University Council Member Appointed Archbishop

BishopManghesteabThe Holy Father Pope Francis, on 19th January 2015, erected the Metropolitan Church sui iuris in Eritrea dividing it from the Metropolitan Archeparchy of Addis Ababa; and appointed the first Metropolitan Archbishop His Excellency Menghesteab Tesfamariam, MCCJ hitherto Eparchial Bishop of Asmara.

Most Rev. Menghesteab Tesfamariam, MCCJ,  Archbishop Designate of Asmara is a member of the University Council.The seat of the new metropolitan Church is Asmara, which is elevated to the status of metropolitan Archdiocese.

The term sui iuris which means “of its own right” or “of its own law” is of great importance as it makes the Catholic Church in Eritrea fully independent. Without it, Catholic Church in Eritrea would have remained an Ecclesiastical Province under Ethiopian Catholic Bishops Conference.

The Metropolitan Church sui iuris, is governed by the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches 155-173 CCEO and in its canonical form is distinguished by having an ecclesiastical province headed by a Metropolitan.

Speaking to AMECEA Online News from Eritrea, The Archbishop designate, His Excellency Menghesteab Tesfamariam said that this is a historical milestone for the Catholic Church in Eritrea for that the process of making the Catholic Church in Eritrea independent has been going on for a long time. “Officially up to now the Churches in the two neighbouring countries formed one Episcopal Conference,” he said.

According to the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches, there are four kinds of Eastern Catholic churches: Patriarchal (led by a Patriarch), major Archepiscopal (led by an Archbishop), metropolitan sui iuris (led by a Metropolitan Archbishop), and other sui iuris churches.

The new Metropolitan sui iuris extends on all Eritrean territory and includes the following eparchies: Archeparchy of Asmara; the Eparchy of Barentu; the Eparchy of Keren and the Eparchy of Segheneity.

His Excellency Menghesteab Tesfamariam, MCCJ, was born on 24 December 1948 in Berakit, eparchy of Asmara. He entered the novitiate of the Comboni Missionaries on 1 September 1971 and issued temporary vows June 25, 1973. After five years, March 15, 1978, has professed perpetual vows. He studied and attended regular courses Institutional philosophy and theology to the priesthood.

Ordained a priest February 18, 1979, he became assistant priest at Namalu, Uganda, 1979-1985. From 1985 to1990 he dedicated to the training of the Comboni postulants in Addis Ababa; from 1992 to 1994, he attended a two year specialization course at the Catholic Theological Union, Chicago (USA). From 1 January 1991 to 31 October 1993, was in charge of the training of the Comboni School in Chicago and from 1 November 1993 to 31 December 1996 was named local Superior in Chicago.

On 25 June 2001 he was appointed by Pope John Paul II, Bishop of Asmara and received episcopal ordination from its predecessor Zekarias Yohannes September 16, 2001.Since 2001 he became the Eparchial Bishop of Asmara.

SOURCE: AMECEA Online News Blog:





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