One of ten children, Sr. Assumpta and three of her sisters entered the convent. She entered with her twin sister at around sixteen years old. Her twin sister eventually left the convent but serves the church as a committed lay woman. Sr. Assumpta’s vocation was influenced also by her older sister. When she attended her older sister’s profession to religious life she knew that is what she wanted to do with her life.
Sr. Assumpta speaks perfect English. She said, children in Uganda are required to speak English in school from Primary 3 onward. One of the methods used to practice English is to debate – on various, sometimes random, subjects.
Upon entering the Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Sr. Assumpta’s attention was focused first on formation as a Sister. After professing vows to religious life as a Sister of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Sr. Assumpta then trained to become a teacher. She taught, what we here in the USA, would call high school. The subjects she taught were religion and history. Sister taught at the communities Mayo Secondary school and then was sent to St. Monica’s school.
St. Monica’s is a vocational school for girls. It is a school surrounded by high thick walls with a gate keeper. It is located across from a prison which affords it a little extra production from the guards who work there. This school is widely known for its’ compassion and caring particularly for young women and girls who were abducted by the Lord’s Resistance Army. They provided not only education and vocational skills but a safe place for women and children afraid of the LRA. Some, known as night commuters, would stay in the St. Monica compound at night returning to their home during the day.
The Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) started by Joseph Kony, beginning as an ethnic war between various ethnic groups in Uganda, Africa. The LRA lead by Joseph Kony became one of the most violent terrorist groups in this part of the world. The LRA would go from village to village kidnapping children, often killing loved ones right in front of them. The children were forced to go with the LRA – and become part of the LRA under threat of being maimed, dismembered, or killed. Boys – some under 10 years old – were forced to be soldiers and partake in the pillaging and killing rampages of the LRA. Girls were forced into “marriages” with LRA soldiers. (Article published on the St. Kizito website 2017)
Today St. Monica is still empowering young women and girls by providing them with valuable trade skills such as secretarial, seamstress, hair dressing, catering, knitting and weaving. Students also enjoy extracurricular activities such as Netball (similar to basketball), Football (soccer) and volleyball as well as music, dance, singing, and drums. St. Monica additionally offers adult literacy classes. Sr. Assumpta resides at St. Monica in a mostly administrative capacity today. Some of the St. Kizito scholars reside and are educated by St. Monica’s school.
Sr. Assumpta will spend be in the United States through September. She is favorably impressed by what she has experienced thus far. She finds the United States very organized and filled with generous and warmhearted people. We are happy Sr. Assumpta is visiting and hope that many in our St. Kizito Family get a chance to meet her!
You can meet Sr. Assumpta at the annual St. Kizito Event Saturday, September 21st. Save the Date.
Sr. Assumpta will be the keynote speaker at the St. Kizito Fall Fundraiser to be held on Saturday, September 21st. Details will be available in the near future.