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Tainui history gets a Make Over

Tainui history gets a Make Over

The meeting house Auaukiterangi that houses the unwritten history of the people who navigated the Tainui canoe to Kawhia during the Great Migration has been given a one million dollar makeover.

Kaumātua Roy Willison says while compliance has always been the driving force behind the project it's also important to ensure future generations have a safe haven where they too can eat, sleep, laugh and cry.

The re-dedication of the newly refurbished meeting house will be conducted by Taranaki at the invitation of King Tūheitia who will be on site for the ceremony. Taranaki will lead the karakia and tribal incantations on Friday morning, 22nd July before sunrise.

Auaukiterangi was opened at Kawhia in 1962 by King Koroki, the grandfather of King Tuheitia. Hoturoa was the captain of the Tainui canoe and Auaukiterangi was his Dad. Auaukiterangi means "elevated to the skies" and it serves as a link for the Tainui people to their spiritual homeland of Hawaiki. It's also a fitting tribute to the man who blessed the Tainui canoe and its crew for the last time before it set sail for Aotearoa under the leadership of Hoturoa his second eldest son.

The Tainui canoe is buried behind the ancestral meeting house where the stern and prow of the canoe are marked with two limestone pillars. They were named Hani and Puna by the captain and the high priest. They are important landmarks for the people because they embody the life force of their ancestral canoe.

This is also where Hoturoa set up a tuahu at Te Ahurei on the small hill just behind the canoe. This was a sacred alter for karakia where he performed the first traditional thanks-giving to the gods to mark the end of an epic journey across the Pacific and the beginning of a new life in the Land of the Long White Cloud. They all symbolise the history and whakapapa of the descendants of Hoturoa who make up the Iwi of Ngati Maniapoto, Waikato, Hauraki and Ngati Raukawa.


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