Vanuatu: aid confirms cargo cult prophecy

Two elders from the John Frum movement, on Tanna Island, say their recently-deceased prophet had predicted a major event would occur in 2016.

They say the cyclone, and subsequent aid, are a precursor to a major event that was foretold to take place next year.

The island of Tanna in Vanuatu is known for its peculiar set of new religious movements, including what are popularly known as cargo cults.

Cargo cult followers believe an adherence to American military protocols will bring back goods, equipment and a bountiful lifestyle that was in abundance during World War II.

Followers of the John Frum movement worship the man who promised a life of prosperity during the American military’s presence on the island during the second world war.

They routinely raise a flag in the village and march with makeshift wooden rifles over their shoulders like the long-gone soldiers used to.

Tearfund worker, Andrew Finlay, came to Tanna in the wake of Cyclone Pam.

He says while the beliefs were hard for the western world to understand, their importance to the community should not be undervalued.


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News category: Asia Pacific.

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