Tuesday, 1 November 2011


The Roman Catholic Diocese of Mahenge is a diocese located in the city of Mahenge in the Ecclesiastical province of Dar-es-Salaam in Tanzania.

April 21, 1964: Established as Diocese of Mahenge from Metropolitan Archdiocese of Dar-es-Salaam

Bishops of Mahenge (Roman rite)
Bishop Agapiti Ndorobo (since 1995.03.03 to date)
Bishop Patrick Iteka (1973.06.14 – 1993.08.22)
Bishop Nikasius Kipengele (1970.06.25 – 1971.12.07)
Bishop Elias Mchonde (1964.04.21 – 1969.06.13)

Useful information about Diocese of Mahenge
  • Diocese of Mahenge Erected: 21 April 1964
  • Metropolitan: Archdiocese of Dar-es-Salaam
  • Country: Tanzania, United Republic of
  • Square Kilometers approximately: 40’000.
  • Mailing Address: Kwiro, P.O. Box 102, Mahenge, Tanzania.
  • Population of about 500’000 whereby Catholics make up nearly 87 percent of the total population. The rests are other Christians of other denomination, Muslims and traditional indigenous religions, and atheists.   
Covers about 40’000 sq km south east of the country. In the south it boarders Songea archidiocese and Njombe diocese, west – Iringa diocese, north – Morogoro Diocese and east Lindi and Tunduru Masasi dioceses. Mahenge is both montanous as well as lowland. Almoast the whole of kilombero district is lowland and the major part of Mahenge district is mountainous.

The lowland areas are hot and humid with as average day time temperature of 30ºC. The hilly country has the average temperature of 20ºC. However, the hottest months are from October to February and the long rainy season is from mid march to late May.

Mahenge was only established as a diocese on the 1 of July 1964. Before it was part of the Archidiocese of Dar es salaam. Thus its first Bishop was the late Bishop Elias Mchonde who ran the diocese until 1969. The second bishop was the late Bishop Nikas Kipengele who died of a car accident two years later after his installation. Rt Rev Patrick Iteka followed him from 1973. This was the longest serving Bishop so far of the diocese. He died in the year 1993. The diocese is now having Rt Rev Agapit Ndorobo as its the 4th successor of bishopric.

Diocesan Cathedral
Kwiro is the diocesan Cathedral which is found at Mahenge. A very huge church built by the Franciscan Capuchin by in the year……Bishop’s house is just 100 m. from the cathedral.

Relationship with other religions and denominations
Generally, the relationship between Muslim and Christians has been that of friendship. Religious toleration has been one of the factors uniting religions and other Christian denominations living in the area of the diocese. These has been manifested in the joint invitation in feast days and other works of social services. There has been one of the goals of our diocese in creating dialogue through ecumenical efforts with other Christian denominations as well as inter religious dialogue with the Muslims.

The main Goal of the Diocese
The main thrust of the Diocese is to develop a communion church, participatory church and more specifically, establishing small Christian communities through creating awareness starting from the grass root level. With our situation of economic poverty, the only possibility of getting out of the situation is through involving everybody in the faith-development issue. In fulfilling this so many inputs are needed, but the most important thing is to work as a community. Everybody should feel concerned with the progresses which are to be for the betterment of the society. Our vision is to have a community of faith, living in love, according to the Gospel message, and striving in hope for the coming of the kingdom of God.

The asset from which the diocese is mostly dependent is the people. These are categorized in the groups of clergy, religious, laity – adults, youth as well children in their various organisations. Their collaboration is very important in pushing the wheel of faith and development forward. A Church becomes authentic in its mission through the people. Our people are ready to perform various duties, but animation is needed so as to create awareness especially to the voice less and less powerful like women and children.

Building communitarian/participatory church
African attitude of living in communities give the diocese an opportunity introducing communitarian church towards establishing small Christian communities. This time not based on clan or tribe but based on Jesus Christ’s teaching of a neighbour.

Communication at the heart of evangelization
Communication, therefore, should help bridging the distance by bringing contact among the people of different category. The use of multi media approach would help reach this goal best. Media can make best use of available talents; can provide alternative correct information; Communication can overcome the problem of illiteracy through an oral medium such as radio. Our people should learn about group communication and audio visual communication which can be done with a reduced costs by establishing a proper training without taking them away from their daily family obligation, work and earnings.

Communication is linking with other Diocesan departments

·         Justice and peace commission: Works hand in hand with the communication departments. Its goal is to make sure that peace and justice is prevailing. This is done through reporting of malicious cases and injustices and help the executive arms of the government that law and order is adhered to all society members.

·         Catechesis: The diocese is running the catechetical centre at Igota Parish. The course ranges from one year to two years. One year for refresher course and two years for new comers.

·         Healthy: The diocese is running the Ifakara district designated hospital. The hospital has 300 beds. In connection with the hospital there are clinical officers training school, Nurse school and nurse upgrading school. Above in every parish there is a dispensary run by the parish under the supervision of the Diocesan Medical board.

·         Education: The diocese is running two girls secondary schools. One is called Regina Mundi, which is also a high school and it is located about 14 km from the cathedral and another one called St Agnes technical school is situated just nearby the cathedral. It has one seminary which is called Kasita Seminary also a high school meant for preparation for future priests. On another hand the diocese is running a vocational training centres of carpentry, mason, mechanics, plumber, electric in the two centres located at kwiro and Ifakara.

Backed up by the Church document “Aetatis Novae” which speaks of the urgency of bringing in communication and media into the diocesan pastoral plan communication is expected to establish a link with/to every department within the diocese. It will provide some guide lines to these departments because all the departments are geared to the same mission of evangelisation through faith, hope and love towards a community development. It is our aim that Communication department try to link the catholic media professionals, trying to evoke them so that they may find the duty and delicacy of their job in defending the weak, the oppressed and the disadvantaged group of the society.

All these is geared to making our become the witness of the Gospel of Christ. That is to live the message of Jesus of faith, hope and love. It is the duty of the Diocesan communication coordinator to coordinate every diocesan pastoral activity so that it may conform to the goals set by the pastoral planning of the diocese.