by MARK EBERY
A total of 13 catechumens were baptised, and 12 candidates were confirmed at the Easter vigil and first Mass of the Resurrection held in a packed-out Cathedral of St Patrick and St Joseph in Auckland on the evening of March 31.
Among the new Catholics was the Bridge family from the Auckland suburb of Mt Roskill.
Dad Daniel and daughters Olivia (aged five) and Adara (aged two) were baptised, while Mum Paula was received into full communion with the Catholic Church and confirmed.
A very good family friend had introduced Paula and Daniel to Catholicism; many conversations helped convince them about joining — and also altered their earlier perceptions that the Catholic Church was rather mysterious and also judgmental.
Another factor that cemented their decision to join the faith, they commented, was the openness and welcoming spirit of Pope Francis.
Paula and Daniel said that they had been attending church for about six years before they finally took the decision to join, and for the past eight months they have also been regularly attending the RCIA programme held at Liston Hall next to the cathedral on Thursday evenings.
Commenting on the programme, Paula and Daniel noted that the sense of community there, and the sharing of perspectives on aspects of the Catholic Faith, as well as the reflections that are part of the weekly Lectio Divina, were particularly inspiring for their journey.
Their hopes for the future? To continue learning and growing together as a family — keeping their faith central to their lives in this modern fast-paced world.