Ugandan Diocese Mourning Death of Pioneer Bishop, “founding Father”, Aged 92

Late Bishop Erasmus Desiderius Wandera. Credit: UEC

The people of God in the Catholic Diocese of Soroti in Uganda is mourning the passing on of Bishop Erasmus Desiderius Wandera, the first Local Ordinary of the Ugandan Diocese. 

Bishop Wandera, aged 92, died on Thursday, December 8 “at his residence in Mbale City”, the Chancellor of Soroti Diocese has announced in a statement. 

“The Local Ordinary of Soroti Catholic Diocese, His Lordship Rt. Rev. Dr. Eciru Oliach with deep sorrow announces the demise of our founding Father of the Diocese, His Lordship Erasmus Desiderius Wandera, Bishop Emeritus of Soroti Catholic Diocese,” Fr. Gonzaga Ongereny Waziwazi says in the December 8 statement.

Fr. Waziwazi adds, “This occurred this morning around 6:00 am at his residence in Mbale City.”

“As a Diocese, we mourn with profound grief this great loss and commend his soul to the loving hands of God,” the Chancellor of the Ugandan Diocese says, and implores, “Eternal rest unto him O Lord, and let Perpetual light shine upon him, may he rest in Peace, Amen.”


Born in April 1930, the late Ugandan Catholic Bishop was ordained a member of the Clergy of the Archdiocese of Tororo in December 1956.

He was appointed the first Bishop of Soroti Diocese in November 1980 and consecrated Bishop in March 1981.

The late Ugandan Bishop who retired in June 2007 was succeeded by Archbishop Emmanuel Obbo as Apostolic Administrator before the appointment of Bishop Joseph Eciru Oliach as the Local Ordinary of Soroti Diocese.

Following the news of Bishop Wandera’s demise, Ugandans have taken to social media to mourn him and condole with the people of God in Soroti Diocese. 

“The former Parish Priest of Immaculate Conception Cathedral dies early on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception. This is not by chance. May the Immaculate Virgin accompany you to a safe place of rest in the kingdom of her Son and our Lord whom you served faithfully. RIP Papa Bishop,” Agustino Phiri Epieru Locha says in his comment on Facebook.

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On his part, Bernard Omoding says that it is “a very sad morning for Soroti and the entire Catholic Church. My Bishop, May God grant your soul Eternal rest.”

In a statement, members of the Episcopal Conference of Uganda (UEC) say that details regarding the funeral of the late Ugandan “will be communicated later.”

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.