By: Mary Chin
KOTA KINABALU: Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of Sabah, The Right Reverend Datuk Melter Jiki Tais was duly installed as the Sixth Archbishop of the Province of the Anglican Church in Southeast Asia at the All Saints’ Cathedral here on Sunday.
He was installed by his predecessor The Most Reverend Datuk Ng Moon Hing who handed over the primatial cross to his successor.
Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Christina Liew represented Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal at the Installation Service. She has described the installation of The Right Reverend Datuk Melter as a historic occasion.
“It is a historical moment for the Anglican Diocese of Sabah as this is the first time that a native of Sabah has been elected and installed as the Archbishop and Primate of the Province of the Anglican Church in Southeast Asia. “We wish The Most Reverend Datuk Melter all the best in his new spiritual role,” she said.
Archbishop Melter was elected as the sixth Archbishop to succeed the outgoing fifth Archbishop Ng at the Extraordinary Meeting of the Provincial Synod on Sept 24, 2019.
Archbishop Melter, who hails from Kg Nangoh in Beluran, was installed as the first indigenous Bishop of Sabah in May 2015. Prior to that, he served as the A rchdeacon of the Central Archdeaconry, an Assistant Bishop of Sabah and the Vicar-General of Sabah. He has more than two decades of experience in parish ministry, having been in charge of parishes in Keningau, Lahad Datu and Telupid. He is married to Angeline Wong and they have five children.
Among the 1,000 people who attended the service were the first Archbishop of the Province of the Anglican Church in Southeast Asia, Bishop Dr Moses Tay from Singapore, Bishop of the Diocese of Singapore, The Right Reverend Rennis Solomon Ponniah, Bishop of the Diocese of Kuching, The Right Reverend Danald Anak Jute, Bishop Dr Graham Kings who represented the Archbishop of Canterbury, The Most Reverend Justin Welby, Secretary-General of the Anglican Communion, Archbishop Dr Josiah Idowu-Fearon from the UK, Bishop of Lambeth Design Group, Nairobi, The Right Reverend Joel Waweru, Bishop John Yeo of the Diocese of Sabah and Archdeacon Moses Chin of Christchurch, Kota Kinabalu.
Also present were Archbishop of the Catholic Archdiocese of Sabah, Most Reverend Datuk John Wong, President of the Sabah Council of Churches (SCC), Bishop Dr James Wong, former Malaysia’s resident ambassador to the Vatican, Tan Sri Bernard Dompok, Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Wilfred Madius Tangau, Minister of Health and People’s Well-being, Datuk Frankie Poon and Assistant Minister to the Chief Minister, Datuk Jimmy Wong.
Overseas guests comprised archbishops, bishops and clergy from Anglican Churches in Australia, Myanmar, North America, North India, the Philippines, Kenya, Korea and Southeast Asia.-END.