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  • Jessica Oata

Chimbu Catholics Pledge Partnership with new Bishop

Kundiawa, Chimbu: The Catholic people of Chimbu Province welcomed and pledged to work in partnership with the new Bishop of the Diocese of Kundiawa, Bishop Paul Sundu during his Episcopal Ordination on Saturday July 3rd, 2021 at the Mary Help of Christians Cathedral, Kundiawa.

Congratulatory speeches were the second part of the Episcopal Ordination that had speakers give their congratulatory messages to the new bishop on behalf of the people they represented.

The guest speakers included former Prime Minister and Governor for Western Highlands Honourable Paias Wingti, Diocesan Priests Representative Fr Michael Wiami, Religious Representative Fr Cosmas Kombla, Archbishop Anton Bal representing the Bishops, Secretary to the Apostolic Nuncio of Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands Fr Jacek Pinocy, Laity Representative Sebastian Mane, Catholic Church Services Representative Judy Gelua, and outgoing administrator Fr Richard Wajad.

Governor Wingti stressed that the Government and the Church are good partners and acknowledged the Catholic Church for providing much needed services to the people in places that the government cannot reach. He also urged the people to change their mindsets and look after public servants and priests who are serving in the province.

Speaking on behalf of the Laity, Mr Sebastian Mane said that Bishop Sundu will be faced with many challenges but assured him that he has the support and prayers of the Catholic Laity in the Diocese.

Diocesan Representative Fr Michael Wiami addressed the priests highlighting the need to be both spiritually active and physically active and pledged to work with the new Bishop.

Ms Judy Gelua when speaking on behalf of the Diocesan Workers congratulated Bishop Paul Sundu on his appointment and pledged on behalf of the Diocesan workers to work closely with the Bishop.

Fr Cosmas Kombla in his speech highlighted the need for people to work together to bring the local church forward and encouraged the laity to pray for more young people to join the vocation of priests.

When addressing those present, the outgoing administrator of the Diocese of Kundiawa said it was his privilege to have been the administrator of the diocese and said he looked forward to working with Bishop Paul Sundu to take the Church another step forward.

Secretary to the Apostolic Nuncio to PNG and SI in his speech congratulated Bp Paul Sundu and invited the people of the Diocese of Kundiawa to bring about a change by the holiness of their lives.

“I was here two years ago and now that I am here, I can see a lot of changes. It also brings me so much joy to see spiritual growth and not just physical changes within the diocese”, said Fr Jacek.

In addressing the congregation, the new Bishop Paul Sundu said, “The first time I was told that I will be the Bishop of Kundiawa Diocese, I couldn’t sleep for three nights. I thought a lot, but I also prayed and meditated a lot”, he said. He thanked the Catholic faithfuls for their constant prayers and vowed to work with them. “This is not going to be an easy task as I am a newly elected Bishop but I hope that we can all work together to carry the Church of God forward”, said Bp Paul Sundu.

Despite the Chimbu heat, there was a lot of jubilant shouts of the famous Chimbu ‘Ayoooooo’ to signify that the people were happy.

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