by PATRICIA SISON
On May 1, a special Mass was celebrated in honour of the Feast of St Joseph the Worker at St Joseph’s church, Mt Victoria, Wellington. The Mass was celebrated by Msgr Gerard Burns, vicar-general of Wellington archdiocese. About 50 pilgrims prayed the consecration prayer and a hymn to St Joseph in front of the statue of St Joseph the Worker outside the church after the Mass.
This was followed by a pilgrimage to churches under the patronage of St Joseph in Upper Hutt, Pauatahanui, and Levin, with some pilgrims staying overnight at St Joseph’s Convent in Hiruharama (Jerusalem) along the Whanganui River. Prayer included the joyful mysteries of the rosary, through the eyes of St Joseph.
On May 2, the pilgrims began their morning with a St Joseph-related rosary at the historic St Joseph’s church. How serendipitous to begin the pilgrimage at St Joseph’s church, Wellington, which has a special connection with Mother Mere Hohepa (Sr Mary Joseph or the Venerable Suzanne Aubert) who herself had a great devotion to St Joseph, and to culminate in a trip to St Joseph’s church, Jerusalem, where she founded the Daughters of Our Lady of Compassion 129 years ago!
After morning prayers, the pilgrims travelled to the Kaiwhaiki Marae, where they were warmly greeted with a powhiri by the Māori community, followed by Mass, kai and fellowship.
The presence of God was tangible throughout the whole pilgrimage, and the experience was truly a special time of grace spent with Sr Mere Hohepa, our Blessed Mother and our spiritual father St Joseph!
The Family Pilgrimage with Mary is an annual event organised by the Centre for Marriage and Family, and the Legion of Mary.
To express an interest in going on a Family Pilgrimage with Mary in honour of St Joseph, please visit www.marriageandfamily.org.nz or email firstname.lastname@example.org