News Release

New Zealand Church Historians Receive Award for Service

21 historical collections represent many years of love and care for people’s stories.

Rangi and Victor Parker, New Zealand historians for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, recently received recognition for five decades of volunteer work.

Aunty Rangi and Uncle Vic—as they are affectionately known—were recognised during a seminar held at Hamilton’s Matthew Cowley Pacific Church History Centre on Saturday, 29 November 2022.


Pacific Area Church History manager, Melanie Riwai-Couch, was emotional as she addressed an audience of associates, family and friends and presented ‘Te Whatukura’ and ‘Te Mareikura,’ the new lifetime award for services to Church history in Aotearoa – New Zealand and the Pacific Area.

‘Te Whatukura’ (male) and ‘Te Mareikura’ (female) in reference to the award, are respected friends and leaders whose presence and impact can be felt even when not physically present.

Wayne Crosby, Church Archives Director, joined in the proceedings online from the USA. He shared about his “first-time meeting the Parkers in 2010,” and seeing the “wonderful records” that Aunty Rangi had “collected with love and care over many years.”

Crosby spent three hours with Aunty Rangi and “enjoyed all the stories she told” about missionaries and the members of the Church in Aotearoa. Crosby wrote in his journal that evening, “we are blessed that Rangi wants to donate the collection to the Church.”

Aunty Rangi’s contributions are now part of the Church History Department’s catalogue and include 21 collections.

According to Riwai-Couch, the 21 collections are made up of 3130 components and “each component can contain many hundreds… of smaller parts,” such as letters, recordings, artefacts and journals.

Riwai-Couch noted that while numbers give a sense of the vast work done by the Parkers, the value of their “qualitative contribution” is priceless.

“It’s not possible to number the tears, the memories, the remembrances, the love, those who have been touched, the spiritual experiences that have been had, nor the hearts that could not help but be touched by these two special souls,” Riwai-Couch said.

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