WE DON’T KNOW HOW LUCKY WE ARE – as the saying goes…..!



 For our Eucharistic Convention to have been able to work with NASA to allow Astronaut Michael Hopkins to come to our event, to share his experience of the beauty of God’s creation with those lucky enough to hear him, is a miracle in itself. It has taken nine long months to be able to pull this off; not a walk in the park.


In order to get the green light from NASA, we have had to arrange meetings for him other than our own. So, here’s what’s planned.


There is a New Zealand connection with NASA who we have offered the chance for Astronaut Mike to speak to her group. Her name is Alexia Hilbertidou, who was chosen by space agency NASA to ride on-board their 747 jumbo jet aircraft during a special overnight mission last year. In one 10 hour flight, she travelled at -70C and zero per cent humidity while measuring stardust and taking in the breath-taking displays of the atmosphere, such as the the Aurora Australis. Alexia describes the experience as an out of this world opportunity.


Alexia has organised for Astronaut Mike to talk to a group of young women from Auckland Secondary Schools on the afternoon of Friday 6th April – the day our convention opens. This event will be held at Westlake Girls Hight School.


We have offered an opportunity to primary school children from 11.15am to noon on Saturday 7th April (big kids can come too), then again, for convention attendees on Sunday
th April from 11.15am to 12.15am (anyone else is free to attend). It is a NASA requirement that anyone coming to hear Mike speak should be able to do so free of charge. We had to sign up to this otherwise we would not have been approved as sponsor. That means, anyone can come to hear Astronaut Mike talk for no charge. You would, of course, be free to pop a donation our way if the Spirit so moves you.


We have also offered the Little Sisters of the Poor the opportunity to have Astronaut Mike come to speak to the elderly and infirm; we are awaiting their decision.


Send your children or grand children along to hear Astronaut Mike, it is a grand opportunity. We are not sure whether or not we will have enough seating if we get an influx of people, the kids can sit on the floor, up front by the stage, but if adults can “bring their own chair” (camping chair or similar) as an emergency option that would be helpful.


There is a NASA Kids Club you know. Copy and paste this link to your browser to view: https://www.nasa.gov/kidsclub/index.html


I was talking to Astronaut Mike this morning, he is super exciting about coming, decide to come and listen to him, it could be a once in a lifetime opportunity.


Have a look at Astronaut Mike repairing a pump on the International Space Station on the link below, he has a lot to share with us.


John Porteous