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PNG church group on dream trip to Cooks

Thursday October 23, 2014 Written by Published in Church Talk
It’s a dream come true for a visiting group from Papua New Guinea. With visions of Rarotonga’s green mountains and it’s turquoise lagoon – not to mention a rich history in spreading the gospel across the Pacific – this theological group set out with fundraising efforts earlier this year, and this week, finally landed in the Cooks. 14102209 It’s a dream come true for a visiting group from Papua New Guinea. With visions of Rarotonga’s green mountains and it’s turquoise lagoon – not to mention a rich history in spreading the gospel across the Pacific – this theological group set out with fundraising efforts earlier this year, and this week, finally landed in the Cooks. 14102209

A visiting delegation from Papua New Guinea currently in Rarotonga is fulfilling a long-held dream by coming to the Cook Islands.

The group consists of members from the congregations of the Seventh Day Adventist, the Good News Ministry, and the United Church.
 “It has been our dream to visit these nice people,” said Gou George, the assistant events coordinator for the group.
At Rutaki meeting house yesterday morning, the visitors planted around a dozen coconut trees just off the shore, in what was meant to be a lasting reminder of the trip.
During their visit, the group has participated in a number of activities with the church, and made visits to the Punanaga Nui market and Takamoa Theological College.
To make the trip a reality, she said group members – who come from a traditional village just outside of the capital city of Port Moresby - started fundraising in February by selling food, holding raffles, and organising dances.
Ms. George said, “Every part has been fabulous. We hope to bring back these memories.”
For Ikupu and Miria Gavera, the trip was also an opportunity to commemorate a milestone in their marriage.
Ironically, the two were married 31 years ago and celebrated their honeymoon in the Cook Islands. Next week, they will be celebrating their wedding anniversary on October 29.
“It has changed so much,” said Ikupu. “It’s changed so much.”
Christianity arrived in the Cook Islands in 1821 on the island of Aitutaki and in 1823 in Rarotonga. From 1839 onwards, local missionaries began travelling to the outer Cook Islands, and further abroad to Samoa, New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, and beyond.
The outflow continued for over a hundred years finishing in the late 1960s with Papua New Guinea – described by some as “the last main mission ground”.   

1 comment

  • Comment Link Okirua Te Okoitu Wednesday, 12 November 2014 00:49 posted by Okirua Te Okoitu

    The group was hosted by Arorangi CICC after accepting their request for a host. Arorangi CICC is the only church group or one that has the value of accepting to host strangers in the name of Christ on the island. Its not an easy task as most host would ask payment, where as Arorangi CICC group never squeek for payment. This year, it accepted the duty of host for 3 visiting groups Aurora College Group, Tahiti Rugby Group and the PNG Group without asking for payment. Being a host of such groups is hard work speaking from experience. Similar travel to NZ and Aussie by groups from Raro and Outer Islands seem to cook the same menue. We understand the burden any host in NZ and Aussie go through when groups from here visit or a visit by groups within NZ and Aussie for whatever purpose, fundraising, education, reunion, training, workshops you name all in excuse for a visit.. Its not easy. Lets hope the Father above stops this as we humans can't.

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