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Diocese marks double anniversary

Purwokerto celebrates twin milestones with proclamation of Good News

Bishop Sunarka (middle) concelebrating the Holy Mass
Bishop Sunarka (middle) concelebrating the Holy Mass
  • Robertus Sutriyono, Purwokerto
  • Indonesia
  • November 21, 2011
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Proclamation of the Good News was the highlight of Jesuit Bishop Julianus Sunarka of Purwokerto’s 11th anniversary as a bishop and the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Indonesian Church.

Both anniversaries were celebrated yesterday with a Mass concelebrated by the prelate and dozens of priests. About 4,000 brothers, nuns and Catholics from all 24 parishes attended the event at the Satria Sport Building in Purwokerto, Central Java.

Bishop Sunarka, 69, acknowledged that adding to Catholic numbers is not easy. “But proclaiming the Good News is the most effective way of doing so. The way we do that is by developing parishes in villages so that more Catholics can serve others,” he said.

In this way, he added, “people can experience ‘an inner baptism’ through the recognition of human values.”

He also called on Catholics to spread God’s love.

“As Catholics, we must be pioneers. The Church in Purwokerto must see the future with the spirit of love,” he maintained.

Bishop Sunarka’s episcopal ordination was on September 8, 2000 and the Church in Indonesia on January 3, 1961.

The diocese now serves about 60,000 Catholics.
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