Primate: The Most Rev. Jacob Erasto Chimeledya
The Anglican Church of Tanzania (ACT) is a member of the Anglican Communion based inDodoma. It consists of 21 dioceses (20 on the Tanzanian mainland, and 1 on Zanzibar) headed by their respective bishops. It seceded from the Province of East Africa in 1970, which it shared withKenya. The current Archbishop is the Most Reverend Valentino Mokiwa, the Bishop of the Diocese of Dar es salaam.
The Church became part of the Province of East Africa in 1960. From 1970 until 1997, then was known as the Church of the Province of Tanzania. Today it is known as the Anglican Church of Tanzania or ACT.
The church was founded originally as the Diocese of Eastern Equatorial Africa (Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania) in 1884, with James Hannington as the first bishop; however, Anglican missionary activity had been present in the area since the Universities Mission to Central Africa and the Church Missionary Society began their work in 1864 and 1878 at Mpwapwa. In 1898, the diocese was split into two, with the new diocese of Mombasa governing Kenya and northern Tanzania (the other diocese later became the Church of Uganda); northern Tanzania was separated from the diocese in 1927. In 1955, the diocese’s first African bishops, Festo Olang’ and Obadiah Kariuki, were consecrated by the Archbishop of Canterbury in Uganda (Olang’ would be elected the first African archbishop in 1970); in 1960, the province of East Africa, comprising Kenya and Tanzania, was formed with L.J. Beecher as archbishop. Tanzania seceded from the province of East Africa in 1970 and the province of Tanzania was formed with John Sepeku as the first archbishop of the province of Tanzania.
Today, there are at least 2.500,000 Anglicans out of an estimated population of 34,500,000 in Tanzania.
The polity of the Anglican Church of Tanzania is Episcopalian church governance, which is the same as other Anglican churches. The church maintains a system of geographical parishes organized intodioceses. There are 21 of these, each headed by a bishop.
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