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National Day Of Repentance Papua New Guinea

Local Time

  • Timezone: America/New_York
  • Date: Aug 26 2023
  • Time: All Day


Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea


Aug 26 2023


All Day

National Day Of Repentance

Papua New Guinea observes the National Day of Repentance on August 26 each year. After assuming office in 2011, former Papua New Guinean Prime Minister Peter O’Neill created the National Day of Repentance public holiday. The day was set aside when churches asked Sam Abal, O’Neill’s predecessor, to do so before he was ousted from power by a no-confidence vote. Within a few days of the declaration, the first National Day of Repentance was observed.

There was some uncertainty at the time because the administration sent out very few details about the day’s goals. The Shema Evangelism Ministry’s Pastor Jack Edward was appointed coordinator of Repentance Day and declared that the day would be a time for families to gather to pray and seek God’s pardon for wrongs committed in the nation.

National Day Of Repentance

The purpose of Repentance Day is to dedicate a day to Christian prayer. Scrutinizing one’s behavior and expressing regret for past wrongs is known as repentance. This exercise is followed by a dedication to concrete actions that demonstrate and show a change for the better. Taking personal responsibility is the first step, and we should acknowledge our mistakes.

The second is regret: we ought to feel genuine regret for our errors as well as for the suffering and issues they have brought about. The third is resolve: irrespective of temptations or circumstances, we should be determined never to repeat the conduct. The country needed to repent from its pagan past, thus on the inaugural Repentance Day in 2011, a sizable totem pole and other pagan symbols that ornamented the parliament building were set on fire. It is significant to highlight that on this day, all businesses, government offices, and schools are closed. 

History Of National Day Of Repentance

Oceania is the area of the planet where Papua New Guinea is situated. The country is classified as a developing country by the International Monetary Fund (I.M.F.). The currently independent nation has a history of being colonized by other nations, such as Britain, Australia, and Germany. The monarch of Papua New Guinea continues to be Queen Elizabeth II because it is a Commonwealth realm.

Following independence, Papua New Guinea experienced weak governments that frequently disintegrated as a result of votes of no confidence in the national assembly. When Patrick O’Neill and Sir Michael Somare falsely claimed to be the Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea in 2011, the nation experienced a constitutional crisis. The Supreme Court supported Somare, but Parliament backed O’Neill. O’Neill became the nation’s prime minister after the elections in July 2012, and he continues to represent the people of Papua New Guinea until 2019.

In 2011, just two weeks after assuming the position of prime minister, O’Neill declared that August 26 would be a national holiday called National Repentance Day. A collection of churches first suggested the day to O’Neill’s predecessor Sam Abal. As the day of the 26th approached, there was reportedly some uncertainty among Papua New Guineans due to the government’s almost complete lack of explanation of the day’s purpose. The facilitator of Repentance Day is Pastor Jack Edward of the Shema Evangelism Ministry. He stated that the goal of the day is for people to “come together and pray and ask the Lord to forgive us for the wrongs that are happening in our country.”

In a country with a large Christian population, it was supposed to be a day of Christian prayer. The “spiritual head” of Papua New Guinea’s “4,000 practicing Muslims,” Imam Mikail Abdul Aziz, told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation that while he did not object to the concept, it would send the “wrong message” because repentance should take place frequently rather than just once a year. Due to the lack of publicity around the day, many businesses initially doubted if it was intended to be a public holiday, forcing them to either give their staff the day off or double pay them. A version of the Government Gazette was acquired by the Port Moresby Chamber of Commerce to persuade its members that it was a public holiday.

On August 26, 2011, prayer services were held in churches all around the nation. Representatives from 20 provinces, as well as different national officials and church leaders, gathered in Port Moresby, the nation’s capital, for a ceremony that included “special prayer and Bible readings” and “thanksgiving prayers.” Participants prayed for God to guide the country. A parish priest in Boroko declared that religious beliefs were important to their identity and our culture and that people’s church attendance on a public holiday demonstrated how differently Papua New Guinean identity differed from that of many other nations. On Karanget Island in Madang, people observed the day by having kids give the nation to God by placing the national flag on a church altar.

National Repentance Day in Papua New Guinea

How People Celebrate The National Day Of Repentance

All companies, offices, and schools are closed on the National Day of Repentance. The nation’s churches hold prayer services and other celebration-related events.

People Attend Churches

Repentance Day is a religious event celebrated as a day of Christian prayer. Therefore, people attend church and join the people of Papua New Guinea in prayer if they feel so inclined. A big totem pole and other pagan symbols that ornamented the government building were destroyed on the inaugural Repentance Day to symbolize the need for the nation to turn away from its pagan heritage. In other places, young people brought the national flag to church altars as a symbol of turning the country over to God.

People Learn About The History Of Papua New Guinea

The history of Papua New Guinea is lengthy. Therefore, people read up on the nation’s recent history during the celebration.

People Contribute To A Charitable Cause

Papua New Guineans’ quality of life is being improved by several philanthropic groups. People Consider donating to the less privileged people in the society during the celebration.

People Pray For Their Country During The Celebration

There are special prayers, Bible readings, and prayers of thanksgiving, in which many people implore God to guide the country. Church, prayer, and family are the main focus of the day, and people are urged to reflect on the past year and make amends for any transgressions they may have committed. It is held that religious principles are crucial to the achievement of the nation and that going to church on that particular day is crucial to the identity and culture of Papua, which sets that nation apart from other nations in the world.

Importance Of National Day Of Repentance

A Day Set Aside For Pleading With God For Forgiveness

The Shema Evangelism Ministry’s Pastor Jack Edward was appointed administrator of Repentance Day and declared that the day would be a time for people to gather to pray and seek God’s forgiveness for wrongs committed in the nation.

The Day Is Viewed As A Chance For People To Pray To God

People believe that gathering in prayer to retake Papua New Guinea on this day, the only way to create a thriving and successful Christian nation is to do so. When someone admits their failings, sins, failures, weaknesses, and moral corruption, it is thought that they have truly repented. As a result, this unique occasion is considered a chance to ask God, the source of all hope, strength, and blessings, for his help.

It Draws Attention To Popular Opinion.

Given that a significant portion of the population is Christian, the need for a holiday like this may be indicative of how the general public feels about the current state of affairs in the nation. The general mood of a nation should always be taken into consideration because it may point to stability or a lack thereof.

It Enlightens People On The Past Of Papua New Guinea

This holiday was declared during a turbulent period in Papua New Guinea’s history, although the nation has since recovered. As a result, people see this holiday as a fantastic opportunity to learn more about the political and social history of Papua New Guinea.

It Is A Distinctive Holiday

Religious holidays having no antecedent religious or historical significance are quite uncommon. It is fascinating to watch this phenomenon.

What To Give On National Day Of Repentance

You can offer prayers for your friends and those who observe this holiday in many ways. Some people even attended services on this day as they view it as a time to pray for their friends in solitude or via quiet thought. Additionally, people take advantage of this time to catch up with friends and relatives. On social media, users can use the hashtags #ReprentanceDay or #Buß-und-Bettag.

Conclusion National Day Of Repentance

Although Pastor Jack Edward, the Shema Evangelism Ministry’s repentance day coordinator, stated that the public holiday is commemorated on what was once an annual, unofficial day of prayer, the date has no apparent religious or historical relevance. Since Papua New Guinea is a country that is predominately Christian, National Repentance Day is intended to be a day of Christian prayer. In Papua New Guinea, the day has no religious significance. The purpose of the day is to simply “ask the Lord for forgiveness for the wrongs happening in Papua New Guinea” in a relaxed atmosphere of prayer.

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