Celebrating Marist Jubilees

What a wonderful celebration it was when Marist Sisters in Fiji, family and friends gathered to celebrate the Golden and Diamond Jubilees of Marist Profession for Srs Veronica Lum and Torika Wong. Archbishop Peter Chong Loy was Chief celebrant at the Mass and he reminisced on his school days at St John’s College when Vero was his Chemistry teacher. Many of Vero’s classmates of Loreto were present and lots of Sr Torika’s relatives. The family sang a beautiful hymn after communion. About two hundred guests packed the parish hall. The food was delicious. We praise and thank God for our two sisters and their dedicated service to the church in Fiji and the Philippines.

 

Sr Loyola Grehan sm

Sr Loyola Grehan sm was called to eternal life on Wednesday 31st July 2019.

Eternal rest grant to her, O Lord.
May perpetual light shine upon her.
May she rest in peace.
Amen.

We extend our prayerful sympathy to the Marist Sisters in Fiji and to Sr Loyola’s family and friends.

Asia-Pacific Leaders Meet

The Leaders of the four Marist Sisters Units in the Asia-Pacific Region met recently in Davao, The Philippines. Srs Catherine (Australia), Jane Frances (Aotearoa-New Zealand), Lavinia (Fiji) and Sheila (the Philippines) spent a week together focusing on issues such as Marist Life and mission, formation at all stages of life, sharing of resources, developing leadership skills and mutual support for those in leadership. While in Davao the sisters also visited Balay Banaag (a hostel administered by the Marist Sisters) and participated in a Sunday Eucharist at the local jail where members of the Marist family, including our Sisters, minister.

Remembering Sr Mary Chris

About fifteen Marist Sisters attended a memorial Mass in St Mary’s Church Nadi, Fiji, to remember Sr Mary Christopher on the first anniversary of her death.   The paraliturgy by the tombstone was simple and meaningful. The sisters shared briefly on their memories of Mary Chris. This was followed by the blessing of the headstone by Father John Crispin sm.
We then visited the graves of all our sisters buried in Balawa, Lautoka and a placed a bouquet of flowers on their tombs. Some of the sisters included Sisters Wilfred, Regina, John Gualbert, Blaise, Sulita, Helen, Rita, Anita, Anne Marie, Amadeus, Alexis and Nolasco. On returning home to Nadi, there was a small kava ceremony to thank Father Crispin. This was followed by a delicious meal prepared by parish sector members.

Easter Joy

Happy Easter from the Marist Sisters

During this sacred time when we celebrate
the great event of our redemption
may we all experience deeply
the joy, the peace and the hope
that is ours because of
our Risen Saviour.

 

Novena to St Peter Chanel

Each year for the nine days leading up to the feast of St Peter Chanel, Marists throughout the world pray through the intercession of St Peter Chanel for vocations to the Marist Family.

St Peter Chanel, a  Marist Father, was in the first group of Marist missionaries to Oceania.  Peter arrived in futuna in November 1937.  During his lifetime Peter saw little success in his work.  During his first six month on Futuna he baptised only one Futunian – a dying child. Early in the morning of April 28, 1841, Fr. Peter was wakened from sleep and clubbed to death, his skull split by the axe of a Futunian warrior. He was thirty-eight years old.  He was the first martyr of Oceania and the first Marist to be canonised.

You are invited to join us in praying that young people of today may, like Peter Chanel, respond generously to God’s call to follow Christ as Mary did. Download the novena prayer here.

 

Reforestation Project in Fiji

On Wednesday 21st March 2019 the Marist Sisters of the Nadi community in Fiji witnessed a very simple but meaningful missioning ceremony of Sister Lora who is undertaking a reforestation project in the Yasawa Islands. Also present were Srs Lavinia Henry, Fiji Unit Leader, Noelene Simmons, General Bursar, and Lorraine Campbell, Fiji Unit Bursar.  The hymns and readings reflected the purpose of missioning Lora to the land of her ancestors named MATANIWAI. The reforestation project that she is undertaking involves planting long term and short term trees, shrubs, flowers, fruit trees and vegetables. The principles of Laudato Si as expressed  by Pope Francis are mirrored in this project. The Marist Sisters support Lora in this project and wish her well.

Celebrating 100 Years of Life

The centennial celebration of Sister Loyola’s birthday on 27th December was a wonderful and memorable occasion in Fiji where Sister has lived and ministered since 1962.  The day started with Holy Mass at 10.00 am in the church. The main celebrant was Fr Frank Hoare , an Irish Columba’s priest who came from Suva. Sisters own Magnificat was read by Sr Teresia after the Gospel. Thanksgiving after communion was another Magnificat sung by the choir.
The caterers produces a delicious meal of various dishes which was enjoyed by all. There were about 200 guests including Marist Sisters and a large group of sisters ex students. They donated the birthday cake which was beautifully decorated. The highlight of the morning took place at 8.00 am when the President and his wife and his entourage of four cars arrived at the convent. Sister was delighted and even overwhelmed when the President Mr Jioji Konrote presented her with a plaque and a letter from our Prime Minister, Mr Frank Banimarama.
The spirit of the day was expressed with joy and dancing and singing Irish songs after lunch.
(Click on the images below to see the full-size photo)

Final Profession in Fiji

On 8th December, feast of the Immaculate Conception, Fijian Sister Titilia Tupou made her Final Profession as a Marist Sister. Her family arrived in Nadi the day prior to the profession and they came well prepared for the big occasion with food for themselves and for the lovo…Fijian style food cooked in an earth oven.
The sun shone on the morning of the 8th as the sisters, family members and parishioners sang with great joy the Entrance hymn welcoming Father Milikiade sm the main celebrants and his two brother priests of Nadi.  Tears of joy flowed as Sister pronounced her vows and received her ring. The meal afterwards was indicative of good management as there was a variety of delicious dishes.. more than 300 guests enjoyed the meal and there was more left over. All in all , it was a joyous occasion for the Marist Sisters and for Titilia’s family. On the evening of the 8th, the family handed over Titilia to the Marist Sisters in a very moving traditional custom. Again tears were flowing.
(Click on the images below to see the full image)

Rich Experiences in Fiji

Students from Cerdon College Merrylands went to Fiji believing they were needed. They quickly learnt that it is in giving that we also receive. The students are very grateful to the Marist Sisters in Fiji for enabling them to have such wonderful experiences. They have come home richer people as a result of the time they spent there.