The Rt Revd James Ayong, the Bishop Aipo Rongo, has been elected the new Archbishop of the Anglican Church of Papua New Guinea (PNG) by the Provincial Council. He will succeed the Most Revd Bevan Meredith who has retired.
Bishop James Ayong has been the Bishop of Aipo Rongo for a year. He was formerly a parish priest of Gerehu parish in the Diocese of Port Moresby before he succeeded Bishop Paul Richardson as Bishop last May.
Bishop James was born in a cave in Kumbun, West New Britain in 1944, as bombs were falling nearby during the time when the Allies were trying to recover the area from the Japanese. His first employment was as a Local Government Officer. In 1976 he became Purchasing Officer and Radio Operator for the Anglican Diocesan Office in Lae where he also assisted with the translation of the Bible into Pidgin. In 1980 he started his ordination training at Newton College and graduated from there in 1982 with a Diploma in Theology. He then worked in parish work in Lae and studied for a Bachelor of Theology Degree from Martin Luther Seminary. After his ordination to the priesthood in 1984 he was posted to Popondetta to work in the cathedral parish. He returned to Newton College in 1987 as a Lecturer in Old Testament Studies and Theology and became the CollegeUs Principal two years later. In 1993 he came to Britain with his wife Gawali to study for an MA at Chichester Theological College. On his return to PNG he was appointed Parish Priest of Gerehu and then in 1995 was consecrated Bishop.