Whare Wānanga blessing

On Friday morning, a large crowd gathered for the turning of the soil for our Whare Wānanga project.
It was a profoundly moving experience for all who experienced the blessing ceremony, and there was barely a dry eye to be seen. Despite the atrocious weather earlier last week week, the heavens were kind to us, and although it was very early (5.30 am) and it was still dark and cold, it was a beautiful, clear morning.

Even the tui and other birds seemed to respect the importance of the occasion and sang for us as we welcomed the beginning of this auspicious and longed-for project. Afterwards, we enjoyed sharing some kai and looking at Project Manager and former student, Emma Ormsby’s beautiful designs for the whare.
It was a very proud moment for our school and for Te Raki Paewhenua rohe (the North Shore).
We gratefully acknowledge our Mana Whenua, Ngāti Paoa, for laying the foundation for the ceremony under the guidance of Whaea Drina Paratene through karakia and karanga, with support from our school kaumatua Jerry Norman blessing the ‘mauri’ (life force) of the whare wānanga, and blessing of the whare itself, respectively.
We are grateful, too, for the words and actions of Principal Jane Stanley, Eady Sevelio-Thompson, Eddie Hudson and our kapa haka.
To our ‘ringawera’ (behind-the-scenes workers), thank you for all your hard mahi. And to all the visitors who shared the moment with us, we are so grateful you could come.
Ngā mihi.