A Martyr is a person who is killed because of their religious or other beliefs.
Pope Francis the 266th is visiting Africa in November 2015 honoring twenty-two martyrs of Uganda. The Twenty-two Ugandan Roman Catholic martyrs refused to denounce their Catholic faith, so they were burned alive by the teenage King Mwanga II.
Twenty-Two African Roman Catholic Martyrs
|Pope Francis the 266th Honoring Twenty-Two Ugandan Martyrs|
Pope Francis is the 266th Pope of the Roman Catholic Church. He will travel to Kenya, Uganda and the Central African Republic November 20-30, 2015.
Pope Francis will travel first to Kenya from Nov. 25-27, before moving on to Uganda Nov. 27-29. His last stop will be the Central African Republic, from Nov. 29-30.
Pope Francis stated, “God willing, I will be in Africa in November...before the presidential transition in the Central African Republic, and Uganda after the 50th anniversary of the martyrs, though a little late, their feast day is June 3." The Martyrs of Uganda were 45 Anglican and Roman Catholics executed between the years of 1885 to 1887 during the persecution of Christians under Uganda's former teenage ruler Mwanga II of Buganda.
Mwanga gained control of the throne at the age of 16 forcing out missionaries and demanding Christian converts denounce their faith or face death. Twenty-two Ugandan Roman Catholic men refused to denounce their faith and were burned alive. They were declared martyrs and beatified, (declared formally that they showed a heroic holiness) by Pope Benedict XV in 1920 and canonized (officially declared to be a saint) by Pope Paul VI on October 18, 1964.
Pope Francis Statements on the Exploitation of Africa
Pope Francis said, “Europe has been very generous with Africa in terms of what's Catholic. Today the world isn't generous with Africa because they exploit it. They treat it as a land of exploitation.”
“I say this with all respect and with a lot of love: Africa is an attractive place to despoil… (there is) the ability to go there in search of wood, gold or metals, and ravage and leave,” stated Pope Francis.