Provincial Directory - Religious Communities

Popondota  Congregation of the Sisters of the Visitation of Our Lady

Popondota  Society of St Francis (Pacific Islands Province)

Popondota  The Melanesian Brotherhood (Papua New Guinea)

CVL - Congregation of the Sisters of the Visitation of Our Lady 

Founded 1964

In the early 1960s, three young women accompanied a Holy Name Sister to Hetune, a site near Popondetta in the then Northern Province, in order to test their vocation to the Religious Life. The group became known as the Community of the Visitation and for the next twenty years remained concentrated at Hetune, making two attempts at opening further communities, first at Madang, then at Dotura.

The Congregation, on the basis of its spirituality springing from the life and discipleship of Our Lady, focuses its apostolate on the family which it undertakes through complementary ministries of hospitality within its own community houses and visiting in family homes and centres of family activity.

The Christian Family Life and other spiritual enrichment courses are conducted by the Sisters to people of all ages. We have spiritual affirmation with Roman Catholic Religious, and every year in March we participate in the Federation of Religious and Women Conference. The Sisters have now established capacity building and the Community Development Centre in the Convent.

Contact Details

Name: Sister Naomi Faith CVL  (Guardian, assumed office 26 October 1998)
Address: Convent of the Visitation Hetune, Box 18, Popondota, Oro Province, Papua New Guinea

SSF - Society of St Francis (Pacific Islands Province) 

Founded 1921

The Society of St Francis has diverse origins in a number of Franciscan groups which drew together during the 1930s to found one Franciscan Society. SSF in its widest definition includes First Order Brothers, First Order Sisters (CSF), Second Order Sisters (OSC) and a Third Order. The First Order shares a common life of prayer, fraternity and a commitment to the poor.

SSF friars went from England to Papua New Guinea in the late 1950s and the first Australian house was established in 1964. The first New Zealand house followed in 1970. In 1981, the Pacific Province was divided into two: Australia/New Zealand and the Pacific Islands.

Contact Details

Name: Clifton Henry SSF  (Regional Minister)
Address: St Mary of the Angels Friary, Haruro, PO Box 78, Popondota, Oro Province, Papua New Guinea
Tel: 329 7060
Email: Email

Other Addresses:

Address: All Saints' Friary Dipoturu, PO Box 78, Popondota 241, Oro Province, PNG

Address: Saint Margaret's Friary Katerada, PO Box 78, Popondota 241, Oro Province, PNG

Address: St Francis Friary Koke, PO Box 1103, Port Moresby, NCD, PNG
Tel: 320 1499

Address: Douglas House, PO Box 3411, Chinatown Lane, Morobe Province, PNG.
Tel: 472 1842

Address: Philip Friary Ukaka, PO Box 22, Alotau, Milne Bay Province, PNG

MBH - The Melanesian Brotherhood (Papua New Guinea) 

Founded 1925

The Melanesian Brotherhood was founded by Ini Kopuria, a native Solomon Islander from Guadalcanal, in 1925. Its main purpose was evangelistic, to take and live the Gospel in the most remote islands and villages throughout the Solomon Islands, among people who had not heard the message of Christ. The Brotherhood's method is to live as brothers to the people, respecting their traditions and customs: planting, harvesting, fishing, house building, eating and sharing with the people in all these things. Kopuria believed that Solomon Islanders should be converted in a Melanesian way.

Today, the work of the Brotherhood has broadened to include work and mission among both Christians and non-Christians. The Melanesian Brotherhood now has three regions: Solomon Islands, Papua New Guinea, and Vanuatu & Fiji. They have also opened two households and a community centre in Palawan, the Philippines.

The Brotherhood aims to live the Gospel in a direct and simple way following Christ's example of prayer, mission and service. The brothers take the vows of poverty, chastity and obedience, but these are not life vows but for a period of five years, which can be renewed. They train for three years as novices and make their vows as brothers at the Feast of St Simon and St Jude.

Contact Details

Name: Brother John Septimas MBH  (Regional Headbrother, assumed office October 2003)
Address: Dobuduru Regional Headquarters, Haruro, PO Box 29, Popondota, Oro Province, Papua New Guinea