Cardinal Ribat visits home province

Islands

THE festive season for most residents of East New Britain had an extra blessing in the rare visit of Cardinal Sir John Ribat.
Sir John arrived in the province on Wednesday and spent a week meeting with Catholic faithful at selected locations.
The main message that Sir John delivered to the people he visited in Kokopo, Rabaul and Gazelle districts was that God has promised to be with his people to the end.
Cardinal Ribat said Christmas marked the birth of Emmanuel meaning God is with us.
“The Book of Isaiah stated that one woman will give birth to a child to be called Emmanuel meaning God is with us,” Cardinal Ribat said.
“The promised messiah will come as a baby and now over 2000 years later, we still read this same word every time every Christmas and this does not change meaning that God’s promise to be with us is everlasting and we must be steadfast.”
He said his appointment as Cardinal for Papua New Guinea and Solomon Island was God’s decision.
“I did not think I would ever be appointed or had the dream that I would be appointed Cardinal but if it is God’s desire, then I ask for all your prayers to God to guide me so that I may fulfil his work,” Cardinal Ribat said.
“I ask for your prayers and I can in turn pray for you because this appointment is not for me alone but for all of us.
“Let us stand together in prayer not only for Catholics but for the nation, Solomon Islands and all denominations. We must see God’s face in our brothers and sisters.”
Cardinal Ribat expressed gratitude for efforts put in by the people in their preparations to welcome him into the province, saying this was a symbol of a happy heart and strong belief in God.
He urged the people to change during this festive season to accept Jesus and be born again.

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