NEBBI. There was excitement at Goli Church of Uganda in Nebbi district on Saturday as thousands of believers gathered to celebrate the 70th birthday of the retired Archbishop of Uganda Dr Henry Luke Orombi.

Born on October 12, 1949, Orombi was ordained and became the first Bishop of Nebbi Diocese in 1993.

He later served in various capacities before being elected the Archbishop of Uganda in 2004 and when his term came to an end, he eventually retired from the office in 2012.

But during his birthday ceremony, Bishop Timothy Wambunya of Butere Diocese in the Anglican province of Kenya who doubled as the main celebrant said Orombi has stood firm in spreading the gospel of God even after his retirement despite the numerous challenges the church is facing today.

“Being a Bishop in this error is not easy as we are harassed by politicians so as to create fear in us coupled with the increasing violence in the society that has made our work more difficult. But I thank God that the retired Archbishop stood the test of time and is still preaching the gospel," Wambunya said.

Pastor Pons Ozelle described Orombi as a father who mentored many youths.

“I am a product of Orombi’s good work and because of his passion for education, he sponsored many youths to school and now most of them are doing well and for that reason, we wish him more years to continue with his pastoral work," he said.

Ozelle added that due to his passion especially in the education sector, Orombi revamped dying schools like Aluka and Uringi senior secondary schools, a move that has now helped the schools to improve on their performance.

His Highness Phillip Olarker Rauni III, the King of Alur describe the retired Archbishop as a perfect man that should be emulated by all.

“We can all learn a thing or two from His Grace and let him be an inspiration to all of us," the King said.

Meanwhile, in his remarks, Orombi urged Ugandans to stop chasing people because of money, adding that friends are more important than all the money in the world.

“Stop doing bad things to your colleague human beings because of money but instead make more friends who will intern help you to get the money you want," Orombi advised.

He noted that it is the love for people and the fear of God that has made him live this long, saying it is not easy to make 70 years without knowing God.