Waitangi Day

Saturday 6 February is our national day commemorating the first signings of the Treaty of Waitangi – Te Tiriti o Waitangi, in 1840. 

'Because of the Christian involvement in its signing and the Church’s mission to bring about a better world we can mark Waitangi as a significant spiritual event and a time to pray for the land and its peoples. We can give thanks for the gift of being here, ask forgiveness for the wrongs of our history from which some have benefitted and some have lost, and re-commit ourselves to work for a more just society.'

Monsignor Gerard Burns homily Waitangi Day 2019

“It is good that we look here to Waitangi, where in these first sacred discussions about the way to live in partnership with each other, my predecessor Bishop Pompallier asked for and received a guarantee of religious freedom and protection. It is religious tolerance, religious inclusion and religious acceptance that is our heritage. We honour and celebrate that today." From Cardinal John’s address at Waitangi in 2020 reaffirming protection of religious beliefs. 

Read the full speech HERE

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Readings for the Mass of the Day

Heb 13:15-17; 20-21

Mark 6:30-34


Prayer of the Faithful

Invocation:  E te Ariki …

Response: Whakarongo mai rā ki a mātou

For true partnership living together in peaceful relationships:

May there be a true desire among all in Aotearoa to grow more culturally aware and inclusive communities, schools and workplaces through inclusion of the Māori language, tikanga and understanding of a shared spirituality of our Christian tradition.

E te Ariki ... Response

For those in government:

May leaders of all nations demonstrate religious tolerance and inclusion so that religious freedom and protection is preserved.

E te Ariki ... Response

You might compose more prayers seeking forgiveness, giving thanks, re-committing ourselves towards justice and increasing religious tolerance. 

Prayer after Communion

E te Ariki, ka inoi nei mātou mā te Ūkaritia kua tango nei mātou,

May the Eucharist which we have received, strengthen and renew us, we pray o Lord,

e whakakaha, e whakahōu i a mātou, ā mā tēnei kaupapa huna o te kotahitanga

that through this mystery of unity

mātou e whiwhi ki te rangimārie ka tukua nei

we may possess the peace we may hand on,

me te whakaū i te rangimarie kua tango nei mātou.

and preserve the peace we have received.

Mā te Karaiti to mātou Ariki.

Through Christ our Lord.

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 Prayer for Waitangi Day

God of reconciliation, You made people in your likeness, and you call us to hohou rongo - reconciliation - with you, and hohou rongo with each other. Let us give thanks for the good will and aroha that New Zealanders have for one another, and for the progress made in healing the things that divide us. Steel us. Give us kaha - strength - for the challenges ahead and the work yet to do in our nation. Like a covenant that unites us together for all ages, help us to use the Treaty to build bridges across our ignorance. Help all New Zealanders to join hands in friendship and seek the way of peace together. As we protect each other’s interests, as we partner each other in our mutual needs, as we participate together in our common good, may we remember the high intentions our founders had for each other.

Mā tō mātou Ariki mā Hehu Karaiti, Āmene

 Published in Caritas Companions February 2011



E te Ātua e aroha mai ana ki a mātou

God who loves each one of us

Ko ōu iwi katoa hei iwi mō mātou

All your people are our people,

Awhinatia mātou ki te mārama tetahi ki tetahi

Help us to understand each other

Kia whakapaingia tōu Hahi,

Let your Church be blessed,

E mahi tahi ana I roto I te kōmunio tuturu

As we work together in true communion.


IMG 2749 Akaroa2

Photo of Interior Onuku church, Akaroa. 

For many Common Prayers in Te Reo click HERE

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Headline picture shows modern reconstruction, showing Tāmati Wāka Nene signing the Treaty in front of James Busby, Captain William Hobson and other British officials and witnesses. Some Māori signatories are assembled on the left. 

More background here https://nzhistory.govt.nz/media/photo/the-signing-of-the-treaty

Image by King, Marcus, 1891-1983. The signing of the Treaty of Waitangi, February 6th, 1840. 1938. Ref: G-821-2. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. /records/22308135 Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.


More Māori resources can be found at Te Runanga o Te Hahi Katorika ki Aotearoa





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 Dawn at the Treaty grounds, Waitangi

The National Anthem

Sing two verses - first in Māori and then in English. Words are included in the following video.

 Click here to sing our own anthem in honour of this special national day.

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