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Thursday June 23, 2016

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Celebrating Suzanne Aubert’s Birthday The Sisters of Compassion and Wellington South celebrated Suzanne Aubert’s 181st Birthday at the weekend. The light-filled chapel at Our Lady’s Home of Compassion in Island Bay, was at capacity last Sunday evening as people gathered to celebrate the special day. Friends and well-wishers, some from as far afield as Hiruharama (Jerusalem) and Kaikoura, joined with the Sisters of Compassion for a Mass to commemorate the birthday of Mother Aubert, who is likely to become New Zealand’s first saint. The Mass was celebrated by Cardinal John Dew who noted how Mother Aubert’s example still guides us today and how it

was particularly appropriate to be celebrating her birthday on a Day of Prayer for refugees and migrants. In her welcome, Sister Margaret Anne Mills, congregational leader, said, “Suzanne knew the anguish of refugees as on her arrival in Rome in 1913 she was turned away from more than 40 convent doors. “Towards the end of a discouraging day a French family gave her accommodation until she was able to make her own arrangements. “Suzanne also had a challenging time returning to New Zealand in 1920. It took many months for her to obtain legal papers and a passport.”

Who was Suzanne Aubert? Suzanne Aubert arrived in New Zealand in 1860 after working as a nurse in her homeland of France. She initially arrived in the country to work as a Catholic missionary in Auckland and later established Hiruharama (Jerusalem) on the Whanganui River. Mother Aubert is responsible for founding a religious order, the Daughters of Our Lady of Compassion in 1892. Mother Aubert started two hospitals in Wellington, including Our Lady's Home of Compassion in 1907. Mother Aubert died in 1926 and the process for Mother Aubert's canonisation as a saint began in 2010.

Sister Margaret Anne and Sister Josephine cutting the cake for the Catholic Parish of Wellington South

Volunteers at the heart of Plunket services This week, Plunket is celebrating its volunteers across the country and the diverse ways in which they give their time to support families with young children. National Volunteer Week began on Sunday, and Plunket is one of the many organisations to recognise the work of its volunteers. Plunket New Zealand’s acting president, Christine Lake, said

volunteers founded Plunket in 1907. “More than a century later, volunteers are still at the heart of our services for families,” she said. “National Volunteer Week is a chance for us to say thank you to all those who make time and give their individual skills to help families in their local communities, this week and every week.”

Plunket’s national advisor for volunteers, Maia Faulkner, said the organisation had developed a volunteer strategy with a focus on supporting those who make time in their busy schedules to provide services for their local community. “We want to make available to people the kinds of opportunities they want to volunteer for. ”Plunket is committed to vol-

unteering because research and our own experience show that children are more likely to thrive when they grow up in connected communities where families give their time to help each other. “We’re grateful to every volunteer who has contributed their time to help families.”  If you are interested in getting involved in your local community, visit plunket.org.nz

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Play adapted for Wellington audience

Matariki at the Miramar and Maupuia Community Centre

By Nikki Papatsoumas

This Saturday 25 June from 6-8pm, 27 Chelsea St. Music from Brannigan Kaa, Sianne & Tawhai Konia. Hangi $5. Free entry.

A group of Italian students have re-worked a well-loved play, making it perfect for a Wellington audience.

This week, the Victoria University of Wellington Italian Society will present Mambo Italiano to eager audiences. Mambo Italiano follows a family fallout after lead

Mambo Italiano is on at Bats Theatre until Saturday.

character Angelo commits two cardinal Italian sins: moving out of home before marriage, and (unbeknownst to his parents) moving in with his boyfriend Nino. What ensues is an hour and a half of uncontrollable chaos as Nino and Angelo’s parents find out about their relationship, try to ‘fix’ their sons’ sexualities, and ultimately have to question whether tradition is more important than family. President of the Victoria University of Wellington Italian Society, Jayden Evett, said he had spent four months reworking the script to give it a Wellington feel. “The playwright Steve Galluccio originally wrote the show for a Montreal audience, and it's taken a good four months to research and adapt the script to replicate that honest local comedy, for a Wellington audience,” Jayden said. Jayden explained the play was now set in the capital and in particular, Wellington’s

Italian community of Island Bay. It was also packed full of references to Cuba Street, Out in the Park, and the controversial Island Bay Cycleway. Hockey and Basketball has been changed to Rugby and the Hurricanes – and the play was now set in today’s age as opposed to the late 80s early 90s, Jayden said. “It’s a true Wellington play it has really become its own thing now. There is always something in it for everyone.” Jayden said the Victoria University of Wellington Italian Society was re-established in 2014 and now had more than 70 members. “We are very new, the last time we were this active was in 2004.” He said putting on a show was a “tradition” amongst the languages at Victoria University, and the society would now look at presenting a play biannually.  Mambo Italiano will play at Bats Theatre until Saturday, June 25.

Brooklyn Community Market This Saturday 25 June from 9.30am to 1pm. Brooklyn Community Centre, 18 Harrison Street. Great stalls, delicious food and face painting for the kids.  Details online: www.brooklyncommunitycentre.org.nz

St Anne’s Market Saturday, 25th June. 10am - 2pm at St Anne’s Church Hall, Emmett Street, Newtown. Food, clothes, Bric-a-Brac, plants - all sorts! Stalls available. Call Noreen 021 02780601.

Johnsonville Craft Fair The Salvation Army (next to BP) Saturday 25 June 2016, 9am to 3pm. Almost 30 stalls, includes crafts, skincare, clothing, pickles and art. All welcome. Entry Free.

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