Friar Wojciech ULMAN, the Delegate of the Provincial Delegation in Uganda of the Province of St. Anthony and Bl. James of Strepar in Poland (Cracow) was honored by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland, Zbigniew RAU, with the “Bene Merito” medal for activities strengthening Poland’s position on the international stage.
The Polish Ambassador to the Republic of Kenya, Jacek BAZAŃSKI, was appointed to confer the recognition upon Friar Wojciech. The ambassador presented the award on Friday, March 5, 2021.
The detailed explanatory statement for the award reads: “Friar Wojciech ULMAN has carried out many aid projects in Uganda, mainly in the education and health sectors. His commitment led to the construction of the St. Charles Lwanga School, the St. Anthony School, the Wanda BŁEŃSKA Medical Center in Matugga, and the Our Lady of the Angels Nursery School in Buziga-Kampala, among others. These centers support local structures and are important places for local people. Friar Wojciech also carried out ecclesial projects. He initiated the construction of a parish church in Matugga and a formation house in Kakooge. The best known structure, which he oversaw, is the Ugandan Martyrs National Shrine in Munyonyo, near Kampala. Friar Wojciech is also involved in charitable projects; he is the leader of the “Good Samaritan” group, which includes sixty people associated with the Munyonyo Basilica. Thanks to this group, which receives donations from Poland, among other things, material aid reaches over 1,500 needy inhabitants of Uganda. Friar Wojciech is actively involved in the activities of Polish emigrants. He organizes Masses and meetings for the Polish community. The Munyonyo Shrine is a place open to the Polish diaspora. In collaboration with that center, consular services are offered there. Friar Wojciech also takes care of Polish memorials in Uganda, especially the cemetery in Koja, where Poles who had been deported to Siberia are buried. He spreads knowledge about these places, both in Uganda and in Poland. ”
Friar Wojciech ULMAN was born in 1983 in Leżajsk, Poland. In 2002, after his high school graduation, he entered the Order. He completed his postulancy year in Głogówek and his novitiate year in Kalwaria Pacławska, both in Poland. He then began his studies at the Major Seminary in Cracow. After completing his philosophy studies in 2006, he went to the United States to study the English language. In 2007, he went to Kenya to study theology. He made his solemn profession in 2008 and was ordained to the priesthood in 2010. He spent the next four years working in Matugga, Uganda. Since 2016, he has been working in the capital of Kampala-Munyonyo, where he serves as Guardian of the friary, Pastor and Rector of the Shrine of the Martyrs of Uganda.
Friar Jan M. SZEWEK