- Fr Ambrose Pereira sdb
Imposition of Pallium on Archbishop Bal
Madang: The pallium was imposed on Archbishop Anton Bal, Archbishop of Madang by Archbishop Kurian Mathew Vayalunkal, Apostolic Nuncio to Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands, on 25th October at the Holy Spirit Cathedral, Madang.
Archbishop Emeritus William Kurtz, Bishop Rozario Menezes, Bishop of Lae and priests of the Archdiocese concelebrated at the Eucharistic celebration. Religious, Parish Pastoral Counsel members of the Archdiocese of Madang and Catholic lay faithful filled the cathedral for the celebrations. A large group of prisoners were also present for the celebrations. The liturgy was alive with hymns and dances.
The Pallium is a liturgical sign of communion that unites the See of Peter and his successor to the Metropolitans and through them the order of Bishops throughout the world. As a sign of synodality with the local churches, Pope Francis has decided that the Pallium blessed during the mass of Sts Peter and Paul will be handed over to the newly appointed Archbishops, which in turn will be imposed on them in their respective Sees, by the Pope’s Representative, the Apostolic Nuncio.
Two other events of significance were the blessings and presentation of the Pastoral Plans of the Archdiocese of Madang to the Deaneries and the commissioning of the Catholic Professionals.
The Archdiocesan Pastoral Council consisting of all the Parish priests and their chairpersons, catechists, and devotional group leaders met at Alexishafen for two days. The Pastoral Plan for the Archdiocese for the next five years was drawn up. In the months ahead, every parish is to identify suitable activities to ensure that the plan is put into practice. The Archdiocesan Pastoral Plan was presented to the two deans and the Catholic Professionals after Holy Communion.
After the homily, 32 Catholic Professionals made their commitment to be ‘light and voice’ to the people of the diocese. Each was then presented with a ‘cross of courage’ by Archbishop Anton Bal. They were reminded to be witnesses to Christ by their way of life. Mr Paul Harricknen, President of the Catholic Professionals PNG and Fr Ambrose Pereira sdb, Spiritual Director had a meeting with the Catholic Professionals later that afternoon. “As Catholic Professionals you are to work together and in harmony with your Archbishop. You are to be a light and a voice for the voiceless”, said Mr Harricknen. The members were also reminded to ensure that prayer and the celebration of the sacraments is regular in their lives. Devotion to Blessed Peter ToRot, Patron of the Catholic Professionals Society was also highlighted. The members were invited to implore his intercession for favours and graces for themselves and their families.