The Catholic Diocese of Gikongoro was canonically erected on 30 March 1992 by Pope John Paul II and seconded from the Diocese of Butare by Decree No. 3307/92. He obtained the legal personality by the Ministerial Order No. 296/05 of October 1, 1992, published in the Official Gazette No. 23 (Bis) of December 15, 1992. Its Statutes were revised by the General Assembly of the Diocese dated 27/03/2013, to be adapted to the Law N˚ 06/2012 of 17/02/2012 on the organization and functioning of the Organizations founded on the Religion in Rwanda.
As specified in the Code of Canon Law, the supreme authority of the Diocese belongs to the Bishop appointed by the Sovereign Pontiff (CIC, Can. 377, §1). He owes all the ordinary, clean and immediate power required for his episcopal office (CIC, Can. 381, §1). As such, he is ex officio the Legal Representative of the Institution. The Bishop of the Diocese of Gikongoro, Monsignor Celestin HAKIZIMANA, was ordained on 24/01/2015.
He himself appoints an Alternate Legal Representative.
At the level of parishes, the bishop is represented, including with the authorities of the State, by parish priests. But these do not have their own legal (civil) personality. On the whole, all councils assisting the bishop in the diocese’s government are advisory.