Over 25,000 Rwandans and guests from Tanzania, Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Belgium, Italy and Spain witnessed the event.
Bishop Antoine Kambanda was appointed by Pope Francis as Archbishop of Kigali to succeed Archbishop Thadee Ntihinyurwa whose wish to retire was approved by Pope in November last year.
Born in Nyamata on November 10, 1958, Kambanda was ordained Bishop of Kibungo Diocese on July 20, 2013. He had been ordained priest on September 8, 1990 at Mbare, Kigali Archdiocese during Pope John Paul II’s visit to Rwanda.
Upon his priesthood ordination, Bishop Kambanda started his mission as teacher doubling as the in charge of studies at Ndera Minor Seminary in Kigali.
Between 1993 and 1999, he went for further studies at the Alphonsian Academy in Rome, where he obtained a doctorate in moral theology.
From 1999 to 2005, Kambanda served as Director of CARITAS of Kigali Archdiocese, serving also as the Chairman of Justice and Peace Commission in the Archdiocese.
He was also a teacher at Nyakibanda Major Seminary.
Between 2005 and 2016, Antoine Kambanda was the Rector of Kabgayi Major Seminary before he was once again appointed as Rector of Major Seminary of Nyakibanda, a position he left when he was appointed the Bishop of Kibungo Catholic Diocese on May 3, 2013 replacing Monsignor Kizito Bahujumihigo who had resigned from the position in 2010 amid financial troubles.
Archbishop Antoine Kambanda’s motto is “Ut vitam habeant’’, translating as, “That They May Have Life.”