Bishop Banzi celebrates the 25th Anniversary of Episcopate
Rt. Rev. Anthony Banzi a Bishop of Tanga Diocese in Tanzania has celebrated twenty-five years of his episcopate. The Jubilee took place on 15th September at St. Anthony of Padua Cathedral in Tanga Diocese.
Presenting a message from His Holiness Pope Francis to Bishop Banzi, Most Rev. Marek Solczynskinew Apostolic Nuncio to Tanzania said that Pope Francis is pleased with Bishop Banzi's noble mission. He thanks him for giving his life to serving the Church and prays for him so that God will continue to keep him in good health as he leads the people of Tanga in love and strengthens their faith.
On behalf of Tanzania Episcopal Conference (TEC), the Co-President of the Conference Rt. Rev. Flavian Kassala congratulated Bishop Banzi on the splendid mission he has done while thanking him for his unwavering dedication over the 25 years of his episcopate.
He said that bishop Banzi has dedicated himself to serving the poor tirelessly.
“You have been a blessing to the Church of Tanzania, we pray that God continues to give you more energy and all blessings that you can continue serve His Church,” he said.
“We are aware that 25 years in your pastoral journey was not easy. You went through pains and joys. We encourage you to persist in this pastoral commitment with love and more dedication. We promise you our support as brothers in the Church,” he added.Rt. Rev. Kassala has also thanked the Government for partnering with the Church in serving the community. He said that the Church recognizes the contribution of the Government of the United Republic of Tanzania as it cooperates with the Catholic Church and maintains the freedom of worship.
“In particular, we thank the President of the United Republic of Tanzania Hon. John Magufuli for volunteering to save the life of Archbishop of Dar es Salaam Archdiocese Most Rev. Jude Thaddaeus Ruwa'ichi when he fell ill. President Magufuli volunteered his plane to transfer our Archbishop from Moshi to a National hospital, and he organized the team of specialists who operated on him. Now his condition has much improved and we thank the President that support,” he said.
In his homily, The Archbishop Emeritus of Dar es Salaam Archdiocese His Eminence Polycarp Cardinal Pengo also congratulated Archbishop Banzi on celebrating his 25th Jubilee of Episcopate, adding that despite the success of his mission, there have been various challenges that could have discouraged him, but God has continued to be with him in the journey to lead his flock.
He reminded Bishop Banzi that 25 years of Episcopate should not be a point of rest but rather a new beginning to continue his spiritual journey until God calls him to his Kingdom.
On his part, Bishop Banzi thanked Government officials, bishops, priests, religious, lay faithful, and people of all goodwill for having worked with him at every stage of his life more than during his 25 years in his Episcopate.
“I love my calling and I thank God for his protection up to this point. I thank my parents, relatives, and friends for raising me up and putting me in this Catholic faith. I thank all the classes from primary, high school, seminary, and all the priests and my brother bishops for their cooperation until I reach this day, ”said Bishop Banzi.
He further thanked President John Pombe Magufuli for his fight against corruption and continuing to improve various social services and open up economic pathways.
"We are witnessing economic development projects including the construction of the Standard Gauge Railway, the large-scale electricity projects and the oil pipeline project from Uganda to Tanzania, to improve air travel by buying modern aircraft and improving road infrastructure and other social development.
Bishop Banzi was consecrated to episcopate in 1994 and has been bishop of Tanga during all the 25 years.