As members of the Catholic community in the country joined the rest of the world to celebrate Assumption Day on Tuesday, clerics urged their respective congregations to selflessly serve God and emulate the humility espoused by the Virgin Mary.
They made the call during the Assumption Day mass in various churches where believers convened to celebrate the assumption into heaven by the Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus Christ.In Kigali, churches were packed to their brim during morning mass while special functions like baptism were held in some of the churches.
During their sermons, various clerics urged Christians to reflect on the love Mary had for the world and the suffering she endured as her son Jesus Christ suffered in the name of spreading God’s word.
“Today we are happy as we celebrate the Assumption of the Virgin Mary into heaven. We pray together and seek Mary’s intercession to God,” Father Jean Claude Bigirimana, the main celebrant at Saint Famille Church in Nyarugenge District said.
He urged them to come forth and repent.
“Mary is our spokesperson in heaven, she was given the power to do so and she is worth praising and respecting,” he added.
“Assumption Day is a big feast for us. Because of her acts on earth, Mary went to heaven alive and as Christians we must strive to do good to emulate her and be sure that the heaven awaits us,” said Bigirimana.
At St. Michel church in downtown Kigali, Father Eugene Muhire Rwigirira prayed for peace and better welfare for Rwandans and the humility for Christians to seek forgiveness whenever they sin.
For Christians, the day is a reminder of the love and humility Mary showed the world by accepting the maternity of Jesus and how special she was to have been taken into heaven both in body and soul.
“Today we are celebrating, it is a very important day for me as I would not be here praying, the celebrations today is to honour Mary, the mother of our savior and pray that her blessings continue coming down to us,” said Esperance Uwamahoro, after church service at Regina Pacis in Remera church.
The national celebrations, like has been every year, were held in Kibeho, Nyaruguru District where apparitions of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Jesus Christ are believed to have occurred between 1981 and 1989.