“To the priests, religious and people of the Diocese of Johannesburg, I have been called to serve you. I kindly request you to allow me to serve you. I kindly request that you help me to serve you“. Installation Homily, 29 June 2003
His Grace was appointed Archbishop of Bloemfontein on 13 January 1999 and ordained and installed Archbishop of Bloemfontein on 10 April 1999. He was transferred to the Diocese of Johannesburg on the 8th of April 2003, with the title Archbishop-Bishop of Johannesburg. He was installed as Bishop of Johannesburg on the 29th of June 2003, at Ellis Park Rugby Stadium. On the 5th of June 2007, when the Diocese of Johannesburg became an Archdiocese, he was appointed the First Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Johannesburg.
- He matriculated at Inchanga High School, near Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal
- In 1967 he entered the novitiate of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate at Villa Maria, Quthing, Lesotho.
- In 1968 he entered the Mater Jesu Scholasticate in Roma in Lesotho, where he obtained a BA Degree in 1967 at the University of Lesotho, Botswana and Swaziland in 1972.
- He studied Theology at the Gregorian University in Rome between 1972 and 1976.
- He was ordained to the Prieshood by Archbishop Fanyana Butelezi in 1976 and worked in the Soweto community, servicing at Our Lady of Fatima in Dube, 1979 – 1984, Our Lady of Mercy in Emdeni, 1984 – 1989, Christ the King in Orlando East, 1989 – 1999.
- Archbishop Buti Tlhagale has been a visiting lecturer at St Joseph’s Scholasticate in Cedara, KwaZulu-Natal. He taught philosophy at St Peter’s Major Seminary in Hammanskraal and has written extensively on Theology, Inculturation and Labour matters.
- He worked in the Justice and Peace Department of the South African Council of Churches in 1979 – 1980.
- He served as Secretary General of the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference (SACBC) , 1995 – 1999.
- He was ordained Archbishop of Bloemfontein in 1999 and appointed Bishop of Johannesburg in 2003.
- He was Grand Chancellor of St Augustine College of South Africa, the Catholic University in Victory Park, Johannesburg.
- On June 5, 2007, The Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, raised the Diocese of Johannesburg to the status of a Metropolitan Archdiocese and appointed the Most Reverend Buti Joseph Tlhagale, OMI, as its first Metropolitan Archbishop.