Sunday, April 12, 2009


NEWS & NOTES - 12 April 2009 - Easter Sunday




** Easter 2009 **

God's love endures in story of Easter
Easter messages by - among others - Bishop Pat Dunn.

Christ's gospel needed more than ever, by Garth George
While I was reading once again the other night the timeless and evergreen story of the first Easter, a piece of paper fell out of my elderly and much-thumbed Bible. It contained a daily reading _ from what year I know not _ written by one C. Knott and based on Matthew 16:18: ``And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.'' Knott wrote: ``The Lord Jesus left us in no doubt about what he is doing during this age _ he is building his Church. He is not improving society. He is not reforming through politics. He is saving people and thus calling them out of the world and into his Church.

Halswell Cross to go up again (photo)
The Christchurch Mail
This Easter will be the third year that the Halswell Cross is erected in the main ampitheatre of the Halswell Quarry Park.

Cross bears prayers of the faithful (photo)
Hundreds of people visited Halswell Quarry yesterday to see a 5.4-metre-high cross with a stylised figure of Jesus Christ.

Easter rites
Whether you're heading to church, or out to play backyard cricket, or just catching up on daytime TV this long weekend, you have Easter to thank for the fact you're not at work. But not everyone agrees a country as secular as New Zealand should retain the Christian holiday...

TVNZ. Close Up. Waitaruki's Good Friday tradition (video report)
In Kaeo, like around the rest of the country, one of the most important days in the Christian calendar is recognised. For Catholics in particular this area is significant. Just a short way away is where Bishop Pompellier established his first mission on the East Coast, so the parishioners from the tiny settlement of Waitaruki have their own Good Friday tradition.

Thought for the meaning of Easter
For Rowan Locke, lying on a concrete grave playing Jesus Christ about to be crucified was all part of Easter celebrations.

Walkers have a cross to bear (photo)
Members of different churches joined together for a "walk of witnesses" in Frankton yesterday.

Survey: God still has pull
A religious historian says while few people will be going to church this Easter, most still have a strong belief in God.

Faithful flock to church in their hundreds
The Press | 11 Apr 2009 Page: 13
Attendances were up on last year as hundreds flocked to the Anglican and Catholic cathedrals in Christchurch yesterday for Good Friday services.


In other news ...

Shortage of priests leads to Catholic mass cutbacks
Sunday mass will no longer be held at one of Timaru's Catholic churches as changes are made to address the shortage of priests in the region.

Unique Spiritual Retreat At Eucharistic Convention, 17-19 April 2009
The global economy may be in the pits, but over 1,000 kiwis will enjoy a huge spiritual uplift at next weekend’s Eucharistic Convention. Brilliant international Catholic speakers from the USA, Vietnam and Australia, plus kiwi speakers, are set for the 16th annual event at Westlake Boys High School Auditorium.

Prime Minister meets with Church leaders
Church leaders from the Anglican, Baptist, Catholic. Methodist, Presbyterian, Assemblies of God and Salvation Army churches met at the Beehive yesterday with Prime Minister John Key and Minister of Finance Bill English to discuss pragmatic responses to the local social impacts of the global economic crisis and to shape some priorities that can be supported by Churches and their social service agencies.

New Zealand Should Follow Australia’s Lead in Supporting Indigenous Rights
The New Zealand government should follow Australia’s lead in declaring support for the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People, says Caritas, the Catholic agency for Justice, Peace and Development.

Speech competition win a ‘biggie’ for St Peter’s
The Southland Times | 7 Apr 2009 Page: 13
St Peter’s College pupils took on their bigger cousins in the Dunedin diocese at the weekend and won the coveted Bishop’s Shield. Acting principal Lindy Cavanagh-Monaghan could hardly contain her enthusiasm yesterday ...

College kids slum it (photo)
There were no iPods, no McDonald’s, no cellphones – just cardboard boxes and rice. About 70 St Peter’s College students learned what it was like to live in a slum on Saturday night. The Palmerston North school’s courtyard was turned into a village of...By Laura Jackson

Priest up for diversion
The Dominion Post — News — 6 Apr 2009 — Page 3
A Catholic priest is to be considered for diversion for throwing paint on an Israeli memorial. Father Gerard Burns was charged with wilful damage of the Yitzhak Rabin memorial after he mixed a drop of his blood with paint which was thrown during a pro- Palestinian protest on January 7. He has been remanded by a Wellington District Court registrar until Thursday.

'Fat Jesus' competition evokes church's wrath
Some church leaders have reacted with outrage to a radio competition which encourages Auckland listeners to find "fat Jesus".

Churches slam The Edge Radio Station
Today the leaders of the Catholic and Anglican Churches in Auckland sent a letter of protest to The Edge radio station for lampooning Jesus as part of a Good Friday stunt.

Priest cross over cut off
Cut off from his congregation in the run-up to Easter, a priest says Telecom's delay at reconnecting telephone lines at the church is "appalling". The Holy Cross Catholic Church in the Wellington suburb of Miramar had been without telephones or an internet connection since March 31.

Rotorua MP to introduce Easter Sunday Trading Bill to Parliament
Press Release: New Zealand National Party 07-4 09:48-2009/>
Rotorua MP Todd McClay is to introduce a Member&'s Bill to Parliament asking MPs to change the law to allow local communities to choose whether or not they can open on Easter Sunday.



** Being together at Easter **
Easter in one parish and at St Catherine's College

** He has risen without a doubt **
A reading and discussion of Mark 16:1-7 with Canon Jenny Wilkins and Rev. Frank Nelson at St Paul's Cathedral, Wellington.



New Zealand Catholic Blogs. Some current topics ...

The Anguish of Absence: a meditation for Holy Saturday by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger ... Light in the darkness (New Zealanders and faith) ... Staring at the Light (preparing for Holy Thursday) ... Solidarity (in defence of Regnum Christi)


ALL THINGS CATHOLIC, by John L. Allen, Jr.

Obama and Notre Dame

I’d like to float a hope regarding the increasingly acrimonious debate over the University of Notre Dame and its invitation to President Barack Obama to deliver this year’s commencement address. In a nutshell, my hope is that American Catholics will manage their disagreements over the Obama appearance without turning this into yet another nasty front in our version of the culture wars...


WORLD NEWS OF THE CHURCH (video) (news of Pope Benedict - video)



Eucharistic Convention - Friday 17th April - Sunday 19th April 2009
Westlake Boys High School, 30 Forrest Hill Road, Takapuna, North Shore, Auckland
Full details and booking:




[Teaching vacancies in New Zealand Catholic schools are advertised in the Vacancies section of the Education Gazette: ]

[Vacancies for Catholic youth workers are advertised on the Vacancies page of ]

Adult Formation Co-ordinator, Catholic Diocese of Hamilton
Details in 'NZ Catholic' April 5 - 18 2009 p.23, and from the pastoral team leader, Chanel Centre, tel. (07) 856 6989; e-mail: Applications close 17 April 2009.