It was overcast on Saturday morning as we prepared to go to Newlands to do a service project for the Mormon Helping Hands group. It started out at Papakainga (which is a historical building which will be 100 years old in June) where a group of volunteers worked on preparing this old building for a special ceremony which will be held the end of June. It had to be sanded, patched and primed to be ready to paint. Since New Zealand is steeped in Maori tradition the project was started with the Maori speaker (speaking in Maori) and then a special Maori song. The opening prayer asked for good weather and just then a few drops of rain fell but the prayer was answered and by the time we arrived at our assigned projects the rain had stopped and the sun was shining. It was indeed a beautiful day.
Our project was at Seton Nossiter Park where we had to dig holes and then plant all different varieties of plants and scrubs. We first dug the hole, fertilized, planted and then replace the soil around the plant. After that we put mulch on the top and covered the area around the plants. It was hard work but very rewarding.
This is what it looked like at the end of the project. Another group went to the Jay Street Reserve and they dug post holes.
This is the view from the Papakainga building overlooking the harbor past Wellington. It also overlooks the town of Petone.
If you look to our right in the distance you will see Wellington. Newlands is about a 15 minute drive north of Wellington on Motorway 1.
Brother Turner and Don are now best friends. He was born in England and then served a mission in the London Temple just about 2 years ago. He has all of this history about England and especially about the United Brethren Church which is special to Don because his grandfather was a minister of that church in both Illinois and in California. At church on Sunday Brother Turner brought Don brochures on the church and also some pictures of the first United Brethren Church in England.