BRIEF HISTORY THE CATHOLIC DIOCESE OF NDOLA
The first Missionaries who came in the developing mining area settled in Ndola, (part of what was called Northern Rhodesia) today Zambia. These Conventual Franciscan Friars arrived from Italy at Bwana Mkubwa Railway Station on 08th April, 1931. The team leader was Friar Francis Constantine Mazzieri. The others were, Friar Bonaventure Rocchi, Friar Giovani Evandri, Friar Luciano Lelli, Friar Angelo Truccia, Friar Alberto Ferrari and Friar Antonio Toffoni.
The first Bishop of Ndola was Rt. Rev. Francis Mazzieri. Ofm. Conv. His motto was “Instaurare Omnia in Christo”, (RestoringAll Things in Christ), from 1938 to 1966. The second Bishop was Rt. Rev. Nicolas Agnozzi. Ofm.Conv. His motto was “Ut omnes umum sint”, (That all may be one), from 1966 to 1975. The third Bishop was Rt. Rev. Denis Harold De Jong. His motto was like of the first Bishop, “Instaurare Omnia in Christo”, (Restoring All Things in Christ), from 1975 to 2003. The fourth Bishop was transferred from Solwezi Diocese, Rt. Rev. Charles Noel O’regan. Sma. His motto was “Evangelizare pauperibus misit me”, (He sent me to evangelize the poor), from 2004 to 2010. The fifth and current Bishop, came also from Solwezi Diocese, Rt. Rev. Dr. Alick Banda. His motto was like that of first and third, “Instaurare Omnia in Christo”, (Restoring All Things in Christ), appointed Coadjutor Bishop on 13th November, 2009 and installed on 13th February, 2010.
The Catholic Diocese of Ndola was erected on 8th January, 1938 as a Prefecture Apostolic from Broken Hill Vicariate and was elevated to a Vicariate Apostolic on 13th January, 1949. It was later established as a Diocese on 25th April, 1959. The Diocese covers the whole Copperbelt Province with an area of 32,000km with a population about 2,000,000 in nine Districts namely; Ndola, Kitwe, Masaiti, Luanshya, Mufulira, Chingola, Kalulushi, Chililabombwe, Mpongwe and Lufwanyama.
The Diocese is divided in ten Vicariates namely; Bwana Mkubwa, Ndola, Luanshya, Kamfinsa, Nkana, Kitwe, Kalulushi, Mufulira, Chingola and Chililabombwe. It consists of an estimated 909,470 Catholics spread in 86 parishes. It’s under the Patroness of Mary Immaculate Conception, this Solemnity is celebrated on 08th December.