A pioneer branch church that closed more than a decade ago in New Ireland Province, Papua New Guinea, reopened on April 10 after locals were introduced to the Bible Discovery Reading program.
Following an evangelism campaign in June 2019, many new contacts expressed interest in learning more about the Bible. This led to the formation of small groups and new church plants.
Pastor Julius Divu, the former personal Sabbath school director, ran training on the Discovery Bible Reading (DBR) program. After the training, church members ran DBR programs towards the third and fourth quarters of 2019. Further training was also provided by Dr Leigh Rice, leader of the Discipleship Ministries Team at the South Pacific Division.
During the recent COVID-19 lockdown the DBR program has flourished in homes and at new church plants. Many of the new contacts showed an interest in attending church, which led to the reopening of Namatanai Adventist Church. The church, which was established in 1997 by John Dau, had closed in 2008 due to a land owners’ association issue.
The branch church has an average attendance of 50 members every Sabbath. Out of 20 new contacts attending DBR programs, 12 have expressed their desire to be baptised and it is expected that there will be others soon.
One of the contacts is Jeroldine Kange, a mother of two children who has expressed interest in baptism. She and her mother, Pauline Tukiua, are principal land owners of the land where the church building is situated. Ms Kange said the DBR program has helped her to learn many new things and she can’t resist sharing them with others while she awaits baptism.