"Extensive checks were undertaken through Lambeth Palace before Bishop Jonathan Ruhumuliza began ministry in the Diocese of Worcester in 2005. No evidence was found of complicity in the Rwandan genocide. Bishop Jonathan has always been willing to face any charges but none have ever been brought, even though he returned to Rwanda for three years in 1994. In 2005 the Archbishop of Rwanda, Emmanuel Kolini, commended Bishop Jonathan to the Archbishop of Canterbury, who then gave Bishop Jonathan permission to minister in the Church of England. The then Bishop of Worcester, Dr Peter Selby, responded to a request from the Archbishop of Canterbury to find a role for Bishop Jonathan. As is well known, Bishop Jonathan has ministered in the Diocese of Worcester since then and his ministry has been much appreciated by those whom he has served. We are concerned by the legal and moral implications of allegations from African Rights recently published in The Observer and we are confident these will be looked into by Lambeth Palace. At the same time any serious allegations are, of course, subject to investigation by the appropriate secular authorities."

ENDS

The Diocese of Worcester is one of 44 dioceses in the Church of England. It covers an area of 671 square miles and includes parishes in the County of Worcestershire, the Metropolitan Borough of Dudley, and a few parishes in northern Gloucestershire, south east Wolverhampton and Sandwell.

From: Sam Setchell, Press Officer for the Diocese of Worcester and the Bishop of Worcester.

Tel: 01905 20537 Mobile: 07852 302516
Email: ssetchell@cofe-worcester.org.uk