[from Hawaii Catholic Herald, May 20, 1966]
The unofficial capital of the Friendly Island, Molokai, is Kaunakakai. This simple fact gives St. Sophia’s Church in this community a place of importance for all Catholics on the island. There is another fact equally important which gives this parish a place of prominence: its two missions at Kamalo and Kaluaaha were established and built by Molokai’s most famous name: Father Damien DeVeuster, SS.CC.
During the long period of twenty-eight years, 1900 to 1928, Father Thomas Geloen, SS.CC., living at Our Lady of Sorrows in Kaluaaha, traveled the length of Molokai caring for all the Catholics. It was during this early part of the century that the population began to shift from East Molokai to the central and western areas of the island. Thus Kaunakakai developed into a fair-size community. In January 1914 Bishop Libert Boeynams, SS.CC. blessed the first chapel in Kaunakakai. The property had been acquired from Moses Burrows. The chapel’s capacity was for fifty souls.
(…..to be continued)
Blessings, pono & pule!
Fr. Brian Guerrini, ss.cc.