Easter Newsletter – to read click here.
Chair’s Letter –
If we thought that 2021 would bring a quick resolution to the coronavirus crisis, the various lockdown measures in UK since the new year have shown what a long haul it will be, even with the impressive roll-out of the vaccines. In PNG things have seemed much quieter up to now. As I write this (in mid March) there are still only 21 deaths reported, but the news is of a dangerous spike in cases – a seven day average of 87, but 354 reported today. Reports in the Australian media are ringing alarm bells about the capacity of PNG’s health services. No one has been vaccinated in PNG at present, although the country will receive them under the COVAX scheme. The Australian government is being lobbied to send vaccines directly.
PNGCP sent some emergency funds last year to the Anglican Health Services and to Anglicare, and I fully expect we shall be doing the same again this year. Your regular financial support, for which we are always grateful, helps us do that.
Meanwhile, we have positive stories to share in this edition. From Dogura Diocese Margaret Poynton writes with news of extra clergy training for these widely scattered ministers, and the Bridging Course at Newton College, to raise the educational level of new students, has been a great success.
There is also an article, from one of my former clergy in Port Moresby, about the isolated settlement of Moreguina in the parish of Cape Rodney. In 2013, when ACPNG hosted Archbishop Rowan and Jane Williams for a week, a government helicopter took them from Popondetta to Dogura for a few hours before returning to Port Moresby. On the way back they had to stop to refuel …. and landed at Moreguina! The Melanesian Brothers who lived there were somewhat shocked, but very delighted, to find that the Archbishop of Canterbury, accompanied by our own Bishop Jonathan Meyrick, had just dropped in to say hello!
PNG has had nine Prime Ministers since independence in 1975. Two of the former PMs, Sir Mekere Morauta and Sir Michael Somare, have died recently. Both made a great contribution to nation building and have been warmly remembered.
My thanks for your prayerful and financial support for PNGCP. Enjoy this newsletter and may the good news of Easter sustain faith and witness here and in PNG.
Bishop Peter Ramsdem