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Archdiocese of Agana prays for New Caledonia

By Pacific Island Times News Staff

The Archdiocese of Agana asked the clergy and the Catholic faithful to pray for the people of New Caledonia, who are currently engulfed in a crisis resulting from deadly protests over the French government's voting reform.

Violence and rioting erupted in the capital of Noumea this week in a frightening

 time of political and social conflict.

According to international media outlets, the death toll has increased to six, including three members of the indigenous people known as Kanaks and two police officials.

Guam's archdiocese is a member of the Episcopal Conference of the Pacific, also known as Conferentia Episcopalis Pacifici. New Caledonia hosted CEPAC’s last plenary assembly in November 2023.

"We’ve been alongside New Caledonia and other Pacific islands such as the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, Samoa, Fiji and the Marshall Islands, among others," church officials said.

"Aside from the Church, Guam has forged bonds of goodwill and friendship with our Pacific brothers and sisters from New Caledonia and other islands in sports, culture and the arts during the Pacific Games and  the  Festival 

of Pacific Arts and Culture (FestPAC) since the 1960s and early 70s," the archdiocese said.

Bishop Ryan Jimenez, CEPAC president and head of the Diocese of Chalan Kanoa, asked the Catholic faithful "to join together in prayer for peace in New Caledonia, that all parties may come to the table with open hearts and minds, willing to listen and work towards a just and lasting resolution."

CEPAC officials said they also pray that "the voices of the Kanak people are heard and respected and that their rights and aspirations are recognized and upheld."


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