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Introduction: The Life of Salvation

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 October 2022

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Summary

“I felt a hunger, like the life of salvation.”

—Yeremiah Rwakatagoro

Introduction

“Mary” was born in 1920, the last of seven children, and she grew up along the northwestern slopes of Mount Elgon, in eastern Uganda. Her mother died when she was five and one of her sisters raised her, making sure Mary joined her at school. She eventually graduated from a teacher training college at the age of sixteen, having progressed as far as she could in her education. She taught for the next nine years. Then, in December 1945, Mary traveled to Kampala, where her sister was working as a nurse at Mulago Hospital. “When I reached Mulago, I found another lady, a Toro from western Uganda. She took me to the visitors’ room. She started preaching to me, talking about salvation. She gave me testimonies. I started wondering, ‘Eh! Maybe my sister had told her about my life and what I did.’ Because whatever she said was about me.” Mary continued:

When she had finished talking, she kept quiet. She asked me, “[Mary], what do you think?” I told her, “I have accepted Jesus as my Lord.” She started praising. We left the room when she was so happy. She told my sister, my sister is called [“Janet”]. She told her, “[Mary] has got saved.” When I stayed there for a few days, I came back [to Mbale].

Now the preparations were underway for us to get married in January. When I came back, people were already spreading new rumors. Because there was nobody else who had got saved this side [of Uganda]. And people thought I had gone mad because they saw me returning things which I had taken—putting things right. Some things I had stolen. Some things were from my boyfriends—I took them back to those people. Because the Bible says, “A person accepts with the heart and has to speak with the mouth about salvation.” So God showed me that. God showed me: “This, this one is not yours. That one. That cloth is not yours. That dress.” In fact when I took all of the things back, I had only one dress remaining. And everything was taken back to the owners, who had given them to me.

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Publisher: Boydell & Brewer
Print publication year: 2017

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