The many and varied activities undertaken by Sr Alice Hardiman during her 60 years as a Missionary Sister of the Society of Mary were highlighted at St Michael’s church in Remuera on December 2, last year.
At the Saturday vigil Mass, which she usually attends, those present saw a slide show about Sr Alice’s life and about the SMSM sisters, on the occasion of her diamond jubilee. Presented by her younger sister, Sr Frances Hardiman, also an SMSM, the slideshow traced her life from growing up in Southland, being educated in Dunedin at St Philomena’s College and her representing Southland at netball and athletics.
But she heard God’s call to life as a religious, and started her preparation in Heretaunga in Wellington, where she took her vows.
During Sr Alice’s religious life she would do many things — including spending 28 years in Samoa, where she became a fluent speaker of the local language.
In New Zealand, she would work with the Auckland Diocesan Marriage Tribunal, working on Samoan cases. She also spent three years at the Marcellin Hall Pastoral Institute. She ran many seminars and retreats. Sr Alice has also had a long association with the Mother of Divine Mercy Refuge in Avondale as a counsellor and in other support roles. (The Mother of Divine Refuge youth sang at the Remuera Mass.)
In 2009, she was one of a team of six SMSM sisters who travelled to Samoa to support the relief effort after a devastating tsunami. Her main role was with the Samoan Mental Health Team doing trauma counselling.
At the Remuera Mass, Sr Alice renewed her vows as an SMSM sister.
On the feast of the Immaculate Conception, Sr Malia Sanele Moahengi, SMSM, her novitiate companion, renewed her vows at the 9am Mass at Northcote. Sr Malia was also celebrating her diamond jubilee. She had been missioned to Hawaii, Kiribati, Australia, and worked for many years in the Solomon Islands.
She is now in her home country of Tonga.