New Catholic Archbishop of Durban welcomed
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DURBAN - NEWLY appointed Catholic archbishop of Durban, Bishop Siegfried Mandla Jwara, has been warmly welcomed.
Jwara was appointed by head of the Catholic church, Pope Francis, as the new archbishop of the archdiocese of Durban yesterday.
Cardinal Wilfred Napier, the Catholic Archbishop of Durban, made the announcement yesterday afternoon.
This follows the death of Archbishop Abel Gabuza, who died after contracting Covid-19, on January 17, just months before he was to take over as the new archbishop of Durban.
Speaking after the announcement, Raymond Perrier, the director of the Denis Hurley Centre, said the centre joined the Catholic community of Durban in welcoming Bishop Jwara as the new archbishop.
“In following in the footsteps of Archbishop Hurley and Cardinal Napier, he inherits not only a huge diocese, but also a long and positive tradition of leading Catholics – in working closely with other Christians and with people of all faiths,” he said.
Perrier said Jwara’s ministry in poor rural communities gave him first-hand experience of the challenges faced by the homeless, refugees, and other marginalised people that the Denis Hurley Centre worked with.
“We are excited to work with him, as he leads the Archdiocese to play its crucial role in building a better Durban and a more just South Africa,” he said.
Napier received a letter on June 7 from the Pope’s ambassador to southern Africa, Archbishop Peter Wells, who is based in Pretoria, indicating that the official announcement would be published in Rome and South Africa at noon yesterday.
The letter also announced that Napier would be temporarily appointed as the Apostolic administrator until the 64-year-old bishop took up his new role.
In a statement, Napier said God had chosen a man with a long history of going into unknown territory, to sow the seeds of faith.
“I invite the faithful of the Archdiocese of Durban to open their hearts, minds and arms, to welcome and accept Bishop Siegfried Jwara CMM, who has been appointed Archbishop of Durban, with effect from 12pm today, June 9, 2021.
“The Lord has given us Archbishop Siegfried, the Lord has taken away Archbishop Abel, blessed be the name of the Lord,” said Napier.