[ACNS, by Gavin Drake] The Bishop of Kericho, the Rt Revd Jackson Ole Sapit, has today been elected to serve as the sixth Archbishop and Primate of the Anglican Church of Kenya and Bishop of the Diocese of All Saints’ Cathedral.
The 52-year-old bishop was baptised in 1977 and confirmed eight years later. His first church role was as evangelist and community motivator in Narok, which he undertook from two years from 1987 before joining the Berea Theological College. He was ordained a deacon in July 1991 and a priest a year later.
He served as vicar of Belgut Parish in the diocese of Nakuru and then as vicar of Kilgoris Parish and project manager at Transmara Rural Development Programme.
Throughout this time he continued his education, gaining a Bachelor of Divinity from St Paul’s University in Nairobi and a Certificate in Research and Consultancy at Nairobi’s Daystar University. In 1997 he studied for an MA in Social Development and Sustainable Livelihoods at the UK’s University of Reading.
He returned to Kenya to take up the role of mission and development coordinator for the Diocese of Nakuru; before serving as the Suffragan Bishop of the Kericho area; becoming diocesan bishop when the area was carved out of Nakuru Diocese to become a diocese in its own right.
In 2012 he was awarded a Doctorate of Professional Studies by the Global University for Lifelong Learning in California, USA.
A profile published by the Anglican Church of Kenya in advance of today’s election says that Bishop Sapit “managed to nurture the young Diocese of Kericho” both in spiritual terms and in community development.
It describes how the Archbishop-elect mobilised local and international resources to transform communities, improve food security and enable economic empowerment. He has established a number of health clinics in the new diocese and is passionate about sustainable development.
He has held a number of other roles both within dioceses and the provincial structures of the Anglican Church of Kenya. From time to time, Bishop Sapit has been called upon to manage conflicts within the church and community at large.
The current Archbishop of Kenya, the Most Revd Dr Eliud Wabukala, retires on 26 June.