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Sir Paul Reeves state funeral - updates

Thursday 18 Aug 2011 9:58 a.m.

Thousands of people are expected to attend the state funeral this morning for Sir Paul Reeves.

3 News will provide updates from the funeral, with which hymns are sung and video.

1:11pm The casket has now been placed in the hearse and the funeral has ended - thus concluding 3 News' coverage.

1:06pm Those gathered outside the cathdreal are performing the haka 'ka mate' as Sir Paul Reeves' casket is carried past them.

1:04pm The recession is now leaving the cathedral. The pallbearers are Brian Tunui, Benjamin Tunui, Roger Green, Joe Jakicevich, Bishop Peter Atkins and Bishop Kitohi Pikaahu.

1:00pm Archbishop Brown Turei is now blessing the congregation.

12:55pm Those in attendance are now singing the New Zealand national anthem.

12:53pm The congregation is now standing for the proclamation, delivered by Philip O'Shea, New Zealand Herald of Arms Extraordinary to Her Majesty the Queen.

Taken from us and into Almighty God’s Divine Mercy the late Right Reverend and The Honourable Sir Paul Alfred Reeves, Member of The Order of New Zealand, Knight Grand Cross of the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George, Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order, Knight Bachelor, Companion of The Queen’s Service Order, Knight of Justice of the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St John of Jerusalem, Companion of the Order of Fiji, Manu’alesagalala, bestowed by the Niu Suatia Safata village, Samoa.

Master of Arts of the University of New Zealand and of the University of Oxford. Honorary doctorates from the University of Oxford, Victoria University of Wellington, the General Theological Seminary of New York, the University of Edinburgh and the Church Divinity School of the Pacific.

Incumbent Chancellor of Auckland University of Technology and former Bishop of Waiapu and of Auckland, Archbishop of New Zealand, and Governor-General and Commander-in-Chief in and over New Zealand.

12:48pm Roimata and Benjamin Tunui are now blessing the casket while Archdeacon Tikituterangi Raumati says a farewell to Sir Paul Reeves.

12:46pm Archbishop of the New Zealand Dioceses, the Most Reverend David Moxon, is delivering the commendation.

There is nothing in death or life,
in the world as it is,
or the world as it shall be,
nothing in all creation,
that can separate us from the love of God
in Jesus Christ our Lord. (Romans 8:38, 39)

E kore te mate, e kore te ora,
e kore nga anahera, e kore nga rangatira,
e kore nga kaha, e kore nga mea onaianei,
e kore nga mea e puta mai a mua,
e kore te tiketike, e kore te hohonu,
e kore tetahi atu mea hanga,
e kaha ki te momotu i a tatou i te aroha o te Atua,
i tera i roto nei i a Karaiti Ihu i to tatou Ariki. (Roma 8:38,39)

God alone is holy and just and good.
In that confidence, therefore,
we commend you, Paul,
to God’s judgment and mercy,
to God’s forgiveness and love.

Blessed be God the Father,
who has caused the light of Christ
to shine upon you.
Go forth from this world:
in the love of God the Father
who created you,
in the mercy of Jesus Christ
who redeemed you,
in the power of the Holy Spirit
who strengthens you.
In communion with all the faithful,
may you dwell this day in peace.
Amen.

12:40pm Bishop of Auckland, the Right Reverend Ross Bay, is delivering the prayer.

God our Father,
we pray for the family and friends of Paul,
that they may know the comfort of your love. Lord, hear our prayer.

We pray that you will use us
as bearers of your love,
to support them in their grief.
We also remember before you
all who mourn and all who suffer.
Lord, hear our prayer.

Give us patience and faith
in this time of our loss,
so that we may come to understand
the wonder of your mercy,
and the mystery of your love.
Lord, hear our prayer.

Increase our faith and trust
in your Son, Jesus Christ,
that we may live victoriously.
Lord, hear our prayer.

Give us such a vision of your purpose,
and such an assurance of your love and power,
that we may ever hold fast the hope
which is in Jesus Christ, our Lord.
Lord, hear our prayer.

12:30pm Bishop of Taranaki, the Right Reverend Philip Richardson, is giving his homily to the service.

11:35am Kelly-Moore is now welcoming those who will pay tribute to Sir Reeves. These are; Archbishop of the New Zealand Dioceses the Most Reverend David Moxon, AUT University Vice Chancellor Derek McCormack, former Commonwealth Secretary General Sir Don McKinnon and Maori Land Court Judge Sarah Reeves.

11:31am The congregation is now singing the hymn Piko Nei.

Piko nei te matenga,
Tau mai ko te pouri nui
E te Tama a t’Atua, x3
Tenei arohaina mai.

Ngaro nei o matou hoa,
Riro atu ki te po;
Tangihia i muri nei, x3
Tenei arohaina mai

Tena koe kua taunga noa
Ki nga mate o te ao;
Nou te mate tino nui; x3
Tenei arohaina mai.

Tena koe te mohio na
Ki nga panga mamae mai;
Nou te mamaetanga nui; x3
Tenei arohaina mai.

Mamae ko te ngakau he,
Pouri whakaroto ia,
Pehi kino iho nei; x3
Tenei arohaina mai.

Whakapikau ana koe
I nga hara o te ao;
Nau katoa i whakaea; x3
Tenei arohaina mai.

11:29am Governor-General Sir Anand Satyanand is now reading Matthew 5:1-12.

Blessed are the poor in spirit: for the kingdom of heaven is theirs.

Blessed are the sorrowful: for they shall find consolation.

Blessed are those of a gentle spirit: for they shall have the earth for their possession.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst to see right prevail: for they shall be satisfied.

Blessed are those who show mercy: for mercy shall be shown to them.

Blessed are those whose hearts are pure: for they shall see God.

Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called God’s children.

Blessed are those who have suffered persecution for the cause of right: for the kingdom of heaven is theirs.

11:22am The cathedral choir is now singing the anthem 'Greater Love' by Dr John Ireland.

Many waters cannot quench love, neither can the floods drown it. Love is strong as death.

Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree,

That we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness.

Ye are washed, ye are sanctified, ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus.

Ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation;

That ye should show forth the praises of him who hath call’d you out of darkness into his marvellous light.

I beseech you brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies, a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto to God, which is your reasonable service.

11:20am Jane Reeves is reading Ephesians 3:14-19.

For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth takes its name. I pray that, according to the riches of his glory, he may grant that you may be strengthened in your inner being with power through his Spirit, and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, as you are being rooted and grounded in love. I pray that you may have the power to comprehend, with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Hear what the Spirit is saying to the Church.

Thanks be to God.

11:19am Bridget Jakicevich is reading the Wisdom of Solomon 3.1-9.

The souls of those who have pleased God are safe in his hands and protected from pain. Only in the minds of the foolish are those people dead and their death considered a disaster or a destruction. In fact they are at peace and destined never to die, though others may have thought they were being punished. They will be richly rewarded, because God tested them for a while and found them worthy of being his children. God tested them like gold in a fiery furnace, and he accepted them like a pleasing sacrifice. When God shows them mercy, they will be like shining sparks setting weeds on fire. The Lord will rule them forever and let them rule over nations. All of God’s faithful people will understand truth and live with him in love, because God is kind and merciful to those he chooses to be his holy people. Hear what the Spirit is saying to the Church.

Thanks be to God.

11:14am Archbishop Winston Halapua, Bishop of Polynesia, is now paying tribute to Sir Reeves. He has thanked God for sharing Sir Reeves' talents with the world.

11:09am The Most Reverend David Moxon, Archbishop of the New Zealand Dioceses, has begun to give his tribute to Sir Reeves. Following Reverend Moxon will be Bishop Te Kitohi Pikaahu, te Pihopa ki te Tai Tokerau

11:03am Archbishop of York, the Most Reverend and Right Honourable John Sentamu, has begun his greeting, including a statement from the Dean of Canterbury.

Archbishop Sentamu's greeting: We have come together to remember before God the life of Bishop Sir Paul Alfred Reeves and to give thanks for the impact of his life on us all; for his courage in the face of adversity for his example of service, and for his inspiration to the many people of this and other nations.

We have come to commend him to God’s keeping, to commit his body to be buried and to comfort those who mourn with our sympathy and with our love; in the hope we share through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

11:00am The funeral has formally begun, with the Very Reverend Jo Kelly-Moore, Dean of Auckland, welcoming the congregation.

10:55am The congregation has taken their seats, while the procession continues to slowly file in.

10:40am The casket and processional are being welcomed to the cathedral. The processional pallbearers are Bill Sparks, Harvey Smith, Pare Keiha, Gavin Rennie, Dean Peter Beck and Bob Scott.

10:50am The casket is currently being laid at the front of the cathedral as the audience, including current Prime Minister John Key, look on.

10:35am Some mourners in attendance are carrying portraits of Sir Paul Reeves.

10:30am The hearse has arrived at the Holy Trinity Cathedral and is reversing in.

10:20am Sir Reeves' hearse is making its way to the Holy Trinity Cathedral accompanied by a military guard.

10:00am Sir Reeves' cortege has begun its journey from the Holy Sepulchre church in Eden Terrace to the Holy Trinity Cathedral, near Newmarket and Parnell.

Sir Reeves' hearse is expected to arrive at the Holy Trinity Cathedral at 10:30am, and his casket at 11:00am. The funeral is expected to conclude around 12:30pm, when the cortege will travel to St John's College.

Sir Reeves was the first Maori Governor-General in New Zealand.

A tangi has been held for the last three days at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in central Auckland, after the former Governor-General died at the weekend from cancer.

State funerals are given to former Governor-Generals and sitting Prime Ministers, though exceptional New Zealanders can also receive a state burial, such as Sir Edmund Hillary, whose funeral was also held at the Holy Trinity Cathedral in 2008.

His life will be commemorated at the funeral through hymns and speeches.

About Sir Paul Reeves

Paul Reeves was born in 1932 in Newtown, Wellington. His parents were D’Arcy Reeves, a motorman on the tramways and Hilda (Pirihira) Reeves (nee Sparks). He had one older brother Bill. Paul attended Wellington College and then Victoria University College where he graduated with an MA in English Literature. Once he had completed his MA he moved to Auckland to train for the Anglican priesthood at St John’s Theological College.

In 1959 after he was ordained to a curacy in Tokoroa, Paul was awarded a Sir Apirana Ngata Memorial Scholarship to study at Oxford University. In this same year he married Beverley Watkins and five days after their wedding they set off on a 5 week journey to England aboard the steamship SS Rangitata.

Paul graduated with an MA in 1962 and went on to work in parishes in Oxford, Lewisham and Lowestoft. Daughter Sarah was born in Lowestoft and in 1964 the family returned to New Zealand where Paul became vicar of Okato. It was in this small Taranaki community that he had the opportunity to live among his mother’s Te Atiawa whanau for the first time and to reconnect with them. Second daughter Bridget was born while they were living in Okato.

In 1965 Paul took up a teaching position at St. John’s Theological College and in 1970 he became director of Christian Education for the Diocese of Auckland.

In 1971 at the age of 38 (and now with daughter Jane) he became the Bishop of Waiapu and was based in Napier. He travelled widely and rejuvenated the diocese as well as boosting Maori participation in church governance. In 1979 he became Bishop of Auckland, then Primate and Archbishop of New Zealand the following year.

In the 1980’s he had a growing international role, for instance in 1983 he travelled in an Anglican group to South Africa to support Desmond Tutu who was under investigation. Paul gave evidence before the Eloff Commission.

In 1985 he was appointed Governor General by David Lange’s Labour government and he became New Zealand’s first Maori Governor General. Sir Paul said he modelled his governorship on the role of a bishop: ‘a bishop travels, a bishop stands alongside people and searches for a common ground’.

The Reeves brought a new atmosphere to Government House. ‘I’ve tried to hitch the house onto the life of the community’, Sir Paul said in 1990, ‘so that it flows in and out’. He joined the local Newtown Association and encouraged local communities to come up to Government House. Maori too claimed the house in a new way. When the Reeves moved there at the end of 1985, at least 100 Taranaki whanau slept in the ballroom and on several other occasions the ballroom became a wharenui.

Although most of his predecessors had reduced their public role after leaving Government House, Sir Paul launched himself into another two decades of service at the very highest levels, starting with three years as Anglican Observer at the United Nations. Later, on behalf of the Commonwealth, he observed elections in Ghana and South Africa, reviewed the existing constitution of Fiji and spent 4 years travelling to and from Guyana on behalf of the Commonwealth trying to strengthen democratic institutions like Parliament, the Select Committees and the Electoral Reform Commission.

At home, Sir Paul continued his work in many different fields. He chaired the Queen Elizabeth II National Trust and the Bioethics Council and helped to select judges for the new Supreme Court. He negotiated Treaty settlements for Taranaki. He continued his lifelong commitment to education through visiting professorships and becoming Chancellor of the Auckland University of Technology. He continued to be an active Bishop in the life of the Anglican Church. In 2007 New Zealand awarded him its highest honour, membership of the Order of New Zealand.

Effect on traffic

The following roads will be affected by the funeral service:


  • Parking restrictions on Burleigh Street, Eden Terrace until 10pm.
  • Parking restrictions on Brighton Road, Parnell and Birdwood Crescent, Parnell until 2pm.
  • St Stephens Avenue from Parnell Road to Brighton Road, Parnell until 2pm.
  • Domain Drive from Titoki Street to Parnell Road, 9am to 11am.
  • Parnell Road from Ayr Street to St Stephens Avenue intersection - 9am to 2pm.

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