Canterbury’s First Rural Catholic Church Opened – 1871

In 1871, Canterbury’s first Catholic Church was opened on Shands Road, near the intersection with Boundry Road, near Rolleston.

The parish of this tiny church (Church of the Most Blessed Sacrament) stretched from The Conway (Kaikoura) to the Rangitata River! (Ashburton)

The land was gifted by Patrick Henley and the first Father was named Chervier.  If Chervier’s counterparts in the Anglican Church are anything to go by, Chervier may have travelled endlessly through his parish to serve the spiritual needs of those Catholics who couldn’t make it to church!

*image taken by Annette Bulovic*

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