WelCom March 2020:
The Catholic Parish of the Wairarapa held a special ceremony on Sunday 6 October last year, dedicating the parish to Mary under the title of ‘Our Lady of Compassion’. The ceremony was celebrated with a combined Mass at St Patrick’s Church, Masterton.
Representatives from St Anthony’s, St Teresa’s, Sacred Heart, St Mary’s and St Patrick’s communities came together for the occasion. The event also saw installation of our new Parish Pastoral Council members.
Highlights were the procession at the beginning of the Mass, the beautiful music, the dedication prayer especially written by parishioner Joy Cowley, custom-made holy cards, and great hospitality after Mass.
Our Lady of Compassion connects the Parish of the Wairarapa with Blessed Suzanne Aubert, and her Sisters of Compassion. The sisters resided in and ran a school and home in Carterton, from the 1950s until the 1990s. They were welcomed and supported by all the parishes within the Wairarapa.
Suzanne Aubert’s association with the Society of Mary was significant from the beginning of her ministry in New Zealand, having come out from France with Bishop Pompallier. It also connects us with our history in the Wairarapa.
The first parish priest for the Wairarapa, Fr Anthony Halbwachs, belonged to the Society of Mary. He was appointed by Bishop Redwood sm, a great friend and confrere.
A ‘thank you’ has been extended to all those involved in the planning and participation in the dedication Mass, including Fr Bruce England and Fr Binu Matthew who concelebrated on the day.
Margaret Bourke is a member of the Wairarapa Parish Pastoral Council.