Masaka- Uganda: After he served as a Reverend for the Anglican Church for over three decades, sections of congregation are still in awe why Rev. Cornelius Kateregga Bakubanja elected to convert.
The run-up of West Buganda Dioses Bishop four years five years ago is now the Vicar General of the Orthodox Anglican Church after quitting from his former faith recently. He now preaches under the flag name of the Orthodox Church which originates from North Carolina, USA.
The Very Rev. Cornellius Kateregga Bakubanja says he still has energy to serve the Lord other than retiring in his former Church. He insists that his new religion which was initiated by three believers from the Catholic, Anglican and Orthodox Churches in 1964, is far much better compared to the original Catholic and Anglican faiths.
The Orthodox Anglican Church will have its headquarters in Gayaza village, Kyotera County in Rakai District where, the estranged Reverend also runs a secondary and vocational institute. He has plans to set up a seminary to recruit and lecture students about his new religion.
Talking to the Investigator, Bakubanja, also Obwakamuswaga bwa Kooki senior Minister, said there are many issues that have suppressed believers in the two churches which are clearly solved in the Orthodox Anglican Church which was introduced in Uganda in October last year.
The former contender of the position of a Bishop of the West Buganda Diocese further said their new religion does not subscribe to the ordination of women to priesthood as they follow what Jesus Christ did. “Jesus had women serving in his church during his time but he did not elevate any of them to being a disciple,” he said.
The former COU Venerable added that they also don’t accept single sex marriage. He further says they are not under the dormain of the queen of England who is the chief of the Anglican Communion and that they also have a better service.
Bakubanja blames the churches for failing to pray for the dead yet they are baptised Christians. He said many priests and church leaders have become so judgmental on Christians who have been denied the deserved sacraments.
Also a retired secondary Head Teacher, Bakubanja says he is to retain and don his Anglican Church regalia and attires plus the Reverend title save for conducting services.
According to the rules governing the Orthodox Anglican Church, Holy Communion is given to every Christian that attends prayers without discriminating children and the matrimony sacrament certificate holders.
The hitherto Kyampagi COU Priest says he still respects the Anglican Church and the Orthodox Church as fellow comrades. “I’m not shunning the Anglican Church but it has loopholes which I have realised another church doesn’t have.”
The diocesan secretary, Rev. Canon Samuel Mwesigwa however opposed Bakubanja’s decision of converting from his original Church saying he did not clearly stipulate his intentions.
But in a recent meeting at Kako where Bakubanja requested the Church administration to grant a nod to his resignation, Canon Mwesigwa said if the Man of God had decided to follow Jesus through other means after serving for 35 years, it’s up to him.
The Canon added that Bakubanja’s issue will be handled by Church leaders at a higher level before a response is communicated. But the estranged Reverend insists the law grants him freedom of worship and joining priesthood, with no restrictions to only the Anglican Church.
He said some believers quote him wrongly and think he is up to some cash prizes from the new church but he worked for the Anglican Church in 1980 when he received only Shs1000 per month and never deserted the religion.
Bakubanja contested as a Bishop of West Buganda in 2010 till the final stage but was won by the late Bishop Godfrey Makumbi.