Diocese gets new bishop


CATHOLIC parishioners in Chimbu gathered recently at the St Mary’s Parish in Kundiawa to witness the consecration of its new bishop.
The 13 parishes in the province have been without a bishop for two years.
Bishop Paul Sundu, 48, from Womatne in Kundiawa-Gembogl was appointed by the Vatican in April to be Kundiawa diocese’s new bishop.
He was concentrated the fourth bishop of the diocese by the Archbishop of Mt Hagen Douglas Young together with Archbishop Anton Bal of Madang and assisted by Bishop David Libert of Mendi.
“The first time I was told that I will be the bishop of Kundiawa diocese, I couldn’t sleep for three nights, I thought a lot, but I prayed and meditated a lot as well,” Bishop Sunu said.
He thanked the Catholic faithfuls for their prayers and vowed to work with them.
“This is not going to be an easy task as I am a newly-elected bishop, but I hope that we can all work together to carry the church of God forward,” he said.
Cardinal Sir John Ribat along with ten bishops attended the consecration.
District superior of Divine Word Missionary (SVD) Fr Peter Kim and Chimbu diocesan priest Fr Moses Gend led Sundu to the alter as a sign of their support to the new bishop.
The bishops prayed over Sundu and the litany was sang by MMSI sisters from the Dirima parish.
The consecration included anointing of oiling on the head as a leader of the church, the wearing of the cross of Jesus to face and work with challenges, the wearing of a ring marking his marriage to the office, the wearing of the tuktuk on the head to uphold and protect truth and the shepherd’s staff to lead the church in purity.
Bishop Sundu recited to the people what was expected of him and his office.
After the consecration, all bishops laid hands on the head of the new bishop and embraced him as a sign of good will.
Vatican diplomat Fr Jacek Pinocy, who is the secretary to the Apostolic Nunciature, read out a congratulatory and encouragement letter from Pope Francis to Bishop Sundu and the Catholic faithful to work together in prayers and deeds to maintain the church’s holiness.