The visiting Archbishop of Canterbury The Most Reverend Justin Welby yesterday paid tribute and respect to the graves of the seven martyred Melanesian Brothers during a visit to Brotherhood headquarter in Tambalia, North West Guadalcanal.
At the same time he also unveiled a monumental cross in front of the cemetery in honour of the seven members of the Melanesian Brotherhood.
They were killed in 2003 and properly buried in 2004 at Tambalia.
Brother Nathaniel Sado was the first brother to be killed. Three of the brothers who went to look for him had been shot and killed upon arrival and were buried in a single grave. The other three who went with them revealed signs that they had also been beaten and tortured and shot on the following day and were also buried in one grave.
Archbishop Welby was accompanied by his wife, two other officials, Archbishop Reverend David Vunagi, Anglican officials and some government’s officials including the Royal Solomon Island Police Force (RSIPF).
In his brief speech Archbishop Welby thanked the brotherhoods (Tasiu) for their bravery and sacrifices in trying to restore peace in Guadalcanal but were killed.
“I would like to thank those seven Anglican brotherhoods (Tasiu) for their sacrifice and bravery while trying to bring peace but were killed.
“The Church would always remember their service and work as brothers for this country,’’Archbishop Welby said.
Following the unveiling of the cross Archbishop Welby was also given a honour to offer a dedicatory pray sprinkled Holy Water around the monument.
Members of Brotherhood and members of the church and around the area turned up to witness the ceremony.
Minister of culture and tourism (MCT) Samuel Manetoali was also present at the occasion.
In 2004 the then Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams visited the country and also paid tribute to the fallen brotherhoods.
By DENVER NEWTER