New chapel next to locked St Mary’s Church in Hokitika

A new chapel will be built next door to the locked St Mary’s Church in Hokitika, parishioners have been told.

The news – delivered at Mass last weekend – dashes hopes for a $2 million contribution from the Christchurch Catholic Diocese towards re-strengthening and reopening the existing church, which was closed 10 years ago.

Friends of St Mary’s (FOSM) spokesman Mike Keenan said the diocese funds would instead be put into the new church, which was planned for the footprint of the recently vacated presbytery.

It follows consultation directed by the diocese on where the parish wanted to be in the next 10 years.

Mr Keenan said it was “disappointing” that the consultation did not include a buildings option.

Bishop Gielen wanted the closed St Mary’s to stay on site. Continue reading


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