d. between November 15, 1885 – January 27, 1887
By 1879 the first Catholic missions were started in Uganda and other parts of Central Africa. Under King Mutesa, missionaries preached, people studied the faith, and many believed in Jesus. Unfortunately, King Mutesa was succeeded by King Mwanga, who began persecuting the Christians in Uganda. Mwanga was a corrupt man who abused his young pages (male servants).
Charles Lwanga was in his late teens when he served as a page in the court of King Mwanga. He served under the chief page, Joseph Mukasa, who was a Catholic and went to great lengths to protect the younger boys from the king. Mukasa denounced the king’s actions and the king subsequently had Mukasa beheaded. That night, realizing that their lives may be in danger, Charles and 100 other catechumens were baptized. At 25 years old, Charles replaced Mukasa as chief page. Charles catechized the young men, encouraged them to refuse to take part the pagan customs of the country, and protected them from the king’s advances.
The following May, King Mwanga learned that some of the pages were being instructed in the faith. He was furious and ordered all the pages to be questioned to separate the Christians from the others. Mwanga commanded his soldiers to kill Charles Lwanga and his friends. Most of the pages were under the age of twenty-five. The youngest was thirteen years old. After their deaths, many other Christians were persecuted and killed. The example of these teenagers and men inspired other people, which caused the faith to grow and spread in Africa. Twenty-two Ugandan martyrs, including Charles and the pages, were canonized in 1964.
· How would you describe the three Persons of the Trinity? Draw a picture if it helps.
· Which person of the Trinity do you pray to the most? Explain your answer.
· Jesus commands us to make disciples of all nations. What can your family do to respond to this commission?
· St. Charles Lwanga went to great lengths to protect younger boys from danger. Share a time when you protected someone from getting hurt or getting into trouble.