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Fr J F R Pestre (Provincial) to Fr C Cognet (Superior of Maori Mission) 1/10/1895

Translated by Brian Quin, February 2002


Wellington 1 October 1895

Reverend and very dear Father
You will be happy to learn that tomorrow, the 3rd of October, a young Father will embark at Marseilles to come and join you, to help you evangelise Taranaki. He is Father Hervier, who has asked me to tell you of his coming, but he has not given me the name of a ???? confrere, nor any other detail about himself. You will have to get set to prepare for him somewhere to live. See what you will have to do about that; I am not familiar enough with your situation to give you any advice. If you don’t have anywhere for him to live, especially while he will be learning Maori, you can perhaps leave him for some time at Otaki, waiting for you with Fr Melu.
As for your plan concerning the foundation of a house for missionaries in the Taranaki district, you can propose it to the Archbishop when he visits the area. I firmly believe that the great difficult, at present, is the shortage of priests, whether secular or religious, to take on this fine work.
Father Devoy has not yet been able to see the ministers about your Maori orphanage at New Plymouth. As they are at present very busy and strongly attacked, they would not have the time to deal with this matter, and, beside, they would be in too bad a mood. Father will try to see Mr Carroll next week.[1]
No other news for the present.
Pray for me, and believe me always, Reverend and dear Father,
Yours devotedly in JMJ
J F R Pestre


  1. This would have been Mr James – later Sir James – Carroll, Minister for Native Affairs under Prime Minister Seddon – translator’s note