CATHOLICS in a small parish in Uganda are seeing the fruits of a partnership with Our Lady of the Way Parish, Petrie, as construction on their new church started this month.
For the past six years, the Petrie parish has supported St Bruno’s Parish, Uganda, with about $50,000 in donations.
In late January, the parish transferred a donation of about $5500 to St Bruno’s.
The Ugandan parish community began a “vigorous fundraising” effort through “local clans” earlier this month.
Many of the clan members would exchange crops, fruits and food crops for money that is donated to the parish.
Parish priest Fr Porphyrius recently wrote a letter of thanks to the partnership members and said the money came at a crucial time in the construction of the new church.
The partnership was the result of a successful leadership program offered by longtime Petrie parishioner John Brady who, through his role as a board member for National Evangelisation Teams Ministries, had been going to Uganda since 2005.
On Mr Brady’s 15th visit giving a leadership seminar, former St Bruno’s parish priest Fr Gerard Mukwaya approached him and requested a seminar at his parish that same week.
On his first visit to St Bruno’s, Mr Brady said there were “hundreds of people” attending Mass, but they had nowhere to sit and were often getting wet from the rain.
Seeing the need to improve their place of worship, he consulted the Petrie parish committee, and with Brisbane Archbishop Mark Coleridge’s approval, began a partnership with St Bruno’s and Petrie parish.
Mr Brady said the parish had been generously donating funds up to $5500 to St Bruno’s since 2007, including “every cent” of the parish’s Christmas collection from that year.