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Theodorus van Ruijven CM

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Theodorus van Ruijven (Van Ruyven in some scripts) was born on May 22, 1938 in Rijswijk, in the Diocese of Rotterdam, Holland . He entered Congregation of Mission in the Province of Holland in Panningen on September 2, 1957. Ordained priest on March 19, 1964.

In 1965 he became a missionary in Ethiopia working in the houses in Addis Ababa and Bonga until 1986. From 1986 to 1992 he was member of Provincial Council of the CM Province of Ethiopia. In 1990 became Rector of St. Justin de Jacobis Minor Seminary in Ambo and left the office in 1993. 1994 Fr. van Ruijven was elected Visitor of the Province of Ethiopia. In 1998 re-elected as member of Provincial Council. He left this post in 2002.

On July 9,1998 Fr. van Ruijven was appointed Prefect Apostolic of Jimma-Bonga which was separated from the territory of Nekemte Vicariate in 1994 (It's first Prefect was present Archbishop of Ethiopia Msgr. Berhane Yesus D. Souraphiel CM). Additionally on July 23, 2008 he was appointed the Apostolic Administrator of Nekemte. On July 23, 2009 pope Benedict XVI appointed him Vicar Apostolic of Nekemte and nominated him the titular bishop of Utimma.

Apostolic Vicariate of Nekemte received its name in September 1982. Previously, from 1937, it held the name of Apostolic Vicariate od Gimma and from 1913 to 1937 as Apostolic Prefecture of Kaffa. Of twelve Prefects and Vicars Apostolic of Kaffa/ Gimma/Nekemte eight are Vincentians. It has an area of 98,972 km2 and a population of 6,501,000 inhabitants, of whom 45,000 are Catholics (ca. 1%). There are 86 parishes in the Vicariate led by 23 diocesan priest and 9 religious, all of them Vincentians and almost of Dutch origin. There are 16 seminarians in major seminary 39 members of religious congregations, including 9 from from Congregation of the Mission.