At 1pm today in Rome the Holy Father Pope Francis announced that he has appointed as bishop of the diocese of Queenstown, South Africa, the Reverend Fr. Paul Siphiwo Vanqa, S.A.C., until now diocesan administrator of the same see. At the same time, the Holy Father also announced his appointment as bishop of the diocese of Kimberley, South Africa, Bishop Duncan Theodore Tsoke, until now titular Bishop of Orreacelia and auxiliary of the metropolitan archdiocese of Johannesburg.

Rev. Fr. Paul Siphiwo Vanqa, SAC for the Diocese of Queenstown

Msgr. Paul Siphiwo Vanqa, S.A.C., was born on 15 June 1955 in Xonxa, in the diocese of Queenstown. In 1979 he entered the Society of the Catholic Apostolate (the Pallottines), and completed his novitiate in Germany, where he gave his first vows on 11 October 1982. He then concluded his priestly formation at Saint Joseph’s Theological Institute in Cedara, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, affiliated to the Pontifical Urban University.

He gave his perpetual vows on 6 October 1985, and was ordained a priest on 5 July 1986.

He subsequently held the following offices:

  • Parish Vicar of the Holy Family parish in Dutywa (1986-1988)
  • Parish Priest of Saint Thomas More in Tsomo (1988-1992)
  • Parish Priest of Our Lady Queen of Apostles at the Pallotti Farm, Queenstown (1993-1995)
  • Formator at Saint Vincent Pallotti House in Merrivale and Pietermaritzburg, and at the same time Parish Priest of Imbali (metropolitan archdiocese of Durban) (1995-2010)
  • Parish Priest of Saint Mary’s and Saint Joseph’s in Stutterheim (2011-2015)
  • Administrator of the Christ the King Cathedral, Queenstown (2015 to the present)
  • Vicar General (2011-2019) and, from 2019 to the present, Diocesan Administrator of Queenstown.
  • Within the Pallotine Institute he has also held the offices of counsellor (1996-2002) and vice delegate (2002-2010).

The Diocese of Queenstown has been vacant since Bishop Mphako was appointed the Archbishop of Pretoria on the 30th of April 2019.

Bishop Duncan Tsoke for the Diocese of Kimberley

Bishop Duncan Theodore Tsoke was born on 15 April 1964, in Daveyton in the Archdiocese of Johannesburg. He studied Philosophy at the Hammanskraal Major Seminary in Pretoria (1988-1990) and Theology at the National Major Seminary of St. John Vianney (1991-1994). He also holds a Diploma in Ecclesiastical Heritage Management (2010) which he studied whilst in Nairobi, Kenya.

He was ordained a priest on 2 December 1995, for the Archdiocese of Johannesburg. Subsequently he held the following positions:

  • 1995-1999: Parish Vicar of St. Francis of Assisi in Yeoville, Johannesburg, and responsible for youth ministry
  • 1999-2000: Formator and teacher of Spirituality at St. Peter’s Seminaryof Garsfontein, Pretoria
  • 2000-2009: Episcopal Vicar for Evangelization, Assistant Vicar for the pastoral care of vocations and, at the same time, parish priest of St. Albert in Vosloorus and of the Holy Family in Ponong, Johannesburg (2000-2004), parish administrator of St. Anthony Pucci (2006-2007)
  • 2009-2016: Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Johannesburg and pastor of the Holy Family in Turffontein.
  • 2016-2021: auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Johannesburg.

Episcopal Ordination of Bishop Robert Mphiwe for the Diocese of Rustenburg

This past weekend, Bishop Robert Mphiwe, received his episcopal consecration on the 27 February 2021.

Bishop Mphiwe is the third bishop of the diocese of Rustenburg, after Bishops Dowling and Henry Hallett CCsR (1971-90).

Born in Pretoria on 14 March 1972, he studied at St Peter’s and St John Vianney Seminaries in Pretoria, and at the Pontifical Athenaeum of Saint Anselm in Rome, where he obtained is licentiate in liturgy. He was ordained to the priesthood on 1 November 1997.

Bishop Mphiwe has served the parishes of Marapyane (1997-99), Atteridgeville (2009-10) and Centurion (2011 to present). He also was a lecturer and trainer at St Peter’s Seminary in Garsfontein (2000-01 and 2005-08).

He is the fourth successive vicar-general of Pretoria archdiocese to be appointed bishop, after Archbishop Abel Gabuza (Kimberley in 2010, for the past two years coadjutor archbishop of Durban), Archbishop Dabula Mpako (Queenstown in 2011, since 2019 archbishop of Pretoria), and Bishop Victor Phalana (Klerksdorp in 2014).

With these appointments, the only vacant Diocese in South Africa is now the Diocese of Kokstad.

This article is archived here from my work for the online publication, Spotlight.Africa which I wrote whilst working for the Jesuit Institute South Africa. Spotlight.Africa was a work of the Society of Jesus in South Africa from 2017-2021.

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