Archbishop of Canterbury declares Muslim-majority Sudan as global Anglican church's 39th province

The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby has pronounced Sudan as the global Anglican church's 39th province during an official visit to the Muslim-majority country on July 30.

(REUTERS / Luke MacGregor)The new Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby speaks to the congregation during his first service at Canterbury Cathedral in southern England March 23, 2013.

On Sunday, Archbishop Welby met with Christians who attended a ceremony at the All Saints' Cathedral in Khartoum, Sudan. The Church of England leader also inaugurated Ezekiel Kondo Kumir Kuku as the first Anglican bishop in the predominantly Muslim country, Africa News detailed.

"We welcome him with glee," Archbishop Welby said of Kondo during the inauguration ceremony. "Christians in Sudan have a responsibility to make this province work and to make it loved by their brothers from abroad who must support it and pray for it."

Hundreds of parishioners joined in the celebration of Archbishop Kondo's inauguration on Sunday morning. They waved flags, cheered, and danced as a band marched and led the worshippers in a procession through the street, Anglican News reported.

The newly inaugurated Archbishop Kondo said he was so excited with the occasion. He also asked people from all over the world to pray for the congregation in Sudan.

Meanwhile, Welby said the Anglican church in Sudan is facing a lot of challenges. He said the church should be able to sustain itself financially and to help the people improve the skills that they already have.

In addition, Welby praised the tolerance and co-existence among Christians and Muslims in Sudan. He said he will pray that the country will continue to enjoy its freedom so that Christians may be able to bless their country.

Since South Sudan's secession in 2011, the Anglican Church there has been managed from Juba. Christians are mostly found in the southern region in the Nuba Mountains in South Kordofan. Human rights groups have reportedly accused authorities of persecuting Christians, as some priests were reportedly arrested over spying allegations.