The Catholic Bishops of the Association of Member Episcopal Conferences in Eastern Africa (AMECEA) have elected Bishop Charles Kasonde of Solwezi, Zambia as Chairman of the association on July 21, 2018.
Bishop Kasonde who was an AMECEA Executive Board delegate from Zambia takes over from Archbishop Berhaneyesus D. Cardinal Souraphiel of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia who served as Chairman for one term of four years.
Speaking at the Official Closing Mass of the AMECEA Plenary Assembly where he was the main celebrant, Bishop expressed gratitude to AMECEA Bishops for trusting and having confidence in him and other office bearers who have been elected and appointed to various positions.
“May I ask for your support and collaboration, in synodality and communion,” he said adding that “As we are closing our plenary Assembly, I want to ask you all to live the theme of the Plenary: Vibrant Diversity, Equal Dignity, Peaceful unity in God in the AMECEA Region. And remain committed to the common initiatives of AMECEA.”
In the final document issued by the conference on July 22, 2018, the bishops called for recognition of the equal dignity of all persons, as well as their integral development.
“We uphold and endeavor to promote the Church’s basic peacebuilding plan which has four principles: recognition and defense of equal dignity of all members of the human family, promotion of integral human development, support for international institutions and forgiveness in AMECEA region,” said the document, signed by Bishop Kasonde “These peacebuilding blocks are the basis for enhancement of human dignity that must be enjoyed by every human being through respect of human rights.”
Bishop Kasonde was born on December 14, 1968, and was ordained as a priest on August 4, 2001, in Ndola, Zambia. He was appointed Bishop on March 23, 2010, and consecrated as a Bishop on May 29, 2010.
The Chairman of AMECEA is elected every Four Years during the business session of the Plenary meeting. The position is held for a maximum of two terms.