John and Della Rea have been invited by Anglican Primate of Papua New Guinea, the Most Revd James Ayong, to work for the Province as Project & Development Officers, as the Church copes with a deteriorating economic and social situation. They will share responsibilities, fulfilling a long cherished wish to work again in a developing country. John and Della come from the Edinburgh diocese, where they are members of the Scottish Episcopal Church.
John is Chair of the International Anglican Family Network and, until September, a member of the Joint Primates/Anglican Consultative Council Standing Committees and the Anglican Observer to the UN's Advisory Council. He is currently Director of Fundraising for the Children's Hospice Association of Scotland "CHAS".
Della, until the end of the academic year, was Head Teacher of Deans Community High School in a disadvantaged area of Livingston, which provides comprehensive education for adult learners and 860 students aged 12-17.
This new appointment will be funded jointly by PNGCP and USPG, with Papua New Guinea Church Partnership as the principal agency. USPG's David Craig said, "The joint appointment with PNGCP is an exciting development and your prayers are asked for John and Della."
The Province, which was inaugurated with five dioceses in 1977, is this year celebrating its Silver Jubilee.
Archbishop James Ayong comments, "We are happy that John and Della have responded to our appeal to help us move towards a stage where we may begin to be realistically a self-supporting Church; they will work alongside us helping to make our dream become a reality."
The couple will be based in Mt Hagen, undertaking considerable travel around the Province, as they assist dioceses and institutions to identify and implement sustainable projects, and to source development funding. It is planned that John and Della will travel to PNG in late April via Oceania to meet partners in the region and, after some months in post, will attend the orientation course offered by the ecumenical Melanesian Institute in Goroka.
"We are delighted at the prospect of working with the Anglican Church in Papua New Guinea," they said. "It feels both exciting and not a little scary to us, as we prepare for the challenge of working in a new and unfamiliar culture. We look forward to the steep learning curve that surely awaits us in PNG; learning to listen, appreciate and hopefully contribute in a very different way over the next couple of years."
Article from: Papua New Guinea Church Partnership