|James Simon Ayong|
|Bishop of Aipo-Rongo and Archbishop of Papua New Guinea|
|In office||1996 — present|
Kumbun, West New Britain, Territory of New Guinea
|Previous post||Bishop of Aipo-Rongo
Bishop of Aipo-Rongo (incumbent)
James Simon Ayong, born in a cave in Kumbun, West New Britain in 1944, has been the Anglican Archbishop of Papua New Guinea since 19 June 1996. As Archbishop, Ayong also is the Primate of The Anglican Church of Papua New Guinea. He has served as a parish priest in rural and metropolitan Papua New Guinea and — unusually among indigenous Papua New Guinean clergy — studied overseas, in England.
Archbishop Ayong is the first prelate in the church of Papua New Guinea to come from elsewhere in the country than the eastern Papuan heartland of the country's Anglican Church.
At the time of his birth Australian New Guinea (the northern half of eastern New Guinea and the New Guinea Islands) was under occupation by the forces of Japan during World War II and Japanese forces and Papuan tribesman sympathetic to the Japanese cause had recently executed the New Guinea Martyrs.
In 1982, James Ayong earned his diploma in Theology from Newton College, in Papua New Guinea. He would earn a Bachelor of Theology from Martin Luther Seminary, in Lae. Martin Luther Seminary is a joint clergy-training venture of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Papua New Guinea and the Gutnius Lutheran Church of Papua New Guinea. He earned his Master of Arts degree from Chichester Theological College, in England, in 1994.
Summary of Career
- Local Government Officer
- Purchasing Officer and Radio Operator for the Anglican Diocesan Office in Lae, 1976–1980
- Ordination training at Newton College, 1980–1982
- Assistant priest, Lae, 1982–1987
- Lecturer in Old Testament Studies and Theology, Newton College, 1987–1989
- Principal, Newton College, 1989–1993
- Chichester Theological College, England, 1993–1994
- Parish Priest of Gerehu, 1994–1995
- Bishop of Aipo Rongo, 1995 to date
- Archbishop of Papua New Guinea 1996 to 2009
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