09/04/2014 16:56

Archbishop Gorge Bernarding - CV

Born at Carrick, Pa., U.S.A., February 15, 1912.

Entered SVD 1926. First vows 1934. Final vows 1938.

Ordained August 13, 1939, at Techny, Ill., U.S.A.

Arrived at Alexishafen, New Guinea, in 1940.                                   

Appointed to coast stations: Alexishafen, Bogia, Josephstal, Sek Island.      

Just before Christmas 1941 he went to Rebiamul, Mt. Hagen, to help his friend Fr. William Ross, with the baptisms scheduled for Christmas.           

On January 21, 1942, Madang was bombed, and Bishop Francis Wolf told him to stay on at Mt. Hagen. 

In December 1942 he, along with other missionaries, was flown out of New Guinea by order of the Australian authorities.         

He and Fr. Ross were the first to return, September 8th, 1944. They returned to Mt. Hagen. Others followed.

Then begun the expansion of the Western Highland’s mission – old stations were build up again, new stations were started: Kumdi, Kuruk, Kuli, Wurup, Minj, Banz, Nondugul, Ulga… There was expansion into the Wabag area in 1947 and Pampabus, near Wapanamanda, was build up in 1948.

At the end of 1945 he was made rector of Mingende.

From 1947 to 1952 he was rector at Alexishafen.

From 1949 to 1955 he was a regional consultor.

From 1952 to 1955 he was a pastor in Lae and build a cathedral church there.

In 1955 he was named the regional superior for New Guinea.

On December 19, 1959, he was named the of the new vicariate of Mt. Hagen. He was ordained bishop, April 21, 1960, in Pittsburgh, Pa., U.S.A.

On November 15, 1966, Mt Hagen was raised to the rank of diocese.

On March 27, 1982, Mt. Hagen was raised to the rank of archdiocese, and bishop George became the metropolitan archbishop of the Highlands’dioceses.

Mt. Hagen was raised to the rank of and Bishop George became t~ archbishop of the Highlands'

He retired earlier in 1987 and returned to  the USA for medical attention.

He died December 21 at the Vincentian Retirement Home in Pittsburgh.

His body was returned to Mt. Hagen and was buried in the mission's cemetery at Rebiamul, Mt. Hagen, 2/1/88.

Archbishop George was 75 years old, 48 years a priest, 47 years in New Guinea, and 28 years Bishop of Mt. Hagen.

May he rest in peace.