From left, Archbishop Tarcisius Isao Kikuchi of Tokyo, the new president of Caritas Internationalis, his vice president Kirsty Robertson, and Mr. Alistair Dutton, the secretary general.

By CBCP News

May 16, 2023

Manila, Philippines

Caritas Philippines has welcomed the election of Archbishop Tarcisius Isao Kikuchi of Tokyo as the new president of Caritas Internationalis, a Vatican-based confederation of more than 160 Catholic charities around the world.

Bishop Jose Colin Bagaforo, president of the national Caritas, said Kikuchi’s election “reaffirms our commitment to prioritizing the needs of the marginalized”.

“We believe his leadership will further strengthen our collective efforts to uplift the lives of those in need,” said Bagaforo, who is currently in Rome for the confederation’s 22nd general assembly.

“We look forward to working closely with him to advance social justice and integral human development,” he said.

More than 400 delegates taking part in the assembly elected Kikuchi, who is also the current secretary general of the Federation of Asian Bishops’ Conferences (FABC), on May 13 to serve a four-year term.

Replacing Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, the former archbishop of Manila who has been leading the Dicastery for Evangelization since 2019, Kikuchi is the second president of Caritas Internationalis from Asia.

The archbishop has been associated with Caritas since 1995, starting as a volunteer in the Refugees’ Camp in Bukavu, Zaire.

The assembly on May 15 also elected Kirsty Robertson as the new vice president of Caritas Internationalis and Mr. Alistair Dutton as the new secretary general for a mandate of four years.

Robertson has been the CEO of Caritas Australia since 2019. She previously held various positions at Caritas Australia including Pacific Programs Coordinator and Communications Group Leader.

She was also CEO at Mary MacKillop Today and held numerous leadership roles in other faith-based aid and development organisations.

Currently Executive Director of SCIAF (Caritas Scotland), Mr. Dutton has more than 25 years of experience in the humanitarian field and has led projects in more than 70 countries.

With more than 25 years of experience in the humanitarian field and has led projects in more than 70 countries, Mr. Dutton first worked with Caritas in 1996.

He is currently the Executive Director of SCIAF (Caritas Scotland). From 2009 to 2014, he served as the Humanitarian Director of Caritas Internationalis.

In 2014, Dutton was also the CEO of the Sphere Project, the international humanitarian standards body. From 2005 to 2009 he was head of the Humanitarian Programmes Unit for Africa of Christian Aid.


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