St Vincent de Paul Society’s New Plymouth branch has a new base following the sale of the parish’s suburban church of St Paul in Spotswood .
Their depot of many years next to the church had of necessity been demolished as the property changed hands.
Members and guests gathered to celebrate the blessing and opening of the new building next to St Joseph’s parish school. Fr Manus Lyons officiated, and Anne Marie McCarten, national administrator, performed the ceremonial cutting of the ribbon.
Meanwhile the school principal, Mike Dowd, expressed great pleasure in the proximity of the facility which now provides an excellent link for the school community with one of the longest-standing voluntary care services of the church.
Mike also told the story of the moggie who arrived out-of-the-blue on the day builders moved in to start work. He made himself at home immediately and is now a valued member of the school family.
The children promptly named him Vincent (Vinny). He knows a thing or two for sure wandering over to the blessing ceremony, purring contentedly on the step, while waiting to be introduced.
Images: Top: St Vincent de Paul regional chaplain, Sr Patricia Barrett RNDM, Taranaki regional chair, Bernard Lyon, national administrator, Anne Marie McCarten, project coordinator, Trevor Knuckey, after the blessing.
Above: School principal, Mike O’Dowd, with Vinnie the cat.