Category Archives: Cathedral News

Cathedral & Pastoral Area Bulletins & Other Related News.

The Cathedral Connection 18 March 2018

The full newsletter can be viewed here.


Last week everyone in New Zealand participated in the 34th national census which sought to gather a “snapshot” of the country. This weekend we ask you to please participate in our own Parish Census. The information gathered will support our pastoral leadership teams, in their role of acknowledging, guiding and empowering our parish community.

Over the last two months they have been exploring how to encourage a parish life that will honour our Christian understanding of stewardship and the wisdom garnered from the 2017 Diocesan Synod.

The outcomes from the Synod theme ‘Go you are sent…’ have common threads underpinning them, the call to holiness and to be responsible stewards of our community and environment. As our leadership teams strive to model responsible stewardship, to be consultative, collaborative and accountable, they need an informed understanding of who we are as a parish and who is in our wider communities.

You are encouraged to complete our parish census, so that together as a community we are equipped to ‘Go…’ – to our own peripheries; to society’s peripheries; to develop a spirituality of service; as members of the one Body of Christ… As you fill out your census card let St Teresa of Avila’s words ring in your heart:

‘Christ has no body, no hands, no feet now but yours’.

Debbie Matheson
Lay Pastoral Leader

The full newsletter can be viewed here.

The Cathedral Connection 11 March 2018

The full newsletter can be viewed here.


Last Sunday, seven adults and two children were welcomed into our community in preparation for their baptism at Easter. The adults have been meeting regularly with a small group of parishioners since last September, praying, studying and discussing about all things relating to Christianity and our Catholic tradition. The process is known as the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA).

Their formal introduction to the community included an anointing with the Oil of Catechumens, consecrating them to the Lord and commending them to the prayerful support of the whole parish. This happened at the 5.30pm Vigil and 10.30am Masses and in the context of Chapter Four of St John’s Gospel – the account of Jesus’ meeting with the woman at the well.

The theme of Water calls attention to baptism; the “spring of living water” offered by Jesus sparking a transformation in the woman. She becomes the first “missionary”, eager to tell others what she has found in Jesus. This Sunday (11th) and the next, our “Catechumens” will deepen their connection with Jesus through the themes of Light (John, Chapter Eight) and Life (John, 11). They will affirm their commitment to the Creed and will be presented with The Lord’s Prayer as their anthem and link with the Christian family.

Water, Light and Life are images most closely associated with the message of Jesus Christ. As they help pilot the journey of those soon to be baptised they offer refreshment and renewal to those ahead on the road. Pause and take stock of your response to the call to have “life in its fullness”.

Fr James

The full newsletter can be viewed here.

The Cathedral Connection 4 March 2018

The full newsletter can be viewed here.


Last Sunday we said goodbye to Fiona Rammell, our Lay Pastoral Leader over the past year. Fortunately, all is not lost. The parish is blessed to gain a replacement LPL, Debbie Matheson, who formally began her service last Thursday, 1 March. She will be commissioned by Cardinal John at the 5.30pm Vigil Mass on Saturday 7 April.

Letting Fiona go was not easy for me, or for the many people she had served during her time with us. Her pastoral skills are very rich and reflect her commitment through several years of study and formation. Others will surely benefit from her ministry as new opportunities arise for her. So, we bid Fiona farewell, with grateful hearts.

Our gratitude must also extend to the Archdiocese and the vision of Cardinal Tom Williams who, following our 1998 Synod, devised the “Launch Out” programme to bring lay people into pastoral leadership positions.

The Lay Pastoral Leader is qualified to lead a parish in the absence of a priest, and to work alongside a priest as an equal in pastoral responsibilities. Debbie will assume that role as I prepare to step aside as parish priest.  From now to July, she will “discover” the Cathedral Parish, get alongside the various committees and become familiar with the school programme. Families preparing for the sacraments will also be her territory and we will work together as the parish seeks to help implement the decisions of last year’s Archdiocesan Synod.

Lay Pastoral Leaders are integral to the life of our Archdiocese. While currently serving in only a few parishes, their ministry is encouraging parishioners generally to take more responsibility for parish growth. This is Stewardship in action. The more you accept a stake in your parish, the sense of ownership will expand and God will be able to do marvellous things through us.

Fr James

The full newsletter can be viewed here.

The Cathedral Connection 18 February 2018

The full newsletter can be viewed here.


 ONCE AGAIN Lent is with us. From a time when the emphasis was on “giving up” and “making sacrifices”, we are now asked to see this graced season as an opportunity to improve ourselves and our relationships by

  • deepening our awareness of what it means to be a Catholic Christian in the 21st century;
  • examining our personal relationship with God, self, others and creation;
  • looking beyond our own needs to help alleviate suffering and hardship elsewhere.

Reaching these goals can be helped by taking time for quiet reflection or meditation and/or joining one of the archdiocesan adult education programmes. The Caritas Lenten initiatives open paths to developing faith and becoming more alert to the ways in which faith can be put into action.

The ash that signals the beginning of Lent is the banner that champions change.  It can make winners of us all.

Fr James


Burned palms
Echoes of triumph
Trampled underfoot
Squashed into ash

Smeared on foreheads
Lifted up for blessing
Hopeful new beginnings
With the sign of the

Runners on the mark
And forty days ahead
Ash defies the critics
Signalling glory
Going for gold

 The full newsletter can be viewed here.

The Cathedral Connection 11 February 2018

The full newsletter can be viewed here.

Dear Parishioners

Change. Letting go. These are the words flying around in my head as I draw to the end of my time with you. We tend to resist change or letting go, even though nature shows us every day how necessary and inevitable it is for life to flourish. We just need to look at the life of Jesus to see how change and letting go was such a part of his ministry. In fact, our faith believes in the death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus. If that isn’t a lot of change in just a few days then what is!

Yet, despite all this knowledge, we still fret when change happens.  We are fearful of the new. We hear ourselves say “back in my day” recounting tales of when we believed things were great and if only they could be like that now. If only things could stay the same.

Sometimes change happens to us and sometimes we effect the change.  As we see the leper in today’s Gospel was changed by the healing hands of Jesus.

In my short time here with you I have felt your healing hands as you have welcomed me and helped shape and mould me into the person I am today. As I leave my ministry among you, which has been an honour and a wonderful experience, I ask for your prayers as I move into a new way of being God’s hands and heart to those I will go on to serve.

Yes, letting go is difficult, change is inevitable, but the memories I have of walking amongst you will remain with me. For this I am most grateful.

Love and blessings


The full newsletter can be viewed here.