wiPolo Martyrs shrine has been the center of pilgrimage once again these past two days when it hosted Pilgrims from the West Nile Diocese of Arua. Twenty eight catechists turned up to see the holy place where their fore runners martyrs Daudi Okelo and Jildo Irwa were killed.
The catechists led by Fr. Marius Andiaku, the Director of Catechist’s training in Arua diocese arrived on Thursday evening for their spiritual retreat with the purpose of learning about Daudi Okelo and Jildo Irwa whom they had heard but knew so little about and true to their goal, their visit to wiPolo lived met their expectations.
With facilitation sessions led by the incharge of Spiritual Guidance at wiPolo Reverend Sister Margaret Pirango of the Congregartion of the Little sisters of Mary Immaculate of Gulu (LSMIG) and Ivan Aboga Rackara, a student of journalism that addressed the historical background of the martyrs and the relevance of the sacrifices they made, the catechis ended their pilgrimage with a deep sense of fulfillment. They were awesome struck by the narratives of the heroic lives led by fellow catechists Blessed Daudi Okelo and Jildo Irwa in the very early age of Christian evangelization in north Uganda.
“I was well impressed by the fact that Daudi and Jildo young as they were, dedicated their lives to preaching the gospel which teaches me that age is just a number” said Tom Nyakuayo, a catechist from Micu parish.
Nyakuayo further noted that the catechists’ story was a life changing one that every Christian irrespective of their denomination must listen to. He ended by sending out an open invitation to Christians to make the journey to Paimol and witness first-hand the lives of these young brave men.
The visiting group of twenty-six men and two women was also given a brief tour of wiPolo that saw them come face to face with the two sites now that had housed the huts in which the two martyrs had lived and also the place where their dead bodies were left in an anthill in 1918.
Fr. Andiaku encouraged his team of catechists to take advantage of their short visit to get to see the monumental tomb of the two christian faithfuls who were willing to die for the sake of their religion, citing that the catechists should be women and men of courage in preaching the gospel and lead exemplary lives like those led by the two Ugandan martyrs.
For Francesca Draru 45, the youngest catechist in service amongst the group, the sight of the tomb of Daudi Okelo and Jildo Irwa was one that would always remind her about the importance of being brave and defending what is right.
“Now I know that you have to defend what is right and it doesn’t matter whether it’s dangerous or not, Daudi and Jildo were killed more than ninety years ago, yet we still remember them even up to date. She mentioned.
The catechists left early today Saturday February 23 with the promise to return to Paimol for the centenary celebration later October this year.