Bishop Lunge elected to lead ecumenical group in Congo

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Key points:

  • United Methodist Bishop Daniel O. Lunge was elected provincial president of the Church of Christ in the province of Sankuru, Congo.
  • The ECC is a union of 95 Protestant and Evangelical Christian denominations in the country.
  • Clergy and laity of the Central Congo region welcomed the election results.

Bishop Daniel O. Lunge, Central Congo Episcopal Area, was unanimously elected president of the Synode Provincial de l’Eglise du Christ au Congo (Provincial Synod of the Church of Christ in Congo or ECC).

The ecumenical group, a union of 95 Protestant and Evangelical Christian denominations in the Democratic Republic of Congo, is the new autonomous religious structure of the province of Sankuru.

After the results were announced, Lunge said he was honored by the trust placed in him.

“We thank God, master of time and circumstance, who has made possible (my) election today,” he said. “My thanks also go to my fellow representatives for the trust and one more office they have placed in my modest person.”

United Methodist pastors in Central Congo celebrate the election of Bishop Daniel O. Lunge as provincial president of the Church of Christ in Congo in Sankuru. The ecumenical group, a union of 95 Protestant and Evangelical Christian denominations in the Democratic Republic of Congo, met in Lodia. Photo by François Omanyondo, UM News. 

United Methodist pastors in Central Congo celebrate the election of Bishop Daniel O. Lunge as provincial president of the Church of Christ in Congo in Sankuru. The ecumenical group, a union of 95 Protestant and Evangelical Christian denominations in the Democratic Republic of Congo, met in Lodia. Photo by François Omanyondo, UM News.

The election occurred during a meeting of the legal representatives of the ECC member communities. The four representatives present voted unanimously for Lunge.

Lunge will preside over the various Protestant church denominations in Sankuru province for the next six years. He will be assisted by Bishop Léon Mukanga Pa’Odimba with the 42nd Community of Evangelical Churches in Congo and church legal representatives.

The Rev. Jean-François Kalombo, bishop’s assistant, rejoiced in Lunge’s election. He described it as “a cause for great joy and consideration for The United Methodist Church in Central Congo.

“To see the legal representatives decide unanimously (to elect) Lunge,” Kalombo added, “is a great subject of joy, of consideration for our United Methodist Church in Central Congo. We must all work together to ensure that the bishop succeeds in his mandate at the head of this religious organization in Sankuru province.”

Lunge emphasized that his mandate focused on peace and development.

“We place our mandate at the head of the synod on peace and development, not only of the ECC and our respective communities, but also for the province of Sankuru,” he said, “because this is among the missions that are recognized to us as a church. Another meaning of evangelization is the social development of God’s people.”

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Jubilation erupted as news of Lunge’s election spread across social media.

Nsumbu Ekele Djamba, assistant lay conductor of the Central Congo Annual Conference, declared that Lunge’s election was a moment of joy for The United Methodist Church in Central Congo.

“It is with a heart full of joy that we have learned of the election of our bishop to head the Provincial Synod of the ECC in our province of Sankuru,” Nsumbu said. “We are committed to accompanying him in this new mission.”

Pauline Lumu Ngandaji, president of the United Methodist women’s organization in the Central Congo Conference, also welcomed Lunge’s election.

“The charge that has just been entrusted to our bishop is no less,” she said. “Sankuru has several challenges to face, particularly on the socioeconomic, political and peace fronts.”

Lumu called on the United Methodist faithful in Central Congo to support Lunge in his new mission.

François Omanyondo is a communicator for the Central Congo Annual Conference.

Press contact: Julie Dwyer, News Editor, [email protected] or 615-742-5469. To read more United Methodist News, subscribe to Free Daily or Weekly Digests.


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