At our last meeting held Tuesday 11th December our fellow member Rev. Mal Dunnett delivered a Christmas message titled
wantok (plural wantoks)
(Melanesia, Papua New Guinea) A close comrade; a person with whom one has a strong social bond, usually based on shared language.
Usage notes: May be used to casually address a friend: Hello wantok.
Noun wantok 1. a close friend, to whom one gives complete loyalty 2. any person with a shared set of Melanesian cultural values, usually based on speaking a closely related language.
Mal explained to us that in the Solomon Island Christmas is celebrated with the knowledge that although Jesus was born with nothing to poor parents, however he was rich as he had wontok. He was loved by his family and he had mercy, compassion and he cared for others. Wantok is belonging and being loved and valued within the family and extended friends. Mal suggested we use Christmas to celebrate our wantok.
Thank you Mal for your effort.
Mal also told us about his plans for another trip to the Solomon Islands in September 2019 with a team of 8 Indigenous members, 4 members of Anglicare, 4 teachers and 1 CPA. There is room for more participants. If your interested contact Mal.