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Bl. Peter ToRot Feast Day Celebration


-          Paul Harricknen, Catholic Professionals


Port Moresby: Mary Queen of Pacific (MQP) Waigani was the host of celebration of the Blessed Peter ToRot Feast Day on Sunday 5 July 2020. The actual Feast Day falls on 7 July but since it falls on Tuesday it was decided to celebrate on Sunday to allow for maximum participation of the faithful.


The occasion also marked 25 years silver jubilee of ToRot’s Beatification in 1995 and 75 years of his Martyrdom in 1945. The highlight of the celebration was the reception of ToRot’s Portrait from St Charles Lwanga, Gerehu parish. The holy image blessed by Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Vatican Secretary of State in 2018 at the Mary Help of Christians Shrine, Boroko was received at the MQP parish where the holy Image will stay for the year. The Image has been moving among parishes in the Archdiocese of Port Moresby since 2018. In 2018-2019 it was in St Martin De Porres, Morata; 2019-2020 at St Charles Lwanga, Gerehu; and this year 2020-2021 it will be at the MQP parish, Waigani. The faithful of the Archdiocese are welcome to visit and pay their devotion before the holy Image.


The holy Eucharist celebration was led by the Archbishop of Port Moresby, His Eminence Sir John Ribat, MSC, and concelebrated by Fr. Robert (MQP parish priest), Fr. John Willio, MSC, Fr. Urban Kalimet, MSC, Fr. Fabian, MSC, Fr. Martin Ween (Director, Radio Maria), and was attended by over 200 faithful mostly of the MQP parish, St Charles Lwanga, members of the Bl. Peter ToRot Foundation, Catholic Professionals, OLSH Sisters, and the Handmaids of Our Lord (AD) Sisters.


In his homily Sir John encouraged the faithful to show courage and commitment to live the Catholic faith they received in their time, as did ToRot during his time. Mr. Dominic ToMar, a founding member of the Bl. Peter ToRot Foundation encouraged the faithful to come forward with encounters of graces, blessings and miracles they may have encountered with Bl. Peter ToRot to record and use towards the Blessed’s possible canonization to Sainthood. The Chairman of the Foundation Mr. Alfred Nakue explained the importance of the holy Image of ToRot and encouraged the faithful to use the opportunity to increase their devotion to the Blessed and grow their faith and to promote the cause of ToRot’s cannonization.


Mr. Eric Kumasan speaking on behalf of the last host of the holy Image (St Charles Lwanga parish) spoke of the special moments of touch and blessings their parishioners encountered with ToRot and encouraged the faithful of MQP to make the most of their time with him. The President of Catholic Professionals, Mr. Paul Harricknen, challenged the faithful to show zeal and commitment to their faith as ToRot did and not be afraid to stand up on social issues of polygamy, same-sex marriages, domestic violence, gender-based violence, stressing the need for the faithful to stand on their faith.


The celebrations were live broadcasted by Radio Maria, and ended with lunch and sharing of food among the parishioners of St Charles Lwanga and MQP. St Charles parishioners handed over the holy Image of Bl. Peter ToRot with a live pig and food and in exchange MQP shared garden food as well. The MQP parishioners went on to celebrate most of the day in their BCC groups. Much gratitude to the organisers of the celebrations - Mathias Lasia, Romanus Pakore, PPC Chairman Joseph Baki, Parish Mothers, BCC coordinators and their members, and members of the Peter ToRot Foundation.

Glory be to God! May Bl. Peter ToRot pray for us, and strengthen our faith.

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