Archbishop Emeritus Remi Sainte-Marie Dies
Tributes are paid to Archbishop Remi Joseph Gustave Sainte-Marie, archbishop Emeritus of the Catholic Archdiocese of Lilongwe, who died on Saturday at age 84. He died in hospital in Canada, his home country.
The Episcopal Conference of Malawi (ECM) Secretary General the Very Reverend Father Henry Saindi has described Archbishop Emeritus Sainte-Marie as a man of faith who was committed to pastoral ministry.
Saindi said the late archbishop will be missed and remembered ‘as a very dedicated servant of God.’
“We have received the sad news about the death of Archbishop Emeritus Sainte-Marie. He was a very committed pastor and prayerful man. Up until his retirement he was very committed to the administrative work of the archdiocese.” Said Father Saindi.
President Lazarus Chakwera and Vice President Saulos Chilima have also paid their tributes.
In a statement, President Chakwera said his passing is a great loss to the Church at large and Malawi in particular.
Reads part of the statement, “The First Lady and I are saddened by the passing of Archbishop Remi Joseph Gustave Sainte-Marie…. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Catholic Faithful, the Christian Community and the bereaved family.”
Vice President Chilima said was lost for words.
He wrote in a statement, “Words fail us. Your departure, as you journey back into God’s kingdom, drains us all energies. Yet our comfort rests in our bearing testimony in how you totally invested your life in serving God and his flock.”
“Our prayers are to all Episcopes, all the congregation that you dedicated your life to serve, the wider Catholic community and the Malawi nation for this great loss. We pray to God to grant your soul eternal resting peace.”
Many Catholic christians have also taken to social media to mourn his demise.
The Most Reverend Sainte-Marie, a member of the Missionary of Africa (White Fathers) was ordained priest on June 29, 1963.
On September 7, 2000, he was appointed Bishop of the Diocese of Dedza, before his appointment as coadjutor Bishop of the Diocese of Lilongwe on February 18, 2006, and Bishop of the Diocese of Lilongwe on July 4, 2007.
When the Diocese was raised to the status of Archdiocese on February 9, 2011, he was appointed Archbishop. He retired on July 13, 2013.
ECM in a statement has indicated that a full programme of Funeral and Burial will be communicated in due course.