Good afternoon,

Yesterday, i.e. Wednesday  I spent some time in the Lower Hutt library while waiting for my wife’s car to be serviced. I picked up a book on the Chronicles of the Popes and I spent an hour tracing through centuries of Popes and the church of their time with all the muddle that surrounded them or that they caused. Everything you could possibly think of was laid bare – however, a far cry from the early church we experience in our readings. Peter announcing that God has no favourites and this stands in complete contrast to the church of centuries past caught up in the power, opulence and the greed of leaders from every corner of the globe.

Here in the first reading we see Peter not accepting the status of power rather, inviting Cornelis to stand up – a welcome with an attitude of respect and equality. This attitude is driven, ‘by love’ and these early disciples learned this from Jesus. God is love that is the ‘base line’ and we are all invited into a relationship of love which Jesus shares through his union with God.

Strangely, we seem to forget the power associated with this attitude of following Jesus. Going to mass ranks above service to others and the building of community. We amalgamate parishes and close down churches and then wonder why people are hurt, bruised and battered as they feel that there is no opportunity for them to gathering with their  community they identify with or through. In terms of their faith journey. The emphasis is on what we do rather than who we are – it deals with externals. However, this also effects clergy as well who, have been supporting and then it’s like the floor disappears from underneath. On another side or from another viewpoint ,  there is understanding of manpower, finance and costs associated with insurance, maintenance, programmes etc. How so we keep these buildings going let alone supporting their communities?

Overall, it is not easy!  But, it seems to me that we cannot deny looking at the deeper questions re our life and faith. From everything the gospel exhorts us to be, pilgrims, a people journeying in faith with the challenge is to be a community serving others and welcoming others. This is not easy but in these challenging times across our planet it seems that there is a call to stop and listen. What is going on and how can each of us do something to heighten the awareness of being servants not tyrants! 

People can treat following Jesus like turning 65 – I am entitled to my Super – I have done my time it is now time for me? As far as I can tell there is no retirement age or qualifier in the gospels or New Testament. Paul would have none of that as he states when coming to his end he writes to in 2 Timothy 4:7-8 

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.”

I have always since I first came across this verse been astounded by Paul’s faith and honesty. What a strength to say at the end of one’s life. I have done my best and it is done! Not surprising from an apostle who was so committed to bringing Jesus to others and so committed to building small communities of faith. We need this today – large groups sound great but don’t develop or enhance the relationships. Community is about ‘belonging’ just as we believe with Passionist Family Groups – building relationships for the ages – not for next week.

We need to rest those who are tired and allow them to minister in other ways and support where they can but we do need to meet the challenges of using our energies to keep building relationships that encourage, nurture and enthuse us to be gospel people. With Pentecost closing in – now is a time to see that we have to allow God’s spirit to enthuse us and inspire us to reach out and be the best we can be with the fits and talents we have. 

When all is said and done it is above all about love which this week’s readings sharpen our focus. God is love and when we follow in love, miracles happen. 

It is important to remember: That by which one comes to know and love another, is a miracle! So, let us be the miracle for others in God’s name and in our journey of following Jesus.

Have a good week – blessings on each of you and those struggling

Nga Mihi and Aroha


Scripture reflection:  Sixth Sunday of Easter Year B, 5 May 2024.

As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you



Grant, almighty God, that we may celebrate with heartfelt devotion these days of joy, which we keep in honour of the risen Lord, and that what we relive in remembrance we may always hold to in what we do. 

First reading: 
Acts 10:25-26, 34-35, 44-48
Responsorial psalm: Ps 97(98):1-4
Second reading: 1 John 4:7-10
Gospel: John 15:9-17
Link to readings – click here

Today’s readings centre on the theme of love: the totally faithful, unconditional love of God for us. The First Reading describes a turning point in the growth of the Early Church. Peter visits the house of Cornelius, a Roman centurion and Gentile, announcing that ‘God does not have favourites’. God reaches out to those who listen to him through his Holy Spirit. He creates a community of love that embraces all humanity.

St John (Second Reading) reminds us that God loved us first. God’s nature is love. The great depth of that love is revealed in God sending Jesus, whose self-sacrifice redeems our sins and draws us into the life of God. The Gospel shows us Jesus teaching his disciples about his loving relationship with his Father. Jesus chooses and invites us into that same intimate relationship. He tells us how to follow him: that we should love one another. The Psalmist encourages us to sing praise joyfully to the Lord whose love offers salvation to all.

As we approach the end of the Easter season, we pray for the grace that we ourselves might reflect the gift of God’s love, through our actions to our brothers and sisters, and to all creation. We also give thanks for the love of our friends, and for the joy that they bring to our lives



Formation-Reflection and moving forward:

Grief – You Don’t Just Lose Someone Once (Donna Ashworth)


You don’t just lose someone once.
You lose them when you close your eyes at night.
And as you open them each morning.
You lose them throughout the day.

An unused coffee cup.
An empty chair.
A pair of boots no longer there.
You lose them as the sun sets.
And darkness closes in.

You lose them as you wonder why.
Staring at a star lit sky.
You lose them on the big days.
Anniversaries. birthdays, graduations.
Holidays, weddings, and the regular days too.
You lose them in a song they used to sing.
The scent of their cologne.
A slice of their favourite pie.
You lose them in conversations you will never have.
And all the words unsaid.

You lose them in all the places they’ve been.
And all the places they longed to go.
You lose them in what could have been.
And all the dreams you shared.
You lose them as the seasons change.
The snow blows.
The flowers blossom.
The grass grows.
The leaves fall.
You lose them again and again.
Day after day.
Month after month.
Year after year.

You lose them as you pick up the broken pieces.
And begin your life anew.
You lose them when you realize.
This is your new reality.
They are never coming back.
No matter how much
You miss them or
Need them.
No matter how hard you pray.
They are gone.
And you must go on.

Time marches on, carrying them further and further way.
You lose them as your hair whitens and your body bends with age.
Your memory fades.
And the details begin to blur.
Their face stares back at you from a faded photograph.
Someone you used to know.
You think you might have loved them once.
A long time ago.
Back then.
When you were whole.

You don’t just lose someone once.
You lose them every day.
Over and over again.
For the rest of your life.






Reminder: 5 Aims and Goals

  • share & celebrate life & faith 
  • support one another (especially in need)                            
  • reaching out to & include others
  • build community/extended family
  • show and give example to children     



Pease remember in your thoughts and prayer: 


  • Please keep Brian McFlynn in our prayers who is undergoing cancer treatment. Also, his wife Eleanor and their family in your prayers..
  • Please keep Brian Traynor in your prayers – he has improved and now on restful holidays. 
  • Please keep  Paul and Linda Darbyshire in your thoughts and prayer amid new challenges they face. They are in need of prayerful support.
  • Robyn Burns (Hill) in hospital for a two to three more weeks. She has a long recovery time. Also remember her husband Andrew and three daughters.
  • Please keep in your prayer Tim Bartell’s son, Sam who is currently in hospital. Prayerful support for Sue and Tom and mum Sue.
  • Please keep Jocelyn Bryant who is undergoing Chemotherapy along with her husband Kevin and family in your thoughts and prayer 
  • Please keep Christine Geoghegan and family in your thoughts and prayer.
  • Please keep in your prayer Leanne Hintz (Claire & Ray Hague’s  daughter. She is very unwell.
  • We give thanks for the successful operation. Wayne keep him and Mary Dorn in your prayers
  • Please keep Richard Gibbs in your prayer he continues to slowly improve. Remember his wife Sue who has just been a pillar over the past 3 years.
  • Please keep Robert van de Pas in your prayers – he continues to struggle with pain etc from Chronic Pancreatitis. Also Adriana his mother who is supporting him.
  • Please remember Preston and Jenny Epplett’s daughter she has just completed her course of chemotherapy
  • Please keep Debbi Davidson’s husband Bryan in your prayer 
  • Please keep Charlie and Maggi in your thoughts and prayer as they support their daughter and her partner
  • Please keep Anja van de Wettering in your prayers as she has shared she is expecting her second child.
  • Please keep David, Victoria and baby in your prayers. There has been some positive progress and it now looks as if this baby will make it to full term. 
  • Please keep a friend in mind who is in the final stages of pregnancy and ordered to bed rest until baby is born. 
  • Keep in mind all those who are struggling with various aspects of mental health.
  • Please keep in mind a son of a friend of mine who has just been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. 
  • Please remember Martin van der Wetering in your prayers as his health still is causing him grief and discomfort.
  • Please remember Phil Drew a former Passionist along with his wife Anne and family
  • Please keep in your prayers those who continue to  deal with the after effects of droughts on the horn of Africa. Also weather effects on other countries across the planet 
  • Please keep Bob Buckley in your prayers- 
  • Keep in prayer the people of Ukraine
  • Keep people in Gaza and Israel in your prayer – these acts from both sides have had a horrible effect on the innocent as always. 
  • Please pray for Dot and Neill Wilson (Invercargill) – their son-in-law Mark married to Dot’s daughter Anita has been diagnosed with aggressive brain tumour, Please keep in mind their daughter Bailey and son Taylor.
  • Remember Pat and Rod Carson 
  • Aidan son of Josie and Phil McIntyre –his parents are his caregivers.
  • Your own intentions

Humour: Contribution from Paul Mulvaney

The broken down car…. 

Kenny, a city boy, moved to the country and purchased a car from a farmer for $100. The farmer agreed to deliver the car the following day. The next morning, the farmer drove up and said, “Sorry, son, but I have some bad news. The car broke down.”

“OK, well, just return my money to me,” Kenny said.

“Sorry, can’t do that,” said the farmer. “I already spent it.”

“OK then, just unload the car,” said Kenny.

“Whatcha gonna do with it?” asked the farmer.

“I’m going to raffle it off,” Kenny replied.

“You can’t raffle off a broken-down car!” the farmer exclaimed.

“Of course I can,” replied Kenny. “Watch me. I just won’t tell anybody it doesn’t work.”

A few weeks later, the farmer met up with Kenny and asked, “So, what happened with the car?”

“I raffled it off. I sold 500 tickets at two dollars a piece and made a profit of $898.00,” explained Kenny.

“Didn’t anyone complain?” inquired the farmer.

Kenny proudly replied, “Just the guy who won. So, I gave him his two dollars back.”

Going fishing! 

Two men are out fishing and they are having great luck. They are catching so fast, they have to go back early.

“This is so great,” says the first guy. “We should mark the spot so we can come here again.”

“You’re right,” replies the other guy who then dives over the side and paints a big X on the bottom of the boat.

They head back to shore and just as they’re about to dock, the first guy looks at the second and asks, “But what if we don’t get the same boat next time?”

Rain, rain…. 

One night a torrential downpour soaked a small town. The next morning the resulting floodwaters came up about six feet into most of the homes there.

Mrs. Miller was sitting on her roof with her neighbor, Mrs. Smith, waiting for help to come.

Mrs. Smith noticed a lone baseball cap floating near the house.

Then she saw it float far out into the front yard, then float all the way back to the house. It kept floating out, then back, out and back.

Her curiosity got the best of her, so she asked Mrs. Miller, “Do you see that baseball cap floating away from the house and then back again?”

Mrs. Miller said, “Oh yes, that’s my husband. I told him he was going to cut the grass today, come hell or high water!!”