WESTNILE: The South Sudan refugee Dinga community in Koboko district has surprisingly donated a church house worth 500,000,000 Ugandan shillings and the church land costed 70,000,000/= to Madi and West Nile diocese to help preach peace through evangelism.
The church that is located at the center of Koboko municipality accommodates about 1200 Christians measuring 32 by 12 meters was constructed for the last two years from 9/11/2018 to 30/12/2020
According to the Rite Rev Daniel Reeck Akuak who is the Archdeacon of the Dinga congregation West Nile and the brain behind the construction says this offer is to pay back for the hospitality exhibited by the host communities towards the refugees.
“since we dropped on the land of Uganda particularly West Nile, we have experienced total peace either from the settlements or even those self settled in the urban places. We show the suffering in the church where we pray especially St. Mark Church , sometimes mass end at 4PM but this will help decongest the church”.
This church was built by mainly the elderly who have heart for God sometimes others contribute the least been 20,000/= Twenty thousand shillings, to One hundred thousand shillings (100,000/=). We also borrowed loans from banks where the local leaders helped us a lot in signing for us but through generous contributions we have cleared them. ‘Rev Daniel added’
However, the Dinga community also handed over land title of the church and have charged the Leadership of Madi and West Nile diocese to regulate the activities in the church and ensure safety of the equipment.
The Vicar General St. Mark Nyarilo town parish Rev James Ombanya appreciate and comment the Dinga community for the offer.
“I wish to confirm that on behalf of the Bishop of Madi and West Nile diocese the receiving of the Documents including The land title in the names of St. Mark Nyarilo Town Parish, The house details and equipment like speakers, plastic chairs and others , this is a plus and we pray that even the community go back to their motherland we will live to remember them, and may the blessings of the Almighty dwell on you and give you more”
The youth leader for the Dinga congregation Thon Micheal Nhial from St. Jerusalem Church of Uganda Koboko says there was no enough time or Sunday prayers as the St. Mark Nyarilo Town Parish had up to five prayers every Sunday and the refugees come last at 3PM or even 4PM .
“This was not favoring us in our faith as a few wait for such hours for the Sunday services but with this building we only have two masses in a day one from 7AM and the other from noon which gives us enough time”.
Similarly the diocesan coordinator Rev David Ayikobua appeals to the host community to support the Dinga community in their development innovations as these will equally benefit them.
“These people have shown us that they can if given the chance , I call upon the Christians and other people to help by donating enough land so that more structures come up and these are only for the nationals because the refugees will not go with these structures”.
Among other development activities the Dinga community plans to construct a studio for the youth to learn various instruments been played in the churches, construct a well ventilated improved pit latrine for the church and the church leaders, fill in the church with better sitting apparatus other than the plastic chairs that are already in use before they go back to their country.
This marks the first offer by the refugee community to the nationals since West Nile hosted refugees over fifty years ago.