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Inter-faith Relationships Blossom in Hastings

A "Flowers of Faith" inter-religious event was held on September 16th and 17th at the historic St. Matthews Anglican church in Hastings, New Zealand.

Members of various churches, including Anglican, Presbyterian, Catholic, and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints participated.

13 floral displays from churches and community groups in Hastings were spread throughout the church, each with their own unique interpretation of this year's theme of "stories of a mustard seed and yeast" from Matthew 13:31-33.


Helen Wilderside, a leader in the Presbyterian church, spoke to those gathered at the event.

All agreed with her that it was a wonderful way to celebrate the coming of spring and to recognize God's love for all of his children.

The service included readings, speeches, prayers, and hymns.

Charles Ruwhiu, a local leader from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, commented, "It has been a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the arrival of Spring with our civic and church leaders in our community.  The spirit and beauty of St. Matthews Anglican Church this year was most humbling."

Anna Wairama, a local Latter-day Saint, said, "We celebrated our commonalities in faith and discussed opportunities to work collaboratively in the community.  It's an exciting time to be a Christian and working together to build better communities."

Flowers in Praise is an annual event that is part of the Hastings Blossom Festival.  Local churches take turns hosting the event.

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