Pope Francis has appointed Bishop João Carlos Hatoa Nunes as Coadjutor Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Maputo in Mozambique.
The Tuesday, November 15 appointment was published by the Holy See Press Office.
Born in March 1968, the Local Ordinary of Mozambique’s Chimoio Diocese was ordained a Priest for Maputo Archdiocese in July 1995 after completing his philosophical and theological studies at St. Augustine Major Seminary in Maputo.
He began his Episcopal Ministry in July 2011 when he was ordained Auxiliary Bishop of Maputo Archdiocese and assigned the Titular See of Amudarsa.
In January 2012, he was appointed Apostolic Administrator of Beira Archdiocese following the retirement of Archbishop Jaime Pedro Gonçalves.
He was temporarily in charge of the Mozambican Metropolitan Ecclesiastical See until October 2012, when Archbishop Claudio Dalla Zuanna, the member of the Congregation of the Priests of the Sacred Heart who had been appointed as the Local Ordinary of Beira Archdiocese in June of the same year was Consecrated.
Bishop Nunes has been serving as Local Ordinary of Chimoio since 2017.
The 54-year-old Catholic Prelate has previously underscored the need for peace in his native country of Mozambique.
On the 28th anniversary of the signing of the Rome General Peace Accords, Bishop Nunes told ACI Africa that the peace treaty signed between the government of Mozambique and the Mozambican National Resistance (RENAMO), ending the country’s Civil War on 4 October 1992, was yet to bear fruit.
In the 5 October 2020 interview with ACI Africa correspondent, Bishop Nunes said Mozambicans in different parts of the country continued to live in fear because of prolonged violence.
“Peace is still a desire in our country... We still see several very clear signs such as the attacks in the Central and Northern areas and the unending fear that hangs over several populations who are in these conflict zones,” Bishop Nunes said.
The Mozambican Catholic Church leaders said the Southern African country has been unable to conclude the peace-building process, which was proving to be “a rather tenuous and fragile process.”
“Proof of this are the subsequent agreements that we have been signing, which for me, deep down, seek to mitigate aspects that were not observed or not well deepened in past processes,” Bishop Nunes said.
The Archdiocese of Maputo, where Bishop Nunes has been appointed, was erected in January 1612 as the Apostolic Administration of Mozambico.
The Metropolitan See measures 26,358 square kilometers and has a population of 1,323,000 Catholics according to 2019 statistics.