06/11/2013 13:28

Second General Assembly of the Catholic Church in PNG & SI opens in Madang

06 NOV 2013/1. The General Assembly of the Catholic Church in Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands (PNG & SI) is under way in Madang after the opening ceremony and welcoming of delegates on Tuesday, 5 November in the afternoon. Hosting President of Divine Word University, Fr. Jan Czuba SVD, reminded the participants of the challenges for the Church in the Pacific in this time of changes. “Values and doctrines do not change - he said-, but the ways we live, learn and take risks change”. Abp. Douglas Young of Mt. Hagen traced the immediate motivation of the General Assembly to the April 2013 Pastoral Letter of the Catholic Bishops of PNG & SI on the “Year of Faith generating an Assembly of Faith”, that may be able to generate in its turn a witnessing community. “What is God asking of us now as Church in PNG & SI?” is the key question to guide the reflection and prayer of the General Assembly, which is expected, in fact to inspire a five-year pastoral plan. The New Evangelization is the horizon of the General Assembly, according to coordinator Fr. Roger Purcell MSC, while the original source of it is the Vatican Council 2 and the renewal it brought about. Continuity was also stressed by Archbishop Steven Reichert OFM Cap of Madang with the first post Vatican Council 2 comprehensive “self-study “ of the Catholic Church in Papua New Guinea in 1992 and the first General Assembly in Vunapope, Rabaul in 2004. For the first time now in 2013 Papua New Guinea and Solomon islands hold a conjunct General Assembly. The works of the General Assembly will eventually enter into open discussion with the key address of Dr. Catherine Nongkas of Divine Word University on “Year of Faith, New Evangelization” late in the morning today, Wednesday 6 Nov. 2013. (Follow us on Twitter at @CatholicReporterPNG )

www.cbcpngsi.org – giorgiolicini@yahoo.com