The Melanesian Brotherhood (MBH) opened a new household in Shepparton Parish, Wangaratta Diocese in Australia in April.
Br. Matthias Tovotasi from Guadalcanal and Br. Augustine Paekeni from Isabel, joined two Papua New Guinea Brothers to serve in the household.
The extension of the MBH mission to Shepparton Parish came following a request by the Diocesan Bishop of Wangaratta Diocese, the Right Rev. John Parkes for Melanesian Brothers to serve in his diocese.
The Rt Rev. John Parkes in his letter to the Melanesian Brotherhood in July last year stated a need to have the Brothers in his Diocese.
“We see the Brothers joining us as equal participants with the existing ministry team of the Shepparton Parish; to fulfil their apostolate of prime evangelism to the untouched multicultural population of Shepparton. This is a mission the current parish ministry finds it difficult to do because of some barriers; to give a wholeness to the ministerial team which is a gift those in religious life traditionally bring and to enhance holiness of the community by their participation in the daily round prayer within the Parish and to provide for training opportunities in both secular and religious fields”.
The MBH Council agreed upon the request in July last year and arrangements were made. A total of eight Brothers from Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands, including the Head Brother, Br. Nelson Bako and Regional Head Brother of Papua New Guinea region, Br. Joe Narui, witnessed the opening of the new household in Shepparton Parish, on 7th April.
Before the opening, the Brothers attended the consecration service of Fr. Keith Joseph as the 11th Diocesan Bishop of Northern Queensland on Sunday 31st March. Dr. Aram Oroi, Principal of Bishop Patterson Theological College preached in this consecration service.
On 4th May Companions to the Melanesian Brotherhood from across the UK, will meet in London to pray and give thanks for the Brotherhood and plan their activities for the next 12 months.
News story and pictures from ACoM Communications