This morning, as dawn broke over the beautiful Bay of Islands, Dame Cindy and Dr Davies joined the thousands in attendance at Te Whare Rūnanga for the Waitangi Day Dawn Service. Attendees joined together in song, contemplation and prayer, as Aotearoa New Zealand marks 184 years since the signing of Te Tiriti o Waitangi.
During the service, Dame Cindy read from He Waiata Whakamoemiti:
Nō reira mātou ka tāpae ki a koe
I a mātou whakamoemiti.
Mō Ranginui i runga nei, mō Papa-Tūānuku e takoto iho nei.
Mō ngā maunga whakahī, mō ngā puke-kōrero
Mō ngā tai-mihi-tāngata, mō ngā moana e hora nei.
Kia whakapaingia a te Karaiti,
Mō ngā tūpuna, mātua, mō te hunga tapu.
Ngā tōtara whakamarumaru, ngā toka tūmoana,
Ngā kākā wahanui, ngā puna roimata.
Kia tīaho te māramatanga ki a rātou,
Kia au tā rātou moe.
So now we offer our thanks
for the beauty of these islands;
for the wild places and the bush,
for the mountains, the coast and the sea.
Our thanks for marae and the cities we have built;
for science and discoveries,
for our life together,
for Aotearoa, New Zealand.
You can find more images from the service in the Waitangi Day Dawn Service 2024 image gallery.