May 18, 2021

Maori News & Indigenous Views

Ringatu explore problems within church

1 min read



The religious movement founded by Maori prophet Te Kooti Arikirangi Te Turuki is exploring how it can entice followers back to church and increase the expertise of its tohunga (ministers).

About 30 Ringatu followers and tohunga went to a wananga at the University of Waikato over the weekend, where falling church attendance and the abilities of the clergy of tohunga were examined.

A guest speaker at the hui, Pou Temara, said follwoers wanted to find ways to help make the church popular, which included changing the role of tohunga.

He said more than 200 of the 300 people who live in the Bay of Plenty settlement of Ruataahuna are Ringatu but only 13 actively attended church.

Professor Temara, who is Ringatu but not a minister, said there was a new generation of tohunga making up the clergy.

In the past, all tohunga were mentored by experienced tohunga who were knowledgeable and wise but today the did not have access to people like that.

The professor of Maori language and culture coins the tohunga role today as karakia-heads. He said all they did was intone karakia (prayers) and there was no intellectual, debate, discussion or research – elements that used to be done by tohunga in the past.

2 thoughts on “Ringatu explore problems within church

  1. He whakamātautau nā te Atua. Our tohunga in Apanui say that those who are meant to go to karakia will be there cos, nā te pere i tō atu. Popularity for the church or hāhī is not important. Te whakapono ki a Ihowa o ngā mano is. Inā te kupu a Paora Ngāmoki, ‘Mehemea nā te tangata, āpōpō ka mate. Mehemea nā Te Atua, ka haere tonu, ka haere tonu.’

  2. It will be exciting to see the Ringatu community build up a comprehensive academia across their people related to all of mystical, spiritual and practical matters; as well as to crystallise systematic organisation, processes and programs to aid the beleivers in contributing to advancing the prosperity and welfare of their peoples and of humanity, as well as fulfilling the end times mission of their path in order to achieve true justice, world peace, and spiritually rich life and after life.

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