Seventh Bishop of Temotu Consecrated

Published: January 15, 2024

Picture: Rt Revd Patteson Nibeo

The Diocese of Temotu witnessed the Consecration and Installation of Reverend Patteson Nibeo as their seventh Bishop on Sunday 14th January.

The Archbishop of Melanesia, the Most Revd Leonard Dawea officiated the consecration ceremony, together with three other bishops; the Rt Revd Arthur Abui from the Diocese of Hanuatoó, the Rt Revd Michael Bebeu, Bishop of Malaita and Rt Revd Rickson Maomaoru, Assistant Bishop of Malaita.

Immediately after he was consecrated as a Bishop, the Right Revd Nibeo was installed to the episcopal chair of the diocese by the senior priest of Nende region, Fr. Fox Menaa, in the absence of the Vicar General of the diocese.

Gracing the ceremony was the Governor General of Solomon Islands, His Excellency the Rt Revd Sir David Vunagi, who preached at this consecration ceremony.

Delivering a heartfelt sermon, Sir David who was the third Bishop of the Diocese of Temotu in 2001 before becoming the Archbishop of ACoM in 2009, reminded the bishop-elect of the extensive responsibilities that come with the office of a Bishop.

“As a bishop, you are to teach, preach, correct, love and listen to the people. A Bishop is not only a spiritual guide but is also responsible for the effective administration towards spiritual growth and development of the Diocese,” Sir David said.

The Governor General, who was instrumental to the priesthood Ministry of the bishop-elect, also echoed words of wisdom to the wife of the bishop-elect to stand in support, recognizing the symbiotic relationship crucial for the successful progression of the Diocese’s mission and ministry.

In his maiden speech as the 7th Bishop of Temotu, Rt Revd Nibeo expressed deep gratitude and acknowledged the transformative work carried out by his predecessors. “I will strive to carry on the good work laid by the past Bishops,” he affirmed, expressing his commitment to fulfilling his new role with integrity and dedication.

The ceremony commenced with a majestic procession from the Diocesan office to the Holy Trinity Cathedral in Lata, Santa Cruz. The attendance of around a thousand church members and invited guests in and around Santa Cruz, signifies the crucial role the Church plays in the community. The program concluded with speeches, feasting, and entertainments, fostering a sense of communal celebration and unity.

Traditional dancers

As the newly consecrated Bishop begins his journey, Archbishop Leonard appealed to the people of Temotu to extend their unwavering support to Rev. Nibeo and his family. Their collective contribution, be it through prayers, guidance, will serve as pillars of strength as they navigate the challenges and joys of their new role.

The Rt Revd Nibeo’s consecration marks a significant milestone in the history of the Diocese of Temotu. With a deep reverence for the work of his predecessors and a vision for spiritual growth, he stands poised to lead the faithful towards a brighter future.

The Diocese of Temotu was inaugurated in 1981 at Naban Village Gracious Bay. Her first Bishop was the Rt Revd Amose Waiaru who served the diocese from 1981 to 1984. The second Bishop was the Rt Revd Lazarus Munamua from 1985 to 2001, followed by our current Governor General His Excellency the Rt Revd Sir David Vunagi. From 2002 to 2009 the Diocesan Bishop was the Rt Revd George Takeli from 2010 to 2016, followed by the Rt Revd Leonard Dawea from 2016 to 2019. The last retiring Bishop was the Rt Revd Willie Tungale from 2019 to 2023. The Diocese has three regions – Nende with ten districts, Pele region with five districts and Vattu region with eight districts.

ACoM Communications