PRIME Minister Manasseh Sogavare has graced the Pathfinders during the opening ceremony of the 3rd Trans Pacific Union Mission (TPUM) Pathfinder camporee event on Tuesday.
Sogavare took the honor, not only as Prime Minister but also an ordained elder of the leadership structure of the SDA church to deliver the official address at the opening ceremony.
“‘Hear the call’ the theme to direct the minds and interests of a movement that is made up of young growing intelligent group of people that will become leaders in the church, the government and the private sectors of our respective countries,” Sogavare stated.
“I understand that we have pathfinders from other nations in the region attending. On behalf of the people and government of Solomon Islands I warmly welcome you to our shores.
“Please enjoy our simple Melanesian hospitality during your short stay with us.
“We have a greater bond that binds us even stronger and that is our membership of the great movement to prepare people for the coming of our lord.
“I would like this opportunity to thank the Seventh Day Adventist church for appreciating that the church as an organization as a very important partner in the development of our respective countries and must be organised so as to be relevant for the time in which we are living.
“We are a movement with a mission and purpose challenged to be worthy partners in the great commission and incentive by the savior himself that he will come again to take us home.
“As politician and leader of this country it brings Joy to our hearts to see young people taking part in Character building activities.
“The pathfinder movement in Solomon Islands is acknowledged in our long term development plan as a strategy to implement the national youth policy under the partnership approach to implementing our national development strategy and the United Nations sustainable development goals.
“Young people up to 15 years of age make up about 34 percent of the population distribution of the 15 states and territories in the Pacific.
“ Solomon Islands averaged at 39 percent and this is more than one third of the country’s population so ensuring this vulnerable age group directed in a right path is not an easy task and the government does not pretend to be able to do that without the support of our churches in particular.
“As the matter of fact there is very little that the government can do apart from setting the broad policy guideline on that note the government highly commend the Seventh Day Adventist church for being an effective part of this regard you stand tall,’’ said Sogavare.
The event ended Friday.
By BRYAN LUVENA