A Catholic Monthly Magazine

Sowing the Seed of God’s Word

Earl Crotty

Fr Earl Crotty sm

Julienne has been living in East Tamaki, South Auckland, since the early 1960s. She came from Rakahanga in the northern Cook Islands and took up residence here. Coming to live across the road from her was another Cook Island family, husband Toka and wife Teremoana Kumu. Julienne was a devout Catholic, Legion of Mary member, devoted to the Divine Mercy. Toka and Teremoana Kumu became her good neighbours. Every morning as Julienne went to work she would drop a piece of paper detailing Scripture verses from that morning’s Mass in the Kumu letterbox. Julienne had been reflecting on these verses, praying them before breakfast. The Kumus began to discuss the Scripture readings with Julienne when she came home from work.

About 1994 Julienne went home to Rarotonga for the opening of the new St Joseph’s Cathedral. When she returned, Teremoana was in tears . “We had missed you so.” She wished to become a Catholic, but Julienne demurred. None in Teremoana’s large family was Catholic. “They would not like me if you became Catholic,”  she said. The two families were still friends and shared a cup of tea regularly.

One evening, while Julienne’s family was saying the Rosary, Toka and Teremoana came in to Julienne’s house. They were much taken by a picture of our Lady of Fatima and asked could they have it. Although Julienne was sad about this, she agreed and prayed, “May our Blessed Mother in heaven lead you.” A week later the Kumus asked to become Catholic, so Julienne took them down to St John the Evangelist Parish Priest, Fr Logue. He spoke to them at length and, in due course, received them into the Church. When he first gave them Holy Communion, he asked the congregation to let them be the first that morning to receive the Eucharist.



There was such happiness evident on the Kumu faces. They became stalwart parishioners, active in the Legion of Mary, delivering food to needy families, helpers in Church liturgies, in the Sacristy. Both Toka and Teremoana died this year, 2015, within six weeks of each other, blessed with the Anointing of the Sick and Holy Communion. Think of the power of God’s word in that piece of paper dropped in the letter box each morning ..... think of Julienne, eyewitness and servant of the word ... sower, sowing the seed! Her prayer: Use my hands, Lord. Use me. 

Tagged as: ,

Comments are closed.