NEW RELIGION: Called Serulanda, their god is Dead

First we bring to you the house where embalmed bodies of the dead in the religion are kept and is called “Baloola” translated as meditating room. Currently, the mausoleum holds over five bodies.
Its going to be the final rest place for the ”messiah Joseph Mugonza the founder of Serulanda Spiritual Foundation in Ssesamirembe-Rakai District.

His body will be embalmed and kept in a glass coffin where followers and visitors will be able to view it in future. Since his death, there are people in Rakai region who have claimed seeing him in their dreams where he appears in form of a very bright light, speaking to them and offering miracles.


According to Dr Bhuka Bijumiro-jumiro, the secretary general of the foundation, Mugonza was a “living holy creature” who cannot be buried like ordinary people.

We shall not give him the usual burial his body will be embalmed and the process started. The body was put in a glass coffin which will be taken to our mausoleum where embalmed bodies are kept to rest,” Dr Bijumiro-jumiro said.

Like your Jesus, “Our superiors don’t die. They are laid in a room to take a moment of meditation,” he said.

He said experts in embalming bodies including anatomists, biochemists and surgeons, who are also members of the spiritual foundation, are likely to spend one month preserving the body. “We want Mugonza’s body to maintain its physical form—shape, weight, colour, limb flexibility and suppleness,” Dr Bijumiro-jumiro said. “We are going to employ modern embalming techniques to ensure that His holiness Mugonza is recognizable as he was in life many years to come,” he said.

Joseph Mugonza, 80, locally known as Bambi baaba babuwe (his imperishable glory ), died on Tuesday at his home in Kachanga Village, Kabira Sub-county, Kyotera District, following a long illness It is not clear what led to his death but followers point to old age. He is survived by several women and over 14 children, according Dr Bijumiro-jumiro. He wielded immense divine power over his followers, who regarded him as a demigod who performed various miracles.

He was born a saint who started performing miracles at the age of three and received a revelation of starting his ministry in caves aged 12. Although God did not show him where they were located, he found them in 1975,” Dr Dr Bijumiro-jumiro said. His followers believe that Mugonza also got a vision when he was three years old to build a city and eradicate poverty in the area. Mugonza’s followers, estimated to be over 1,000 are spread in different countries including the US. They are forbidden from eating meat or any animal product. They do not drink alcohol.

While worshiping, they combine Buddhist, Hindu, Sikh and traditional Bachwezi practices. According Dr Bijumiro-jumiro, Mugonza will soon be replaced with another leader who would hold the title of “The living saint or the living master saint”, and will be picked from devotees the deceased trained to a level of ‘saints’.

Mugonza rose to prominence in 2006, when one of his companies Kagera Eco-Cities signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the government to establish a multi –billion shillings Free Trade Zone at Sesamirembe Village (genesis of peace) on the shores of Lake Victoria, in the newly- created Kyotera District .

However, in February 2009, Rakai District Council, refused to give out a 200 square-mile piece of land to Mugonza until a clear report about the operations of the foundation was released .This came after suspicion that the foundation was a religious cult.