A Catholic Monthly Magazine

Brother Luke Paget sm

Br Luke Paget

Br Luke Paget

Born in Dunedin 19 October 1937

Professed 19 March 1964

Died in Christchurch 30 January 2016

Thanks to Br Raymond Kelleher sm for the following article, based on his eulogy, with additional material provided by Marist Archives.

Brian James Patrick Paget, Brother Luke, was the first born of twins. His twin brother was Neil who has predeceased him. Their parents were James and Winifred Paget, and his sister Joan was born four years later. His first school years were at St Mary’s Wakari Primary School, which was staffed by the Dominican Sisters.

In his father’s footsteps, his secondary education was with the Christian Brothers of Dunedin from 1948 until 1955. On leaving school Luke worked as a plant nurseryman before beginning a bookbinding apprenticeship (1957-1962).

In September 1962 he entered the Society of Mary Novitiate at Highden, Palmerston North, and made his first profession on 19 March 1964. He then worked in the kitchen at Greenmeadows Seminary where he trained as a cook. Luke’s Profession for Life in the Society of Mary took place in the Sacred Heart Basilica, Timaru, on 19 March 1967.

He spent the next two years at Rochester Hall university hostel in Christchurch before returning to the seminary kitchen for another few years. In January 1973 he was appointed to the Novitiate at Highden and the following year was moved to the Mission House in Wellington.

He enjoyed a welcome break from kitchen work when he had a period of restful renewal at Maryknoll, Hawke’s Bay, during the first few months of 1975. In the same year he was appointed to St Patrick’s College, Silverstream, boarding school where he assisted the caretaker with general duties. In 1997 he was appointed to Futuna Retreat House and in 2001 he returned to Hawke’s Bay to the retirement house in Windsor Terrace.

In March 2005 he moved to the Sacred Heart Presbytery in Timaru, where he was for almost two years. He had charge of general duties in the community and was a very dedicated sacristan in the Sacred Heart Basilica. January 2007 he was asked to move to the Presbytery of St Mary’s, Manchester St, in Christchurch, where, although semi- retired, he was active in the kitchen and garden. He was living there when Christchurch suffered a number of serious earthquakes. Post-Earthquake, he moved with the community to Bishopdale and in 2012 he retired to Armstrong Village, now renamed St Basil’s Court.

When one looks at the number of moves Br Luke had one gets the impression that his generosity in going where he was needed was never lacking even when he was suffering from indifferent health.

Luke’s simple self-presentation belied his intelligence, his wide reading and his love for TV documentaries, preferably late at night! A confrere tells of holding forth about how the various themes of operas were contained in the overture. Luke shook his head. “No, not always.” When he was challenged, Luke replied respectfully but definitely, “Aida.”

He was respectful in demeanour. When Peter Blake told Luke that he could call him by his first name, Luke replied, “Yes Father,” and that’s the way it remained.

When illness struck, Luke approached it phlegmatically, his faith was steady and he was at peace.


1964 -- 1967 Greenmeadows Seminary

1968 -- 1969 Rochester Hall, Christchurch 1970 -- 1972 Greenmeadows

1973 -- 1975 Highden

1976 -- 1996 St Patrick’s, Silverstream

1997 -- 2000 Futuna

2001 -- 2006 Taradale

2007 -- 2011 Manchester St., Christchurch

2011 Post-earthquake, Bishopdale

2012 Armstrong Village

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