Congolese Bishop Known for Spearheading Fight against Ebola in DR Congo Dies in Belgium

Late Bishop Marie-Edouard Mununu Kasiala. Credit: Kikwit Diocese

Bishop Marie-Edouard Mununu Kasiala who has been known for spearheading the fight against the Ebola virus in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), has died in Belgium at the age of 86.

The death of the Congolese Bishop was confirmed by his successor in DRC’s Kikwit Diocese, Bishop Timothée Bodika Mansiyai.

“It is with profound sorrow that I announce to the community of Catholic Christians and all people of good will the death of my venerable predecessor, Bishop Marie-Edouard Mununu Kasiala,” Bishop Bodika says in a statement shared with ACI Africa Wednesday, December 7.

In the statement dated December 5, the Local Ordinary of Kikwit Diocese says his predecessor died on December 4 at “St. Michael Jesuit Community in Brussels, Belgium.”

The member of the Order of Cistercians of the Strict Observance (OCSO) also known as Trappists, had been received on 25 November 2022 for a medical appointment at St. Luc Hospital, Bishop Bodika says.


In his statement, Bishop Bodika goes on to extend his condolences to the “Congolese Bishops, the Diocesan Clergy, the whole Diocesan community, the Cistercian family as well as the biological family grieved by this painful loss.”

He commits the soul of the late Bishop to the “fervent prayers” of the people of God in the Congolese Diocese.

The late Bishop Mununu joined the Trappists in 1960 and made his solemn profession in 1965. He was ordained a Priest in 1967. 

He served as Superior of the Trappists from 1972 to 1984, and then as Titular Prior from 1984 to 1985.

In 1984, he was appointed Auxiliary Bishop of Kikwit, and succeeded Bishop Alexander Mbuka-Nzundu as the Local Ordinary of the same Episcopal See in 1986.

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The Congolese Bishop who retired in November 2016 has been lauded for spearheading the fight against the Ebola virus, which reportedly claimed the lives of 200 people, including Catholic Nuns in 1995.

Through Radio Tomisa, the Diocesan radio station of Kikwit Diocese that he founded, Bishop Mununu was able to reach many listeners with sensitization messages on how to prevent the spread of the Ebola virus.

Speaking at his Farewell Holy Mass in June 2018, Bishop Mununu said, “I am still a Bishop and I will die a Bishop even though I am no longer at the head of the Diocese of Kikwit.”

He added, “It is the community that will forget me, but I will never forget this Diocesan community.”

The late Bishop asked the faithful to work in collaboration with his successor for the growth of the Catholic Church in Kikwit.


In his December 5 tribute to his predecessor, Bishop Bodika says the late Catholic Church leader was “a man of the people of God, a Pastor in the image of Jesus Christ, a man of deep prayer, a wise and prudent man.”

In more than three decades of Episcopal ministry, the Local Ordinary of the Congolese Diocese says his predecessor “knew how to prepare the paths of the Lord in Kikwit, in the province of Bandundu, in the ecclesiastical province of Kinshasa and in the Church family of God which is in the DRC.”

“Dear Bishop Mununu whom I affectionately call ‘Mbuta’, your great merit is to have been pastor of this local church for more than 30 years. God only knows how many disputes you have resolved; how many people you have helped reconcile; how many faithful you have baptized, confirmed, ordained Priests, married, (and) to whom you have given the Holy Communion.”

Bishop Bodika implores in his tribute, “May the Lord whom you diligently served, now reserve you a place in His Heavenly Kingdom.”

Bishop Mununu is expected to be laid to rest on December 17 at St. Francis Xavier Cathedral of Kikwit Diocese.

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The late Bishop had been in monastic vows for 60 years, 55 years as a Priest, and 38 years as a Bishop.

Jude Atemanke is a Cameroonian journalist with a passion for Catholic Church communication. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the University of Buea in Cameroon. Currently, Jude serves as a journalist for ACI Africa.