A senior cleric of the catholic faith has reacted strongly to the syndicated story published in several newspapers including Awoko that the “Makeni Diocese is still vacant” quoting the Principal Consecrator Most Rev. Protas Rugambwa.
The cleric drew attention to the Papal Bull, which is the scripted message from Pope Benedict XVI, which states “when the church in Makeni became vacant because of the retirement of our worthy brother George Biguzzi SX, it pleased us with the greatest diligence to appoint another president of the sacred rites to that place.”
The message further stated that “at the same time we grant you all the rights and we impose all the responsibilities which the gift of the Episcopacy carries with it. We readily accept that you can receive the Episcopal ordination outside the city of Rome, from any Catholic Bishop, in accordance with liturgical norms.”
The cleric pointed out that the Archbishop Protas Rugambwa who was sent by the Pope as the Principal Consecrator, “would have never, ever said to any group let alone a group of Priests/Religious that the Episcopal seat of Makeni diocese is still vacant.”
He pointed out that “a statement of that calibre would have been a contradiction in ‘terms,’ (that is) a contradiction of Archbishop Rugambwa and his mission.”
He said further that a “statement of that kind would have meant that Pope Benedict XVI lives and acts in a dream world.”
He maintained, “Archbishop Protas mission was one of execution of a mandate by the Pope.”
The cleric explained that “the idea of ‘an impeded Bishop’ or when the diocese of Makeni becomes a vacant seat is a contradiction in terms of the very legitimate Episcopal ordination of Bishop Henry Aruna on Saturday 5th January 2013 (which) caused a cessation of Makeni Diocese to be a “vacant seat”.
“The very “existential” moment when Bishop Aruna was ordained,” he said, “Makeni was entrusted in the hands of Bishop Aruna. His possession which is to be immediate could be misconstrued by some Priest who have not only demonstrated a myopic and shortsighted view of the catholic church, but have also boycotted the ordination ceremony toying with an action that could lead in their being penalized canonically.”
He pointed out that “sathsm is what they are wooing and excommunication could be an eventual and definitive decision taken by Rome and the Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI who nominated, appointed and sent an envoy to ordain Monsignour Henry Aruna now Bishop of the diocese of Makeni.”
He explained further that “an impeded seat is one in which the Bishop is either incarcerated or kidnapped and cannot celebrate the sacrament and govern and guide, pastor and shepard the diocese and people.”
On the suggestion that another appointment will be made or the Bishop be transferred to another Diocese he said “when once the Bishop has been named and ordained it will never be reversed but in some cases they can be moved which is a decision that will be made by the Pope for certain reasons and because the Church is a Universal Church and not in the case of Makeni when the people say they do not want him.”
By Betty Milton