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4 October 1845. — Bishop Guillaume Douarre to Father Victor Poupinel, New Caledonia

Translated by Peter McConnell, June 2010

To Reverend ¤ Reverend Father Poupinel Procurator of the Missions ¤ of the Society of Mary ¤ Lyon ¤ France Rhône

[in the hand of Poupinel]
New Caledonia 4 October 1845 ¤ My Lord the Bishop of Amata to Fr Poupinel

Reverend Father,
Your letter gave me the greatest pleasure and I have only one regret and that is that I cannot answer as fully as I would like to, but time rushes on and I have to go to the ship to see the commander and thank him for all the kind things that he has done for us and leave with him Father Viard who is leaving us to go to New Zealand. I have spoken to you about a ship without telling you which one. That is not surprising; I wrote to you 24 hours ago. It is the corvette Le Rhin commandered by Mr Bérard. A mother would not have been able to do more for her children than this worthy commander has done for us. I have to go on board this moment. Excuse me then if I speak to you immediately about business matters.
In New Caledonia we would need a lot of footwear, shoes, boots to protect us against mosquitoes, some soutanes, particularly short ones in brief because of the mountains, undergrowth, and bad pathways. For the natives a lot of red material, blue necklaces for the women, hatchets for the men. For us some money for flour, wine. oil, vinegar, bacon, as New Caledonia has no pork. We would also need some money for chartering a ship to go to Sydney to buy some livestock there and some iron for the natives. Never send missionaries without supplies; they will always be receipted. Send us too mosquito nets. I have nothing else to ask you at the moment.
Do please offer my respects to the Monavon family whom I am unable to write to today ; remember me to Mr Montheillet. I don’t know whether I forgot our priests in my letter to the reverend Father Provincial. Be so kind as to mention me to them and with my thanks for the services that you continue to give us, do accept the assurance of the affectionate attachment with which I will never cease to be, reverend Father, your very humble and obedient servant,
Guillaume Douarre, Bishop of Amata.