Cardinal Richard Kuuia Baawobr of Ghana has passed away in Rome. According to a telegram sent by Father André-Léon Simonart, the Secretary-General of the African Missionary Conference, on Sunday, November 27th, the 63-year-old Cardinal passed away in the hospital despite emergency care.
At 5:45 p.m., an ambulance transported our confrere from the Generalate to Gemelli Hospital, and at 6:25 p.m., we were given the tragic news. Parts of the statement stated, “May Richard rest in the serenity of his Lord whom he so lovingly served.”
He was the previous Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Wa and was subsequently made Cardinal in May by Pope Francis I.
It was in Rome’s Santo Spirito Hospital where Cardinal Baawobr had successful heart surgery in September 2022, just days before the Vatican event at which he was to receive a scarlet biretta from Pope Francis.
It was announced in February 2016 that His Eminence Baawobr will succeed His Lordship Paul Bemile as the 4th Bishop of Wa. Six (6) years later, in May of 2018, he stepped down from his position as Superior General of the Missionaries of Africa (White Fathers).
He was the first African to hold the Office.
His Eminence was chosen President of the Symposium of Episcopal Conference of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM) during its 19th Plenary Session in Accra, Ghana, not long after his August announcement of elevation to the Office of Cardinal.
Cardinal Baawobr is the first Ghanaian to hold the position of President of the continental organization, which is made up of eight (8) regional conferences.
Metropolitan Archbishop of Ouagadougou Philippe Cardinal Ouedraogo Nakellentuba was succeeded by him (Burkina Faso).