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Welcome to the Marist Studies Wiki: Letters of French Catholic Missionaries in the Pacific 1836-1854

  • A place for sharing translations into English of the letters to Rome by the early French missionaries to the Pacific.
We have been so overwhelmed with the wealth of material being made available that the indexing system has been changed. In the navigation pane on the left you will now see several pages of contents:
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  • Girard Contents is the key focus of the site, the translation into English of Lettres reçues d’Océanie the collection of letters from the Marist General Archive in Rome, the critical edition of which Fr Charles Girard SM has made available.
    • There is on sale a single volume "highlights" of the 9 volume set. This is entitled Lettres des missionnaires maristes en Océanie (1836-1854) by Charles GIRARD (dir.) with ISBN : 978-2-8111-0081-0 and this link will take you to the publisher's site.
  • Clisby Contents is the set of translations by Br Edward Clisby FMS which has been privately published under the title Letters Received from Oceania
  • ColinSup Contents is a collection of documents for the study of the generalate of Jean-Claude Colin. Colin is a major recipient of the letters of the missionaries and this collection includes many of his replies to those letters. The name of this comes from the way Colin, as Superior General, used to sign his letters - Colin Sup.
  • Keel Contents is the compilation published in 1993 by Fr Edwin Keel SM called a book of texts: for the study of marist spirituality
  • Other Contents is the index to other primary historical documents relevant to Marist Studies and to the history of the Catholic Church in Western Oceania.
  • Secondary Sources is a response to the request to use this site to enable the online publication of Marist Studies materials.

2015 Publication of "Brother Missionaries in Early New Zealand"

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An in-house publication was done in late 2015 by the Marist Archives Wellington of a collection of their resources about the early brothers of the Society of Mary in New Zealand.

It is attractively presented with excellent photos and includes an index of those who were professed as Brothers and worked in New Zealand

You may access an electronic version here








A Piety Able to Cope by Jan Snijders

Here is the online version of the following work:


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This work has now come out in Print under the title A Mission too Far ... Pacific Commitment and can be purchased from ATF Press.

Alternatively you can purchase it as a pdf file from them at A Mission too Far (pdf).

Bonus Chapters of A Mission Too Far ... Pacific Commitment

This text is published in follow-up of A Mission Too Far … Pacific Commitment written by Jan Snijders and published in 2012 with the ATF, Hindmarsh, SA. In ten chapters the book tells the story of the Marist Founder’s role in the opening of the Marist missions in the Pacific from 1835 to 1841. To continue the story Jan wrote a further chapter, 1842 Part 1: A Quiet Period in Between, that was published in Forum Novum, Volume 14, in December 2012, 78-101. On this link is a second one, 1842 Part 2: Reorganizing Things.

Now, in September 2014, we offer yet another Chapter 13 - January-August 1842: Action in the Pacific.

The story continues! In May 2015 we offer Chapter 14 - 1842-1843: The End of a Period

In September 2016 we offer Chapter 15 - 1843: Douarre and Épalle.

In July 2017 the fascinating story of Fr Forest Chapter 16 - 1843: A Visitator in New Zealand.

October 2017 the story of the next groups of missionaries arriving and of the dividing up of the region into different vicariates. Chapter 17 - Expansion 1843-4.

The Extra Chapters


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