A bishop close to his people

A bishop close to his priests and his people

In his homily at the Mass on Monday, 5 December, Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re, Prefect Emeritus of the Congregation for Bishops since 2010, underlined some of the virtues of Cardinal Richard Kuuia Baawobr, such as his great spirituality, his missionary spirit and his remarkable intelligence.

A thoughtful zeal to proclaim eternal truths.
Cardinal Re outlines the various stages of the life of the Bishop of Wa, from his birth into a Catholic family on 21 June 1959 in Nandom in the Lawra District of Ghana to his death on 27 November 2022 in Rome.

Cardinal Re emphasized that Richard Kuuia Baawobr’s life is marked by a spirit of initiative, organisational skills, and a thoughtful diligence in proclaiming the eternal truths of the Gospel, with the language and style of the new times. He also understood that the missionary commitment of the Society of Missionaries of Africa should not be limited to Africa but should also be extended to countries with a Catholic tradition, which were in need of the Word of God and of a revival in the renewal of faith and Christian witness.

With him went a very significant figure of “the African bishop“.
In 2016 Richard Kuuia Baawobr was appointed bishop of Wa by Pope Francis; he was a pastor close to his priests and his people; always available to meet and say a word of kindness to those around him. He knew deeply “the responsibility that lay upon him by virtue of being a successor of the Apostles”. Last July, the plenary assembly of the episcopate of Africa and Madagascar elected him as its president, emphasised Cardinal Re, and affirmed that “with him disappears a very significant figure of the ‘African bishop'”.

The dean of the college of cardinals also emphasised that “this unexpected death, although it has caused consternation, is part of God’s inscrutable plan, mysterious but always inspired by love and strengthened by the immortal certainties of faith.

Commitment to mission in a spirit of openness.
In July 2020, the Holy Father appointed him as a member of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. This was the beginning of a close collaboration with the Apostolic See. In many situations he was seen as an industrious protagonist with a great sense of responsibility, a desire to do good and driven by an innate missionary spirit,” Cardinal Re continued. The Bishop of Wa was engaged in intense pastoral activity, with a view to a future at the service of the Church and humanity. Cardinal Baawobr gave much and seemed to promise even more. But “God’s ways are not our ways“, concluded Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re.

Mass for Cardinal Richard BAAWOBR


A Mass for the repose of the soul of Cardinal Richard K. BAAWOBR will take place on Monday, 5 December 2022, at 11 a.m. in St. Peter’s Basilica. It will be presided by Cardinal Giovanni Battista RE.

The funeral will be held in his Diocese of Wa in Ghana.

Rome, 29th November 2022

André-L. Simonart,
Secretary General

Cardinal Richard Baawobr / Return to the Celestial Father

With sadness and pain we hereby inform you of the return to the heavenly Father of Cardinal Richard Baawobr which occurred today, Sunday, 27 November 2022. Our confrere was taken by ambulance from the Generalate to the Gemelli Hospital at 5.45pm and we received the sad news at 6.25pm. May Richard rest in the peace of his Lord whom he so generously served. On behalf of the bereaved Society. Our prayer and our thoughts go also to his family, to his diocese, his fellow bishops, to all his friends and acquaintances.

Rome, 27th November 2022

André-Léon Simonart,
Secretary General.

To express your condolences:

Prayer for Ha-Jo

Prayer for the liberation of Father Ha-Jo Lohre

God our Father,
You, the Merciful,
the all-powerful in love,
You who are always attentive
to the cries of those who call upon you,
we turn to you with confidence.

We pray to you for our brother,
Father Ha-Jo.
Protect him. Strengthen him in faith,
hope and charity.
Give him the strength
to stand firm in his new mission
which he did not choose,
in the hope that he will soon be released.

We pray for his captors: touch their hearts;
that they may understand that
you call us all to live together
in love and brotherhood.

To those who are working for his release,
inspire just decisions
that lead to a happy outcome.

We pray for all the other hostages;
that they all regain their freedom
and return to their families
as soon as possible.

Bless the Church-Family of Mali;
Bless Mali!

Our Lady of Africa,
watch over our brother Ha-Jo,
Watch over Mali.  Amen

Pierre Féderlé R.I.P.

Society of the Missionaries of Africa

Father Emmanuel Lengaigne, Provincial Delegate of the sector of France,
informs you of the return to the Lord of Father

Pierre Féderlé

on Monday 21st November 2022 in St-Martin du Tertre (France)
at the age of 89 years, of which 62 years of missionary life
in Italy, Great Britain, Malawi and France.

Let us pray for him and for his loved ones.

Download here the announcement of Father Pierre Féderlé’s death

Milestones in the life of Father Pierre Fédrelé

Born in Mulhouse
on 02/12/1932
Spiritual YearMissionary OathPriesthood ordination
in the diocese of Strasbourg28/08/195413/07/1960 03/02/1961
 Nationality: French Maison-Carré

(Great Britai)



01/09/1961Etudes: BibleRoma, M.G.Italia
01/09/1965Prof. TotteridgeLondonAnglaterre
01/01/1974VicaireLilongwe, CathedralMalawi
01/01/1977Professeur, Gd.SéminaireZombaMalawi
01/01/1981Professeur, Grand SéminaireKachebereMalawi
11/05/1988Nommé Malawi
15/04/1991Centre Etudes Africains.ToulouseFrance
01/12/1996Maison GénéraliceRomaItalia
03/02/1997Petit EchoRomaItalia
09/05/2003Nommé France
01/01/2004Fraternités MissionnParisFrance

Ha-Jo Lohre / Communication


All confreres are herewith informed that our confrere Ha-Jo Lohre has been missing from his community in Bamako since Sunday 20 November 2022. In the evening, his confrères noticed that his car was in the courtyard, but it was badly parked and the driver’s side door was slightly open. They searched everywhere without finding him. The police were alerted and came to the scene.
Didier and Stan ask all the confreres to pray for Ha-Jo. May God give him strength where he is. May our Lady of Africa intercede for him and his family.

Rome, 21 November 2022
André-Léon Simonart,
Secretary General.

Cardinal Richard Baawobr News


Dear confreres,

Last Friday, November 18, in the afternoon, our confrere Cardinal Richard Baawobr left the Gemelli Hospital, where he had been transferred on Saturday, October 15, and arrived here at the Generalate. In the evening Richard came to the refectory to have supper with the community. He took the opportunity to thank all the confreres for their prayers and for their support.

Richard is here to rest and regain his strength while receiving the care he needs. We are happy to have him with us here.

Rome, 20th November 2022.
André-Léon Simonart,
Secretary General.

Cardinal Richard Baawobr


Dear confreres, yesterday Cardinal Richard Baawobr asked me to convey to you all his greetings.  Our confrere Richard continues to take an interest in what is happening in the Society and in his diocese. He finds the waiting time long and hopes, as we do, that the doctors will soon decide on the modalities and the time for an intervention on his heart. I have assured Richard of our friendship and of our prayerful support.

Rome, All Saints Day 2022.
André-Léon Simonart,
Secretary General.