PNGCP virtual gathering – November 11th @ 7.30pm (UK time) [Zoom invite]

Dear friends,

Here is the Zoom invite for our virtual gathering on November 11th. We look forward to “seeing” you for what will be a lovely evening (or early morning for our guests from PNG and viewers from Australia*). For the agenda, please see here.

* November 11th @ 7.30pm in the UK will be November 12th @ 5.30am in Port Moresby and 6.30am in Sydney. 

Topic: PNGCP Supporters Day 2021
Time: Nov 11, 2021 07:30 PM London

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Invitation to a PNGCP virtual gathering – November 11th @ 7.30pm

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I write on behalf of the PNG Church Partnership, whose Trustees asked me to take over the Chair following Bishop Peter completing 5 years at our helm. Some of you may remember that he relieved me after a short three years due to the volume of commitments I had at the time. I have now retired from my full-time role as Bishop of Lynn, and look forward to giving more time and energy to our work supporting our colleagues and partners in the Gospel in ACPNG.

We hope you are well, and have come through these last 20 months relatively unscathed – though most of us have had some degree of loss or illness through it.

Next year will see (finally) a Lambeth Conference and we hope our Bishops from PNG and their wives will be here in the summer, when we will have a gathering with all of them. Meanwhile, we thought we should have another Zoom gathering this Autumn, and we hope you will join us.

The date is Thursday, November 11th starting at 7.30pm, and aiming to be finished in an hour and a half.

Agenda 

  • Evening Prayer (ACPNG rite)
  • Contributions, we hope, from PNG to include the Central Office (Acting Archbishop Nathan and Dennis Kabekabe), the new Bishop of New Guinea Islands (Bishop Reginald), the Diocese of Dogura (possibly Bishop Tennyson, and Margaret Poynton)
  • Introduction to our new Treasurer (Jan Nicholson) and an update from her on how we are holding up, and recent support given
  • Progress on a calendar by Ed Backhouse
  • Introduction to new members of the Committee, and a reminder of our new (CIO) structure
  • An opportunity for all present to introduce themselves, give news and ask questions
  • Update on Lambeth Conference Plans

** Please RSVP to pngcpoffice@gmail.com so we can send you the Zoom link. We will also share the link on our website and via email, but it would be helpful to us to have your email in advance. ** 

On behalf of the Trustees and Committee, I send my prayers and best wishes,

Jonathan Meyrick

Summer Newsletter

Read our summer newsletter and chair’s letter (also here) below –

Dear Supporters,

I am glad to have this chance of writing to you just a few weeks after being brought back as Chair of the PNGCP Trustees. Bishop Peter has been such a good Chair over the last five years, when I stood down to concentrate on other aspects of my then-widening ministry. It was mean of us to grab him so swiftly after his retirement as Bishop of Port Moresby, but he rose to the challenge instantly and with great assurance. His own knowledge of the Anglican Church there was a huge boon for us, and we thank him for all he has given us through these years.

Years that have seen us move to a new legal status as a Charitable Incorporated Organisation. As this edition of the Newsletter notes, there are seven Trustees, of whom Peter remains one, and we are the body charged with the responsibility of making decisions for PNGCP. We do so following meetings with the wider group to spread the expertise and interest input, and each of the five others who join us have particular responsibilities in our life and mission. John mentions most of them in his piece about these changes; I would just add that we are also joined by Barry Slatter, a non-stipendiary priest from Bury St Edmunds Diocese who has, over recent years, put so much energy and expertise into successfully furthering a number of church-building projects, so far mostly in Aipo Rongo Diocese; by David Robin, son of Peter a missionary priest in PNG last century, who is helping our Treasurer with the Gift Aid administration; and Sue Martin, a non-stipendiary priest with an interest in education, who has taken over as our link representative from Norwich Diocese.

Sue has replaced my former PA, Ann Whittet, who stood in for me whenever I was not able to get to meetings and who has been a Minute Taker over the last few years since Gill Wilkinson retired. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Ann for that; she had a keen interest in our work, and it’s only stopping now because of her role in the Diocese is increasing and she will no longer have the time. I am grateful to all my Trustees and Committee colleagues, and not least to John Rea, who works assiduously with this Newsletter and has supported successive Chairmen in their roles through his competent and dedicated holding of the Vice-Chairman role.

As always he has given us an interesting and stimulating edition: I join him in congratulating Bishop Reginald of New Guinea Islands Diocese on his recent consecration. I remember meeting him on several of my visits. Any Bishop must be amazed by the thought of confirming 527 teenagers in one village confirmation. I thought Bishop Lindsley had done me a great honour in asking me to lead the confirmation we shared of 300 or so back in 2012. I see now he was merely limbering up for his own marathon this June! There is so much more – enjoy and read, and thank you for your support for ACPNG.

Bishop Jonathan Meyrick
PNGCP Chairman

New Bishop for New Guinea Islands

The latest from ACPNG is that Fr Reginald Makele has been elected as the next Bishop of New Guinea Islands Diocese. Fr Reginald Makele, 51, is from Sag Sag in the Cape Gloucester area of West New Britain. He is married to Cathlyn – also from West New Britain – and they have three children, Abel, Ruth and Junior Reg. He has spent much of his ministry in Port Moresby, including Gerehu and Morata parishes, and as Bishop’s Chaplain and Dean of the Cathedral. He is currently the Anglican Chaplain to the Police. A date for his consecration has yet to be announced, meanwhile PNGCP sends our congratulations, prayers and good wishes to the Makele family and all in NGI Diocese.

Fr Makele and family

Update on COVID-19 in Papua New Guinea

With thanks to Sue Ramsden for sharing, here is a video from the World Health Organisation featuring Professor Glen Mola at Port Moresby’s General Hospital on the challenges Papua New Guinea and hospital staff are facing responding to the pandemic and encouraging uptake of vaccines.

Outside his work, Prof Mola attends St Martin’s Boroko in Port Moresby.

ACPNG Newsletter 20/21

Here is the Anglican Church’s latest newsletter, featuring:

  • Message from the General Secretary
  • ACPNG inauguration
  • Updates from Aipo Rongo, Dogura Diocese and Newton Theological College
  • Church Partnership update
  • COVID-19 update in PNG
  • Anglican Alliance COVID-19 resource hub
  • Condolence Messages for Grand Chief Michael Thomas Somare and former General Secretary, Richard Rabiafi

Coronavirus response

Many of you will be aware that so far (at least compared to the UK), Papua New Guinea has largely escaped the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic. Alas, from these recent news articles – BBC News and ABC News – this no longer appears to be the case.

In response, PNGCP’s Committee agreed last week to provide grants for the Church’s dioceses and Anglicare in Port Moresby. Diocesan Health Secretaries and Anglicare will be able to spend as they see most appropriate with a recommendation that the grants be used to help provide clean water supplies and promote good hygiene.

Easter Newsletter

Easter Newsletter – to read click here.

Chair’s Letter –

Dear Supporters,

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

Easter 2021 Chair’s Letter
Easter 2021 Newsletter

Farewell to the Bishop of Lynn

Here is a link to a farewell service in Norwich Cathedral on the occasion of Bishop Jonathan’s retirement. Bishop Jonathan is not leaving the PNGCP committee, but this completes his service as Bishop of Lynn and his steering of the Norwich-PNG Link.

From Norwich Diocese –

“On Sunday 24th January at 3.30pm, as a Diocese we will bid Farewell to Bishop Jonathan. Bishop Jonathan will preach at a service which will be live streamed from Norwich Cathedral. Gathering together online we will give thanks for the many gifts Bishop Jonathan has shared with us during his time here as Bishop of Lynn and during his extensive and varied ministry in the Church.”

ACPNG Newsletter 19

We are pleased to share the Anglican Church of Papua New Guinea’s latest newsletter.

  • Message from the General Secretary
  • Information sharing on carols by candle light
  • International Day of Persons with Disabilities
  • Creative artist makes portrait of the St. Paul’s and St. Peters Cathedral
  • COVID-19 update

Christmas Newsletter

Letter from our chair and our Christmas Newsletter

Dear Supporters,

Greetings to you all at the end of this extraordinary year. The PNGCP committee has spent the year zooming instead of having our regular meetings at the Anglican Communion Office in London, which itself has been closed. I’m very grateful for their individual contributions, not least that of Simon Courage in setting up our virtual Supporters’ Day. Meanwhile, as always, John Rea has been busy producing yet another excellent newsletter, which I trust you’ll find informative and encouraging as we seek to walk with our partners in PNG.

There are plenty of ups and down to share. The saddest news has been the death of former archbishop, Allan Migi, who only recently resigned due to ill health. We have sent our good wishes to Mother Mary and their children in Gasmata, West New Britain. ACPNG will need all our prayerful support as a new archbishop and bishop for NGI Diocese are elected.

According to the World Health Organisation, as I write this on 1st December, there have been 656 cases of Covid19 in PNG resulting in 7 deaths. No, I haven’t missed off some noughts! In the circumstances of the global pandemic and our own experience in UK, that is wonderful news. But it doesn’t mean that PNG has a fully functioning and adequate health service. There are many major problems just under the surface of PNG society, as the article from Heni Meke, National Director of Anglicare, shows.

There are also positive stories to share concerning development of coffee business to help local communities in the highlands of Aipo Rongo, support from the GFS in Popondota and Port Moresby dioceses and the gradual but solid improvements at Newton College.

Our supporters are scattered across the UK but it would be right to say that a particularly strong contribution comes from Norwich Diocese, thanks to their link of over 50 years. Bishop of Lynn, Jonathan Meyrick, has been their representative on PNGCP in recent years, and has been joined at our committee meetings by Ann Whittet, his secretary, who has been our efficient and cheerful minute taker. As he retires we thank them for their past contribution and future involvement and look forward to the next phase of the PNG/Norwich Link.

Speaking of supporters, I was very sad to hear of the death of Sybil Bennett from St John’s Eltham. Over the years she wrote regularly to us in PNG, hosted us when home on leave and encouraged others to support PNGCP. My thanks for her and to all the other “Sybils” out there who support our work by prayer, donations and the sharing of interest in the Anglican Church of PNG. Thank you for everything you do. May you have a blessed, peaceful and healthy Christmas, confident of God’s presence with us at all times and seasons.

Bishop Peter Ramsden

Supporters’ Gathering REMINDER

As mentioned in our previous email update and newsletter stop press, we will be holding an online Supporters’ Gathering on Wednesday, 16th September (PNG’s Independence Day) at 7pm UK time.

We’ll provide an update on how PNGCP’s grants have helped Newton College, the response to the PNG Earthquake and health grants.

We hope you’ll be able to join us via Zoom.

The meeting will also be recorded for those unable to make it live.

Archive Films

We’re delighted to post the first of a number of archive films from Papua New Guinea. Our first video is a fascinating treasure – archive home video from the Papua New Guinea highlands in the 1960’s, filmed and narrated by Father Peter Robin.

Peter went to PNG as a missionary in 1954, serving in the western highlands under Bishop David Hand who recruited him. At that the time the mission organisation was New Guinea Mission, and missionaries worked alongside recruits from other Anglican missions such as ABM. After working in a number of mission stations he was posted to Simbai in 1958, staying for many years. There he met Olive, who went to PNG as a missionary nurse in 1956. Peter and Olive went on to serve as missionaries at Koinambe in 1966, where they build their home the mission house and the airstrip in 1966. Together they helped establish the Anglican Health Centre in Koinambe, and Peter become Anglican Chaplain at Balob College, Lae. They had three children who were all born and lived in PNG until the family left in 1974.

Supporters’ Gathering

In common with many organisations, we are holding our events and meetings online. Our annual Supporters’ Gathering is no exception, an opportunity we hope to use to feature material direct from Papua New Guinea, including updates on our recent grants to the Anglican Church.

Whilst we organise the format and confirm speakers, we ask you to please hold the date: 16th September at 7pm (PNG’s Independence Day).