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Erica Sabiti :First black Archbishop

By Vision Reporter

Added 25th February 2011 03:00 AM

HIS wife’s death left him questioning God’s love for him. Nonetheless, he rose above the agonising experience, continued serving in the church and later was chosen to succeed Leslie Brown, Uganda’s expatriate archbishop. This appointment made Erica Sabiti the first Ugandan Archbishop.

By Vicky Wandawa

HIS wife’s death left him questioning God’s love for him. Nonetheless, he rose above the agonising experience, continued serving in the church and later was chosen to succeed Leslie Brown, Uganda’s expatriate archbishop. This appointment made Erica Sabiti the first Ugandan Archbishop.

Sabiti was born in 1903 in Ankole. He attended King’s College Budo, where his interest in Christianity was nurtured.

After secondary education, Sabiti returned to Ankole and taught at a primary school, although he was not a trained teacher.

Later in 1925, he enrolled for a teacher training course at Makerere University College. In the same year, he married Georgina Kachanda, who shortly passed on after suffering from malaria.

He then remarried and enrolled for training at the Bishop Tucker Theological College in 1931, after which he was ordained deacon in 1933.

\Sabiti worked for a year at Namirembe Cathedral, but was relocated back home to Ankole’s Bweranyangi parish. He later served at Rwenzori Diocese for several years.

In 1965, he replaced Leslie Brown as the bishop of the Uganda Province. However, his new position came with opposition from the clergy, who preferred a Muganda bishop for Namirembe Diocese.

But the president of Uganda, Idi Amin, came to his rescue when he summoned all the bishops to Kampala to have the dispute resolved. The meeting agreed that Sabiti remains a bishop. Interestingly, Amin’s intervention did not deter Sabiti from criticising the president’s political tyranny.

During his reign as bishop, Sabiti was among the few courageous critics of Amin. He survived the president’s wrath, but his successor, Jonan Luwum, was not as fortunate.

Sabiti’s reign came with numerous developments, among them was emphasis on the clergy’s education. The father of seven retired in 1974, but continued serving in the church, despite poor health. He passed on in 1988.




Erica Sabiti :First black Archbishop

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