New Eparchy in Ethiopia, Metropolitan Church of Eritrea

Pope Divides Territory of Addis Ababa

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The Vatican announced today that Pope Francis erected the eparchy of Bahir Dar-Dessie, Ethiopia, with territory from the metropolitan archieparchy of Addis Ababa, making it a suffragan of the same ecclesiastical circumscription.

The eparchy has a population of 16,215,850, with Catholics numbering 17,544, priests 24, religious 47.

He appointed Bishop Lisane-Christos Matheos Semahun, formerly auxiliary of Addis Abeba, as the first bishop of the new eparchy of Bahir Dar-Dessie, Ethiopia.

The Pope also erected the metropolitan Church “sui iuris” of Eritrea, dividing it from the metropolitan archieparchy of Addis Ababa.

The seat of the new metropolitan Church is Asmara, which is elevated to the status of metropolitan archieparchy. It corresponds to the territory of Eritrea and regroups the eparchies of Asmara, Barentu, Keren and Seghenity.

He appointed Bishop Menghesteab Tesfamariam, M.C.C.J., formerly eparchal bishop of Asmara, as the first metropolitan of Eritrea.

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