Kudjip Nazarene Mission Station, Papua New Guinea:   Please be praying for the effects of a tribal fight taking place in the area north of the Nazarene Hospital in Jiwaka Province.  

A local leader’s son was killed at Banz yesterday, which is a town about 15 minutes away from the Mission Station.   We are told the man started some disturbance at the market there.  He was attacked by a group of people and died as a result of his injuries. 

Tribal fighting is an all-to-common occurrence in PNG.
Tribal fighting is an all-to-common occurrence in PNG.

Today, many young men from the Kuma Tribe (one of the tribes neighboring the Mission Station) blocked a bridge into the area.  Many of our Hospital staff that live in the Banz area, could not come to work today because of this.  We are now hearing that many of the Kuma men went up to the Banz market and surrounded the area.  They have burned down buildings and houses in that area.  Many of our staff and Nazarene church members are trapped there with this fighting – feeling that their own properties and lives are threatened.  

There is a lot of potential for the fight to grow and spread,  affecting many others as both sides feel wronged. 

The Nazarene Hospital itself currently remains unaffected directly, but this will affect some of our staff and surrounding community.

This is truly a spiritual battle!  Many of our project workers are from the Kuma tribe.  Many recently gave their lives to Christ this past weekend at a spiritual retreat that the hospital held for them.  We even told those at the retreat that often, immediately after coming to Christ, there will be some big temptation.  It has certainly turned out that way.

The Nazarene Hospital has this week had some community tension over land issues and now today is a time that many in our community are having to decide to stay home and be a comfort to a grieving family… or go join a tribal fight that will only build destruction and death.  Satan knows there are no winners in these fights – both sides lose.

Please pray for our community leaders, these young men, police/authorities, etc.,  that they will do the right thing.  Pray for the protection of innocent lives and property.

— Submitted:  Dr. Scott Dooley – Nazarene Hospital Administrator & Rev. Harmon Schmelzenbach, Melanesia South Pacific Field Strategy Coordinator.