Pope Francis Appoints First-ever Resident Apostolic Nuncio in South Sudan

Mons. Séamus Patrick Horgan greets Pope Francis in Rome. Credit: Vatican Media

Pope Francis has appointed Mons. Séamus Patrick Horgan as the new Apostolic Nuncio for South Sudan, and elevated him to the dignity of Archbishop, assigning him the Titular See of Árd Sratha in Ireland.

The appointment of Mons. Horgan to represent the Holy Father in South Sudan was made public on Tuesday, May 14 by the Holy See Press Office.

South Sudan gained independence from Sudan in July 2011. The East-Central African nation has been served by the Kenya-based Apostolic Nuncio in collaboration with a Charge d’Affaire based at the country’s Apostolic Nunciature in Juba.

Set to become the first-ever resident Apostolic Nuncio in South Sudan, Mons. Horgan is a native of Ireland, where he was born in the Catholic Diocese of Killaloe in August 1969.

He was ordained a Priest in June 1994 after completing his Priestly studies and formation. 


The graduate in Canon Law from the Rome-based Pontifical Gregorian University, who speaks French, English, Italian, and German entered the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy, the Holy See's diplomatic service, in July 2005.

Since then, the Archbishop-elect has served in various Apostolic Nunciatures, including Uganda, Switzerland, and the Philippines, and at the Section for Relations with States and International Organizations of the Secretariat of State.

He has been serving as Cousellor at the Apostolic Nunciature in the U.S.

Following his appointment as Apostolic Nuncio, the Local Ordinary of his native Diocese has  congratulated him and assured him of “the prayers of the faithful of Killaloe Diocese”.

“Monsignor Horgan brings a wealth of pastoral and practical experience with him to his new role. A conscientious, diligent, and prayerful pastor, his engagement with people is marked with great kindness and courtesy,” Bishop Fintan Monahan says in his Tuesday, May 14 congratulatory note.

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The newly appointed Apostolic Nuncio, Bishop Monahan adds, “served with distinction in his appointments at the local level in Bodyke and Roscrea in the diocese and his various appointments since he entered the diplomatic service.”

Nairobi-based Archbishop Hubertus van Megen, who has been the representative of the Holy Father in South Sudan since March 2019 is to facilitate the transition of the Archbishop-elect to the Apostolic Nunciature in Juba.

Silas Mwale Isenjia is a Kenyan journalist with a great zeal and interest for Catholic Church related communication. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Linguistics, Media and Communication from Moi University in Kenya. Silas has vast experience in the Media production industry. He currently works as a Journalist for ACI Africa.