Founded in 2001, the Inter-Religious Council of Uganda (IRCU) is an indigenous, national faith-based organization uniting efforts of religious institutions to jointly address issues of common concern.
Founded in 2001, the Inter-Religious Council of Uganda (IRCU), is an indigenous, national faith-based organization uniting efforts of religious institutions to jointly address issues of common concern. IRCU is constituted by; the Roman Catholic Church (RCC), the Church of the Province of Uganda (Church Of Uganda-COU), the Uganda Orthodox Church (UOC), the Uganda Muslim Supreme Council (UMSC), the Seventh-day Adventist Uganda Union (SDAUU), the Born Again Faith in Uganda (BAF) and the National Alliance of Pentecostal and Evangelical Churches in Uganda (NAPECU). Similarly, IRCU works with other religious organizations, namely the Spiritual Assembly of the Baha’i, the Methodist and Lutheran Churches.
IRCU is affiliated to Religions for Peace International (RfP), the African Council for Religious Leaders, (ACLR), the East African Community – Inter Religious Council (EAC-IRC), and the Global Women and Youth of Faith Networks. IRCU delivers services through religious leaders and religious structures and infrastructure, which cascade down from national to the grassroots levels. Among the religious based institutions through which IRCU delivers services are; health facilities, universities, schools, Vocational/post-secondary institutions and regional and district governance structures (dioceses, deaneries, fields and Muslim districts, counties and villages). IRCU plays the coordination function to ensure coordinated approaches, coherence of effort, maximization of synergy and sharing of resources to enable these structures and infrastructure to provide quality services to God’s people. IRCU’s main focus is on promotion of peace and conflict transformation, sustainable human development and network development among the Religious Leaders, communities, women and youths
On 31st March and 3rd April, 2001, the Secretary General of Religions for Peace (RfP) international, Dr. William F. Vendley, held private meetings with senior-most religious leaders from four religious communities in Uganda, namely; the Roman Catholic Church, the Anglican Church (Church of Uganda), the Orthodox Church of Uganda, and the Muslim Community.
During the meeting, Dr. Vendley introduced the mission and vision of RfP, then known as the World’s Council of Religions for Peace (WCRP), and the emerging initiative and unique opportunity for religious communities to address the plight of orphans affected by HIV/AIDS, and he also offered to facilitate the formation of a national inter-religious structure.
Religious leaders unanimously held a view that the time was ripe for a national inter-religious council to be co-built by both Christians and Muslims. The WCRP team met with major religious groups and inter-religious groups in Uganda to brainstorm about how their activities could be strengthened by the formation of a national inter-religious council.
The first preparatory meeting for the formation of the Inter-Religious Council of Uganda (IRCU) was held on 4th April, at Nile Hotel in Kampala. The committee consisted of representatives appointed by the heads of four religious communities in Uganda.
The participants agreed to officially constitute the preparatory committee mandated to work for the establishment of IRCU. The committee designated six members to form an ad-hoc committee to conduct preliminary work for the committee, including the drafting of the Council’s constitution.
A divinely peaceful, united, prosperous Uganda where all people enjoy full health and freedoms for the common good.
To promote peace, reconciliation, good governance, and holistic human development through interfaith action and collaboration, advocating for the empowerment of member bodies for common good.
Inspired and motivated by love and faith, IRCU strives to serve God through service to humanity, especially the poor and vulnerable of society Surah Al-Baqarah 17; Mathew 25:34-40; 1 John 4:20. From these, IRCU derives its mandate as follows:
Building the capacity of FBOs and religious leaders so that they rise up to today’s challenges
Mobilizing resources for addressing the challenges
Influencing Public Policy Advocacy
Taking action as an agent of social change and transformation
The principle of representation recognizes that religious communities, their structures and representatives are respected and duly taken into account in the work of IRCU.
The principle of delegation recognizes that while local decisions and actions shall be taken and implemented at the local level, the national decisions and actions shall be taken and implemented at the national level.
The representation of the IRCU member Faith Based Organizations shall be consistent from the highest to the lowest level.
Build the competence of religious leaders to mobilize and facilitate social transformation of faith communities for the common good based on the respective principles and values enhancing for a peaceful and just society in Uganda.
Promote multi-religious collaborative dialogue on issues of common interest and concern among the different faiths based on shared moral commitments in Uganda and in relation to other parts of the world.
Advocate for peaceful co-existence, tolerance human rights, justice and reconciliation for harnessing the unique similarities and differences in faiths, traditions, ethnicity, beliefs and action.
Promote moral and spiritual integrity and values in the Uganda society.
Putting the youth at the center of our work