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Latest stories: South Africa

Catholic Christians use sanitizer provided by the Church to clean their hands to prevent the outbreak of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) after a Sunday Mass at the Holy Family Basilica in Nairobi, Kenya. March 15, 2020. / REUTERS/Njeri Mwangi

What Church Leaders in Africa Have Instructed to Prevent Spread of COVID-19

The pandemic of coronavirus that has spread to well over 80 countries across the world including at least 26 in Africa has prompted the taking of precautionary measures aimed at preventing the spread of the deadly virus, with the global death toll having surpassed 5,300.

Map showing countries affected by the Corovirus around the world. /

Bishops in Africa Call for Appropriate Measures as Cases of COVID-19 are Confirmed

As the world steps up efforts in tackling the spread of COVID-19 virus, the disease caused by coronavirus, with the most recent cases in Africa confirmed in South Africa and Cameroon, Catholic Church leaders at the helm of the Bishops’ conferences in Africa have expressed concerns that the virus could rapidly spread on the continent if appropriate measures are not taken to prevent its initial spread.

Bishop Sithembele Sipuka of South Africa’s Umtata diocese. /

“We need to get to the root cause of femicide,” South African Prelate Says

As South Africa struggles to curb alarming rates of gender-based killings targeting women and girls, a Bishop in the country has, in an interview with ACI Africa, highlighted the need to identify the root cause of violence targeting women for an appropriate way out of the societal challenge.

Some Participants at the ongoing six-day workshop in Pretoria, South Africa, involving the coordinators of Caritas Southern Africa. /

Caritas Southern Africa Coordinators Deliberate on Funds, “dealing with natural disasters”

The challenge of natural disasters in the Ecclesiastical territories within Southern Africa and how to deal with them and having financial resources are among the deliberations of the ongoing six-day workshop in Pretoria, South Africa, involving the coordinators of Caritas Southern Africa, with participants having come from Botswana, Eswatini, South Africa, as well as Namibia.

The newly ordained Bishop of South Africa's Aliwal North Diocese, Ugandan-born Bishop Joseph Kizito, blessing the people of God who witnessed his Episcopal ordination at Sauer Park Stadium, Aliwal North on February 15, 2020. / Fr. Paul Tatu/The Southern African Catholic Bishops' Conference (SACBC)

Correct “erroneous ways of worship” in South Africa, Uganda-born Bishop Told at Ordination

At the Episcopal ordination of the Ugandan-born Monsignor Joseph Kizito, as Bishop of South Africa’s diocese of Aliwal North Saturday, February 15, being attentive to “erroneous ways of worship” in modern-day South Africa was a key highlight, the newly ordained Bishop advised to seek ways to address “weak worship” in his new Ecclesiastical territory.

The representative of Pope Francis in the Apostolic Visitation of South Africa's Diocese of Mariannhill, Archbishop Emeritus of Pretoria, William Slattery / Public Doamin

South African Prelate to Represent Pope in Apostolic Visitation of Mariannhill Diocese

In response to the request from the Bishop of South Africa’s Diocese of Mariannhill “for an Apostolic Visitation”, Pope Francis has appointed the Archbishop Emeritus of Pretoria in South Africa, William Slattery to represent him in the visit of the diocese that is part of the Ecclesiastical Province of Durban.

The late retired president Daniel Moi with Pope John Paul II / Getty images

Kenyans Mourn Longest Serving President Who Hosted Three Papal Visits

Kenya’s President Daniel Toroitich arap Moi who passed on Tuesday, February 4 will be remembered not only for being the longest serving president of the East African country but also for hosting the highest number of Papal visits in the nation.

Blessed Benedict Daswa. Beatified on February 2, 1990. /

Blessed Benedict Daswa “calling us to conversion”: South African Prelate

At the 30th anniversary of the martyrdom of Blessed Benedict Daswa, South Africa’s first potential saint, a Church leader in the country has challenged Christians to heed to the challenge by the Blessed, to convert to Jesus Christ and His Gospel.

Logo for the Mini World Day 2020 to be held in December 2020 in Pretoria under the auspices of the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference /

Botswana, Eswatini, South Africa Approve “Mini World Youth Day” for December 2020

As youths around the world prepare for the next World Youth Day to be held in Portugal in 2022, Church leaders in Botswana, Eswatini, and South Africa have “approved in principle” the plan to have a Mini World Youth Day (MWYD) proposed for December 2020 in Pretoria, the administrative capital of South Africa.

A Poster of the New Pastoral Plan for the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference (SACBC). / SACBC FaceBook page

New Pastoral Plan Expected to Restore Lost Glory in Botswana, Eswatini, South Africa

The newly-launched pastoral plan of the Southern Africa Catholic Bishops’ Conference (SACBC) is expected to be “a light in darkness” for Botswana, Eswatini and South Africa, to guide the three countries on the path of evangelization in contemporary times, and possibly redeem the people of God there from economic instability, corruption and social evils to become, once again, “the model and envy of the world,” a section of SACBC members have said.

Kobe Bryant with 13-year-old daughter, Gianna who died alongside seven others in a helicopter crash on Sunday, January, 26, 2020 in  in Calabasas, California. /

African Clergy, Religious, Laity Pay Tribute to Basketball Superstar Kobe Bryant

A day after the sudden and unexpected death of the basketball superstar Kobe Bryant in a helicopter crash alongside his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna and seven others, a section of clergy, religious, and lay Catholic faithful in Africa have, amid shock and disbelief, paid glowing tribute to the 41-year-old retired NBA player, expressing appreciation for his talent, for being a role model to many, and for practicing his Catholic.

Archbishop Peter Bryan Wells, Apostolic Nuncio to South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Lesotho, and Swaziland. /

Nuncio Encourages Bishops in Southern Africa to “become models of the joy of Christ”

At the ongoing Plenary Assembly of the Bishops in Botswana, South Africa and Swaziland, the Papal representative in the region, Archbishop Peter Bryan Wells outlined, on Wednesday, January 22, five characteristics of missionary episcopate that the Holy Father desires of serving Bishops as explained in Pope Francis’ Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium and that “the bishop must become a model of the joy of Christ.”

Bishop Sithembele Anton Sipuka of Umtata Diocese, South Africa, President of the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference (SACBC) /

Why the Southern Africa Bishops’ New Pastoral Plan is Important

As the Church leaders in Botswana, South Africa, and Swaziland prepare to officially launch their new Pastoral Plan this Sunday, January 26, the President of the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference (SACBC) that brings together the three countries, Bishop Sithembele Sipuka has explained why the new pastoral plan, which will replace the one that has guided evangelization activities of the Church in the region for the last 30 years, is important.

Belgian Missionary Fr. Joseph Hollander, a member of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate (OMI) who was ministering in South Africa murdered on January 12, 2020 / Bishop of Klerksdorp Diocese

Suspected Murderer of Belgian Priest in South Africa “well known to him”

The young man suspected to have murdered a missionary priest who was engaged in parish ministry in South Africa’s diocese of Klerksdorp last week was well known to the late cleric, has already been arraigned in court over the killing and is set to be presented to the court again “to apply for bail,” ACI Africa has been told.

A Poster of the New Pastoral Plan for the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference (SACBC). / SACBC FaceBook page

Church in Botswana, South Africa, Swaziland Set to Unveil a New Pastoral Plan

The Church in Southern Africa is set to launch a new pastoral plan that will replace the one that has guided evangelization activities in the countries of Botswana, South Africa and Swaziland for the last 30 years.

Fr. Sibusiso Zulu (left) and Fr. Owen Wilcock (right)  from South Africa who died in a car accident on December 3 / SACBC

Pope Francis Condoles with Families of Seminary Formators in South Africa

Pope Francis has expressed his condolences to the families of the two priests, formators at Saint John Vianney Seminary in Pretoria, South Africa, who died in the December 3 road accident and made known his prayerful solidarity with the two others who survived the Tuesday afternoon tragedy.

Ms. Dominique Yon with Pope Francis / Dominique Yon

South African Appointed to New Vatican-based Youth Advisory Body “surprised, honored”

A year after the Synod of Bishops' special assembly on Young People, Faith and Vocational Discernment proposed the creation of an advisory body that would reinforce the work done by the Vatican-based Youth Office of the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life, one of the 20 members appointed to the newly established International Youth Advisory Body, South African Dominique Yon, has shared with ACI Africa about her reaction at the news of her appointment announced Sunday, November 24.

Ugandan-born Monsignor Joseph Kizito, Bishop-elect of Aliwal North, South Africa /

Ugandan-Born Cleric Appointed Bishop in South Africa, Says He is “baptized and sent”

One of the recent news from the Holy See related to the Church in Africa has been Pope Francis’  appointment of Ugandan-born Monsignor Joseph Kizito as Bishop of South Africa’s Aliwal North diocese, with his ordination slated to take place on February 15, 2020.

The Springboks of South Africa, 2019 Rugby World Champions /

South Africa’s Rugby World Cup Win Source of “rare” National Unity, Bishop Says

The victory of South Africa over England in the Rugby World Cup over the weekend in Japan has been viewed as having had the impact of uniting South Africans in a “rare” manner.

Participants in SECAM Justice, Peace and Development Commission Workshop in Boksburg, South Africa / ACI Africa

Address Root Causes of Xenophobia to Completely End It: SECAM Official

The challenge of xenophobia in Africa can be overcome by identifying and addressing the root causes of the menace that has affected the peaceful coexistence of people of the same race, an official of the Symposium of Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM) said recently in South Africa.