Port Moresby welcomes back its new cardinal


Cardinal Sir John Ribat made his first public appearance, after being made a cardinal, on Sunday November 27 at the Jack Pidik Park, during the 50th anniversary ceremonies of the Port Moresby Catholic Archdiocese.

The number attending the celebration was variously reported to be to 1000 and 20,000 and people from other mainline churches.

Government and diplomatic heads and friends from the Diocese of Townsville, Australia also at the event.

As he walked up the red carpet laid out to welcome him, Ribat was accompanied by the apostolic nuncio, Archbishop Kurian Mathew Vayalunkal and 49 priests.

The four-hour-long celebration included the celebration of the Eucharist, contributions from the various dioceses, a combined male and female choir, speeches by the various dignitaries and church leaders and representatives.

About 28 lay church workers from 9 parishes received awards in recognition of their commitment and contribution towards building the archdiocese.

Ribat called for unity and cooperation in building the church and the country as well.

“Today we are uniting to build the church in all areas in cooperation with our sister churches, the government and others.”

He also acknowledged the work and sacrifices made by the early missionaries who came and planted the faith.

Ribat said Port Moresby Archdiocese was a young diocese. It has been part of the Bereina Diocese until 1966. It has had only 5 bishops.

The nuncio Archbishop Kurian congratulated Ribat whom he referred to as “a simple and humble person”, for his contribution in the work and development of the church in Port Moresby and the country.

He said that the appointment of Cardinal Ribat is a sign by Pope Francis of his love for Papua New Guinea the people and the church, and recognition of the work of the church in this part of the world.

Governor General, Sir Michael Ogio thanked the new cardinal for his working relationship with the Government.

“I admire the work of this new cardinal. He has been vocal on issues and we will work alongside him,” Ogio said.


Additional reading

News category: Asia Pacific.

Tags: , ,