Beatification day of Blessed Peter Torot
On Tuesday 17th of January 1995 St. Pope John Paul II came to PNG for the beatification of Peter Torot exalting him to the rank of Blessed in the Catholic Church.
That happened after the volcanic eruption in 1994. People were in fear of the volcano and most of them have evacuated and resettled in care centres.
During the first week of January 1995 under the supervision of Emeritus Archbishop Karl Hesse (MSC), vicar general Fr. Thomas Tukaliu (MSC), some health workers together with some police men came to Rakunai cemetery and dug out the bones of Blessed Peter Torot into a casket.
It was then moved to Vunapau (formation house of the MSC's) to be washed and then brought to Port Moresby.
The Archdiocese of Rabaul sponsored some faithful to attend and witnessed the beatification in Port Moresby. It was held at the Sir. John guise stadium.
Early morning on Tuesday 17th of January 1995, clouds poured down rain but the people patiently waited for the Pope.
When he arrived, the celebration begun with the procession and presentation of the casket by the elders of Rakunai to the Pope.
Pope John Paul II now a saint was the main presider of the Holy Mass and it was within the Liturgy that he beatified and declared Peter Torot as Blessed. He declared 7th July as the date to commemorate Blessed Peter Torot.
From 17th January 1995 until 17th January 2020 the 25th anniversary of the beatification was celebrated and on 17th January 2021 the 26th anniversary of the beatification was celebrated.