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Coventry vicar is new Bishop of Matabeleland: CEN 1.02.09 p 5. January 6, 2009

Posted by geoconger in Church of England Newspaper, Zimbabwe.

A Coventry vicar has been appointed Bishop of Matabeleland. Meeting at St. John’s Cathedral in Bulawayo on Nov 8, the the Matabeleland diocesan synod elected as bishop the Rev. Cleophas Lunga, rector of the Caludon Team Ministry in Coventry.

Born in Bulawayo, Bishop-elect Lunga worked as a legal clerk before entering Bishop Gaul Theological College in Harare. Ordained deacon in 1993, and priest the following year, Bishop-elect Lunga served as an assistant at St John’s Cathedral and as diocesan youth minister before being appointed rector of the multi-racial parish of All Saints & St Modwen’s in Bulawayo in 1999.

In 2003 he emigrated to the UK taking up the post of team vicar of St Catherine’s in Stoke Aldermoor, then team rector of the Caludon group of parishes with responsibility for Wyken and Stoke Aldermoor. During his time in Coventry, Bishop-elect Lunga earned an MA degree at Coventry University.

“In Coventry I have been welcomed and very much loved. Encouraged to share my African heritage, I have been tremendously blessed by the experience I have gained here. I have learnt to listen to people’s stories with respect and work towards nurturing hope through love.,” the new bishop said.

“As we are praying during this process we are also looking forward to the possibility of returning to my other homeland and journeying with others who have a zeal for the Lord,” he said.

Dr. Christopher Cocksworth, the Bishop of Coventry welcomed the election saying Bishop-elect Lunga was “an excellent priest who has given a great deal to the Diocese of Coventry.”

“Although we are sorry to lose him, I know that he will have so much to contribute to the Diocese of Matabeleland. My prayers are with him and his family as they await the confirmation of his election and prepare for all that lies ahead,” Dr. Cocksworth said.

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