On Sunday, 11 September 2022, our rōpū Māori, Te Kotahitanga, led our service at Manurewa Baptist Church to open Te Wiki O Te Reo Māori. We did this because we believe that supporting beautiful te reo Māori is a justice issue. We opened with a short mihi and karakia in te reo Māori. Then Marci led our worship (English translations were provided on screen). Most of these waiatas are on our regular rotation, so our congregation were familiar with them. We took up a special offering to go to a local kura (school) to support the kaupapa of schooling in te reo Māori. I interviewed four of our Te Kotahitanga members about why learning te reo Māori is important to them and what is significant about this week. We heard their moving and challenging stories. Our kuia, Gail Hosken, shared a message in our Luke series. We finished the service with another waiata, corporate karakia (words on screen to follow along). We then moved through to have shared kai (fried bread with jam and cream). Our church is on a continuing journey of learning how to honour Te Reo Māori, and it’s been a real blessing to us.

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