By Vatican News
Pope Francis on Wednesday appointed a new archbishop in Bloemfontein, in South Africa. He transferred Dehonian Bishop Zolile Peter Mpambani of Kokstad to Bloemfontein as metropolitan archbishop.
The appointment came soon after the Holy Father accepted the resignation of Oblate of Mary Immaculate Archbishop Jabulani Adatus Nxumalo, who reached the canonical retirement age of 75 last year.
Bishop Zolile Peter Mpambani was born on 20 February 1957, in Umlamli in the Diocese of Aliwal.
On 28 January 1982, he made his religious vows, becoming a member of the Congregation of the Sacred Heart of Jesus (also known as Dehonians, after their founder Leo John Dehon).
He studied philosophy and theology at Saint Joseph’s Major Seminary in Cedara. After ordination to the priesthood, he served in parishes in Sterkspruit (1987-1990), and (1990-1993). He then took responsibilities within his Congregation: formation of pre-novices (1994-1997), and General Council (1998-2003). After taking a year off for a sabbatical, he took up his former position with the pre-novices (2005-2010) as well as local superior in Bethulie and director of the Dehonian House in Scottsville, Pitermartizburg. From 2011-2013 he was Minister (along with the vicar general) in the parish of Sterkspruit, in the Diocese of Aliwal. After taking on the position of the Provincial Superior of South Africa for a few months (Feb. – May 2013), he was appointed and consecrated Bishop of Kokstad in 2013.
Within the South African Catholic Bishops’ Conference, he is responsible for formation, life and the lay apostolate.