The Catholic Diocese of Zanzibar is the missionary fruit of Reunion Diocese. Originally the Islands were under the jurisdiction of the Bishop in Reunon. Once the mission was settled, jursdicton passed from one Diocese of another on the Mainland. But this type of Governace arrangement was unsatisfactory due to the geography and hardship of travel. Politacally, it became necessary that a native Tanzanian take charge of tha Islands. Accordingly, a spritan Priest, Father Bernard M, Ngaviliau, C.S.Sp. was appointed. The Apostolic from the Mainland. He was ordained first Resident Bishop of Zanzibar on 5th June 1980.

When Bishop Bernard Ngaviliau retired in 1997, there wer already 13 Diocesean Priests, 26 Sisters,(all assigned from the Mainland congreations), and 44 Catechists. Because of the existing situation, the Priests had not had an opportunity for any education beyound that required for ordination. Very few Sisters had graduated from Form IV still fwere ahd anything more. Only four Catechists had received fromal training.

With the retirement of Bishop Bernard Ngaviliau in 1997, a new and second Resident Bishop was ordained on 27th April.1997; the Most Rev, Augustine Ndeliakyama Shao, C.S.Sp, whao is also a Spiritan Missionary. With the coming of the new Bishop, things started changing rapidly. The number of Priess and Sisters increased, Every effort was made to upgrade the Diocesan personel with particular emphasis on the kind of competence needed for the Missionary Diocese, Other dioceses are assisting by temporarily assigining Priests to Zanzibar to replace those who are away for studies. When they return, others will be given an opportunity on rotational basis. Read more the History of the Catholich Church in Zanzibar

The Catholic Diocese of Zanzibar, at present, has eight established Parishes

  • St.Joseph's Cathedral Parish (in the Old Stone Town)
  • Our Lady of Rozari Parish (Kitope 20km Northern side)
  • St. Antony of Padua Parish (Machui-15km to the East)
  • The Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish, (wete-Pemba)
  • St.Michael the Archangel Paish (Mpendae)
  • St Augustino Parish (Kiboje)
  • The Holy Spirti Parish (Cheju){Pilgrimage center}
  • St Francis Xavier's Parish (Chake Chake-Pemba)

All these Parishes have good number of Outstations and Catholics faithfuls.




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