Installation Mass for the New Bishop of the Diocese of Bereina
- Nigel Akuani
Port Moresby: A heart-warming Installation Mass was held to welcome the 8th Bishop of the Diocese of Bereina, Most Reverend Bp Otto Separy, on Saturday 21st September, at Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Cathedral Bereina, Central Province.
Bp Otto, the former Bishop Ordinary of Aitape after being appointed by Pope Benedict XVI on June 9th 2009. He was announced as the new Bishop of Bereina by the Apostolic Nunciature on 16th July 2019, in Port Moresby.
Celebrating the special occasion with Bp Otto, were Archbishop Kurian Mathew Vayalunkal Apostolic Nuncio to Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands, Cardinal Sir John Ribat MSC, Archbishop Douglas Young SVD, Bishop Anton Bal, Bishop Gilles Cote SMM, Bishop Rochus Tatamai MSC, Bishop Rozario Menezes SMM, Bishop Jozef Roszenski SVD, Bishop Pedro Baquero SDB, Priests and Sisters, Religious, Staff of Catholic Bishop Conference of PNGSI, officials from various Institutions and Departments, family and friends from the diocesan communities.
The Installation began with the Nuncio reading the Letter of Appointment of Bp Otto as Bishop of Bereina and showing the Letter of Appointment to the College of Consultors and the people. An acclamation by the congregation then followed.
The Bishops went to Bp Otto and offered their congratulations. Priests of the Diocese wished the Bishop and ceded obedience to their new Bishop. A representative group of religious and laity of the diocese were also welcomed to meet and greet Bp Otto.
In his homily Bp Otto highlighted the crucial role of laity and appealed for their constant cooperation in carrying out the word of God and helping the works of the Church. “This Year is the ‘Year of the Laity’ because the Church recognizes the significant efforts the Laity makes,” he said.
“I am your new Bishop but I cannot do it alone, and I implore you to work and support my leadership in promoting the faith and evangelization, so we can make a big difference in the Diocese of Bereina. I believe in collective ideas and collaborative efforts when working because that is what the Church is all about,” he said.
The Nuncio in his speech congratulated Bp Otto for his work in Aitape and said that he would continue praying for him and the Diocese of Bereina, its Priests, Religious, and people.
Cardinal Ribat urged the people to work together and journey with their new Bishop, to continue building the church in the diocese.
A gathering of over 3000 people from the surrounding communities came to witness and support this extraordinary event.
The celebrations concluded with lunch and traditional dance performances provided by the local communities.