(KASHOZI : 17/12/1997)
By Fr Stanslaus Mutajwaha


A glorious life has been timely concluded;
An exam has been excellently answered;
A model road has been definitively paved;
And a delicate challenge has been successfully faced.

Yes, and all that has been realized,
in the person of His Eminence Laurean Cardinal Rugambwa,
whom we are intending to lay to rest,
today, the 17th day of December 1997.

It is a moving moment,
where tears blend with joyous memories of a successful FATHER, but sorrow fails to suppress the song of victory,
about the man who has given us a name!


While in front of us,
the eye might be seeing a human body lying silently in death,
our understanding beholds a great and victorious man:
the first and worthy African Prince of the Catholic Church.

Humble and simple though he was,
here is a man who in a very special and most impressive manner,
will always serve as an unchallengeable proof,
that whoever probably doubted
the competence of the sons of Africa,
must have been terribly mistaken.

The beliefs and convictions;
the ambitions and ideals;
the dreams and plans concerning the integral development
of the human person;
the prudence and manner
of handling difficult socio-religious situations;
the service and many more elements still,
in the life of the now deceased Laurean Cardinal Rugambwa,
are there for all of us to see.
But one ought not to forget:
All these were prompted by this man's love and fear
of the Almighty God.


We are gathered here,
not just to look at someone who has fallen to eternal sleep,
but in order to render our final and most cordial respects,
to the man who has untiringly dedicated the whole of his life,
as priest, bishop and cardinal,
in the service of the Gospel
of Jesus Christ Our Lord,
and the promotion of the spiritual and material welfare
of his brethren.

We have come to witness the conclusion
of the last deed of a truly great personality.
Present in the Parish church of Kashozi,
the first in Bukoba diocese,
are prominent dignitaries and ordinary people,
from practically all social categories and walks of life:

People from various places and nations both near and far.
All have turned up,
moved by some strong,
and perhaps inexpressible urge,
to see off someone dear,
who has touched hearts,
and caused a difference in the life of so many.

May the gates of heaven swing open before him:
And You, O Lord of life, grant him eternal joy.

Fr Stan
Fr Stanslaus Mutajwaha
17th December, 1997

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