First African bishop of Harare laid to rest

Funeral of Bishop Peter Hatendi held at St Mary and All Saints Cathedral in Harare

The first African bishop of Harare has died. The Rt. Rev. Peter Hatendi died on 31 Aug 2018 at the Avenues Clinic in Harare. He was 91. His daughter Pauline Makoni told the Sunday Mail Bishop Hatendi had been “battling chronic heart and lung diseases for over 10 years. He was a truly loving father and an inspirational man who feared the Lord and the church.”

Born on 9 April 1927, Bisho Hatendi was educated at St Augustine’s College in Penhalonga in Southern Rhodesia and trained for the ministry at St Peter’s College Rosettenville in South Africa. He undertook further studies at King’s College, London. Ordained in 1958, he served as a curate in Bonda, chaplain at the Bernard Mizeki Mission in Marandellas, lecturer at St John’s Seminary in Lusaka, before being elected Bishop of the Diocese of Harare and Mashonaland in 1979. He helped the church navigate through the difficult transition to majority rule in the 1980s.

The Rt. Rev. Chad Gandiya, Bishop of Harare, lauded his predecessor, saying Bishop Hatendi came into office “during crucial time towards Independence. His contributions in terms of support to nationalist leaders is well documented. He will be missed.”

The Rt. Rev. Eric Ruwona, Bishop of Manicaland said Bishop Hatendi was “a principled man. Very strict disciplinarian. He confirmed me November 1981 at St Paul’s Highfield, accepted me into college in 1992, and ordained me deacon in 1994”

Bishop Ruwona added: “He was a strict disciplinarian because most priests who trained ahead of us were suspended for one reason or the other. He had confidence in our group which went through three years of training up to ordination without any suspension. Under him you either had to shape up or he would ship you out.”

Bishop Hatendi’s funeral took place on 3 Sept 2018 at Harare’s Cathedral of St Mary and All Saints. He will be cremated and his ashes interred in the cathedral.


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