Year of faithAll roads leads to Mkoba in Gweru for the installation of Monsignor Xavier Munyongani as the Bishop of Diocese ofv Gweru on Saturday.

Monsignor Xavier Munyongani was born on 1 January 1950 in Mutero mission in Gutu district in the diocese of Masvingo. His parents Joachim Mudhodhi and Anna were blessed with ten children. Of which Xavier is the eighth child.

After his primary education in the schools in Gutu district, he completed his secondary education in the Gweru diocesan Minor Seminary (1967–1970). Later he joined Chishawasha Major Seminary for his Philosophy and Theology studies (1971-1977). He was ordained apriest for the diocese of Gweru, on 20 August 1977by the then Bishop of Gweru, Rt. Rev. Tobias Chiginya. He obtained a Diploma in Religious studies from the University of Zimbabwe in 1978. In 1986 he was sent to Rome for higher studies and he obtained a Licentiate in  Sacred Liturgy from St. Anselm.

On his return from Rome on completion of his specialization in Sacred Liturgy in 1990 he was appointed Lecturer and Formator at Chishawasha Major Seminary. Since 1998 he held the post of the Vice-Rector of the same Major Seminary. He trained and formed the future priests of Zimbabwe for fourteen years.

In 1999, Gweru diocese was divided to establish Masvingo diocese. Since Msgr. Munyongani’s Gutu district is in the Province of Masvingo, he belonged to the new Masvingo diocese. He has held various pastoral ministries in the dioceses of Gweru and Masvingo. In Gweru diocese, Monsignor Munyongani served as Assistant priest at St. Antony’s mission in Zaka, Parish priest of St. Alois mission and Spiritual Director of St. Paul Brothers in Serima.

In the diocese of Masvingo, Monsignor Munyongani held various other positions such as Promoter of Lay Apostolate and Spiritual Director of St. Joseph Association of Masvingo diocese, Assistant priest in Silveira mission and spiritual director of St. Anne’s Association, Parish priest in Rutenga mission, Diocesan Consultor, Member of Priests’ Council. Member of diocesan Liturgical Council etc.

In 2007, Zimbabwe Catholic Bishops’ Conference appointed him as Chaplain of the Zimbabwe Catholics in England. In recognition of his exemplary priestly life and meritorious pastoral zeal for the Church in Zimbabwe, Pope Benedict XVI conferred upon Fr. Xavier Munyongani the title of “Monsignor”.

He speaks well his mother tongue Shona, and is fluent in the second major local language Ndebele. In addition, he is gifted in international languages such as English, Italian and German.

Gweru was  without a Bishop following the resignation of Bishop Martin Munyanyi in 2012