Bishop of Aotearoa

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The Bishop of Aotearoa (Te Pīhopa o Aotearoa) is a bishop in the Anglican Church of New Zealand, belonging to Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia. The post was created in 1928. The Bishop of Aotearoa is the most senior bishop and head of the Māori Anglican Church. It a very holy office with the Bishop been seen as the 'Spiritual Leader' of the Māori people. Along with been the Metropolitan of the Māori Anglican Church, he also holds the title of Primate and Archbishop of Aotearoa New Zealand & Polynesia. The office of Bishop of Aotearoa is currently vacant.


The Bishop of Aotearoa is chosen by God,[citation needed] through the prayerful and holy discernment of elected members of the Māori Synod. The next election will take place in September 2017.

Te Pīhopatanga o Aotearoa[edit]

The Bishop of (Te Pīhopa o) Aotearoa heads the Māori Anglican Church throughout New Zealand. The Bishopric of Aotearoa is split into 5 episcopal units (pīhopatanga/bishoprics) each with their own identity and Pīhopa (Bishop): Te Taitokerau (Pīhopa: Kito Pikaahu), Te Manawa o te Wheke (Ngarahu Katene), Te Tairāwhiti (Don Tamihere), Te Upoko o Te Ika (Muru Walters) and Te Waipounamu (Richard Wallace).

List of holders[edit]

  1. Frederick Bennett CMG (1928–1950) – first Māori Bishop in the Anglican Communion
  2. Wiremu Panapa CBE (1951–1968)
  3. Manuhuia Bennett ONZ CMG (1968–1981) – son of Frederick Bennett.
  4. Whakahuihui Vercoe PCNZM MBE (1981–2006) – the first Primate and Archbishop of New Zealand from the Māori Church.
  5. Brown Turei (2006–2017) – the second Primate and Archbishop of New Zealand from the Māori Church. Turei announced his intention retire as Māori archbishop on 31 March 2017.[1]