Volume 25 No. 3 | Spring 2015
Missionaries overcome challenges to be
with PNG’s forgotten people
In a world of big cities and instant communications it is easy
to forget that in places like the Highlands of Papua New
Guinea, missionaries still walk for two days through rough
terrain and swollen rivers to reach the “forgotten” people in
Fr Stach Kilarski SVD has been missionary to the remotest
parts of PNG’s Enga Province since 1979, and is currently
stationed at Maramumi Parish in Wabag Diocese.
“I’ve been lucky enough to have been most of the time in
the really remote areas, in the so-called bush,” he says.
“There’s a lot of walking, but it’s been a good experience for
me to be in these remote, high altitude places.”
When he’s not walking from place to place, often for
days, Fr Stach sometimes uses a motorbike or even a
bicycle, depending on the terrain and the accessability. On
occasion, he asks the AUS Province to send him motorbike
parts and other crucial supplies, something the Province,
through its generous Partners in Mission, is very happy to
provide. The AUS Province has also recently sponsored
a new motorbike for another SVD missionary from the
Highlands of PNG.
“We don’t have
big villages here,
Fr Stach says.
“There is the
and then some
small places where
“Sometimes I can
ride to one of the bigger stations, but then, from there, it is
two days walk, across the river and through the bush to the
Fr Stach says the people in the remote Highlands face
difficult times, with little support from the government in
terms of health services and education.
“There are no health services here now. There used to be,
but then it stopped. And there is no education. They used
to have a health centre, police and agriculture, but now
everything is gone.”
Just this year some schools have started up again, after a 10