20 December, 2001
Bishop Manuhuia Bennett
Prime Minister Helen Clark today mourned the death of Bishop Manuhuia Bennett, the former Anglican bishop of Aotearoa and a leading figure in Maoridom.
“Manu Bennett was admired in both the church and the wider community. He was a man of great intelligence and wisdom, generosity and compassion. He will be very deeply missed.
“Our thoughts are with his wife, Kaa, and his whanau, hapu, and iwi who have lost a favourite family member and kaumatua. He was a leading community member in Rotorua and a rangatira within Maoridom.
“New Zealand has lost one its most honoured persons. Bishop Bennett was awarded the Order of New Zealand (ONZ), the country’s highest honour limited to twenty living persons at any time, on Waitangi Day in 1989. He was also made a Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George (CMG) in the Queen’s Birthday list in 1981.
“I personally will miss him for his humour and warmth. New Zealand is the poorer for his passing.”