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New Adventist president for PNG elected

Pastor Kepsie Elodo is the new president of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Papua New Guinea.

“I am humbled,” said Pastor Elodo, reflecting on his appointment, which was announced late yesterday.  “God has called. My motto, and my family’s motto, is: 'The Lord calls, we follow.' Wherever the Church calls we believe that God is calling us.”

Pastor Elodo has served as president of the Bougainville Mission of the Seventh-day Adventist Church for the past three years. Before that, he worked in administration at the Papua New Guinea Union Mission, South-West Papua Mission, North-East Papua Mission, Madang Manus Mission and Eastern Highlands Simbu Mission, where he also served as a local pastor and district director.

At Bougainville, Pastor Elodo was instrumental in reconciliation ministry among a population still carrying the scars of a bitter civil war. He hopes to bring this emphasis into his new role.

“My passion is reconciliation,” he said. “I want to put the Church — with the help of God and the leadership, right down to the lay people — in order, like King Hezekiah. People have differences even in the Church, different thoughts and feelings, but if they can have peace — peace with God and peace with each other — then respect and trust and unity are built.”

Pastor Elodo has also been a strong advocate for reconciliation among family members, with domestic and family violence among the big issues in PNG.

Originally from Efogi, Pastor Elodo grew up along the Kokoda Track. He studied ministry at Sonoma College and more recently at Pacific Adventist University.

“His spiritual leadership has been very prayerful and people focused,” said Pastor Glenn Townend, president of the South Pacific Division of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

Pastor Elodo replaces Pastor Geoffrey Pomaleu, who died from health complications in July. 610285

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