Frances Scurfield: Frances Scurfield’s CommUNITY News no. 3

Simbu tour guide, Bonny on the way up Mt Wilhelm
Dear all,

As I enter my last few months in Mingende, I know I am going to be very sad to leave these beautiful people, who have made my stay in PNG so enjoyable. People here have accepted me even if I do not understand all their cultural ways and are always interested to know about my family, my place and my ways.

I am very happy with the national lady Bishop Henk has employed to take over the running of the diocesan office. Maria is a very good lady, honest, diligent and with a good sense of humour which is essential in this work. I am very much enjoying working with her.

Many diocesan offices are still run by expats and some have been here for many years. The PALMS ideal of sharing skills and working for an interdependent lifestyle for all people, has been to the fore of my thinking in my time here. With Bishop Henk’s assistance we are hoping this will work in the Chimbu Diocesan office.

The PALMS ideal of sharing skills and working for an interdependent lifestyle for all people, has been to the fore of my thinking in my time here.

Temporary bridge repairs in Chimbu province
It really amazes me how fanatical the people in PNG and especially in the highlands are about the State of Origin series. Many are Qld supporters but there are a few loyal Blues among us. Last year, I watched a couple of games outside in a neighbour’s garden. There were about 30 there and when it rained, part way through, we just put up the umbrellas and kept watching. You could hear the excited sounds all down the valley and on the mountain tops when Queensland were going well. There are very few TVs around so wherever there is a TV there was a large crowd. This year we have reception at the mission so we all crowded around the TV and I thoroughly enjoyed the atmosphere.

All the people working at the Callan Resource Centre are nationals and show great care and concern for their clients.

One project that our diocesan office is partnering, and that has been unfolding all this year is the very large resource centre being built for the Callan Services for disabled people. There will be room for classes for education of the disabled. There will be exercise facilities and equipment and Patrick Moon, an American volunteer physiotherapist will be able to work with the people here in Mingende. At present he walks out to the villages and is disadvantaged because he cannot take much equipment when he walks. There will be facilities also for people who come long distances to stay at the centre. All the people working at the Callan Resource Centre are nationals and show great care and concern for their clients.

I will definitely miss being part of this wonderful community.

Frances

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Those who can, do. Those who can do more, volunteer. - Unknown