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29 March 2016

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Thank you for this very inspiring article Fr Roche. You are indeed a great man. I wish you the best of health so that you can continue to serve the people you love most.

Hi you are choosen by God and you are a Great man who brings the Word of God to PNG. Thanks so much.

Fr Garry, I was very inspired to read your lifetime story. You were a Board Member of Mt Hagen General Hospital when I was Director of Finance & Administration from 2001-10.

In those Board meetings I had to present the hospital's financial reports. I never got to ask you about your background then, now through this article I know. Truly inspirational.

Father, I still remember that moment when I was in need during my studies at Divine Word University and you helped me in cash to purchase a laptop after mine had been stolen.

You have invested a lot in the people of Papua New Guinea, especially in the Western Highlands Province, both physically and spiritually.

May the Good Lord continue to bless you in whatever things you are doing now.

Hi Father Garry remember me Jim Bradley. Hagen 1973 I had the old jeep from the war.

Garry great to hear you are still with us. Do you remember John Murray? He sent the article on to me.

Well Garry, myself and Joy are still going strong, it must be the great job you did at our wedding in Mt Hagen on 8 January 1972,

I often think of the meals and beers we drank together in that flat above the store in Hagen, I am sure you remember well.

Joy and I came to Canberra late 1972 and have been here ever since.
,
Look after yourself Garry, would be great to hear from you.

Blast from the past. Hi Garry, I remember you from when I was a young fella.

Fr. Gerry Roche, thank you for great work. I feel that we still need the presence of missionary priests who are mostly with the people doing their pastoral work more than our young local priests. there seemed to be a vacuum and I feel sad when old missionaries died and some went back to their countries.

Father, thank you very much for what you did so far. I come from Ambullua parish and when you mentioned Jimi I felt very sorry. I hope you will come back and continue your good work.

Thank you all for your comments. I should have included accounts of all the mistakes I made, all the blunders and missed opportunities. Many that I know spent less time than myself in PNG but achieved more.

Truely inspirational story, Fr Roche. My three sons were fortunate to be baptised by you at Piloro church (Fatima parish) in the Dei district in 2011. It was an open air mass that you celebrated with us and my Hagen wife received her first communion also from you after switching from Lutheran to Catholic. It was a moment we never forgot and continue to talk about today after we could not see you in Hagen. Now I know where you are. Thank you, Father.

Thank you Father Roche for your beautiful and inspiring story.

I read about Fr. William Ross in the book "Hagen Saga" back in high school.

I think somewhere in the book actor John Wayne is mentioned as coming to Hagen.

Hagen saga: The story of Father William Ross, first American missionary to Papua New Guinea Paperback – 1982
by Mary R. Mennis (Author)

the book is on Amazon.com for those interested.


That is dedication to the people of PNG. He has got PNG in his blood.

Thank you Garry for sharing your story with us. You have shared most of your lifetime in Hagen and PNG and we are so grateful. In Hagen - we have been most privileged to have you among us.

To the outsider's of Hagen central, Garry is not just a missionary but considered a Hagen man. Garry's knowledge of the Melpa language is significant, and the trace of the genealogy of the tribal and clanic groups around the Melpa speaking groups is just amazing.

For the older generation of Hagen Catholics, Garry is known not as "Roche" but "Ross" having some traits of what the pioneer missionary William Ross had especially his long beard.

Belated Happy Easter, Fr Roche. Thank you for your service to PNG and wish you a safe trip to Ireland. Your life story is now in print for everybody to see now and in years to come.

Inspirational Fr. Thanks be to God.

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