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Bp Otto Separy installed as 8th Bishop of Bereina

-Nigel Akuani

 

Bereina: A heart-warming Installation Mass was held to welcome the 8th Bishop of the Diocese of Bereina. 

 

Most Reverend Bp Otto Separy was installed as the new Bishop of Bereina on Saturday 21st September at Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Cathedral in Bereina, Central Province.

 

Bp Otto is the former Bishop Ordinary of Aitape after being appointed by Pope Benedict XVI on June 9th 2009. He was announced as the new Bishop of Bereina by the Apostolic Nunciature on 16th July 2019 in Port Moresby.

 

Celebrating the special occasion with Bp Otto, were Archbishop Kurian Mathew Vayalunkal Apostolic Nuncio to Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands, Cardinal Sir John Ribat MSC, Archbishop Douglas Young SVD, Bishop Anton Bal, Bishop Gilles Cote SMM, Bishop Rochus Tatamai MSC, Bishop Rozario Menezes SMM, Bishop Jozef Roszenski SVD, Bishop Pedro Baquero SDB, Priests and Sisters, Religious, Staff of Catholic Bishop Conference of PNGSI, officials from various Institutions and Departments, family and friends from the diocesan communities.

 

The Installation began with the Nuncio reading the Letter of Appointment of Bp Otto as Bishop of Bereina and showing the Letter of Appointment to the College of Consultors and the people. An acclamation by the congregation then followed.

The Bishops went to Bp Otto and offered their congratulations. Priests of the Diocese wished the Bishop and ceded obedience to their new Bishop.  A representative group of religious and laity of the diocese were also welcomed to meet and greet Bp Otto.

 

In his homily Bp Otto highlighted the crucial role of laity and appealed for their constant cooperation in carrying out the word of God and helping the works of the Church. “This Year is the ‘Year of the Laity’ because the Church recognizes the significant efforts the Laity makes,” he said. 

 

“I am your new Bishop, but I cannot do it alone, and I implore you to work and support my leadership in promoting the faith and evangelization so we can make a big difference in the Diocese of Bereina."

 

“I believe in collective ideas and collaborative efforts when working because that is what the Church is all about.”

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The Nuncio in his speech congratulated Bp Otto for his work in Aitape and said that he would continue praying for him and the Diocese of Bereina, its Priests, Religious and people. 

Cardinal Ribat urged the people to work together and journey with their new Bishop to continue building the church in the diocese. 

 

A gathering of over 3000 people from the surrounding communities came to witness and support this extraordinary event.  

 

The celebrations concluded with lunch and traditional dance performances provided by the local communities.

 

Bishop Otto was born in Kubila (Diocese of Wewak) on 5th August, 1957. He was ordained priest for the Diocese of Wewak on 19th June 1991 and held offices as Parish priest and the Chancellor of the Diocese of Wewak. 

On 2nd July 2007, he was appointed the Auxiliary Bishop of Aitape and ordained bishop on 30th October. On 9th June 2009 he was appointed by the Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI as the Bishop Ordinary of Aitape.  

 

At present he is the Deputy Bishop of the Commission for New Evangelization of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands.

 

Brief history of the Diocese of Bereina

The Diocese of Bereina was established on 15th November 1966. It comprises of the Kairuku and Goilala Districts in the Central Province.