Diary of a Child of Mary


19th – Feast of St Joseph:
  Our little Sodality had the honour of
adorning the parish statue of St Joseph with flowers and greenery to solemnize
the consecration of the SSPX to St Joseph.

and Holy Week
: As in previous years we ironed
and placed the purple cloths on the statues in the Church in preparation for
Passiontide and we cleaned the brass.   

A week later in response to our Director’s encouragement, we did our best to make the Altar of Repose more beautiful than ever for our dear Lord this year.  Many parishioners commented on how beautiful it looked and how it was the best one yet so I think we succeeded!  

The councillors also had the honour of embellishing the table for the blessing of the holy water and paschal candle stand with flowers for the Easter Vigil.
8th – Feast of the Annunciation:
had the joy of seeing four aspirants make their consecrations! There are now
almost 20 consecrated Children of Mary in Wanganui!  It is so beautiful to see so many blue cloaked
girls kneeling up the front of the Church on the first Sunday of each month for
the Sodality Mass.

: The majority of our members
formed a contingent for the annual pilgrimage to the statue at Paraparumu  in honour of Our Lady.  We all loaded into the white van and left
Wanganui at 6am to arrive at our destination at 8.15am.  We walked 20kms carrying the Sodality banner,
singing hymns and praying the rosary. 
Some members even sang for the evening Mass to end the pilgrimage.  On the way home we stopped for dinner and
sang songs the whole trip back.  A lovely
day was had by all.

June:  Sadly, we had to farewell
one of our number early this month. Annie has sped across the seas to teach at Our
Lady of Victories School in the Philippines. From all we hear, she has settled
in well, and is “a great help” there.  We
had a little farewell gathering for her to let her know that we will not forget
her.  We sang a couple of traditional Maori
songs and a song which we dedicated to her and this was followed by a small

July: The first two days of July have already been very busy for the COM.
In addition to the two feasts, we had two anniversaries to celebrate, a Day of
Recollection and a long-awaited trip
to Mt Egmont.
On the Feast of the Precious Blood, we had
our very first Recollection Day. The plan is that this will be a stepping-stone
towards having an annual 5-day retreat, as the Rule says we’re to have. The
Councillors were asked to have a hand in organising the Day, including the
music for the Sung Mass and the dinner afterwards. After just a little
hair-pulling, it all came together in the end.   We had four conferences followed by
meditations in the Church which were led by Father.  The topics for the conferences were:  What it is to be a Child of Mary, making a
good meditation, the virtue of purity and devotion to Our Lady. 

Our recollection ended with Benediction and
then we adjourned to the school to entertain our chaplain for the celebration
of his fourth year of ordination.  Our
festivities began with a photo presentation of Father’s first year as our
chaplain and then we sang a song which we had written about him.  Everyone then progressed to the tennis club
which has never looked more elegant! Our candle-lit dinner was complimented by
damask tablecloths, fairy-lights and streamers! Dessert took the form of an
immense, two-tiered, soccer-themed mocha cake! Father is renowned for his
soccer and is known throughout Wanganui as “Pere Louis”.  Dinner was followed by games – pictures will
probably say more than words here. The day was rounded off with Compline
(Dominican rite) in the church.

The next morning brought the Feast of the
Visitation, the 8th anniversary of the COM in Wanganui. After a
Sodality Mass and renewal of our consecration to our dear Mother, we had a
speedy muffin-breakfast. We then packed ourselves into the big Red Bus, and
Father drove us to Mount Egmont for a walk (with most of the convent tagging
along!) Our Lady gave us a beautiful day, and the snow on the mountain was stunning!
After lunch on the plateau, we descended the same path but all ended up coming
back from different directions.  During
the entire day, there was only one injured ankle and the odd bruise. Oh, we did
almost lose two of our company, but as it turned out, they had just been
enjoying themselves on an extra detour.

For the journey back to Wanganui, we stopped
for afternoon tea by a couple in the parish who own a farm not far from the
mountain. What a wonderful afternoon! We were so very warmly welcomed, fed and
entertained with hakas, songs, yodelling and story-telling! In our turn, Father
told the story of the Battle of the Spurs, and we and the Sisters sang some of
our favourite songs. Thank you so much to our dear hosts.

When we got back, the COM celebrated our
anniversary in style with another fairy light dinner together at the tennis
club. None of us were quite as energetic as the night before, so the games
didn’t involve so much taping balloons onto each other, or covering books with
one arm …

item on the year’s agenda:
a party for August
11th, the Feast of St Philomena! What a mortified life we lead!  All of this being said we do still meet once
a fortnight for a spiritual talk from Father and we continue to visit the rest
home once a month, do a Holy Hour every First Friday, clean the church,
maintain Our Lady’s garden,  clean for
the elderly and we are now on the roster for arranging the Church flowers.