Boroko, Port Moresby: The Laity and the Religious from different congregations gathered at the Mary Help of Christians Shrine in Don Bosco Technological Institute on Friday December 15, 2023 to celebrate the thanksgiving mass to thank God for the life and service of His Excellency Archbishop Fermin Emilio Sosa Rodriguez during his term as the Apostolic Nuncio to Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands.
The thanksgiving mass had His Excellency Archbishop Fermin Emilio Sosa Rodriguez as the principal celebrant with His Grace Archbishop John Cardinal Ribat MSC from the Archdiocese of Port Moresby, Bishop Otto Separy from Bereina Diocese and Bishop Rolando Santos CM from the Alotau-Sideia Diocese as con-celebrants.
Parishioners from St Peter Chanel, Erima animated the mass with an angelic choir and colorful processions.
In his homily, His Excellency Archbishop Fermin Emilio Sosa Rodriguez shared his experience in Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands.
“When I was appointed as the Nuncio to PNG and Solomon Islands, I was very happy when I heard the name of the countries because it came to my mind the beautiful memories of my first time in this beautiful country when I served as the Secretary to the Nuncio and today is a day to give thanks to God for all the things he has given me”
He added that he views Mission as Passion and thanked the Priests, Religious and Lay Faithful for being living testimonies of life in their respective vocations.
His Excellency concluded by saying that it has been a privilege to serve as the Secretary to the Apostolic Nuncio and an even greater blessing to return and serve as the Apostolic Nuncio.
Before the final blessing, Archbishop of Port Moresby Sir John Cardinal Ribat MSC gave his farewell remarks thanking His Excellency Archbishop Fermin Emilio Sosa Rodriguez for his service to PNG and Solomon Islands for the last two and a half years since his appointment in 2021.
“It has been wonderful having you as part of our big and loving Christian family in Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands. You have gone to our dioceses and visited our people and for that, we are grateful for the time you have given to the church in PNGSI. We will continue to pray for you as you depart for Bolivia that the Lord will continue to bless and guide you”.
His Excellency Archbishop Fermin Emilio Sosa Rodriguez departed Port Moresby on December 26, 2023.