Whoever in the Augustinian Delegation of Papua, Indonesia is assigned as parish priest of Ubrub becomes responsible for a jungle area that lies in the most inaccessible part of Papua.
He has possibly one of the most isolated appointments in the Augustinian world.
Ubrub is a village not far from the international border between Indonesia and the independent nation of Papua New Guinea.
The only access to Ubrub is by foot or by light aircraft.
Communication with the rest of the world is by the mission radio network.
The area is now part of the Diocese of Jayapura, which is centred on the costal town of Jayapura 150 kms away.
The people live by subsistence farming. Because the area is close to the equator, there are no distinctive seasons during the year, and in this rainforest area, water is more than plentiful.
Because in 1934 Franciscan priests from Holland were the only missionaries to come to the area, the entire population of Ubrub is Catholic.
In years that followed, there were vocations from Ubrub to the Franciscans and later to the Diocese of Jayapura.
In 2005, the parish conducts the local elementary school for 200 students, and a government school then provides the first three years of secondary education. No further schooling is available locally.
For the Augustinian pastor at Ubrub, the nearest Augustinian companion is another member of the Order who is parish priest of Yuruf.
These two Augustinians converse by radio, and each week one of them walks along jungle paths for four hours to visit the other.
By historical accident, the Augustinians at Ubrub and Yuruf now minister in area that had an Augustinian priest based at Amgotro (whose people later moved to Yuruf) in 1954-1955.
Both are members of the Augustinian Delegation of Papua, which in 2010 contained three Augustinians from Holland and fifty Augustinians (including members in training, novices, and postulants) born in Indonesia.
For the Augnet photo gallery on the ministry of the Order of Saint Augustine in Papua, Indonesia, click here.
Six other Augnet photo galleries on Augustinian activity in the Indonesian provinces of Papua and Papua Barat are available after you click here.