April 29, 2021 (NAIROBI) – The chairman of South Sudan United Front/ Army (SSUF/A), Gen. Paul Malong Awan on Thursday visited the bishop-elect of Rumbek Diocese, Fr. Christian Carlassare at a hospital in Nairobi, Kenya.
- Gen. Paul Malong Awan and the bishop-elect of Rumbek Diocese, Fr. Christian Carlassare at a hospital in Nairobi, April 29, 2021 (SSUF/A photo)
The 43-year old cleric is receiving treatment days after he was shot and wounded by unknown gunmen in Lakes State on Monday night.
SSUF/A, in a statement extended to Sudan Tribune, said Gen. Malong offered his sincerest sympathies with the bishop-elect, reiterating the strong relationship between the people of South Sudan and the Roman Catholic Church for centuries.
For his part, Fr. Carlassare expressed his appreciation for the SSUF/A leader’s visit.
On Monday, South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir urged authorities in Lakes State to expeditiously investigate the shooting of the Italian and apprehend those who carried out the “shameful” act.
“If those who carried out this shameful act were doing so to intimidate the church, they are sadly mistaken. The Catholic faithful Bishop Elect, Christian Carlassare, was chosen to lead and authorities in Lakes State will stand by him and will not allow action of few criminals to affect the plans of ecclesiastical authority,” he said.
Kiir also called for the prosecution of the perpetrators of the attack if apprehended.
Appointed by Pope Francis on March 8, Fr. Carlassare was due to be formally ordained the Bishop of Rumbek at the end of next month.
Rumbek Diocese has been vacant since Msgr Cesare Mazzolari died in 2011.