A very significant moment for all of us as we were invited to share Mass together on our first day of pilgrimage. Bishop Denis spoke of the important role Pompallier had in ensuring religious freedom for all New Zealanders. Pompallier was able to speak Te Reo Maori and had established a close relationship with the Northern chiefs. He spent several days discussing the clauses in the treaty but wasn't actually present at the signing, which took place in the early hours of the morning under the watchful eye of Reverend Williams.
Bishop Denis spoke of the legacy which Bishop Pompallier left for us, as leaders of Catholic schools, 176 years of the Catholic faith in New Zealand, a very precious gift.