Earthquake Damages Foursquare Churches

Southern Highlands and Hela Provinces, Papua New Guinea
By Dr. Steve Highlander

Papua New Guinea experienced the first major earthquake centered in the Highlands region on 26th, February, 2018 at 4 AM. The 7.5 magnitude earthquake and numerous aftershocks devastated portions of Southern Highlands and Hela Provinces with landslides, major property damage and the loss of over 100 lives to date. Many people are still reported as missing.

Relief efforts are have been hindered by the remote terrain and the fact that roads, airports and other infrastructure has been severely damaged. The flowing is a report from Rev Henry Kopilyo, Foursquare Provincial Superior on the ground in the affected regions.

Just 23 hours before the earthquake many of the Foursquare pastors in the affected areas left their homes and churches to attend the annual Foursquare Pastor’s and Leader’s Convention in Goroka.

According to Kopilyo, “We are safe but we lost our friends, love ones, Churches, houses and properties. Due to road and network cut off’ I am finding difficult to provide full details and photos of Foursquare Churches and Christian’s in the Province. Foursquare family and friends, here are some of the highlights of damage done by the earthquake.” He went on to mention, “One of our Foursquare ministers is living in a chicken house with his family after their home was destroyed.”
1. Concrete floor was split from the door way and across to
the pulpit and it’s unsafe for next earthquake.
2. Musical Instruments – 8 channel Pevey Mixer, Bass Amp
and Bass Guitar, two Pevey speakers were destroyed.
3. Office Computer and monitor was smashed.
4. Two bedroom youth house was destroyed.
5. 9000 litter water tank was ruined.
1. Pimaga church is sliding and it’s not safe to have church
2. The Pastor’s house is also sliding and families are in Mendi
Town Foursquare Church Care center.
3. Hinu Kutubu, Evangelist Charlie Dumaes’ permanent house was completely destroyed and families are living in the chicken house.
1. Mill Foursquare Church was one side that has buckled and is no longer safe for services.

Rev. Kopilyo asked for prayer and financial support to help with the effort to re-establish the Foursquare churches, homes and ministries impacted by this disaster. He issued the following statement,” Foursquare family and friends, we need your support for God to give us strength and provide finance to rebuild, maintenance and to cover the cost damaged by the earthquake.”

Please pray and give to support the many Foursquare families that have been devastated by the earthquake. See official damage reports below.

Report with photos from the Foursquare Care Centre that is housing displaced church families Click here to see Care Centre photos and report

Official reports with damages and photos Diaster Reports and photos: Click Here

Metikau Ektabi – Serving God for Over 50 Years

Ps. Metikau Ektabi has been preaching the Foursquare Gospel for over 50 years. He gave his life to Christ at a crusade held by Dr. Mason Hughes, the original Foursquare missionary to Papua New Guinea. Currently he is working with younger pastors encouraging them in the work and sharing his experience as a missionary, evangelist and pastor. Here is part of Ps. Metikau’s story in his own words.

“I was saved in 1958 when I was about 10 years old. I can remember it was one special morning that brother (Mason) Hughes was preaching, I remember one of the older men and myself went forward and gave our hearts to Jesus. After that I attended Sunday School under Mama (Virgene) Hughes. I learned all about Jesus in Sunday School. From there it was really something how God worked in my life.”

Ps. Metikau first went to school in 1961. In 1966 he went to high school. “After 1966 I went straight the mission field acting like a pastor. Now they make pastors quickly, but back them we had to work with other ministries first. I traveled around with a missionary interpreting for him.” Metikau says he speaks 13 dialects. “When I go to these provinces I speak and preach in these languages and interpret for others. It was an exciting life.

In 1969 he attended Bible school for a year. After Bible school he continued in the ministry. “In 2017 I celebrated 50 years of ministry,” he said with a big smile.

When asked what he considered the biggest miracle he ever saw, he responded quickly. “People turning to God. The biggest miracle is someone turning their heart to God and seeing the excitement on their faces because of the savior and new life they have. We have also seen so many families healed. Broken mothers mended together and restored. Families are important, and we have seen many families touched by God and many lost sheep coming back.”

We also saw many healings, but I had a question. I wanted to see a big miracle happen. In 1970 I was coming home in the rain and my motorbike slid off the road into a drain. It was stuck, and I could not get it out no matter how hard I tried because it was so slick. With the motor still running I prayed to God to give me strength and I lifted the motorbike up like it was a bicycle. I don’t know how many kilograms it weighed, but it was stuck before, and I couldn’t get it out. God supernaturally gave me the strength the lift it out of the drain by myself. That experience always gave me the strength to serve God.”

Today Ps. Metikau has stepped out of his pastoral role into an apostolic one. God spoke to me to help other pastors because of my experience in my earlier years. You can look to your own ministry, but it is important to consider the ministries of others and help them succeed, because we are all part of the same Body of Christ. “God called me to help other pastors and that is what I have been doing for the last 15 years.”

(Author’s Note: Pastor Metikau would love to hear from anyone who would like to visit with him for encouragement in your Christian life or ministry. He asked me to share his phone number, so you could contact him. +675 7479-6316. Why not bless this faithful brother with a call and thank him for his years of faithful service to God in PNG?)