WelCom July 2017: Parish Priest of Whanganui Pastoral Area – Te Parihi Katorika Ki Whanganui, Fr Marcus Francis, was welcomed on Pentecost Sunday onto Kaiwhaiki Marae, 20 kilometres upriver from Whanganui township.
In his welcome, kai korero (speaker of the day) and local historian, Kohunrangi Simon, explained how Fr Lampila sm arrived in 1853 to establish a Catholic Māori Mission and carried ‘a fierce belief in his Catholicism’.
‘Today, it is indeed an honour to welcome Fr Francis onto this marae and to celebrate Mass,’ he said.
Special karakia were said for local priest Pa Steve Hancy and past parish priest Fr Terry Fitzpatrick sm, who had both sadly died the week before and whose spirits were felt in the pōwhiri. Lunch together and a group photo concluded the gathering.