- Jessica Oata
Chaplaincy Workshop for Chaplains
Gordons, Port Moresby: An intense one-day program for Chaplains was held on Saturday, February 26th at the Catholic Bishops Conference (CBC) to discuss and share ideas to draft a CBC Chaplains Handbook.
The program began with a moment of prayer to commemorate the 1st anniversary of the passing of the late Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare followed by discussions and presentations.
Present at the program were representatives from the different sectors such as health, education, correctional services, police and defence where Chaplains are needed.
Also present during the program was Bishop deputy for the Commission of Chaplaincy and Bishop of Lae, Rozario Menezes SMM.
“I am very passionate about this commission because when I first came to Papua New Guinea, almost 40% of the country’s population were Catholics, however, in the last census, the numbers have greatly reduced to just 22%”, he said.
In his address to the participants, Bp Rozario also stressed that Chaplains have a big role to play in guiding the Catholic faithful and showing that someone is there for them when they are in need of spiritual guidance.
Group discussions gave participants a chance to discuss and share their experiences of a Chaplain in their respective sectors, their expectations of a Chaplain and what they hope in the future.
A special presentation on the work of the late Archbishop Brian Barns as a chaplain was done by Fransisca Igo. She described the late Archbishop Barnes as a model Chaplain who was always there to offer spiritual guidance and all Chaplains should follow in his footsteps.
Volunteer Secretary for the Commission of Chaplaincy, Sr. Mary McCarthy PBVM, thanked those who attended for their presence and participation in setting the foundation for the handbook.
The Commission of Chaplaincy is a new commission that was established in 2019 for chaplains to offer spiritual guidance to the Catholic faithful in the various sectors that deal with people.