Great and Meaningful celebrations at Nila in the Shortlands


The shortland people celebrated their parish Feast day with the solemn blessing of the new church completed after 33 years of hard work... It may seem indeed a long time to many, but the difficulties in this remote area certainly are not few and not minor at all.

They also celebrated their 110 anniversary of the bringing of Christianity to their area by the Marist Missionaries from Bouganville. The catholic community has several flourishing churches in the Alu, Fauro and Mono areas. They honored their church with their presence, praying, and celebrating spirit.

The Saint John Kindy, primary school and St Anne RTC at Nila and the Tuha Junior secondary School (across the Nila station area) welcomed and entertained the guests.

Meetings with the chiefs and the station leaders clarified issues and inspired the leaders to take commitments together to renew and involve the church communities in the areas of health and education. Plans are being made to develop the Saint John (Bosco) school into a full Primary, junior and senior secondary school and training centers for the shortland youths. The campuses are envisioned to be in the island of Nila for primary and senior secondary while in Tuha land for the Junior Secondary. The community will unite under the church authority to build and run the school as one. A statue of the blessed mother Help of Christians has been blessed and located at a prominent place of the Island just between the new wharf and the new church. The statue of Saint John Bosco too has been set in place to inspire the youth with the presence of the saint to whom the school has been named by the early Marist missionaries long before Don Bosco came to Henderson in 2000.

The community effort will be carried on in communion with the parish leader Fr Vincent Conception and by the newly chosen paramount chief from Pirumeri, Sir George Leppin former Governor General.
The newly arrived mission boat the "Saint Peter" made its second visit to Nila bringing in all the priests and some sisters accompanying their Bishop who did the honors of the blessings.
The dreams are many and the good will is much, the enthusiasm too. The leadership is firm, strong and looking ahead with courage and faith. There is no reason why the plans and dreams cannot soon become a reality soon.

The occasion also saw the launching of the 50th anniversary of the Catholic Diocese of Gizo with the first bishop appointed in 1960 in the person of Bishop Eusebius Crawford, OP. A good number of pastoral and spiritual activities are in line for the Golden Jubilee celebration which will culminate with the feast of St Peter on June 28th 2010 with the solemn inauguration and blessing of the Gizo cathedral.

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Tuha Community High school Raise funds

Last Easter Sunday, March 23, 2008, the teachers, students and parents of the students of Tuha Community high school raised funds by selling cooked and uncooked foods in2 stalls prepared by students in Nila parish Station.

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Fr. Gerome Pelagio


Originally from the Philippines,

he is the Parish Priest of the Holy Rosary Parish– Nila, Shortlands– Western Province.

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New Nila Parish Sunday School Teachers promise to serve

A total of 34 new Sunday School teachers ( 8 from Aleang, 4 from Maleai, 5 from Gaomai, 4 from Pirumeri, 3 from Arapa, 5 from Komaleai and 5 from Nila) promised to serve the parish by teaching Catholic religious instructions to children last April 26 at Nila parish Church.

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Diocese of Gizo in the Solomon Islands
Opening of Gaomai Church and Michael Kisu's Jubilee

In January 2004 a new Church was blessed and officially opened by Most Rev Bernard O'Grady OP. The Church is situated on the north-west coast of Shortland Island some 30 kms ( as a canoe travels) from the main Parish Centre at Nila. The Church was some eight years in building. There was financial assistance from the Catholic Missions but the people themselves worked hard to fund-raise to cover main costs. Part of the delay in completing the Project was both the Bougainville (still part of Papua New Guinea ) Crisis and the ethnic tension and fighting that plagued the Solomons for 4 years. The village of Gaomai is very close to Buin in southern Bougainville so that when the border was closed during the Crisis the people were cut off from the their main source of cash, the sale of fish both dried and fresh at Buin Town.

But despite these problems, the people managed to complete a building that will serve them for some years to come. The celebrations that marked the opening by Bishop Bernard continued the whole day with music and dancing, both traditional and modern. As is always the case several pigs and a large amount of fish were enjoyed as part of the traditional feast.


The day following the opening of Gaomai Church, Brother Michael Kisu, a native son of Gaomai Village, celebrated his Silver Jubilee of Profession as Friar Preacher midst his family and many friends, including the Honorable John Momis from Bougainville, his cousin. Many of his local Dominican community were also in attendance as was Bishop Bernard who celebrated the Jubilee Mass. Brother Michael is a quadriplegic brought about from a driving accident he suffered some 15 years ago. He now lives in Australia but visits ' home' every two years. The celebrations included traditional dancing and feasting. Brother Michael Kisu is a lively character whose determination to live as full a life as possible has been an inspiration to many people both in Australia and the Solomons.

The new Church



Brother Michael Kisu in procession



Blessing the Altar.



Brother Michael renews his vows



Cutting the ribbon- Fr Theodoro



Clearing the Spirits



Blessing the plaque









































































































































Last change: Apr. 20, 2006 at 23:14

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