Caption: PNG Ambassador to China, Amb. John Momis, Madam Elizabeth Momis, embassy staff Lisa Gabina and other PNG students in China. Pic courtesy of Albert Tobby.
SHENG dan jie kuai le may sound strange to you. Let me add “Xin nian kuai le”.
This is mouth full! But it literally means, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. From China, this scribe wish you sheng dan jie kuai le he Xin nian kuai le.
Try greet a Chinese friend and see how surprising he would be. And hope you pronounce it correctly!
Christmas falls on Thursday 25. But from China, this scribe and other PNG students would like to wish you sheng dan jie kuai le he Xin nian kuai le.
Papua New Guinea (PNG) and China have gone through various achievements and challenges this year.
In the region, there are lots of threatening events, like the continuous suicide attacks on the streets of Pakistan to the recent terrorist attack at Mumbai Hotel, the recent murder of businessman, Sir George Constantinou to the world financial crunch.
But as a Christian nation, PNG has good reasons to uphold the significance of Christmas, despite the set-backs, which are the cause of human ignorance, except the recent tidal waves in PNG caused by “mother nature”.
Christmas is an annual holiday that marks and honors the birth of Jesus of Nazareth.
Modern customs of the holiday include gift-giving, church celebrations, and the display of various decorations - including the Christmas tree.
Santa Claus (Father Christmas) is a popular mythological figure often associated with bringing gifts.
Christmas is celebrated throughout the Christian population, but is also celebrated by many non-Christians as a secular, cultural festival.
This scribe and other PNG students in China would like to convey their Seasonal Greetings to you and loved ones.
They left the family comforts and the motherland for China to acquire relevant knowledge that one day would be of relevance to PNG.
In this time when their families gather together for the festivity, they will miss the atmosphere and the re-union.
Albert K. Tobby from Sinasina Yongomugl District, Simbu Province is a student at Tsinghua University, Beijing, doing Masters in International Development.
He also conveys his Greetings to Madang AOG Town Church Ps. Venny Junimbo and family and the temple boys, members of the Simbu Born Again Students Association (SBSA) and relatives from both Simbu and W.H.P.
“My Christmas message to you all is to remain in the presence of God and you will still be praising God despite your age, status, location and situations (Psalms 84:4)”, Albert said.
“Sengdan jie kuai le” to all the Chinese in PNG. Having a traditional culture that is deeply rooted in family relations, I believe you find the similarities with your PNG friends. zhu nimen da sheng hua hen fengfu ye hen jiangkang,” said Albert.
Albert is also appreciating the China-PNG relations with the coming to an end of one chapter and the beginning of the new chapter next year.
“Many things have happened between China and PNG this year. Some were positive while some are negative, some are great achievements while some are loss,” Said Albert.
However, Albert appreciates that both sides were able to manage the relations smartly both at the government and people level.
“These two countries have rich treasures of untapped potential and therefore if cultivated properly in the coming years, we can achieve the unpredictable development results and shock the whole world.”
China has a proven track record of achieving massive economic development which creates a totally new development model for all developing countries.
China is now an economic super power and is increasingly influencing global development policies, however at the same time, there are many other global players who sees China's rise as a threat and were continuously devising strategies to contain China.
Albert commented that China also seeks strategic development partners and PNG being strategically located as the only land bridge between Asia and Pacific region can benefit.
“It all depends on the relations we develop in the coming years,” he said.
The New Year’s message from Albert is that in the last six years, PNG has seen stable economic growth and politics which are two fundamental prerequisites for national development.
“We all understand that the growth is mainly from mineral boom and export of natural mineral resources. But these are non-renewable resources and will exhaust one day.”
“If we do not convert the gains today for sustainable tangible development then PNG will have a gloomy future.”
“We need strong leadership to show clear directions and lead in doing their personal best so that majority will follow. God Bless Papua New Guinea and Merry Christmas,” Albert said.
Master Student, Tonny Kepou at Shanghai University passes his Christmas and New Year Greetings to all his family members and hausline (Dad, Stk, Narx, PK & JK) especially in Madang, Lae, POM, Manus, Popondetta.
“Also, not forgetting hausline and all the family friends around PNG,” said Tonney
Kalakai Kange, Daniel Angelo Wak in Beijing passes his Christmas greetings to all his friends and relatives in PNG, the Opa Korpan family in Hagen and POM, his uncles, the Raim Rakandui family, the congregation of Miracle Valley and Kiminga Local Church and the boys at Kalakai Market.
“Also Hannah in brizzy, the cycors and Nana, you all have a very Mary x-mass and a blessed New Year.”
“Greetings and a very Merry Christmas to the Chinese community in PNG. Sengdan jie kuai le he xin nian kuai le.” Said Daniel.
From Miruma home base in Upper Asaro, Daulo, EHP is Gene D. Iyovo majoring Algae Biodiesel, masters program at Biosystems & Bioprocess Engineering School of Biotechnology, Jiangnan University.
“Pikosa Revival Church International, and Saints, greetings in the name of the Mighty One. Hold onto the Faith, faith is a treasure.”
“Lae Revival Church International, Pastor Cletus, greetings from China, Do not think the Word has not yet reached China. Is flowing through like wild fire also as far out into Russia,” said Gene.
“Yesu Christo is coming sooner than we think! To all the Christians in PNG, this Christmas moves one step closer to God, get real with Yesu, change your church going attitude to personal relation with HIM,” Gene advises.
“I pray for better symbiotic-relation for better developments and benefits between the two states.” He says.
Jeffers Teargun Heptol from Northeastern University Shenyang, the powerful man of God firmly believes that Jesus is better than Santa.
“As the season approaches for people around the world to feel the essence of Christmas, there are some people who do not really know the real meaning of Christmas.”
“For example here in China, I have asked couple of local people about the Christmas and their response was “it’s a season when Santa Claus comes to give them gifts”,” he said.
“It sounds funny but it is real and indeed sad. How privilege is for PNG to have a joyous celebration on the birth day of the Savoir of the World,” Jeffers said.
“Santa lives at the North Pole but Jesus is every where. To see Santa, you have to stand in the line but Jesus is as close as the mention of His name.”
“Santa does not know your name but Jesus does. Santa has a belly like a bowl full of jelly but Jesus has a heart full of love.”
“Santa puts gifts under your tree but Jesus became our gift and died on the tree. We need to put Christ back in Christmas. Jesus is the reason for the Season.”
Jeffers also appeals to PNG to raise the banner of righteousness.
“Couple of days ago, I was watching a documentary on corruptions in all systems in PNG including Forestry, Policing, and Politics to name a few. It really touched my heart and I cried.”
“Then the Lord spoke to my heart and said, “In 2009, people who are embracing corruption will be removed from the face of PNG and all forms of corruption will be exposed”.
“People have suffered long enough and now its time for God to take revenge.”
“When Jesus was born, the wise men from the east have come to see Him in Bethlehem in a manger. They brought gifts like gold, silver and oil for nurturing the body of Jesus.”
“Now the Word of God which represents Jesus is in PNG and we have all this gifts of gold, silver and oil. These gifts are not for anyone but for the Body of Jesus.”
“Body of Jesus is the Church and Church is the People of PNG. The Body of Jesus has suffered long enough and anyone found involving in corruption will be exposed and removed in the New Year. God has a way to deal with such as He did even in the Old Testament,” Jeffers said.
Given the special occasion, Jeffers remembers his lovely parents and brothers and sends them his special Christmas greetings.
“I pray that you all will be safe and healthy. On the same note, I remember all the TSCF students and graduates throughout PNG.”
“Not forgetting Godly parents at Unitech; Gonduans, Sakulas, Baliolios and Namba Tumu family in Madang.”
Finally, this scribe wishes all prisoners throughout the country a blessed Christmas. The system hates you but God loves you.
To the sick in hospital beds, the pains you endure pierce Gods’ heart. Whisper to God in prayer with faith and walk out from your sick bed.
To the poor and vulnerable on the streets thinking of what to eat tomorrow, God shall pour showers of blessings and feed, shelter and use you to extend His kingdom.
For the criminals, murders, rapists, those heavily engaging in tribal fights, this scribe pray that you surrender and humble yourself under the Cross.
To the Christmas babies, this scribe welcomes you and prays that you do not wake up to the economic, social and moral breakdown of the society but in the comfort of your mother and the patriotism of PNG.