THE Right Rev Ben Seka, Bishop of the Diocese of Central Solomons (DOCS) in the Anglican Church of Melanesia (ACOM) officially laid down the diocesan Pastoral staff that was handed to him when he was consecrated Bishop of the diocese on February 20, 2011.
The laying down of the pastoral staff on the altar of the Diocesan Cathedral symbolises the act of relinquishing the authority vested upon him as the Diocesan Bishop of Central Solomons.
During the laying down of the Pastoral staff, the Retired Bishop said; “In compliance with the requirements of the Laws of the Anglican Church of Melanesia, I do hereby relinquish the authority vested upon me as the Diocesan Bishop of Central Solomons, by laying the Pastoral staff of this diocese on the Altar of this Diocesan Cathedral.”
Seka is the second Bishop of the diocese succeeding the late Bishop Charles Koete.
He served as Bishop of DOCS for 11 years. He was the Principal of Bishop Patteson Theological College (BPTC), Kohimarama when he was elected Bishop.
Archbishop of ACOM, the Most Rev Leonard Dawea in his acknowledgment speech after the ceremony, thanked Bishop Seka for his enormous contributions to the ACOM as a Priest and Bishop.
“Seka participated in various provincial decision-making bodies of the Church including the General Synod, Executive Council, Council of Bishops (CoB), Diocesan and Provincial electoral boards. Given his heavy involvement in these important decision-making bodies, it is not hard to see the extent of Bp. Seka’s influence in the life of the ACoM over the last 11 years.” Dawea said.
Retired Bishop Seka also thanked the ACOM and all members of the church for the support rendered to him and his family during his term as an active Priest and Bishop of the ACOM.
“To my diocesan staff who have been with me in the past and those who have just came into the diocese; we have shared, worshipped and celebrated together in the past 11 years. I thank you for your unceasing love and support in one way or the other. It’s time for me to move so that another Bishop will come and continue the work that God has chosen him to carry on.”
He also thanked the Member of Parliament for Ngella Constituency, Bartholomew Parapolo; the Premier, Stanley Manetiva and the Central Islands Provincial Government, other sister churches, business houses and stakeholders in Central Islands Province for the excellent working relationship, and the support rendered to the Diocese of Central Solomons during his eleven years as bishop of the diocese.
“Without your support, DOCS will not be able to achieve some of the achievements we have seen in the diocese.”
Representatives from the various parishes, districts, ministerial groups, institutions and family members have all echoed the same sentiment of acknowledgement to the retired Bishop for his fine achievements in the diocese and the whole church.
The newly completed and commissioned Bishop Seka Building that will house the diocesan head office with huge conference rooms both upstairs and ground floor, with kitchens and other amenities is one major achievement of Bishop Seka before retiring.
The Archbishop calls on the whole church to pray for Bishop Seka and his family as they take on a well-deserved retirement.
Bishop Seka will be succeeded by Rev. Stephen Koete (Bishop-Elect) who will be consecrated bishop on 27 February 2022. The Archbishop will be the supervising bishop of the diocese during this period of transition.