Photos Coming... I have decided to do kind of a gallery of photos here for Leno, Edward, Contributors of items to follow, JOH folk at NCADP conference, and more from Texas -- rather than for individual postings. So keep watching and send more of your blog contributions and photos to me will you? No need to polish what you send to this blog site. I will do the bare editing or not if you specify. Not too late to send notes from San Jose along with moments you remember recently, from Texas and much earlier from your events with JOH family or somewhere else. Connie
from Edward Mpagi Edmary Sent 02 February 2008
Thanks to the president of Journey of hope for his recommendation to go and speak in Italy. I boarded the airline on 24 /nov/2007 and I reached on 26/nov/2007 at Rome Airport. I was received by Attonita from the Airport.
I spent my first night in Rome in the house of
St. Egidio Community. I appreciated the hospitality given to me by my hosts. They took me around Rome and we visited quite a good number of places.
The following day, I went to a technical school. I shared my testimony and spoke to them about love and forgiveness and the need to support the complete abolition of death penalty in Italy and the whole world.
From there I was taken to Malpensa airport. I left for Milano. I was welcomed by Francisco. We stayed in Novara (I stayed at the home of Francisco and Paulo.)
I gave a sharing in the university the following day. I visited University of Torano sharing with them my situation of how I was sentenced to death for murdering a person who was actually alive. They were all amazed--everybody wanted to listen to me.
I went to Borgomanero High School and I spoke to over a thousand students and old people.
I got a chance of visiting Fr. Agostini who during his work in Uganda helped me a lot during my days in prison. I was very happy to meet him. He gave me some money for the prisoners on death row--the ones he left in Uganda when he returned to Italy.
It was two hours journey to Como. I was welcomed by the Father from Como .
After that I went back to Novara. The following day I went to Lucca. From Lucca I went to Genova. I visited many parts in Genova. We went to the Ocean where I saw different trypes of fish not found in Uganda.
I left for Alexandria--people liked me so much in that part of the country. I was taken to Malpensa to Rome and then flew to Dubai were I spent a night and finally flew back to Uganda.
Through out my trip I stressed the need for forgiveness and to love one another. I talked to people about how cruel and degrading the death penalty is to our society. For example, I spoke about how an innocent person can be convicted--giving examples. I told them how the death penalty is not meant for criminals only--everybody can be a victim any time.
I missed seeing Bill in Italy,as he was busy in a different part of Italy. I enjoyed staying with the people of Italy and they showed me great love during my stay. I was served Italian foods for the first time. It was nice sharing with the people of Italy.
It was amazing to see myself shown in an Italian daily -- almost a full page -- though I could not read the language. I knew the story in the paper could impact the people of Italy regarding the abolition of death penalty.
PS I am very sorry for the delay in writting this. I have had a lot of commitments in Northern Uganda and also working on some film up country. I could hardly access internet during all this period and a lot of work on me --including talk shows,interviews by local and international media. I had a program on BCC last month with Raykroone. I found many things to do after the long time I stayed in US sick. But I thank God life is better --GOOD!
LET ME HEAR FROM YOU!
Edward (Mpagi Edmary)
NOTE: We were so honored to have Edward with us on the Journey of Hope in Texas -- right after his work with Amnesty at the UN in New York. Although he was quite ill his entire time with us, Edward courageously told his story along with the rest of us in many Texan venues.