Samarai’s Old Anglican church – PNG

The old Anglican church on Samarai is derelict these days, which is a great shame given its interesting architecture.016 Anglican Church Samarai

As you walk down the street you do get the feel of a heritage place, or even a ghost town yet it didn’t feel depressing as we feared it might. It’s hard to imagine now that this tiny island was once a hub for trade around PNG and also for shipping to/from Australia and points north.

018 Anglican Church and street Samarai

If the interior of the church was safe enough to enter, you would have a magnificent view over the water.

020 Anglican Church ruins

All photographs on this blog are © Pauleen Cass.

15 thoughts on “Samarai’s Old Anglican church – PNG

  1. I was born on Samarai in 1955. My father was rector of that church and we lived in the rectory next door. I was only 3 when I left but my older siblings remember it well.

    1. hi Jonathan, How amazing. You would have left Samarai only a few years before my husband’s family moved there. I know he loved living there. Feel free to get your siblings to get in touch with me (Samarai people are trying to build up a history of the place), my email is on the About me page of this blog. It would be great to get some stories from an earlier time…most of the people we’ve met are in their 60s. Great to hear from you!

  2. I don’t expect the church has been restored, has it? I don’t think the rectory is still there either. Do you know?

    1. Jonathan, the image shows the church “as is” taken in November 2012. I imagine that it will simply progressively fall down, which is a tragedy but then when the school doesn’t even have enough books I guess it’s all about $$ priorities. The Catholics seem to have done a bit better as their church is still in use. You’ve inspired me to add more photos…been preoccupied with my family history blog. The rectory is still there and Peter says it is still in use but not as a rectory. Sadly I didn’t take a photo of it. Would you like me to ask the guy who took us over in the boat?

  3. Hi Pauleen,
    I have a Picture of the rectory next door, Picture taken 2 weeks ago.
    Contact me if you wish.

  4. Re the church, it is stil in a state of dilapidation as at Monday 10 March 2014. However, the island recently suffered some damage after the cyclone hit about 4 weeks ago and many trees have been felled in the centre green area. We had a very pleasant visit with entertainment from the children – singing, dancing and warrior dances. It certainly didn’t feel like a ghost town, quite the reverse with a busy market selling fruit, vegetables and fish. Also many stalls with jewellery made from sea shells etc.

    1. Thanks for getting in touch, and apologies for the delay in replying. Interesting that the town was looking livelier…how did you get to Samarai?

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