Mapeera Nabunnya Pilgrimage Center

Fr. Simeon Lourdel Mapeera

Fr. Simeon Lourdel Mapeera

Summary of his life

+ 20th December 1853: Born at Dury in the district of Arras, northern France.
+ October 1861: Enters the preparatory seminary of Arras where he received first holy communion on 25th 1865. He is dismissed from seminary after 5 years. Goes in public school.
+ October 1872: Enters major seminary
+ 1874: Joins the White Fathers (Novitiate) in Algiers.
+ 2nd February 1877: Makes the missionary oath.
+ 2nd April 1877: Ordained priest in Algiers where he is appointed to teach in the minor seminary.
+ October 1877: Appointed to Metlili in the Sahara desert where he is put in charge of a small health care centre. The three missionaries who were before them had been killed. After three months, the mission is closed and he is chosen to be in the group destined for Uganda.
+ 15 April 1878: Writes his last will.
+ 17th April 1878: Together with others leaves Algiers for Marseilles from where they took a big ship for Zanzibar. It was Holy Wednesday.
+ 15 April 1878: Left Marseilles for Africa.
+ 30th May 1878: Arrives at Zanzibar
+ 17th June 1878: Leaves Bagamoyo for the interior of Tanganyika.
+ 20th December 1878: Chosen together with Amans to go first to Uganda to meet King Muteesa.
+ 20th January 1879: Together with Amans leaves Kageye (Mwanza) for Uganda.
+ 15th February 1879: Stop over at Bugoma, Ssese Islands.
+ 17th February 1879: Arrives at Kigungu (Kyettale-Entebbe). Together with Amans they became the first two catholic missionaries to arrive in Uganda.
+ 21st February 1879: Together with Amans taken to Kitebi in the family of Amir Ssekikkubo while waiting to be received by the King.
+ 23rd February 1879: Received by Muteesa in his palace at Lubaga. He gives them permission to stay in his country and to teach their religion.
+ 7th March 1879: Together with Amans enters their first home at Lubya / Nabulagala.
+ 12th April 1879: Left alone at Lubya while Amans goes to fetch Frs. Livinhac, Barbot and Girault who had stayed at Kageye.
+ 2nd July 1879: Together with the others, they entrusted Uganda to Mary Immaculate.
+ 1879: At the end of this year he starts writing the catechism in Luganda. It was published in 1881, being the first Luganda book to be printed.
+ 30th April 1882: Baptizes Andrew Kaggwa and Joseph Mukasa Balikuddembe at Nabulagala. These were the first people he baptized and both became martyrs.
+ 7th November 1882: Together with others, leaves Nabulagala / Uganda for Tanganyika because of insecurity.
+ 1885: Starts a new parish at Ukune (Our Lady of Jiwe la Singa) in Tanganyika
+ 12th July 1885: Together with others, arrived at Kigungu from exile in Tanganyika. They settled at Nalukolongo.
+ 1st November 1885: Baptises Noe Mawaggali, John-Mary Muzeeyi
+ 16th November 1885: Baptises Denis Ssebuggwawo, Athanasius Bazzekuketta, Gonzaga Gonza, Ambrose Kibuuka, Anatole Kirigwajjo, Achilles Kiwanuka and Adolophus Mukasa Ludigo. All these became martyrs.
+ 26th July 1885: Goes to Munyonyo to plead for the Christians condemned to death by king Mwanga.
+ 1887: Chosen to be the chairperson of the commission to follow up the cause for the beatification of the Martyrs. Fr. Denoit was the secretary and Bro. Amans the principal witness.
+ October 1888: Expelled from Buganda together with his confreres and the Protestant Missionaries.
+15th January 1889: Together with Bro. Amans started the parish of Our Lady of the Exiles at Nyegezi in Tanganyika. There were many exiles from Uganda.
+ October 1889: Came back to Uganda with others and they settled at Nnabunnya (Lubaga). Their houses at Nalukolongo had been destroyed.
+ 12th May 1890: Died at Nnabunnya. It was at 1.10pm. He died of hepatitis and fever. King Mwanga who had come to see him arrived a few minutes after he had died. 13th May 1890: Buried at Nnabunnya.
+ 2nd November 1901: His remains were exhumed from Nnabunnya and reburied in the chapel in the cemetery behind Lubaga Cathedral.
+ 10th May 1975: His remains were again exhumed and kept in the chapel of the Archbishop at Lubaga.
+ 6th March 2011: His remains were transferred from Lubaga to Nabulagala (Mapeera-Nabulagala Catholic Parish, St. John the Baptist) and buried on the same day.

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