09/11/2013 04:45

Keep the good throw the bad of culture, General Assembly says

By Fr. Giorgio Licini PIME

08 NOV 2013/4. The Second General Assembly of the Catholic Church in Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands devoted the third full day of works to the themes of Evangelization and Inculturation. Bishop Otto Separi of Aitape connected his reflection with the Synod on the New Evangelization last year in Rome of which he was a member. Fr. Ben Maepaulo from the diocese of Auki in Solomon Island, but with years of pastoral service in Papua New Guinea as well, explained how this has to meet the concrete local community with its culture as an overall system of meaning. It has been clearly noted by the Assembly that what makes thing difficult and therefore even more urgent is the fact that we live in a time of cultural transition. Many components of the traditional Melanesian culture are still there, but regularly challenged by a more individualistic, sophisticated and consumerist modern and global culture. This impacts in a particular way the individual person and the family. Accompaniment and formation is in great demand along with the renewal of the personal spiritual life.  Nobody is exempt from a new need of evangelization in changing circumstances beginning with the clergy and the Church leaders. Cultural traits that are not in accordance with the Gospel need to be overcome: “Teach the new generations – one participant insisted referring to the still widespread belief in sorcery – that sickness is caused by ‘something’ not by ‘somebody’.” (www.cbcpngsi.orggiorgiolicini@yahoo.com)