THE excommunicated Bishop of Pentecostal Assembly of God (PAG) Uganda who was in May consecrated at night as bishop of the breakaway PAG - Lira, was enthroned
By Hudson Apunyo
THE excommunicated Bishop of Pentecostal Assembly of God (PAG) Uganda who was in May consecrated at night as bishop of the breakaway PAG - Lira, was on Friday enthroned during a general conference.
Rev. Joel Mukalu was enthroned at Lira Pentecostal Church (LPC) by Bishop (Emeritus) John Omara in a colourful ceremony witnessed by over 10, 000 PAG Christians who are his supporters from Amolatar, Otuke, Alebtong, Lira and Dokolo districts, all ferried in lorries.
The Christians marched in Lira town in a procession, singing and dancing, bringing business to a stand still for hours before they assembled at LPC where the ceremony took place.
Rev Joel Mukalu served as Bishop of PAG Lira Pastorate before he was suspended and eventually excommunicated in June this year by the Council of Bishops of Pentecostal Assemblies of God (PAG) Uganda.
There has been serious tension in the denomination since the February 2, 2014 decision by the General Superintendent of PAG Dr. Simon Peter Emiau to suspend the election of the Bishop in Lira, a move that did not go down well with Lira Christians.
The situation become volatile and violent and created two factions – those supporting Bishop Mukalu (the majority) who took over LPC and those for PAG Uganda who are forced to erect a large tent near Caltex Petrol Station.
The Mukalu faction has been militant, moving around PAG churches taking over administration by replacing those not loyal to Mukalu.
PAG Lira have since confiscated most of the property of PAG Uganda claiming they built them with their money.
Attempts by Rt. Rev. Henry Luke Orombi to mediate between the Mukalu group and PAG Uganda failed miserably.
In his maiden speech as the first Bishop of PAG Lira, Mukalu said the general conference is a major landmark in the history and operations of PAG Lira.
Mukalu took time to inform the world that PAG Lira is a registered entity and separate from any other PAG with which it shares roots and nomenclature.
“We are registered and our existence is known by the government” he said.
Mukalu commended President Yoweri Museveni and the NRM government for respecting the right to worship. He said in the 1970s freedom of worship was curtailed and Pentecostals were persecuted.
The prelate said it’s their plan to build five secondary schools, one in each district where PAG Lira operates to contribute to national buildings and also to build health centres.
He said they will also evangelise within and outside Uganda and need government support. He said they are open to government programs which can be implemented through faith based organisations.
Controversial PAG Lira Bishop enthroned