New Archbishop of Durban appointed
His Holiness, Pope Francis, has appointed 64 year old Bishop Siegfried Mandla Jwara, CMM as the new Archbishop of Durban.
The bishop has served as the Apostolic Vicar of Ingwavuma since 2016. He is a member of the Congregation of Missionaries of Mariannhill, founded by Abbot Franz Pfanner and will be the first member of that congregation to head the Archdiocese of Durban.
In a statement welcoming the appointment of Bishop Jwara, Cardinal Napier said that God has “chosen a man taken from the order of men [Mariannhill Missionaries] who have a long history of going into unknown territory to sow the seeds of faith, very much like the Oblates of Mary Immaculate”. Before Cardinal Napier’s appointment, all bishops of Durban had been Oblates, and many priests of the archdiocese belong to that order.
He succeeds Cardinal Napier, who has has been Archbishop of Durban since 1992. The cardinal was meant to have been succeeded by Archbishop Abel Gabuza, who was appointed coadjutor archbishop in 2018, but Archbishop Gabuza died of Covid-19 in January 2021.
Archbishop Jwara was born on February 1, 1957 at St Nivard in the diocese of Mariannhill. He entered the Congregation of Mariannhill Missionaries in 1981. After completing his philosophical and theological formation at St Joseph’s Theological Institute in Cedara, he was ordained to the priesthood in February 1987. He is widely regarded as a friendly man and a competent administrator.
“The Lord has given [us Archbishop Siegfried], the Lord has taken away [Archbishop Abel], blessed be the name of the Lord,” the cardinal said.
With acknowledgement to The Southern Cross