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ketekorero February 2018 - April 2018


The official publication of the Catholic Diocese of Hamilton February 2018 - April 2018

Our hearts burning journey Smiling Jesus lifts spirits Br Vincent's 70 years with Christian Brothers Dianne Porter's shoes From Vietnam to seminary

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In this issue...

ketekorero February 2018 - April 2018

bishop’s message

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A Call to Conversion In Chapter 4 of Mark’s Gospel, we hear that after John had been arrested, Jesus went into Galilee. There he proclaimed the Good News from God. 'The time has come' he said 'and the kingdom of God is close at hand. Repent, and believe the Good News' (Mark 1:14-15). When we hear the word repent we often reduce it to not sinning in the sense we hear on Ash Wednesday when we are exhorted to Turn away from sin, be faithful to the Gospel. In the original Greek text of the Bible, however, the word used is metanoia - which means be converted. So Mark’s Gospel is better translated Be converted, and believe the Good News. Be converted to Jesus. Live his Gospel to the full. Conversion is much more than not sinning. It is the alignment of our whole lives and being to Christ and his teaching. This conversion of our minds, our hearts, and our lives to Christ is what this season of Lent is all about and what our whole Christian life is about. In the midst of our daily life we are called to live the life and teachings of Jesus Christ. We are called to conform our lives to Him rather than to the society around us, even if this means we might be ridiculed or even persecuted. This is what it means to be a Catholic and Christian. But there is also more we must do. It is not enough to just conform or align my life to Christ - we are also called to share and be bearers of that life because we share not only his life but his mission. This sharing in the fullness of Christ’s life and his mission is at the heart of our Diocesan With Hearts Burning process. Lent then is a time for us to ask just how much do I conform or align my life to Christ, his teachings and his mission. Being a disciple means following the discipline of Christ’s way, Christ’s truth and Christ’s life. Jesus doesn’t call us to be part time followers or supermarket followers, those who pick and choose what we want of his teachings according to our tastes. In this way the life journey of the Christian is a continual conversion, a letting go of the fads of society or our own personal preferences of the here and now and instead believing and living the Good News of Jesus in and even despite the world around us. So like Jesus, we keep the Lord’s day holy and on Sunday we “Do this in memory of me”. We say no to any form of killing. We reach out to the many in our society in need with compassion. We share the Good News.

Bishop’s Message A call to conversion


Features Joy Cowley on our journey with hearts burning 3 Listening to yourself on the journey to understanding 3 A ministry of listening 4 With Hearts Burning update 4 Seventy years later - Br Vincent Jury celebration 5 Bishop Steve-led pilgrimage to Holy Land exceeds expectations 9 Shoe sales help take pilgrim on a journey in the footsteps of Christ 9 Jesus smiling over school and students 10 Muralist painting the soul 11 Student makes sense of life through scholarship 11 School News Senior school student prizewinners St Joseph’s Convent, Te Puna – 60 years on

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Parish News 6 Benemerenti Medal recognises Joan Pigou's life of giving to church and community 12 Painting brings new life to St Joseph's Te Aroha 12 Young organists filling hearts with joy 13 Rosa Mystical shop closure 13 Children flying the flag in Christmas parade 15 The Religious Life Joseph Pham's travels through faith 14 Pa Yvan's pilgrimage to Susan Aubert's tomb 15 Advertorial 16

We can mark our own spiritual progress by asking ourselves a simple question - Who or what is it that I truly follow? At the end of Lent, the week after Christ rose from the dead, he appeared to doubting Thomas, who having seen Christ was invited to touch the wounds of the nail and the spear. My Lord and my God, Thomas said. That’s where you and I are journeying towards.

Catholic Communities welcome refugees

The Hamilton Catholic Diocese is among a number of organisations supporting refugee families to settle in New Zealand under a scheme organised by Caritas. Caritas, as one of four organisations approved for the new Community Organisation Refugee Sponsorship (CORS) programme, is leading the coordination of Catholic organisations supporting a refugee family to settle in New Zealand. The new category aims to provide additional forms of admission; allow community organisations to actively engage in refugee resettlement; and enable sponsored refugees to quickly become self-supporting and to facilitate integration into New Zealand communities. In New Zealand, the Catholic Church along with many civil society organisations has called for the creation of a community sponsorship model based on the Canadian scheme running since 1979. “We believe this programme will have many benefits for the refugees, the community organisations, and New Zealand communities,” says Caritas Director Julianne Hickey. “This

pilot adds to the refugee quota; local communities are able to work with their local organisations to nominate refugees; there are shared costs and services by the Catholic Church and NZ Government; and refugees will be able to access services to fully participate in their communities.” The Catholic partnership was created by Suzie and Pat McCarthy who took pilgrims to meet refugees in Jordan who had fled from ISIS militants. The Catholic Diocese of Hamilton joined the partnership due to a government requirement that refugees must be settled outside of Auckland. The partnership was formalised by the New Zealand Catholic Bishops Conference, which endorsed Caritas at the lead organisation. “Each organisation has a skill or area of expertise they can contribute to the resettlement process,” said Julianne. "By working alongside organisations, we demonstrate what it means to be a community.”

The Kete Korero is an official publication of the Catholic Diocese of Hamilton. Deadline for contributions to the next issue is 10 April 2018 Kete Korero Magazine C-/ 51 Grey St, P.O. Box 4353, Hamilton East 3247 Editor: Michael R. Smith, 5 High Street, Rotorua 3010; P.O. Box 6215, Whakarewarewa, Rotorua 3010 At: 07 349 4107, 0272096861, Facebook: Videos: Sponsorship and advertising: David Barrowclough, C-/ Chanel Centre 0800 843 233 Fax 07 8567035 or email: Layout: Business Media Services Ltd, 5 High Street, Rotorua 3010 Design: Sandy Thompson, Advocate Print Ltd, 248 Fenton Street, Rotorua 3010. Printing: Beacon Print Ltd, 207 Wilson Road, Hastings 4153 ISSN: (print) 2357-2221 & (online) 2357-223X Cover Photos Front page: (Top) The "Smiling Jesus" at John Paul College; (Below from left): Joy Cowley, Brother Vincent Jury, Dianne Porter and Joseph Pham. Bottom right: Laura Henderson, 2017 Dux Sacred Heart College Hamilton.

ketekorero February 2018 - April 2018


feature Joy Cowley on our journey with hearts burning Listening to people without putting fences around their spirituality is one way the Hamilton Catholic Diocese can help rejuvenate parishes, says award winning writer Joy Cowley. Joy was the only person to be made a member of the Order of New Zealand in the 2018 New Year’s Honours List. Recognised for her work as a novelist, children’s author and helping young people through reading, she is also noted as the author of numerous books dealing with spirituality and Christianity and Catholicism. Joy also gives freely of her time to retreats, with three already scheduled with the Cloony Sisters in Tauranga this year. Kete Korero talked with Joy about her work and asked about her thoughts on the “With Hearts Burning” programme being rolled out by Bishop Steve Lowe throughout the diocese. Joy said she loved the title “With Hearts Burning”. Regarding bringing people back into the church she focused on the need to listen to people. “Listen to people talking about their spirituality without putting fences around it. Welcome all people.” Having held retreats for about 30 years, Joy has been taking the opportunity to do some Catholic training courses on how to run them. “It’s about being further embedded in the Church.” She called the essay she had to write for the course at the end of the year, “Dissolving into God”. “That’s what you are talking about when you are talking about with hearts burning. It’s the coming back to the heart space. The head space is quite important, because it directs us to the heart. If it doesn’t direct us to the heart, then we are worshipping ideas.” “I think of the journey from the head to the heart as being one of devotion. We don’t have to do a lot. We just have to be open to God working in us.” The journey as a spiral Two common metaphors for the process into spirituality were “journey” and “growth”. Being in her eighties now, Joy said she believed that the journey was a spiral. The journey started with awareness, which could be pleasant or harsh, as Jesus said “waking up to something new”. This was followed almost immediately by resistance as the ego jumps in to prevent the new awareness, which was overcome with prayer. The third stage is acceptance, which in turn was followed by affirmation and a sense of freedom. However, the whole process doesn’t stop at that point but starts again with a different kind of awakening. “So I see it as a spiral of growth. I think it is important to respect people who are on the early part of the journey, because we can see where we were at in the early stage but they can’t see where we are at now. So it is always important to respect where people are at [in the journey].” One of the difficulties was that we lived in an age of “hard sell” in which we were always being sold something. “So there is always a suspicion when somebody from a church comes knocking on a door or puts out an invitation.” Faith and the spirit Although much of the media coverage of her

into a church and were not likely to go to one for various reasons. However, they were all very much spiritually alive and aware there was a presence in their lives. Each brought to a retreat ‘a hungry heart’. The Featherston-based writer’s web site has a spiritual reflections section at:

Listening to yourself on the journey to understanding

Joy Cowley with Rosa. award focused on her writing achievements, Joy confirmed the critical role her faith played in her work. Faith and the spirit were at the heart of everything she did, Joy said. Although not keen on being interviewed, Joy had 13 interviews before the award was made public. All were done by comparatively young people. “The lovely thing about it is that they had all grown up with my books. It was interesting that in the interviews, they did not edit out my comments on spirituality, because that has always happened before.” The current rise in a greater awareness of “wellness” and spirituality in everyday life came through also after the interviews were finished. Some of the reporters opened up to Joy regarding their own spirituality. Although not necessarily in any religious context, their experience reminded her that the church needed to get its language up to date. “We can’t give 2000-year-old language to young people today. It doesn’t work; it doesn’t make sense to them, but we can de-code that language to bring it up-to-date. The church is trying to grapple with change.” The Church in a feminine context Part of the difficulty was that the institutional church had always been masculine and it was based on information and structure. Room existed for a different way of viewing the same structure. She noted that women had a lateral approach to life that was about relationships, and they flowed around structures. “I believe we come from a greater reality and we return to that reality and live a life for the growth of the soul." Younger people were often more prepared to go on a journey that led to experiencing a sense of “otherness” – that there was more to life. They were looking for something that would say more about that aspect of their lives, Joy said. People coming to retreats had often not been

Author Joy Cowley writes often about the importance of listening – a theme of the third module of the With Hearts Burning programme underway in the Hamilton Catholic Diocese. Reflecting on spirituality and religion in her essay “Holding it all together – maps and journeys”, Joy talks about finding the space to nurture ourselves in this busy world. The world is full of information but, she says, reflective self-knowledge isn’t about “religious” or pious activity. “Reflective self-knowledge is about taking time out to know ourselves and listen to the voice of guidance within us. It’s what Jesus did when he left the crowds and went into the mountains to pray.” She notes that in the Jewish tradition, it has been said that we see and hear what we are meant to see and hear. “In this age of noise, I’d prefer to put it this way: we notice what we are meant to notice. That hungry heart, will reach out and grab some truth that it was meant to see and hear, and will be grateful.” Joy says that often new realisations come from somebody else at the very moment we hear them. Our inner response may be, “Yes! That’s it!” Or we sometimes receive affirmation in areas we may have self-doubt. “Prayer is not so much about our giving, as our receiving. It’s found in listening into silence and stillness and being open to the abundance that is being poured into us. It is about sharing that abundance freely with others,” Joy writes. “It is about sharing that abundance freely with others. It’s about seeing past human error to the beauty of God in every soul. "Prayer is something that is constantly happening within us, as St Paul discovered. It is our birthright. ” Reference: MapsandJourneys.pdf


ketekorero February 2018 - April 2018

feature A ministry of listening

Ko te minatatanga o Hehu Kerito, me āta whakarongo mai Bishop Steve Lowe When Jesus approached the two disciples walking to Emmaus, he said to them, ‘What matters are you discussing as you walk along?’ Before Jesus spoke, he listened. Listening enables us to journey with one another. Listening enables us to meet people on their way and to companion them on the journey. It is a sign I’m interested and I’m willing to share their anguish or celebrate their joy, and I’m willing to help them along the way, or embrace their enthusiasm. To listen to those who are falling away from their faith, or have lost it completely, helps us to understand why people have left the Church and/ or God. We also can understand how they got lost and started to wander aimlessly. We can reflect on their feelings of aloneness, disappointment or disillusionment. In listening to another, we are gifted with the depths of their story, their joys and hopes, their grief and their anxiety and in this gift we can come to understand our own story better. When I allow people the space to tell their story, where I am seen to be listening, gives value and respect to the person who is speaking. Listening and hearing Of course, listening is not always easy. This is especially so when people want to speak about us, to maybe raise an issue about us , our ministry, community, school or parish. When we are listening there is always the temptation to correct, to disagree, to criticise, to react or even to explode. So easily, our reactions can shut the door or put up a wall. When this happens, dialogue ends. Listening is ordered towards communion. Failure to listen can lead to separation. Refusing to listen creates division and discord. The disciples walking to Emmaus painted a distorted picture of Jesus. But he listened first… he didn’t correct as they spoke. We have all had the experience of listening to someone and wanting to jump in and fix or correct things straight away. In doing this we run the risk of shutting the person down and not getting to the heart of their story. Alternatively we run the risk of becoming Messiah figures who have to be the Saviour or the fount of all knowledge. All of us in families and parishes can be guilty of not being good listeners. We have all encountered people who we feel haven’t listened to us, and often we walk away from these people feeling unvalued or angry. The danger is, we remain in those feelings and they fester within us, so we ourselves can’t listen. Mutual and respectful listening should lead to both of us changing. As we know from our pastoral experience, there are some times when we just don’t know what to say. Sometimes in the face of real tragedy the only thing we can do is listen. Perhaps, after we have listened, we might offer a simple prayer. Our listening enables the one speaking to unload their burdens and find their own solution. When we think of the parables Jesus told, he spoke them in such a way, he spoke to the heart of those who heard him. He himself was a listener,

With Hearts Burning update What is the purpose? With module three ‘A Ministry of Listening’ having been released in early February, three modules will be released on April 8, May 31, and September 2. The first module focussed on the reasons why people walk away from the Church and the second module asked us to question whether we get alongside those who are walking away. Understandably some groups found it difficult to reflect on these aspects in module one and two. However, it is important to keep the Emmaus mystery, and its parts, intact. The Disciples who walked away encountered the risen Christ and returned to Jerusalem! The purpose of With Hearts Burning is to highlight the Emmaus mystery in order to: a) draw us to the table to encounter the risen Christ, b) draw attention to Jesus as the model, par excellence, of the evangeliser. Just as Jesus walked and talked with the disciples who walked away so must we journey with those distant from the Church and offer them the Word of hope and of life, the Word of the Gospel, the Good News, Jesus Christ. What happens to all the feedback? Currently the feedback from module one and two (including hand-written feedback) is being summarised by a professional. Once completed, these summaries will be made widely available and will inform the discussion and decision making at diocesan and parish levels. However, it is important not to overlook the importance of the individual and small who listened to the word of the Father and the heart of the people and society around him. Being a listener enabled him to be able to speak to their hearts. In speaking to them in parables, Jesus wasn’t telling people what to do, rather he was helping them to be able to listen, to hear at the core of their being, so they could form themselves in response to his word. Jesus as a model listener Jesus is, as always, the model for us. We are invited to reflect on how he listened, so we might become better listeners and thus, better speakers. Listening, then, is a preparation for our own self-formation and the formation of our people, whether in a parish, community, family, parish school or work situation. In all things we should be listening and asking ourselves, “How is what I am listening to going to challenge me in the way I speak, preach, teach and live so, in turn, other people will be able to hear and engage in their own self-formation?” This is critically important, if we want to bridge the gap between cultures and generations and the differing points of view both inside and outside the Church. Look at our young people for example. They come from a much different age than I do simply because the world has changed so rapidly since I was their age. They have different cares and concerns. To be able to speak to the young, we first need to be able to listen to the young. It’s then we learn

groups. Individuals and small groups that seek to truly understand the Emmaus mystery, respond to the questions, and follow Christ, will have a profound effect on the life of the church in our Diocese. With Hearts Burning feedback can be handwritten and mailed to the Diocesan Centre or entered online - (preferred). In the past the website has been clunky and tiresome to use. With the release of module three, the website now accepts the answers to all ten questions in one text box. This streamlined process should speed up the time it takes to upload and read feedback. Feedback from module one indicated that there needs to be more formation around the Mass. In this light, Bishop Steve and the Pastoral Services Team will be producing a formational video series which focuses on active and full participation in the Mass, before the end of August. After reflecting on module two myself, I have made a commitment to get alongside and visit all parishes in 2018. My intention is to come to a better understanding of what parishes need so that the Diocesan Pastoral Team can be of greater assistance. The Emmaus Mystery is worthy of reflection. Meditate on the scripture. Read and respond to the modules. In addition, Bishop Steve recommends the book After Emmaus: Biblical Models for the New Evangelisation by Michael Dumais. Purchase a copy on book depository or send me an email to arrange a loan copy. Alex Bailey Pastoral Services Manager new terms of expression, what’s important to them, what concerns them. In the same way, how do we welcome our new immigrant families? Do new immigrant communities seek to go outside of their own cultural group when they come to Mass? How as parish and parish school communities have we made space to listen to each other’s story? How have we mutually enriched each other? Listening then, is a call to being changed, to be moved with compassion, encouraged, challenged. It is an opportunity for learning and having our horizons broadened. And as we listen, we listen not only with our own ears and hearts, we also listen with the ears and heart of Christ, searching for the voice of the Holy Spirit in what is being said and how it is being said. One of my vivid memories of being a parish priest is how often a comment, insight or question that came up from a conversation with a parishioner during the week, slotted perfectly into a Sunday homily. I loved being able to say “As a wise person once told me…” and look straight at the person who had shared the gem with me. Listening is critical for us as Jesus uses the people around us to pastor and form us.

ketekorero February 2018 - April 2018

Seventy years later - Br Vincent Jury celebration

Brother Vincent Jury is now enjoying retirement in Rotorua after working tirelessly for 25 years in the community at Murupara. A celebration of his life and work was held in Murupara on 18 February, coinciding with Bishop Steve Lowe’s anniversary. Interviewed by Kete Korero, Br Vincent (pictured above) said: “I’ve worked hard all my life and now I’ve been coasting along for the past year.” The 85-year-old entered the Christian Brothers in 1948, and is still going out to the Eastern Bay of Plenty settlement to do Liturgy services on the third Sunday of the month and the fifth Sunday when there is one. Deacons Joe Rogers and Nick Bruce also provide liturgical support and

Mass is held every third Sunday. On the second Sunday, Br Vincent goes out to support Father David Gledhill at Mass in Ngaputahi, the small settlement in the Urewera Ranges (see the article in Kete Korero November 2016-January 2017). As well as providing community engagement in the parish, Br Vincent was an essential part in the life of the community and providing services to Maori, as highlighted in a feature article in Kete Korero May-July 2015). Although disappointed to leave Murupara, he understood the rationale of his Christian Brother leadership team that it was better for him to be closer to hospital services given his age. Although when his aorta was recently checked at Waikato Hospital, the doctor was so impressed with his



Br Vincent entered the Christian Brothers in Sydney 70 years ago on 29 January 1948. A special Mass celebrated the event, after which parishioners joined him for a cuppa and a chat. Fr Lutovio Iusitino blesses Br Vincent. condition that he recommended he was better to remain as he was now. As well as his parish and community work, he used to be woken up at odd hours when in Murupara by people wanting help. Apart from liturgies at Murupara, his days now include visits to give Holy Communion at rest homes in Rotorua and to visit the sick and elderly. “I am generally cruising around and being nice to people.” Br Vincent now lives in a self-contained flat in a quiet cul-de-sac backing onto the Utuhina Stream, a bush-clad oasis with trout near the centre of the city.

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ketekorero February 2018 - April 2018

school news Senior School Student prizewinners St John's College

The Dux for St John's College in Hamilton, 2017 was Brendan Sanders, who was also awarded A General Excellence, The College Award for Year 13 Top Mathematician, The College Award for Year 13 Mathematics with Calculus, The College Award for Year 13 Mathematics with Statistics and the College Award for Year 13 Physics.

Sacred Heart College

John Paul College

Georgia Williams (Dux)

Left, Dux: Laura Henderson - Sacred Heart Girls’ College, Hamilton Right, Proxime Accessit: Doria Kao - Sacred Heart Girls’ College, Hamilton

Aquinas College The Proxime Accessit for 2017 was Dominic Keehan. Dominic was also awarded A General Excellence, The College Award for Year 13 Economics, The College Award for Year 13 Mathematics with Calculus and the New Zealand Institute of Physics Award

Elsie Spiers (Proxime Accessit),

Left, Aileen Harwood, the 2017 Dux of Aquinas College with Breanna Brooker, Proxime Accessit, right.

Elena Lee (Proxime Accessit)

Campion College

Jackson Zame, the 2017 Dux at Campion College. Gold Impact Project Semester 2, Excellence in Religious Education, Biology (Biological Sciences Cup), Chemistry, Mathematics with Calculus (Gardener Cup for Mathematics) & Physics (Physical Sciences Cup)

Maggie Wilson, Proxime Accessit. Gold Impact Project Semester 2, Excellence in Classical Studies. General Excellence – receiving the B. Story Memorial Cup for General Excellence

ketekorero February 2018 - April 2018

St Joseph’s Convent, Te Puna – 60 years on

Opening day pupils with Provincial Superior, Sr Marie O’Neill, Head Teacher, Sr Therese and Assistant Teacher, Sr Paul. Jill Taylor Sixty years ago, on February 3, 1958, St Joseph’s Convent, Te Puna, staffed by the Sisters of Cluny, was officially opened with around 500 well-wishers present at the ceremony. To mark the school’s 60th Jubilee, past teachers, pupils and parents gathered at Te Puna on Anniversary Weekend, 2018, to share memories of their time at the school. The celebrations began with a whakatau (welcome) followed by roll calls, photos, reflections, speakers and opportunities to mix and mingle. A very special moment occurred at noon when the old school bell rang once again for the Angelus; Fr Mark Field led the devotion and those gathered joined in with the familiar responses and rhythm of the prayer, so easily recalled six decades on. It was wonderful to have five Sisters of Cluny at Saturday’s celebration including Sister Bernadette, principal of St Joseph’s from 19651977. Youthful, engaging and blessed with a remarkable memory, Sister delighted all with recollections of her time as principal and teacher

Whakatau, Saturday morning, Ricky Kuka speaks on behalf of those welcomed. (Riki is due to be ordained as a Permanent Deacon in Rotorua on 21 April). of the senior class (the old Standard 5/6), and judging by the warmth of her reunions with pastpupils, Sister had been a much-loved teacher. Memories were shared of Bob Rawiri, inspirational kapa haka teacher, faithful bus driver and loyal advocate for the St Joseph’s students. B ob composed the famous waiata ‘Tauranga Moana’ during those years and students still enjoy the kudos of being the first group to perform it publicly! Many stories were told of the supremacy of the school’s sports teams, especially in rugby and netball. Te Puna Convent punched well

Sister Bernadette and foundation pupils Kelly Bidois and Tame Kuka, cut the cake.


school news above its weight and was a force to reckon with in inter-school competition. St Joseph’s produced a Māori All Black, a junior W i m b l e d o n player and sports representatives across the codes. But undoubtedly the most frequently shared memory was Sister Bernadette, 2018 one of gratitude for the chance to learn and grow up together as one big family, and of the security and pride that this shared upbringing gave. It was said that coming back to St Joseph’s for the reunion was like coming home. The idea of a Catholic school in Te Puna, to better serve the spiritual and educational needs of the local Catholic Māori children, was first mooted in 1940 by Makarita Bidois, who with her brother Hone, gifted the land on which the Convent was eventually built. When Mill Hill Father John Dolphyn arrived as parish priest in 1951, that dream became a reality. Bishop Steve recalled as he celebrated the Reunion Mass: “Pa Dolphyn wanted the Maori community to be proudly Māori and proudly Catholic.” Father saw a school as vital to this mission. With the diocese meeting three-quarters of the set-up costs, local families set about raising the balance - there was a great optimism for the project amongst Te Puna’s Pirirākau people. Thanks to the dedication of the sisters, Father Dolphyn and the community, the little school thrived for just over two decades but as the younger Pirirākau generation left the district for employment and adventure and families became smaller, declining roll numbers forced closure in 1980. Today, the beautifully maintained building and its surrounds remain. Initially used as a retreat centre by the Sisters of Carmel after the school closed, it now hosts meetings, children’s liturgies, support services and parish gatherings. And within the hearts of the children who attended the school, the wairua of St Joseph’s will live forever.

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ketekorero February 2018 - April 2018

feature Bishop Steve-led pilgrimage to Holy Land exceeds expectations Moana Corbett standing by one of the images painted of "Trump" on the Separation Wall...the Jewish people call it the Security Wall.

Light spontaneous entertainment after dinner to end the day. This is at Ron Beach Hotel, Tiberias (Lake Galilee) - in the foreground is Chris and Olive Hepi; opposite from left to right is Emily Gooch, Mihi Morehu, Moana Corbett, Francis Watson, Bev Simpkins, and Louise Kirk.

By Suzie and Pat McCarthy When we invited Bishop Steve Lowe to be chaplain for our 2017 pilgrimage to the Holy Land we hoped he might attract some pilgrims from Hamilton diocese. The response from Hamilton far exceeded our expectations. No fewer than 28 of our party of 49 came from the diocese. Besides Bishop Steve, the diocesan contingent included Shelly Fitness, Olive and Christie Hepi, Louise Kirk, Mihipeka Morehu, Bev Simpkins, Francie Watson (all Rotorua), Mary Holt, Peter and Marianne Spiller (Hamilton), Joyce Branje, Lynnette Moynihan (Cambridge), Emily Gooch, Imelda Woolston (Taumarunui), Jim Bradley, Anne Marie Hutchinson (Whakatane), Maria Jenkins, Janette Michels (Te Aroha), Bernadette Barry-Addy (Te Kuiti), Maria Carruthers (Gisborne), Moana Corbett (Ngongotaha), Pikiora Hawe-Thomas (Taupo), Kathleen Joblin (Mt Maunganui), Kerry Parker (Whangamata), Dianne Porter (Otorohanga), Bev Timmo (Te Awamutu) and Elnora Williams (Tokoroa). As we journeyed through Jordan, Israel and Palestine, a distinct Hamilton flavour emerged in liturgies and the social life of the pilgrimage. The strong Maori presence, mainly from Rotorua, was to the fore in hymns, in spontaneous performances in such places as the siq at Petra and the Roman amphitheatre at Beit She’an, and in singsongs aboard our bus and in times of relaxation. On the Sea of Galilee, we celebrated a Miha

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Maori aboard a traditional fishing boat — was it the first Maori Mass on those waters? An emotional moment was the singing of our national anthem in Te Reo and in English as the New Zealand flag was raised. At the Church of Pater Noster, where the Lord’s Prayer is inscribed in 140 languages around the walls, we recited the prayer in Maori beside the plaque in this language. We visited many other key places in the life of Jesus — Bethlehem, where he was born; Nazareth, where he was brought up; Bethany Beyond the Jordan, where he was baptized; Cana, where he performed his first miracle; Capernaum, which he made the base for his Galilean ministry; and the Jerusalem sites where he underwent his Passion, was crucified, was buried and rose on Easter Sunday. In 20 days we packed in lots of experiences, including the sights, colours, smells, sounds and contrasts of the Holy Land’s different cultures. And the experience continues, as pilgrims exchange photos and memories on Facebook. More important, they speak of how their faith has been deepened and how Scripture readings come alive as they recall the places where the events occurred.

Above, Dianne Porter, Shelly Fitness and Kathleen Joblin at Magdala.

Moana Corbett standing by one of the images painted of "Trump" on the "Separation Wall", officially called the "Security Wall".


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ketekorero February 2018 - April 2018


feature Shoe sales help take pilgrim on a journey in the footsteps of Christ Walking in the footsteps of Jesus Christ helped pave the way for Dianne Porter to join a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. The pilgrimage, led by Suzie and Pat McCarthy with Bishop Steve Lowe as the chaplain, attracted more than half of its members from the Hamilton diocese (see separate story). Dianne, the Primary Religious Education Advisor for the Hamilton Catholic Diocese, had her eyes on going with a group of Auckland RE advisors on a pilgrimage to Ireland led by Australian composer Monica Brown. By chance, Bishop Steve alerted her to the Holy Land pilgrimage and was encouraged by the Catholic Schools’ Manager, John Coulam. Although she was given special leave to go, Dianne had to find a way to raise the money. After discussing her new plans with close friends and family, Dianne was determined to find ways to raise the money so turned to social media where she put up a Facebook page entitled “Dianne’s Pilgrimage to the Holy Land” asking for donations of pre-loved shoes to sell. When asked ‘Why shoes?’ Dianne said that the shoes were in theme for “Walking in the footsteps of Christ!” People started giving their pre-loved shoes to sell, including a lady from Katikati whose youngest sister had passed away a few years ago and had left her with bags of shoes. “She saw the page and rang me to ask me if I would like them. They were the most beautiful shoes and boots I’ve ever seen. It was quite a humbling and emotional encounter, hearing about her sister and not knowing what to do with her belongings.” Dianne says there has been another side to the money-raising. “Through the shoes, I have met the most incredible people.” She continued selling the shoes online, at local markets, and garage sales. She also started to receive donations and money raised by friends as her planned pilgrimage became more widely known. Her stall at markets had signs saying she was raising money to go to the Holy Land, which stimulated questions about where it was and what it was all about. “People would comment ‘that’s where Jesus walked!” and I would be like “exactly!” She recalls a man at the Papamoa (Bay of Plenty) Market looking at a pair of red Adidas sports shoes. Dianne tried to persuade him to try them on, but he was very reluctant, despite returning several times during the day to see if the pair were still there, but always saying that they were too small. The man returned a couple of hours later with his family. His wife got very excited and animated when she immediately saw them, saying: “Babe, babe, look at these shoes; they’re your size, you sit down there and try them on! Don’t you understand she’s going to the Holy Land, where Jesus walked, and these are going to help her (Dianne) go there – Jesus is the man!” He bought the shoes, with Dianne telling them to bag some shoes up for all their children. Dianne had been recording the names of everybody who bought shoes and added the names to a prayer list. The man who bought the shoes asked if Dianne would include his family’s name on the list. Through Pleroma Christian Supplies, she had purchased Maori Madonna prayer cards. The

Placing a prayer card in one of the Olive trees in the Garden of Gethsemane. names of everybody who helped her - including alive the holy places they visited with stories families, schools, friends and people who had from the time of Christ. passed on - were entered into a list Dianne Although she works with Bishop Steve, Dianne placed inside the cards. As she went from place- was able to see another side of him during the to-place in the Holy Land, Dianne left a card at trip. ‘I work with him and work for him but each of the 26 locations. Some of the cards were having the ability to share this experience with put in small plastic bags so they could be placed Bishop Steve was a particular highlight.” in water, such as in the River Jordan where Bishop Steve also provided the opportunity baptismal promises were renewed and at the Sea to hear reconciliation in some unique special of Galilee, where the group held a Miha Maori places, with Dianne choosing to celebrate this Mass out on the water in a boat. sacrament with him sitting on a seat on the edge Dianne admits that this was one of many of the Sea of Galilee. times when the pilgrimage was an emotional “It was just a very special time and beautiful roller-coaster of a journey. The opportunity gesture,” Dianne says. to celebrate the Eucharist in the most holy Dianne was unable to sell all the shoes and significant places can only be described as donated, so gave the remaining bags away – “blessed”. As noted in the accompanying story including a pile of gumboots and shoes a cousin by Suzie and Pat McCarthy, 28 of the party came donated which went to those people affected by from the Hamilton diocese. the Edgecumbe floods. Remarkably, she says Initially it felt surreal arriving in the Holy that not one of the pairs of the donated shoes Land, but the group’s guides were able to bring fitted her!


ketekorero February 2018 - April 2018

feature Jesus smiling over school and students

Patrick Walsh and the painting of the Smiling Jesus at John Paul College. By Michael Smith John Paul College principal Patrick Walsh wants a new painting of a “Smiling Jesus” to provide a strong and joyful image to the school community. Patrick says he wanted to increase the strong symbols around the college showing it as a Catholic school centred on Jesus. The painting is on the wall of the Bishop Denis Browne Centre at John Paul College in Rotorua. However, people had said that most symbols of Jesus showed him as being mournful or said. Picking up on the thrust of what Pope Francis said about how we should place the emphasis on the joyful and happy aspects of faith, he wanted to present students and visitors with a different image of Jesus, one showing him as happy.

“It is a reminder that we are a Christcentred school and it’s a faith based on joy and happiness.” Patrick admitted that some people did not like the Smiling Christ image, seeing it as not reflecting the traditional imagery of Jesus. However, for young people, the dour approach of presenting Catholic imagery did nothing to inspire them. An online search soon turned up images of a smiling Jesus at the Sea of Galilee, a place where he spent much of his earthly ministry. Rotorua artist Warren Houston (also known as Wozz) was contracted to do the painting using techniques usually applied to his work airbrushing custom art on vans and hot rods



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as well as everything from guitars, fridges and letterboxes. The painting turned out to be a tricky assignment, with the picture done on metal and fixed to the wall. Once completed and fixed in place, the picture was blessed by Bishop Steve Lowe. The blessing was timely, as Bishop Steve had just come back from his pilgrimage to the Holy Land, and had been at the school to talk student about his experience in Galilee. Patrick says the painting has become a talking point for students, who like the idea of a happy image of Jesus. He encourages other schools looking at adding religious imagery to think about utilising happy images of Jesus. “Jesus did talk a lot about joy and happiness,” Patrick says, noting that evangelical churches often have a real sense of joy in the way they express faith. Pope Francis spoke about the concept of “joy-filled living” in Evangelii Gaudium (7), saying: “I can say that the most beautiful and natural expressions of joy which I have seen in my life were in poor people who had little to hold on to. I also think of the real joy shown by others who, even amid pressing professional obligations, were able to preserve, in detachment and simplicity, a heart full of faith. In their own way, all these instances of joy flow from the infinite love of God, who has revealed himself to us in Jesus Christ.”

ketekorero February 2018 - April 2018


feature Muralist painting the soul By Michael Smith Finding the soul in the eyes of a person is a key element in creating a successful portrait for Warren Houston, the Rotorua artist who painted a 3 metres high by 2.4 metres wide “Smiling Jesus” picture for John Paul College. Warren (pictured) was one of three artists initially contacted to apply for the commission to go on the wall of the Bishop Denis Browne Centre at the Rotorua Catholic college. “The irony was that I had worked there many, many years ago as a music teacher,” Warren says. He knew principal Patrick Walsh, so it was easy to talk to him. “I talked to them about how I would see the painting being done, about the size, and provided a quote. Fortunately, they came back and chose me.” Warren says Patrick commented after the work was completed that the reason he was chosen was because he had “clicked” with what they wanted. Whereas other artists suggested changes and to make it their own, Warren says he likes to work with clients to ensure he understands what they want. “I won’t start a work until it is generally agreed on what we are doing.” JPC wanted a picture of “Smiling Jesus” to look down upon the children, and to make the place feel happy. Discreet changes were made to the painting to make it special to John Paul College. “What was important to me was to have him looking happy and welcoming.” With so many pictures portraying Jesus and the saints in aweinspiring manner, painting a joyful picture must have been a challenge. Warren says that when doing a portrait, the painter must get right two essential things – the eyes and the mouth. “I wanted him really happy. He’s looking out and he’s happy.” Warren today is not a Christian, although he has high morals and was an altar boy in the Anglican Church in his early years. What used to throw him when he was young was that all the “wrath”. “So, when this came along it was a lovely chance to say ‘be happy’.” When painting portraits, Warren tries to bring out the soul of the person. This determination came going to a Rembrandt-to-Renoir exhibition in Auckland many years ago. “I came across this very old

Warren Houston painting, and I stood in front of that painting crying, because the intensity of the soul in that painting was just overwhelming. I thought: That’s the secret in a portrait. “So, when you are doing a portrait, you try to project something of the someone in there. I tried to capture that in this [the Jesus Smiling painting]. To me, it’s worked; it’s a very happy painting. Capturing that soul, with its joy and happiness shining out, required Warren’s special technical skills. He says tweaking aspects of the work on the eyes and mouth can make all the difference. “We are constantly standing back and doing what we call visual scaling, so you might make a little tweak and then ‘ah’, that’s it. It comes together.” Adding what are known as reflection spots makes the eyes come alive. Warren believes that students will have their own take on the soul shining from the painting, although he recalls how one student observed when it was going up on the wall that “this is the gayest thing I’ve ever seen.” “I would like to think that they would see Jesus as a man who did good, who tried to project love.” Warren works daily on a wide range of art works. He was part of the annual Rotorua Mural Symposium at the end of 2017. Widely known as “Wozz”, he works extensively in custom airbrushing vehicles, such as vans and hot rods. “I love painting; I just love it, and I guess that goes into the painting as well – my love of the artworks,” Warren says. To see more of his work, go to

Student making sense of life through scholarship Eamon Walsh has set himself on the path towards a career in medical research kindled by a month-long visit to Israel. He attended the camp with about 80 other secondary school students from throughout the world who were interested in pursuing a career in science research. A then-Year 13 student at John Paul College, Eamon Walsh went to Israel for a month on a Royal Society Te Aparangi scholarship that endeavours to connect New Zealand with the wider science community. There, he attended the Dr Bessie F. Lawrence 49th International Summer Science Institute Camp. Known as the Bessie programme, the camp brings together about 80 high school graduates from throughout the world to “experience the challenges and rewards of scientific research and to learn more about the Weizmann Institute of Science and life in Israel.” Eamon says the programme enabled young people to network about science issues that are relevant today. Eamon worked in the cancer research Lab at the Weizmann Institute studying Acute Myeloid Leukaemia (AML)- a type of blood cancer. The researchers have genome sequenced thousands of people and looked at long sequences in an endeavour to find out what mutations cause a person to acquire this cancer. The aim is to attempt to identify the likelihood of a person acquiring AML because of their DNA. “It is amazing research and quite incredible what they are doing, as they can predict the occurrence

of this cancer years in advance, making it often crucial to saving a person’s life.” Aside from gaining insights into the work being done in this area, Eamon says he was able to work and connect with young people who were passionate about what they were doing and share this passion. While in Israel, Eamon and the others were able to soak in the history and the spirituality of the holy land. Having read about the places or seen them on screen, actually going to them made it more real. “Visiting the holy sites solidified my faith.” “Just going there made it seem so real and made sense in terms of the Bible.” The geography of the place came alive for Eamon, so much so that he could image Jesus walking through parts of the old Jerusalem. “You could see what it would have been like for Jesus. It connected all the dots for me how it was all possible for the events of His life to happen, because everything is just a stone’s through away.” Eamon had an idea of what he wanted to achieve regarding the science aspect of the trip, but he learned a lot about just how Israel is a multi-cultural society and entirely different to New Zealand. This included gaining an understanding of Jewish cultural and religious practices. Tension was evident between the Palestinians and Israelis, to the extent the students had armed guards when walking through the streets. Eamon will start the pre-med process towards a medical degree this year (2018). Going to Israel has convinced him that he wants to do research.

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ketekorero February 2018 - April 2018

parish news Benemerenti medal recognises Joan Pigou's life of giving to church and community

Picture from left are:- Back row : Jonathan Ridler, Dan Kane, Brad Neal, Nicholas Fitzgerald, Steve Fitzgerald, Bishop Steve Lowe, Father JeLo Maghirang, Kyle Kim; Middle row: Sarah Pigou, Jenny Pigou, Robert Pigou, Joan Pigou, Caitlin Fitzgerald, Paula Fitzgerald, Michelle Pigou; Front row: Debbie Pigou, Katie Pigou, Christine Pigou, Raewyn Field Below: Joan receives her award from Bishop Steve Lowe. Right: Joan Pigou with her award.

(First published in the Morrinsville News, 25 January 2018 with additional help by Maria Burr) A stalwart of the Catholic Women’s League, Joan Pigou has been awarded the prestigious Benemerenti medal. First awarded by Pope Pius VI in the 1700s, the medal originally recognised military merit, and was awarded to those who had fought courageously in the papal army. In 1925 the concept was changed to recognise service to the Catholic Church, acknowledging both lay persons and clergy. Joan was born in Blenheim and shifted to Morrinsville in 1965 with her husband Gerry who worked for Dalgety’s. She taught at St Joseph’s School, rising to the position of deputy principal and acting principal, before retiring in 1989. She joined the Catholic Women’s League in 1959, rose to the position of Morrinsville President in 2002, and is currently President of the Hamilton Diocese CWL Council. She is also the CWL Council representative of the Hamilton Diocese to the national board. Joan says she has done everything in the Catholic Church except say Mass and mow the lawns! Additionally, Joan is a member of the National Council of Women, and an interest in netball saw her as coach, manager and president of the Morrinsville Netball Association, and president of the Thames Valley Netball Association for eight years. The process to nominate her for the Benemerenti medal was started by Father Don Cowan, who called in the support of her family, in particular daughter Christine. When Father Don retired the process stalled, until a member of the Catholic Women’s League rekindled interest and called on Christine once again to go through her mother’s personal papers to find the information necessary to support a nomination. Overall, from the first mention, to the presentation of the medal, the process took around five years. In his letter of support for Joan, Father Don Cowan said ‘…Joan is a follower of Our Lord, a prayerful woman of deep faith and she seeks no applause.’ The medal was awarded by Bishop Lowe, after the homily at a service on 17 December attended by most of her family and friends.

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St Joseph's Catholic Church in Te Aroha being painted (right). The church was officially opened on 22 September 1957 Pictured standing right is Peter Stanish parishioner and member of the management committee. The work has been done by Cantec, Hamilton.

ketekorero February 2018 - April 2018

Young organists filling hearts with joy John Fong The pipe organ has long been the traditional musical instrument to accompany liturgical music in the Latin Church. The Second Vatican Council’s Sacrosanctum Concilium (Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy) states: In the Latin Church the pipe organ is to be held in high esteem, for it is the traditional musical instrument which adds a wonderful splendour to the Church’s ceremonies and powerfully lifts up man’s mind to God and to higher things (Article 120). The Sacred Congregation of Rites states in its Musicam Sacram (Instruction on Music in the Liturgy): By sacred music it is understood that which, being created for the celebration of divine worship, is endowed with a holy sincerity of form. The organ’s unique characteristics are ideally suited to accompany the human voice. The tradition of organ accompaniment continues at the Cathedral of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Hamilton with two young organists in training there. Tara Fernandez-Ritchie is the current Cathedral’s organ scholar. She is the accompanist on the piano and organ for the Cathedral choir. At age 11, she began to learn the piano and at 16, she turned her attention to the organ. In 2014, she was dux of Sacred Heart Girls’ College in Hamilton and was awarded a University of Waikato Golden Jubilee Scholarship. She is in her fourth year at the University of Waikato studying towards a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering degree. The second young organist is Joseph Dean. At the age of eight, he began to learn to play the piano and took up the organ two years ago. He has not decided on what course he will take at university although his favourite subjects are physics and mathematics.

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Rosa Mystica shop closure Pictured above are (from left) Tara FernandezRitchie, Sr Colleen Morey rndm, Joseph Dean and Ephraim Wilson. A past organ scholar at the Cathedral is Ephraim Wilson. He was the accompanist on the piano and organ for the Cathedral choir. However, after his secondary schooling, he left to study law at the University of Victoria in Wellington. While there, in addition to his studies, he continued to be involved in music and has been the general musical assistant and student for Douglas Mews, Jnr, organist for the Chapel of St Michael the Archangel, St Mary of the Angels Church, assistant organist at the Metropolitan Cathedral of the Sacred Heart and of Saint Mary His Mother (commonly known as Sacred Heart Cathedral), understudy organist for the Bach Choir of Wellington, organist at the NZSO National Youth Orchestra, and organist at St Francis de Sales Church. After completing his LLB degree, Ephraim returned to Hamilton in July of last year and rejoined the Cathedral parish and the organ music team. Tara, Joseph, and Ephraim were taught piano and organ by Sr Colleen Morey, rndm of the Cathedral. Sr Colleen had attended the University of Auckland and graduated BMus in 1971 which was followed by a MMus with first class honours. While studying for her music degree, Dr Douglas Mews, Snr taught her the pipe organ on various pipe organs in Auckland but mainly at Holy Trinity Cathedral. Thereafter, she continued to live in Auckland and in various other districts before moving to Hamilton in 1986 when she joined the parish of the Cathedral. To showcase the musical talents of Tara and Joseph, a Young Organists’ Concert was held on Sunday, November 26 at the Cathedral. Ephraim was invited to participate in the programme. When the Cathedral was redeveloped in 2009,

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parish news the old electronic organ was disposed of and a new Allen Quantum Q405C electronic organ was purchased. It boasts four manuals and uses a digital processing technology called “the convolution reverb”. In the implementation of this technique, the acoustics of the Cathedral became an integral part of the organ’s sound and digitally simulates the reverberation of the Cathedral’s physical or virtual space.

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After operating from the foyer of the Cathedral of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Hamilton since the Cathedral was redeveloped in November 2008, the Catholic shop, Rosa Mystica will cease business on 31 March, 2018. Having a shop in the Cathedral precincts provided a prime location for accessibility for the faithful as was the case of The Square Gift Store Ltd located on St Patrick’s Square opposite St Patrick’s Cathedral in Auckland and also of cathedrals in Europe. Rosa Mystica sold books, gifts, stationery, rosaries, crucifixes, candles, statues, and many other religious items in order to serve the needs of the Catholic community in the Waikato. All items were of a Catholic nature and, in particular, there were adult and children’s Bibles, prayer books (some general and others for special needs such as for the sick), and sacramental gifts and cards for Baptism, First Holy Communion, Confirmation and all events in the Church’s Year. Also stalls were set up in events like Set Free, Hearts Aflame (Catholic Summer School for Youth) and on Marian Day at Morrinsville (the latter were great supporters of the shop). Grandparents buying for grandchildren were constant customers, hoping to keep the faith alive in the younger generation. Sales were seasonal according to the seasons of the Church. Baptism gifts were in constant demand. Favourite sales by far were the rosaries and St Christopher medals. The name Rosa Mystica is the name Our Lady called herself when she appeared to Pierina Gilli, a nurse in the town of Montichiari in Italy in 1947. Our Lady’s message was that of prayer and fasting, as she told us in all her appearances. The provision of the shop was a form of evangelisation and an outreach for Jesus. Any profit was put back into the business. The decision to close the shop was for personal reasons. John Fong

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ketekorero February 2018 - April 2018

the religious life

From Vietnam to seminary - Joseph Pham's travels through faith

Joseph Pham with Otorohanga parishioners who supported him in his journey (above). Left, with friends on the farm. Above right, driving cows down a race during milking time on the farm. Right, Joseph with the cows on the farm where he worked during his time before leaving for Auckland.

It’s a long way from a village near the city of Hai Phòng in the north of Vietnam to a dairy farm near Pirongia in the Waikato. However, that is the transition Hieu Trung Pham (Joseph Pham) made on his way to the Holy Cross Seminary in Auckland. Although technically he will be entering the seminary through the Auckland Catholic Diocese for the discernment phase, the understanding that this was the path he wanted his life to take came to him during a spell dairy farming in the Waikato. A Catholic family belonging to the Hai Phòng diocese, the family has a pig and fish farm and produces vegetables. When he finished high school in 2011, Joseph went to Ho Chi Minh city (formerly known as Saigon) in the south to prepare to take a national entrance exam for higher education. While studying finance and banking at the Vietnam National University, he joined a Catholic Student Group at St Dominic’s parish and became part of a leadership team. In 2015, he joined charity of Saint Martin de Porres, undertaking volunteer work creating projects to help poor people start their own businesses and provide financial assistance to students. On graduating with a Bachelor Degrees in Finance and Backing in 2016, he came to New Zealand where he did a business course at the international private training establishment Edenz College. At the same time, he joined the Auckland Catholic Youth Ministry. On completing his Diploma in Business Level 7 in February 2017, Joseph decided a move out of Auckland and into farming would help give him more time to spend with God in the evenings,

away from the distractions of the city. After initially starting on a farm at Clevedon, south of Auckland, he moved to the Waikato. Joseph joined the Parish of St Patrick’s Catholic Church, Te Awamutu, attending the rosary group every Wednesday evening. “I wanted to try a new experience, and want to spend more time with God in the evening. I thought working on a farm would be better, so I could work during the day and have time in the evening.” His experience on the dairy farm included everything that this work entails – milking, fencing, feeding the calves and anything else required. One of the benefits has been having a three-bedroom house. “Some of my friends who came to visit me asked how could I live here alone in the house. But I said I work long hours and then pray, go to bed and get up early in the morning, so I have no time to think that it is boring.” Spending time on the farm, working and praying every day, Joseph realised he wanted to do something more with his life. “I realised my calling from my heart, that it was the right time to do this.” Joseph had wanted to become a priest when he was a child and, although he had done many things, he could not deny the call from God. One of the turning points in his life came while as a volunteer in Ho Chi Minh City he visited children in orphanages and elderly in nursing homes. “I listened to them about their life stories: The children who have never seen their mothers, and the elderly people who are no long looked after by their relatives. They are happy, as they are

living with people who are in the same situation, and other people are looking after them. I saw Jesus in them, and we met in Jesus.” Although he had previously regularly prayed, during his time in Otorohanga Joseph came to know the power of the Rosary. He has also seen the way in which pray has helped his family through a crisis involving one of his sisters. Joseph says he enjoyed working on the farm and had everything he needed by way of money and a house, but something was missing in his life: He wanted to go to Mass and receive the sacrament on a daily basis. He was discerning in part to answer a question he had in front of him since child around whether God was calling him to be a priest. “God’s calls seem like phone calls which I have refused to answer. I have told myself that I should accept the call but not right now, maybe later. If God keeps calling me, I must respond. I cannot deny Him.” Joseph feels a strong urge to help bring Catholics back to the church at the same time as wanting to become a priest in New Zealand to help boost numbers here, where they are very low compared to his home country. This was brought home to him when he attended Mass at Te Kuiti with Fr Matt McAuslin when there was only one other man. Joseph has been supported in his discernment by a number of people in Auckland and the Waikato who, although they have only known him a short time, have been impressed by his faith and insight.

ketekorero February 2018 - April 2018

the religious life


parish news

Pa Yvan's pilgrimage to Susan Aubert's tomb Children flying the flag in Christmas parade Helen Thomas Families from St Joseph's Church Mangakino took part in the town's annual Christmas parade. Flying the flag for Christianity! The float featuring the children took out second prize in the parade. The children included "Mary" (Billie-Jean Hayward), "Joseph" (Carmen Thomas) and two angels in colourful dresses (below). It was a long wait for the parade to start ,so "Mary" is pictured below using her maternal skills to entertain the angels.

In mid-January, Pa Yvan Sergey joined his friends Fr Aidan Mulholland, Brigid McArthur and Mgr Trevor Murray (pictured above) on a pilgrimage at the tomb of Susan Aubert in Wellington. By way of background, Pa Yvan suffers from motor neurone disease (MND). Please find below his account of the visit: We left Monday afternoon and stayed overnight in Taupo with Mgr Trevor. We departed from Taupo on Tuesday morning and arrived in Wellington in the afternoon. We went first to visit Fr Aidan’s Mum who was happy to see us. Then went to stay in a motel in Lower Hut called Green Garbles. On Wednesday morning, we went to celebrate Mass at 10am at the Home of Compassion, which is the place where the tomb of Sr Susan Aubert is placed. They all wanted me to preside the Mass and therefore my two friends lifted me on to the sanctuary, which is fortunately not too high and

Pa Yvan is placed on the sanctuary.

Pa Yvan and his two friends in the crypt where the tomb of Sr Susan Aubert is placed. the same with the altar being low enough to celebrate sitting in a wheelchair. I was able to preside the Mass and give a brief homily. After the Mass, we went to the crypt where the tomb of Sr Susan Aubert is. Sr Jo explained to us the different elements present in the crypt. I was then put on the tomb and everybody present prayed to Sr Aubert for my healing. The first time, I didn’t feel anything, but the second time on the second day, I had a big crack in my back which wasn’t painfull. Up until that point, there were no changes in my disease. My weakness continues to increase. So after several days, maybe, I understood that my way, according to the will of God, is to prepare myself to be born in heaven. After my return from Wellington, these days, I started to struggle to transfer myself to my wheelchair because my left shoulder had a pain and both shoulders started to weaken, so that it became difficult to lift myself. My pelvis also began to be unbalanced, making my standing up a bit funny and, of course, weak. But I am still trying to do it, offering my pain to the Lord. I try to meditate the Stations of the Cross through the vision of my disease. So far, I have already experienced about half a dozen of the Stations and carry on to meditate. I thank my dear friends for this little pilgrimage, it was good and interesting. I hope that Sr Susan Aubert will be praying for several miracles and becomes a saint, and then it will become a pilgrimage place, like the one of St Charbel, I saw in Lebanon. With my kind regards and my love and prayers Pa Yvan+ Priest with MND Background For more on Pa Yvan Sergy and his journey, go to "Pa Yvan's Stations of the Cross", Kete Korero November 2017-January 2018. View more images and thoughts at

CHRISTMAS FLOWERS IN GISBORNE Isabel Neshausen supplied this photo of beautiful flowers in Gisborne's St Mary's Catholic Church during the Christmas period.

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ketekorero February 2018 - April 2018

Our Place Preschool was established to complement the thriving St Columba’s school and parish community. “We feel so blessed to be part of such a lively and loving community” says centre owners Kelly and Jill. The preschool enjoys strong links to the school and church and share in school productions, sports days, celebrations and masses which enrich the pre-schoolers lives. Consequently, the children are very familiar with the school and the addition of a robust transition to school programme means a happy and confident start to school life. Our Place is a place where the person of Jesus Christ lives among the toys, the children and the art projects. The teachers share the stories of God the Father and God the Son with children every day and the love of Christ is embedded in everything that happens in the preschool. Our Place Preschool provides all day care for children from birth to school age at their homely centre nestled alongside St Columba’s Church in Frankton. The fees are reasonable, and they offer ‘20 hours free’ with NO additional costs incurred by parents. A daily hot cooked meal is included along with snacks, a learning portfolio, nappies and sunscreen. You are welcome to visit the centre at 50 Rifle Range Rd, Frankton, Hamilton or call Jill or Kelly 07 8477472 or email


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The Catholic Development Fund (CDF) Ph 0800 843 233 Email: or visit 51 Grey Street, Hamilton East

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This application to deposit is issued with the Replacement Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) dated 23 December 2016 for an offer of debt securities issued by the Roman Catholic Bishop of the Diocese of Hamilton, trading as the Catholic Development Fund (CDF). The Replacement PDS and the Trust Deed can be viewed at the following websites: NZ Companies Office; Catholic Diocese of Hamilton or the Diocesan Office at 51 Grey Street, Hamilton East, Hamilton 3216

Profile for The Catholic Diocese of Hamilton

Kete korero february 2018  

The latest edition of the Hamilton Catholic Diocese magazine Kete Korero is now available. Articles in this edition feature . Author Joy...

Kete korero february 2018  

The latest edition of the Hamilton Catholic Diocese magazine Kete Korero is now available. Articles in this edition feature . Author Joy...