Fr M. O’Meeghan in Held Firm by Faith says: “A few days later [in 1866] he [Bishop Viard] went south by ship to Okarito and celebrated Mass on Pentecost Sunday at the Five Mile in Mr Coglan’s large room with hundreds gathered outside the door.”
Another source says: “In 1866 and 1867 the parish priest of Hokitika, Father McGirr, visited Okarito by boat from Hokitika. There was a chapel at Five Mile in 1867. When the settlement closed the chapel was transferred to Gillespies Beach. Until then the most distant outpost for the priest from Hokitika was Five Mile. The assistant priest from Hokitika, Father John Goutenoire, made the journey to Okarito by boat and so on to Five Mile. The track through the bush had not been made then. The journey along the beach was the road taken by the miners with its dangers of negotiating the bluffs and crossing the rivers.