‘This call on my life is to serve God’s people’ – newly ordained UCU Deputy Vice Chancellor
Originally posted at: https://www.ugandapartners.org/2020/12/this-call-on-my-life-is-to-serve-gods-people-newly-ordained-ucu-deputy-vice-chancellor/
By Douglas Olum
Atop the Nakasero Hill in Kampala, on a clear December 6, 2020, Sunday morning, sweet melodies from a Christian hymn song ring through the open doors and windows of a towering, red-tile-roofed, cream painted building, into the trees, houses and the open sky of the neighborhood. Men, women and a few children were trickling into the All Saints Cathedral premises, to praise and worship God as life returns to Ugandan Churches after six months of the COVID-19 induced closure.
Inside, 13 men and three women were set to be ordained into Christian ministry for the Anglican Church; two of them as deacons and 14 as priests. Among them was the Uganda Christian University (UCU) Deputy Vice Chancellor in charge of Academic Affairs, Rev. Dr. John Kitayimbwa. He was being ordained into priesthood. According to the Anglican Church of Uganda, priests are called to be servants and shepherds to proclaim God’s word.
With his hand raised up high, Dr. Kitayimbwa, the father of three and husband to Rev. Lydia Nsali Kitayimbwa, was singing and praising the Lord; his face lit with joy. Right behind him was his wife, equally full of joy.
“Seeing him join this great ministry really keeps me excited, and I know that not even the sky is the limit,” Mrs. Kitayimbwa said after the service, “I know God has a lot in store for us so we just pray that He humbles us and we remain under his Mighty hand that He may use us to the glory of His name.” She said having her husband join the Christian ministry was both a great spiritual support to her and a sign that the presence of God rests in their home, where their ministry starts.
As the service commenced, Kitayimbwa said that he felt a very heavy weight over his shoulders, presumably signifying the weight of the task ahead of him. But with God’s guidance, he believed he would weather the test of time and bear fruits.
“My major role now is that of a priest because when you are called to come close to God to be with God in His vineyard to work with Him, it is a blessing,” Dr. Kitayimbwa said, “Whether I am at UCU or outside UCU, this call on my life is to serve God’s people, and I will do it diligently.”
Asked what impact he thinks his ordination would have on his service at the university, Dr. Kitayimbwa said, “I am going to freely share the word of God even as I do my role as the DVC at UCU. I am going to try and follow Christ as I imitate Him in order to draw more people to the Kingdom of God. In whichever situation, I will ask myself what would Christ have done? And I think that is what is going to be my motto going forward.”
Dr. Kitayimbwa holds a PhD in Computational Biology, and he is a senior lecturer in mathematics. He was first ordained as deacon in 2019, the same year he was appointed as Deputy Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at UCU.
Dr. Kitayimbwa said his calling to be a priest started a long time ago but it took him time to realize that he was being called. And now, whatever achievement he attained in his past life, he counts it but loss, like Paul says in Philippians 3:8-10 (8 What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ 9 and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in[a] Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith. 10 I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death.)
The Dec. 6 ordination service was presided over by the Kampala Diocese bishop who also doubles as the Archbishop of the Provincial Church of Uganda, the Most Rev. Dr. Samuel Stephen Kazimba Mugalu.
The Archbishop reminded the new priests that their answer to the calling was a life-time commitment for God’s glory and strengthening of His Kingdom. He noted that they would only be able to maintain the call by praying, believing and relying on the strength of God and his grace given in the Word, and not their individual strengths.
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