Many thanks to Fathers Simon and Tien for the opportunity to talk to you this weekend about the Marist Messenger, of which I’ve been the editor for the last few years.
I’m delighted to be visiting St Francis of Assisi Parish, and celebrating in the very church in which I was ordained by Bishop Brian Ashby in 1973. My brother, Peter, who is at present the parish priest of Sancta Maria Parish here in Christchurch, was ordained here in 1979. This is also the building in which my sister was married, and in which Dad’s Requiem Mass was celebrated, so it is a very special place for my family and me. My last year of primary school was at Our Lady of Fatima, and it’s good to see that the classroom in which Sister Helen CHF taught about thirty of us is still there.
In Bathurst, Australia, in September, the Messenger won a number of awards from the organisation of Catholic publications in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific. One of the awards was the Best Print Magazine. The judges wrote:
“Sometimes the best things come in small packages. So it is with the Marist Messenger. This year the ‘magazine of Catholic spirituality’ celebrates 90 years of publication, a truly wonderful achievement. The magazine is compact in format (and in administration and operation) but is packed with good reads – no admonitory preaching here, just inspiring spiritual reflections from laity and religious, including daily insights into the readings of the day, interesting Marist history, guidance from Pope Francis and short biographies of the month’s saints. The Messenger is both edifying and entertaining – with a jokes section guaranteed to raise your spirits with a laugh. There’s also a crossword. Happy 90th birthday, Marist Messenger”.
May God bless each and every one of you, and all of your families and loved ones. Thank you for supporting the Marist Messenger.
Father Kevin Head SM