[from Hawaii Catholic Herald, March 16, 1990]
In 1945, Father Systermans, SS.CC. moved the parish hall from the Sacred Heart church grounds in Hoolehua to Kualapuu for the community’s liturgies. He named the new church in honor of St. Theresa, the Little Flower of Jesus. Father Jules Verhaeghe, SS.CC., blessed the church on Nov. 25, 1946, but it was in use before then. Stephanie Stacy Helm is reported to have been the first baby baptized there in 1945. Records show that in 1947 the first couple married at St. Theresa were Arthur and Cecily Kikukawa.
Father Gregory Shea enlarged the church in the late 1940’s to accomodate the Catholics of Kipu Camp as well as the growing Kualapuu population. Father Systermans, SS.CC. had celebrated Mass for Kipu Camp in their clubhouse.
After Father Shea, succeeding pastors have included Sacred Hearts fathers Anselm Gouveia, Bonaventure Crols, Herman Van den Wyngoet, Ildephonse Kuntz, Harold Meyer, David Paul Todd, Gaston Diels and diocesan priest Robert da Ponte.
[…….. to be contined]
Blessings, pono and pule!
Fr. Brian Guerrini, SS.CC.