Sharples' stepson to be ordained in marae first

23:54, Nov 20 2009
Te Hira Paenga
A HIGH DEGREE OF ORDINATION: Te Hira Paenga who is the stepson of Pita Sharples, will be ordained as an Anglican Church deacon on Sunday. Mr Paenga is pictured here with his family clockwise from left, wife Maria, and children Klani, 10, Te Aowai, 5, Te Aho, 7, and Te Ahu, 1.

The stepson of Maori Affairs Minister Pita Sharples will be ordained as an Anglican Church deacon tomorrow.

Te Hira Paenga, 27, is the oldest son of Dr Sharples' wife, Arapera. Dr Sharples has been his stepfather since Mr Paenga was six.

Mr Paenga will be ordained by Bishop Kito Pikaahu at Auckland's Hoani Waititi Marae. His father, Katene Paenga, an Auckland teacher, will be there, as will Mr Paenga's wife, Maria, and four children.

"The ordination on the marae is a first for the Anglican Church," Mr Paenga said. "I want to introduce young and hip elements to my ministry. Something which will cater for the needs of my Maoritanga as well as for the needs of the church."

Dr Sharples said it was a big challenge. "He will do well."

Mrs Sharples described her son as a very deep person. "It never occurred to me he would be the one from this generation to carry on the work of the church. He is going into this with his eyes open."

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The Dominion Post