Archbishop called away from GAFCON after his 33 year old son dies


The 33 year old son of the Archbishop of Rwanda has died unexpectedly at his home in Philadelphia. On 18 April 2023 the Most Rev. Foley Beach, chairman of GAFCON, told delegates to the GAFCON IV Conference meeting in Kigali the son of their host, the Most Rev. Laurent Mbanda – the vice-chairman of GAFCON – had left the conference for the United States.

“It is with great sadness that I share with you the tragic news that Archbishop Laurent Mbanda’s son, Edwin (Eddie) Mbanda, has unexpectedly passed away in his sleep in the United States. Edwin was 31 years old.

“As you can imagine, this is shocking and heartbreaking news. I, together with the Gafcon family, extend my deepest condolences to Archbishop Laurent Mbanda, his wife Chantal, and their children Eric and Erica.

“Please keep the Mbanda family in your prayers at this difficult time.

“O merciful Father, you have taught us in your holy Word that you do not willingly afflict or grieve the children of men: Look with pity on the sorrows of your servants. Remember them, O Lord, in mercy; nourish their souls with patience; comfort them with a sense of your goodness; lift up your countenance upon them; and give them peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. (Book of Common Prayer, 2019, pg 663)”

The cause of Eddie Mbanda’s death is unknown at this time. The archbishop and his wife, along with his daughter, Erika – who serves as volunteer coordinator for GAFCON IV – and her family have left the conference to fly to the United States. Archbishop Beach approved a a solicitation request to GAFCON delegates and to the wider GAFCON world to help defray their funeral and travel costs
The GAFCON solicitation said: “If you can help, and are led to help, please use one of the two links below for direct contributions. Any form of currency will be exchanged for RWF, and all funds will go directly to the Mbanda family for help during this time of grief and need. This link works for anyone and directs the donation to the GAFCON: Archbishop Mbanda Fund. If you prefer giving through an MTN account, please use this number: +250788406832. Please identify the donation as GAFCON: Archbishop Mbanda Fund.”