New Māori Warden Chaplain finally warranted after 56 years
Wainuiomata Māori Wardens Rev Bruce Aranga and Linda Olsen both received their Warrants after being involved with the kaupapa for many decades.
Wellington Kaumātua and Minita of Te Hāhi Mihinare Rev Bruce Aranga (Ngāi Tūhoe) was presented his Māori Wardens warrant last Saturday by Chair of the Wainuiomata Māori Committee Whaea Linda Olsen who said it was "well deserved after many years." Māori Warden Warrant applications are endorsed by both the Māori Committee and the Wellington District Māori Council before they are sent to Te Puni Kōkiri for approval from the Minister for Māori Development. Koro Bruce has been involved with the kaupapa for around 56 years.
"The legislation [Māori Community Development Act] came in 1962 and I was there in 1964, me and Jim Carroll from Stokes Valley." - Rev Bruce Aranga
For many years Koro Bruce was involved with the Māori Wardens based at Te Mangunu Marae in Naenae with the late Nanny Millie. Today he is a resident member of Wainuiomata Māori Wardens while continuing to serve as Kaumātua for Te Mangunu Marae. Wellington District Commander for Māori Wardens Gabriel Tupou said Koro Bruce was recently appointed as the district's first Senior Chaplain. This new role will awhi the spiritual wellbeing/ wairuatanga of the Wardens and he will officiate at ceremonies, functions and hui. Tupou said, "for many years Koro Bruce would serve the people in this capacity despite not being warranted. He was put forward, with his permission, to finally receive a badge."