Maka Tatafu & John Lomu playing guitars

Mt. St. Marys,
Sat. 10th August ’68.

Dear Mum & Dad,

I have now been here for exactly 6 months to the day (26 weeks), because I also came in on a Saturday 10th. The time hasn’t dragged but the 10th February seems to be ages ago looking back.

We had a Conge last Wednesday. On Tuesday night we went into Napier to see the rehearsal of “Noye’s Fludde” (Noah’s Flood) by Benjamin Britten put on by Sacred Heart, Napier. It was very good. On Wednesday night we had a film called “Taurus Bullus” (or something) which was about the Poles fighting.

Mr. Reade’s 7 week old baby boy died last Wednesday. (Mr. Reade is our speech teacher – abdominal breathing and voice production and all that). In the morning we had a concelebrated Mass of the Angels. Later, after breakfast on Thursday, we walked to the local cemetery for the burial service. The coffin was only a little bit bigger than a shoe box, but there were about 60 there wearing soutanes and surplices (all the Seminarians). I don’t think the sexton could quite make out what was happening.

I have started on the accompaniment of “My Fair Lady”. It is quite hard and will take a bit of time.

Brother Simon, who has been here for about a month, collects cacti. He has about 50 at the moment and is going to get a lot more soon. They are all fairly small and have bright, bright flowers in Summer apparently. I never realized that there were so many different types.

Fr. Chapman, who is fairly old now but was Rector here during World War II, has moved down to the Home of Compassion at Island Bay. He was getting too sick for the students to look after. Bro. Alexander, who suffered a stroke recently, is now almost fully recovered.

The weather has been cloudless here all week and very warm. It starts to get cold around 4.30 p.m. though. Nor have we been getting frosts. There are a lot of lambs about and all the fruit trees are blossoming so it looks like Spring is well on the way, although we could be deceived. The next visiting day is during the Blossom Festival weekend which I think is a fair way away. I will send a complete list soon.

We will be having 40 hours Devotion here on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

Well, I think that that is all the news.

Love from

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