a Christian humanism that radically affirms the dignity of every person as a child of God, establishes a basic fraternity, teaches people to encounter nature and understand work, provides reasons for joy and humor even in the midst of a very hard life. For the people this wisdom is also a principle of discernment and an evangelical instinct through which they spontaneously sense when the Gospel is served in the Church and when it is emptied of its content and stifled by other interests.CELAM, Third General Conference (Puebla, 1979), Final Document # 448
   (tr. NCCB, 1979); cf. Paul VI, EN 48

1677 Sacramentals are sacred signs instituted by the Church. They prepare men to receive the fruit of the sacraments and sanctify different circumstances of life.

1678 Among the sacramentals blessings occupy an important place. They include both praise of God for his works and gifts, and the Church's intercession for men that they may be able to use God's gifts according to the spirit of the Gospel.

1679 In addition to the liturgy, Christian life is nourished by various forms of popular piety, rooted in the different cultures. While carefully clarifying them in the light of faith, the Church fosters the forms of popular piety that express an evangelical instinct, a human wisdom and that enrich Christian life.