3 September 2020 | The government of Papua New Guinea (PNG) has decided to declare the country a Christian nation and has gained the support of the Seventh-day Adventist leadership in the country.
Pastor Kepsie Elodo, president of the Papua New Guinea Union Mission, said the decision was appropriate, given that 96% of the population is Christian.
“It’s about time that the world must know that the official religion in PNG is Christianity,” said Elodo, according to an August 24 article on news site Loop.
The leader of the Adventist denomination in PNG argued that declaring the country a Christian nation would help strengthen the population’s Christian beliefs and principles.
“Not only are we declaring to the world that we are a Christian country but we are declaring to God that He is our God,” said the Adventist leader.
Elodo also suggested business hours from Monday to Friday only, allowing Adventists to worship on Saturdays and other Christians on Sunday.
“We must be practicing Christians. We need to respect religious liberty.”
Elodo also recommended the country’s Christian status be articulated in its own clause in the constitution, as well as in the preamble.
PNG’s prime minister, the Honorable James Marape, is a Seventh-day Adventist. The Papua New Guinea Union Mission is part of the denomination’s South Pacific Division.