“If we work together, we can serve humanity better. The achievements of Joint Medical Store in the last 40 years stand as a testimony to this...
KAMPALA - The Chairman of the Uganda Episcopal Conference, the Rt Rev Prof Joseph Antony Zziwa, has called for a deeper and more committed partnership between Bishops of the Catholic Church and the Church of Uganda.
“If we work together, we can serve humanity better. The achievements of the Joint Medical Store in the last 40 years stand as a testimony to this. But we also need to work together in the area of education. Just like medical work, education in Uganda was also pioneered by the Christian missionaries.
“The education that the missionaries introduced was holistic. It involved the academic, physical, moral and spiritual formation of the students. Today Christian morals and values are eroding away, in many of our schools. We thus need to work together to defend and develop the rich education legacy that the missionaries entrusted to us.”
Zziwa made the remarks during a joint symposium of Catholic and Church of Uganda Bishops at the Uganda Joint Medical Store head office at Nsambya.
Joint Medical Store (JMS) is a private, faith-based, not-for-profit pharmaceutical organisation, which was established in 1979 as a joint venture between the Catholic Church and the Protestant Church, to ensure efficient supply of quality medicines. The symposium was one of the activities to mark 40 years of the organisation.
Zziwa thanked the management and staff of the Joint Medical Store for their dedicated service, which he said had enabled the organisation to grow steadily.
Speaking during the same function, the Archbishop of the Church of Uganda, the Most Rev Stanley Ntagali said that medical work was part of the evangelistic ministry of the Church, which was why the mainstream Churches: Catholic, Anglican, and Orthodox, were deeply involved in medical service.
“Jesus satisfied the spiritual and physical needs of the people. He wanted people to have life in its fullness. As Church leaders, we want to heal people’s bodies so that they can be good followers of Christ. It is not enough to tell a person that Jesus loves you and you don’t attend to their physical needs. Medical work is preaching the gospel practically. Through our involvement in the field of health, we are continuing the healing ministry of Jesus.
Ntagali congratulated the management, staff and all the stakeholders of Joint Medical Store on the organisation’s 40th anniversary. He later urged them to be more committed to the improvement of the organisation’s service delivery.
“We are co-workers of God. We must ensure that our health facilities are well-equipped. We must not allow corruption in our medical centres. Stories of medicines getting stolen or expired, or getting legs and go to places where they were not intended to be, must not come to our ears. Know that you are serving a living God, who also gave you the opportunity to serve people in that capacity.”
“Let us improve on the things we do. Let’s continue to be instruments of God’s healing love. Let’s be faithful and diligent as we execute our roles, knowing that we are serving a living God, who also never changes.”
The Executive Director of Joint Medical Store, Dr. Bildard Baguma, pledged to continue working harmoniously with the Catholic and Anglican Bishops, and the ministry of health, to ensure that people all over the country get quality drugs.
Earlier during the function, the ecumenical Bishops were taken through a tour of the organisation’s multi-billion ware-house, during which they were shown the storage facilities and systems of quality assurance that the organisation has put in place in the last 40 years.
During the function, the Bishops were treated to a captivating cabaret entertainment from ensembles like Joint Medical Store Chapel Choir, Reach Out Mbuya Cultural Troupe and the Golden Praise (Anglican) Choir.