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Melanesian Messenger Online distributed by the
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COM MOURNS LOSS OF FIRST MELANESIAN ARCHBISHOP
 
MELANESIAN MESSENGER 081113-1
November 13, 2008

[Melanesian Messenger - Melanesia] The Anglican Church of Melanesia today mourns the loss of the one of its great pioneer and spiritual leaders Archbishop Emeritus Norman Kitchner Palmer.

The Late Archbishop Emeritus was called to rest this afternoon at his residential home in Honiara in the presence of family members and his wife Elizabeth Lucy Palmer.

The Late Archbishop Emeritus was the first Melanesian to be consecrated and enthroned as Archbishop when the Province of Melanesia became independent from New Zealand in 1975.

A pioneer Melanesian Archbishop, he has contributed a lot to the development and growth of the Church and has devoted his whole life to the service of God in Melanesia.

The Archbishop Emeritus comes from Munda in New Georgia Western province. He attended Kokengolo primary school before he went to Pawa School on Makira.

In 1952 Archbishop Emeritus attended Teaote College, New Zealand where he graduated with a School Certificate and in 1957 graduated with Teaching Certificate at Ardmore Teachers College, Auckland.

He return and taught at King George six school at Alegegeo in Auki from 1958 to 1960 before he answered a call to study Theology at St. Johns College in New Zealand in 1962. He graduated there with a Licentiate of Theology in 1965. In 1966 he went back to Pawa for a year and later became Head Master of Alangaula School also on Ugi from 1967 to 1969 and then became the Head Master of St. Nicholas Mission School in Honiara.

Archbishop Emeritus Norman Palmer was Dean of St. Barnabas Provincial Cathedral in Honiara when he was elected Archbishop.

He became not only the second Archbishop but the first Melanesian to be at any one time a bishop and an Archbishop without being first becoming a bishop.

He retired as Archbishop in 1987 and continued to faithfully serve the Church of Melanesia up until his passing away this afternoon.

The 80 year old teacher, preacher, educator and a devoted father has left an indelible legacy of his work in Melanesia which will long be remembered by the Church.

Archbishop Emeritus Norman Kitchner Palmer is survived by his wife Elizabeth Lucy and his four children Loretta, Trevor, Michael and John Palmer.

His funeral service will be held this Sunday afternoon at the Provincial Cathedral before his body is taken to his retirement home on New Georgia in the Western Province.

All members are asked to remember the family at this time of bereavement.