Archbishop Lebulu retires at 75

28Dec 2017
Edward Qorro
The Guardian
Archbishop Lebulu retires at 75

THE Archbishop of the Arusha Archdiocese Josaphat Louis Lebulu has retired after serving the Catholic Church for 49 years.

His retirement comes six months after clocking 75 years which is the mandatory retirement age for diocesan bishops with the Catholic Church hierarchy.

According to Radio Vatican, the head of the Catholic Pope Francis accepted a resignation letter tendered by the now Archbishop Emeritus of Arusha and will be succeeded by Archbishop elect Isaac Amani Massawe who headed the Diocese of Moshi.

The 1983 Code of Canon Law and the 1990 Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches already require most bishops to submit their resignations at the age of 75; the Pope is not required, however, to accept them.

Nonetheless, the Canon 401 §1 of the Code of Canon Law states that diocesan bishops must submit their resignation to the pope on reaching the age of 75 years. Some do so earlier with a view to having the resignation take effect immediately on reaching 75.

Bishops should also offer their resignation if ill-health or other grave problems render them unsuited for fulfilling their office.

Born in June 1942, Lebulu was ordained priesthood in 1968 before getting appointed as the Bishop of Same Diocese in 1972 before taking over the Arusha Archdiocese in 1999.

In 2013, the Archbishop Emeritus alongside the then Vatican’s envoy to Tanzania Fransisco Padilla survived a bomb explosion hurled inside the St Joseph Worker Parish in Arusha.

Archbishop Lebulu was the main celebrant in the mass when the explosion occurred, killing three people and injuring another 60.