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South Rwenzori launches search for next bishop

By John Thawite

Added 30th July 2018 11:28 AM

Kick-starting the search, Bishop Nzerebende urged the synod to start looking among themselves for his successor.

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Kick-starting the search, Bishop Nzerebende urged the synod to start looking among themselves for his successor.

Bishop Janckson Nzerebende ordaining one of the 37 reverends at a recent function at St Paul's Cathedral. PHOTO: John Thawite

The South Rwenzori Diocesan Synod has launched a search for her next bishop as the incumbent prepares to handover power.

The Rt Rev Jackson Nzerebende Tembo, whose term expires in 2021, succeeded retired Bishop Zebedee Masereka Kahangwa, the diocese’s founder bishop.

Masereka bowed out in 2003 after serving from 1984 when south Rwenzori Diocese was curved out of Fort Portal-based Rwenzori Diocese.

Kick-starting the search, Bishop Nzerebende urged the synod to start looking among themselves for his successor.

He was delivering his eight-page charge to the diocesan 17th Synod session which took place at St Paul’s Cathedral, the diocesan headquarters located in Kamaiba Ward of Kasese Municipality on Saturday.

In the Anglican church of Uganda, the synod is highest policy-making body chaired by a bishop and sits once in two years.

The two-day Synod session meeting, held under the theme: “The role of a family in building the Church of Christ,” was attended by a cross-section of top diocesan clergy, heads of department, archdeaconry delegates and other stakeholders.

Bishop Nzerebende told a very attentive session to start searching for his successor from among themselves, adding that he was ready to handover power come 2021.

“This 17th synod will be transitional for south Rwenzori diocese in that it will take the diocese from the second to the third,” Nzerebende, told the synod.

Several boards and committees, including a nomination committee whose role will include searching and nominating names for a new bishop to be elected by the Uganda Anglican Provincial house of Bishops.

Nzerebende, who was flanked by his wife, Dorothy Nzerebende and the Diocesan Secretary, Rev Can Josephat Bwalhuma, hailed the clergy and the entire diocesan congregation for having looked after him and his family very well.

“You can see how we are healthy-looking and glittering we are,” he said, causing amusement in the audience.

Bishop Nzerebende also commended the Christians for responding to the various strategies designed during his leadership.

“I am glad to inform you that South Rwenzori Diocese is one of the fastest growing dioceses both in Uganda and the world in the areas of spirituality, physical development finance and governance,” he said.

But he cautioned them against various negative practices including rumour mongering, “planned image assassination of church staff and ministry” and the kind of corruption that is affecting service delivery in Uganda.

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