However, a worrying trend is currently being experienced as a decline in the number of open-air crusades and community outreach programmes which churches undertake resulting in the recent rapid increase in criminal activities, increase in marital issues, loss of respect for elders and authorities ultimately impacting society with a worrying moral decline.
With the challenge at hand, the Minister of Internal Affairs, Andrew Solomon Napuat has issued a letter of instruction on 11 February 2019 to the Port Vila Municipal Council to allow all churches and faith-based organisations to stage open air crusades or community outreach programs within Port Vila City.
In his official letter to the Port Vila Municipal Council (PVMC), the Minister states “It is now a living reality that the voice of God as depicted in Vanuatu’s Coat of Arms is diminishing considering the fast development pace in Vanuatu”. He further states “it is common knowledge that crime is on the rise and will continue to be, however the Church of God must be able to stand up and fight this unseen spirit by lifting higher Gods Name.”
PVMC confirmed that it will always allow churches and faith-based organisations to perform their noble role upholding strong moral values indicating that the PVMC has never prevented churches from staging open air crusades around Port Vila.”
PVMC as Town Authority, is calling on different churches and faith-based organisation intending on conducting open air crusades or community outreach programs within the PVMC boundary to advice the Town Hall.
PVMC stated that residents must abide by the national law Cap 40, which restricts Port Vila residents from making noise after 9 PM.