10 August 2016 Last updated at: 9:23 AM

Catholic Church excites Malawi leader Mutharika

President Peter Mutharika has expressed gratitude to Pope Francis for appointing Professor John Alphonsus Ryan to the position of Bishop of Roman Catholic Church Mzuzu diocese, saying that the bishop-elect is a gift of faith to Malawi.

Mutharika said this at Kamuzu Palace in Lilongwe when leadership of the Catholic Church in Malawi paid him a courtesy call to introduce the newly appointed Bishop to Mutharika.

The Malawi leader said that many have known Ryan as Professor of Mathematics, specialized in Coding Theory but Pope Francis and the Catholic Church saw more, they saw a Bishop.

He then congratulated the new Bishop and promised that his government will work with the church leader.

Peter Mutharika, Religious Leaders

Peter Mutharika with the Religious Leaders

“Government would do all it could to work with the Bishop-elect to benefit the Church’s Christians,” Mutharika said.

He also urged Malawians to believe in themselves and in their capabilities to work hard, to be patriotic and become people of integrity for the benefit of the country.

Professor John Ryan has replaced late Bishop Joseph Zuza who was killed in an accident in January 2015.

Bishop-elect John Alphonsus Ryan was born in Holycross in Co Tipperary in 1952. He was ordained as a priest in June 1978. Since his ordination he has served in the following academic and pastoral roles from 1978 to 2005: St Paul’s parish in Mzimba (Mzuzu); St Stephen’s in Kapuro (Mzuzu); St Mathias’ parish in Misuku (Mzuzu); head teacher at a Community Day Secondary School in Misuku (Mzuzu); as head of the minor seminary of St Patrick in Rumphi (Mzuzu) and he also spent time teaching maths in Ireland.

Ordination ceremony of Professor Ryan will be held on 27th August in Mzuzu.

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