THE two top leaders of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Namibia (ELCIN), bishops Shekutaamba V.V. Nambala and Veikko Munyika are nearing retirement and the Church has already kick-started a process to find suitable candidates to replace them as leaders of the church’s two dioceses.
For pastoral and administrative purposes, ELCIN has demarcated the country into two dioceses – the western and the eastern – using the B1 main road as the demarcation line from Oshikango in the north to Noordoewer in the south.
The eastern diocese is led by Nambala, who is also the Church’s presiding bishop, and the western diocese is under Bishop Munyika.
Diocesan conferences were held recently to nominate suitable bishopric candidates.
The eastern diocese’s conference took place at Oniipa in the Oshikoto Region from 17 to 18 November. Three candidates were nominated. They are Dr. Martin Ngodji, the head of a team of linguists who are currently working on a new Oshiwambo version of the bible; Dr. Mathew Kapolo, a counselling specialist who until recently was employed by the Ministry of Veterans Affairs, and Reverend Alpo Enkono, current ELCIN secretary-general.
Likewise, the western diocese held its conference at Ongwediva in the Oshana Region from 1 to 2 December and nominated Reverend Alpo Enkono; Dr. Gideon Niitenge, the executive secretary of the western diocese, and Dr. Eliakim Shaanika, the pastor of the Oluteyi parish in the Omusati Region.
The elective conference of the church takes place next year.