|The Right Reverend and
Sir Paul Alfred Reeves
ONZ GCMG GCVO QSO CF
|Chancellor of Auckland University of Technology|
1 January 2000 – 13 August 2011
|15th Governor-General of New Zealand|
22 November 1985 – 20 November 1990
|Prime Minister||David Lange (1985–1989)
Geoffrey Palmer (1989–1990)
Mike Moore (1990)
|Preceded by||Sir David Beattie|
|Succeeded by||Dame Catherine Tizard|
6 December 1932|
Wellington, New Zealand
|Died||14 August 2011
Auckland, New Zealand
|Spouse(s)||Beverley Watkins, QSO|
Sir Paul Alfred Reeves ONZ GCMG GCVO QSO CF (6 December 1932 – 14 August 2011) was Archbishop and Primate of New Zealand from 1980 to 1985 and the 15th Governor-General of New Zealand from 22 November 1985 to 20 November 1990. He was the first Chancellor of Auckland University of Technology.
Reeves was born in Wellington in 1932 to D'arcy and Hilda (Pirihira) Reeves, who had moved from Waikawa to Newtown, a working-class suburb of Wellington. Hilda was Māori and of the Te Āti Awa iwi; D'arcy was pakeha and a tram driver, he died in 1950 aged 52.
He was educated at Wellington College and at Victoria College, University of New Zealand (now the Victoria University of Wellington), where he graduated a BA in 1955 and an MA in 1956. He went on to study for ordination in the Church of the Province of New Zealand at St John's College, Auckland, receiving his Licentiate in Theology in 1958.
Ministry as deacon and priest
Reeves was ordained deacon in 1958. After serving a brief curacy at Tokoroa, he spent the period 1959–64 in England. From 1959 until 1961 he was an Advanced Student at St Peter's College, Oxford (BA 1961, MA 1965) as well as Assistant Curate at the University Church of St Mary the Virgin. He was ordained priest in 1960. He served two further curacies in England, first at Kirkley St Peter (1961–63), then at Lewisham St Mary (1963–64).
Returning to New Zealand, Reeves was Vicar of Okato St Paul (1964–66), Lecturer in Church History at St John's College, Auckland (1966–69), and Director of Christian Education for the Anglican Diocese of Auckland (1969–71).
Ministry as bishop, archbishop, and primate
Involvement in politics
During this time he also served as chairman of the Environmental Council (1974–76); he was a supporter of Citizens for Rowling (the campaign for the re-election of Labour Prime Minister Bill Rowling); and he served as president of the National Council of Churches in New Zealand (1984–85).
New Zealand republic
In 2004 Reeves made a statement in support of New Zealand republic, stating in an interview, "...if renouncing knighthoods was a prerequisite to being a citizen of a republic, I think it would be worth it."
On the advice of Prime Minister David Lange, Queen Elizabeth II appointed Reeves the 15th Governor-General of New Zealand on 22 November 1985. His appointment was met with some scepticism due to his previous political involvement in Citizens for Rowling, opposing the 1981 Springbok Tour, and the fact that he was an Anglican bishop. The Leader of the Opposition, Jim McLay opposed the appointment on these grounds, stating "How can an ordained priest fulfil that [constitutional] role?" However, many Māori groups welcomed the appointment, with Sir James Henare arguing that "It must be a fruit of the Treaty of Waitangi to see a person from our people." He was the first (and up to the present the only) cleric to hold the post. Moreover, as a member of the Puketapu hapū of the Te Atiawa of Taranaki, he was the first governor-general to be of Māori descent.
During his term, Sir Paul joined the Newtown Residents' Association, and invited members of that association to visit Government House, Wellington. He hosted the first open day at Government House on 7 October 1990, and employed the first public affairs officer, Cindy Beavis, to promote the Governor-General's role.
Reeves remained in office until 20 November 1990. He was succeeded by Dame Catherine Tizard.
During Reeves' tenure, the Fourth Labour Government made radical changes to the New Zealand economy, later known as Rogernomics. In November 1987 Reeves made comments critical of Rogernomics, stating that the reforms were creating "an increasingly stratified society". He was rebuked for these comments by Lange, but later stated in May 1988 "...the spirit of the market steals life from the vulnerable but the spirit of God gives life to all". Reeves later recalled that this marked a "parting of ways" with the Government.
He also recalled "I had a little sense of being left alone and felt that I needed to be taken into the loop more, or be taken seriously." Reeves wrote to the Queen, but did not receive replies directly from the Queen. He said "I used to write to the Queen and express my opinion about this and that going on it [sic] the country and I wouldn't get a direct reply from her but I would always get a lengthy reply from her private secretary, which I took was expressing her viewpoint."
After his retirement from the vice-regal office Reeves became the Anglican Consultative Council Observer at the United Nations in New York (1991–93) and Assistant Bishop of New York (1991–94). From 1994 until 1995 he served briefly as Dean of Te Whare Wānanga o Te Rau Kahikatea (the theological college of Te Pihopatanga o Aotearoa, and a constituent member of St John's College, Auckland). He was also Deputy Leader of the Commonwealth Observer group to South Africa, Chair of the Nelson Mandela Trust, and Visiting Montague Burton Professor of International Relations at the University of Edinburgh.
Reeves went on to chair the Fiji Constitution Review Commission from 1995 until 1997, culminating in Fiji's readmission to the Commonwealth, until its suspension in 2000. On 12 December 2007 it was reported that Reeves was involved with "secret talks" to resolve Fiji's year-long political crisis, following the 2006 Fijian coup d'état.
Honours and other awards
Reeves was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Silver Jubilee Medal (1977), he was appointed a Chaplain of the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem in April 1982, Knight Bachelor in the New Zealand Birthday Honours 1985, a Knight Grand Cross of the Most Distinguished Order of St Michael and St George on 6 November 1985, a Knight of Justice of the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem in 1986, and a Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order on 2 March 1986. In 1990 he became a Companion of the Queen's Service Order. Reeves was also made a Companion of the Order of Fiji.
There was some concern regarding Reeves' using the title Sir, as members of the clergy in the Church of England do not usually receive this title when knighted, and the same rule presumably applied to the Anglican Church in New Zealand. To avoid placing the Queen in an awkward situation (Governors General would by tradition be knighted by her in person at Buckingham Palace), the Prime Minister of the time, David Lange, made Reeves a Knight Bachelor before meeting her. Consequently, when Reeves went to receive the GCMG from the Queen, he was already Sir Paul.
The University of Oxford conferred on him the degree of Doctor of Civil Law in 1985 and his college, St Peter's, appointed him an Honorary Fellow in 1981 and a Trustee in 1994. A Fellowship of St John's College, Auckland followed in 1989. He has received other honorary degrees, including an LLD of Victoria University of Wellington (1989), a DD of the General Theological Seminary, New York (1992), and the degree of Doctor Honoris Causa of the University of Edinburgh (1994).
- "Ditch Queen, say former Governors-General". New Zealand Herald. 14 November 2004. Retrieved 2 August 2006.
- Gavin Maclean (November 2006). The Governors – Governors and Governors-General of New Zealand. Otago University Press. ISBN 1-877372-25-0.
- Brian Rudman (4 June 2008). "Let's follow Nepal into the new century". Retrieved 2 October 2010.
- Michael Field (11 December 2007). "Reeves holds secret Fiji talks". The Dominion Post. Retrieved 13 December 2007.
- "Former Governor-General diagnosed with cancer". ONE News. 26 July 2011. Retrieved 14 August 2011.
- Hayden Donnell, NZPA and NZ Herald staff (14 August 2011). "Sir Paul Reeves dies, aged 78". New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 14 August 2011.
- The London Gazette: . 22 April 1982. Retrieved 20 March 2008.
- The London Gazette: . 30 January 1986. Retrieved 20 March 2008.
- The London Gazette: . 15 April 1986. Retrieved 20 March 2008.
- The Dominion Post, 6 February 2007, Four recruited to ranks of greatest Source
- "Changes to rules around use of title" (Press release). New Zealand Government. 17 July 2006. Retrieved 14 August 2011.
- Biography at Holy Trinity Cathedral website
- Official biographies of former Governors–General of New Zealand
- Radio NZ interview, 8 May 2011 Sir Paul talks extensively about his life and work with interviewer Chris Laidlaw. (Listen directly or download options)
Norman Alfred Lesser
|Bishop of Waiapu
Ralph Vernon Matthews
Eric Austin Gowing
|Bishop of Auckland
Bruce Carlyle Gilberd
Allen Howard Johnston
|Archbishop of New Zealand
Sir David Beattie
|Governor-General of New Zealand
Dame Catherine Tizard