At its canonical erection in 1992, the Catholic Diocese of Gikongoro had 9 parishes. After 27 years of existence of the Diocese, 6 new parishes have been founded. Yet some parishes remain very extensive, with a very large population. Kaduha, Kibeho, and Cyanika are the oldest. They were founded respectively in 1933, in 1934 and in 1935, while all the others are after 1963.
The first Bishop of the Diocese, Mgr Augustin MISAGO, was ordained on June 28, 1992. He died on 12/03/2012. On May 28, 2012, Pope Benedict XVI appointed His Excellency Monsignor Philip RUKAMBA, Bishop of Butare, as Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Gikongoro. On 26/11/2014, His Holiness Pope Francis elected Monsignor Celestin HAKIZIMANA as the new Bishop of the Diocese of Gikongoro. He was ordained bishop on 24/01/2015.
The Catholic Diocese of Gikongoro was born in times of crisis. On the one hand, it was at the time when the Diocese of Butare from which he was born was in a very difficult financial situation, with heavy debts that the Gikongoro Catholic Diocese inherited. On the other hand, the country itself was plunge into a civil war unleashed in 1990, which degenerated into genocide against the Tutsi in 1994. So many circumstances that did not favor a good takeoff of the new Diocese.
During the tragic events of 1994, several churches, presbyteries, parishes, convents, schools and health centers of the Diocese were seriously damaged and completely looted. In the aftermath of the war, everything had to be repaired or rebuilt. Only three priests remained in the Diocese