25 Aug 2016 • EAB PRESS
The Installation of the fourth Archbishop of the Province of the Anglican Church of Burundi, the Most Rev. Martin Blaise NYABOHO took place on Sunday 21st August 2016 in Holy Trinity Cathedral, Bujumbura.
Among those attending the ceremony along with the Bishops of the Province and representatives of all the Dioceses were the Rt. Rev. Paul Butler Bishop of Durham UK who preached and his wife, the Archbishops from Rwanda and Kenya, Rev. Benjamin Musoke-Lubega from Trinity Wall Street, Rev. Canon Grace Kaiso the General Secretary of CAPA, the Most Rev. Josiah Atkins Idowu-Fearon the General Secretary of the Anglican Communion and Rt. Rev. Sadock Makaya from Tanzania.
Representatives from CMS UK and CMS Africa were present along with representatives from Mary Sumner House (Mothers’ Union) and Winchester Diocese UK.
The National Council of Churches of Burundi (CNEB) and other denominations were represented. From the Government of Burundi, were the first Vice-President and the President of the Senate and others.
During the Service, the retiring Archbishop, the Most Rev. Bernard NTAHOTURI, summarized the history and the development of the Anglican Church of Burundi acknowledging that the growth of the Church was due to the Christians working together with God. “We did it together, and God was with us.” he said. He congratulated his successor and prayed that God will bless his ministry.
Archbishop Martin expressed thanks to those who had taught, trained and encouraged him throughout his life. “I am what I am because there are people who contributed a lot to my life” he said. He expressed his deep appreciation and thanks for Archbishop Bernard’s eleven years as a Primate.
Looking to the future, he said the Church will go ahead with preaching the Gospel, teaching and baptizing, fighting injustice, working for love and protecting the environment so that all people can live as free human beings. He expressed his gratitude to the Anglican Communion and to the Archbishop of Canterbury for the support received and clearly stated that the Province of the Anglican Church of Burundi is and will always be a full part of the Anglican Communion.
In his Sermon, the Rt. Rev. Paul Butler shared insights into the ministry of Jeremiah who was called by God not to be a priest as expected but a prophet. Like Jeremiah’s ministry the role of an Archbishop is hard. He would face opposition even from those he would have expected to be supportive. He encouraged Archbishop Martin to remember God’s call to him and promise always to be with him as he works to extend God’s Kingdom through personal, community and national restoration and transformation. The Bishop also challenged the whole church to be faithful to God’s call and pray and work so that all people find a welcome in God’s Kingdom.
The General Secretary of the Anglican Communion also referred to the fact that Archbishop Martin is taking up office at a tough time in Burundi and also within the Anglican Communion. Referring to the Church as beautiful but fragile he presented Archbishop Martin with a glass jug that if dropped would easily break. “Don’t break the Church” he said, “but keep the focus and unity of the Province”.
He applauded the hard work and exemplary leadership of Archbishop Bernard whose years of effective and productive ministry were cause to praise God.
The Archbishop of Kenya, speaking on behalf of CAPA, called for unity, love and dedicated service for the people of Africa.
The representatives from the Government praised the Church for its contribution to the development of the country over many years and promised to support the Church in its mission.
The service included the necessary formalities of an installation along with a sense of real celebration. Choirs expressed joy and thanksgiving to God for his faithfulness in all circumstances. Congratulations were received from the Archbishop of Canterbury and many other friends and partners.