May 2024 Edition
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Newsletter Week 4 Term 2

Hastings Christian School

22 May 2024


Hero of the Faith: Samuel Williams

This term the secondary school student leaders have been showcasing heroes of the faith during the Wednesday assemblies. Each of them have done a fantastic job of inspiring the students with the exemplary lives of men and women down through the centuries whose lives are worthy of imitating (1 Corinthians 4:16). Our deputy head girl, Luch Smith, did an excellent job of encouraging the students with lessons from the life of a local hero of the faith. What follows is the transcript she shared with the students:

Good morning everyone! I’m following Xander and Indie in our series on Heroes of the Faith. I thought I’d look at a hero a little closer to home - my Grandparents home in fact that was built by him. He was a man who’s work for the kingdom of God was lived out in Hawkes Bay over a hundred years ago but the fruits of his work are still apparent today. His name was Samuel Williams.

If you're anything like me, you are a bit sick of hearing about New Zealand history. It feels like all the interesting history happens everywhere else. While I do agree there's a little bit of truth to that, it's still vitally important for us to know our own history, as no other country will. We need to celebrate it and in lots of ways learn from it.

Psalm 78:3-4 says ‘,,,things that we have heard and known, that our fathers have told us. We will not hide them from their children, but tell to the coming generation the glorious deeds of the Lord, and his might, and the wonders that he has done. Also in Deuteronomy 32.7 we are encouraged to, ‘Remember the days of old; consider the years of many generations; ask your father, and he will show you, your elders, and they will tell you.’

And I think today more than ever it’s important for Christians to remember our NZ history and celebrate the missionaries for the good works they did so that we can stick up for them, as often nowadays they can quickly get a bad reputation as history gets taught with quite an anti-colonialist bias. Bear in mind that New Zealand is one of the only nations to not have slavery after being colonised. That is almost completely due to the missionaries following the human right principles of William Wilberforce who came over before the settlers in the hope to protect the native people of the land.

So, Samuel Williams. You might know the name but it probably just gets lost and overlooked with all the other Williams missionaries we hear about. Henry Williams, William Williams. There’s also Samuel Marsden and William Colenso as early New Zealand missionaries thrown into the mix to make the whole name game a little more confusing.

Henry Williams was basically the big boss of Christian missionaries in New Zealand for a lot of the 19th century. He started out as a 14 year old in the Royal Navy and fought in the wars against Napoleon before deciding to become a missionary. In 1823, he brought his whole family and went to New Zealand to work as a missionary. Henry had a big focus on bringing God to the Maori people without trying to civilise the Maori’s to see God the British way. He recognised that God was a father of all nations and cultures, seeing Him for His unchanging nature and love, rather than singularly through the perspective of the British church.

Henry was pretty chill with everyone, both settlers and the tangata whenua, and acted as a mediator between the Maori people and the missionaries and European settlers, often fixing disputes as he was very skilled in understanding both side’s views and the values and ideology behind those views, which allowed him to approach with sensitivity to all and bring about a lot of peace. Henry was actually the one who translated the Treaty of Waitangi into Te Reo. It wasn’t a perfect translation, we know that now. All I can say is that given the time frame he had, he and his son Edward did their best.

Anyway, Henry had another son called Samuel, who was only 8 months old when Henry brought the family to New Zealand, so Samuel grew up alongside the Maori kids on the settlements and not only was fluent in te reo but also had a keen insight into both cultures and their way of life.

Henry Williams had a brother, William Williams, who came over to New Zealand after him as a missionary and teacher. William WIlliams had a daughter, who would end up marrying her cousin, Samuel Williams. I’ve said a few times during my education here that the size of our school means we are very limited for choice in terms of finding a special someone, but imagine how limited the early missionaries would have been in terms of choice of future partner!

So Samuel and his wife/cousin did lots of cool things working as missionaries, just like the rest of their extended family, but ended up settling in Hawkes Bay to launch the mission program here. That was because he was offered some land to build a school for the Maori’s by Te Hapuku and 44 other Maori leaders, however, by accepting this land, he was cut off from the Christian Missionary Society as he was going against their rules by owning the land, and the society also didn't want him moving to Hawkes Bay. However Samuel felt it was the will of God through providence, so stepped out boldly to do God’s work and gave up his ties to the missionary society, his reputation as well as his salary… and by trusting God, God looked after him.

This is a wonderful example for us to live out our lives and our faiths boldly, following God’s instruction and will for us and trusting in Him to provide everything we need.
It might not be easy, as Samuel quickly found, but will be possible through trusting in God’s provision and not relying on our own abilities, powers and plans.

Samuel built Te Aute College for boys and Hukarere Girls College in his time in Hawkes Bay, and it was a long challenge to get them both up and running, with lots of hard work and spending 15 years doing hard labour on his land to get enough money to fund the school in the first place. He was a big believer in educating his Maori students also in Christianity while equipping them to be able to interact with and understand the white settlers in order to live together in peace and so the Maori people wouldn't be disadvantaged in the fast changing country. It is not lost on me as a student at Hastings Christian School how important a Christian education is and I am so grateful to the founders of this school who also stepped out in faith thirty seven years ago.

Samuel was very wise financially, and, while opposed to buying land off the Maori, would buy land back off the European settlers who had already bought it. He would use this land to farm, to keep as natural bush, to provide jobs, and to lease out to others which brought in more income for the school.

Although Samuel became a very rich man eventually, he lived simply and used his wealth and resources to help others and the community. He gave generously knowing that all he had been blessed with came from and belonged to God. He paid university fees for Maori students and supplemented the salaries of teachers. He supported many Maori schools and churches, and contributed to the church and mission work, particularly in fields of health and education.

Even though he had endured through harsh times financially, when he had a large family depending on him. Rather than storing it up for his family, he freely donated the money, not even glorifying himself while doing it. He set up a Trust in the name of his father and uncle so that he could donate large sums of money inconspicuously, and do honour to these two men whose self-giving service to the kingdom of God had been his inspiration since he was a child.

Te Pipi Wharauroa said, “What Samuel did and to what extent could never be tabulated or known. That will be known only to Heaven. He was the right kind of man to be blessed with wealth for he knew how best to use that wealth.”

Samuel Willliams was a man who did not hoard money for himself but was ‘rich towards God’.

It was Samuel’s wish to see the Kingdom of God furthered in every corner of the world. This was his great and abiding passion. To this he dedicated his money; to this he dedicated his life.

Samuel was loved, honoured and respected in our region, mourned after his death as ‘a binding link of harmonious cohesion’ among the various hapu of Ngati Kahungunu.

Teacher Only Days/early finishes this term

Please take note of two teacher only days this term.

Friday 31 May - Special Character Training day for staff (whole school closed)
Tuesday 4th June - Professional development for staff (whole school closed)

Prayer Time

Please join us for a time of prayer next Tuesday morning 28th of May from 8:20-8:45am in the meeting room. One of the main items we will focus on is our need for a secondary science teacher to fill this currently vacant position. Come along if you can, otherwise, we do encourage you to lift this matter up to the Lord, who is the provider of all things, in your own prayer time .

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. Philippians 4:6

Hardship Fund

With the current cost of living, families can sometimes struggle with expenses. HCS has a limited hardship fund that we can use to assist families with immediate need relating to school expenses when we can. If you are in a position where you would like to donate to this fund to help out other families, please feel free to make a donation to the school account
12-3439-0013004-01 Reference: hardship

Found a "lost" HCS library book? Please return!

If you found a HCS library book in the school holidays, we would love to get it back! This includes books that have been out for a long time and have been made lost/missing - all books are valuable to the library collection. Mrs Gardiner even gives chocolate rewards if a missing book is returned. The record is a book missing for 2 years and found.

BOOT CAMP - House Event

This event has been postponed due to the wet weather this week. Y1-11 students will have a normal school day and Y12-13 students will be involved in some sports with visiting students from Bethlehem College from 1:30-3:10pm.

The Y13 students visiting from Bethlehem have offered to help out in the primary school classes for the morning.

NZACS Sports Day

With an attendance check at 7:15am and departure time of 7:30am - we knew this day was going to be long! And we were right. Leaving bang on 7:30am, a typical 2 hour trip to Te Papaioea (Palmerston North) took just over 2.5 hours with the return trip being just over 3 hours! Early morning starts and late arrivals home aside - the day was an amazing success.
Firstly - Te Papaioea (Palmerston North) turned on a stunner of a day. We were told by Cornerstone that this was a typical day in Manawatu (Yeah right!).

Upon arriving Mr V and Whaea Marie were off to a roaring start - they lost all but one student! Thankfully Cornerstones acute organisation skills meant those students had been ushered by the Year 8 leaders, to a classroom where they would store their bags.

The morning started appropriately with a time of worship and prayer and then we were split into groups of approximately 70 teams with 5 to 6 students in each team. This gives you an idea of the scale of this event.

Each team rotated around different sports ranging from hockey to ultimate frisbee, volleyball to netball. The hooter would go and off we would move with our team. Some of us were nervous as no other friend or member of our school was in our team however EVERYONE was the same so it forced us to get to know others and work together as a team through the games.

Our team efforts, Christian character and sportsmanship were awarded at the end of the day with a certificate ceremony in which several HCS students received something. Even if we didn't receive a certificate, we all felt like winners as the day was thoroughly enjoyed by all.

Many thanks to Mr V and Whaea Marie for organising us for the day and thank you to Cornerstone for an awesome day! From E2

Rippa Rugby

We took 11 students, both boys and girls to a Rippa Rugby Tournament on Thursday 16 May. We played 6 games throughout the day. We won 5 out of the 6 games. Here are the scores: Havelock North Primary 2 - HCS 4Te Mata 2 - HCS 7Raureka 5 - HCS 6Lucknow 10 - HCS 7Hastings central 2 -HCS 7

Exam Centre Manager Vacancy

HCS is looking for a new Exam Centre Manager. The position involves managing the administration of running all our NZQA examinations, which are from 5-29 November 2024. This is a paid position, contracted and paid for by NZQA. You will also need to recruit and train examination supervisors for sessions with multiple rooms.

The ECM must have a high level of organisational skills with great attention to detail,
strength in following processes precisely and confidence leading people of all ages.

The position requires you to complete an online training programme and attend a one-day
training session with NZQA in August. The position requires you to complete a number of
administrative tasks to plan and prepare for the exams. You must be available to work for
the entire exam period (Tuesday 5 November to Friday 29 November). In late October, the successful applicant will need to receive examination booklets and process them

The qualities we are looking for in an ECM are:
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Computer skills
  • Ability to work under pressure and within deadlines
  • Well organised and methodical
  • Integrity beyond question
  • Ability to follow instructions
  • Ability to lead a team
  • Firm but fair management of teenagers
If this sounds like you, we would love to hear from you. If you know of someone who would be ideal for this position, please pass this information on to them. A full job description is available on request.

Applications need to be in writing addressed to Anita Nieuwland, Principal’s Secretary Please include details of relevant work experience, or skills relating to the qualities listed above. Closing date for applications is 31 May 2024.

Vietnam Cultural Trip 2024

Sharing our journey: Part 4

Pizza Lunches

Order before school outside the staff room on Friday mornings. $1.50 per piece, cheesy garlic, pepperoni or ham and cheese. Gluten Free $2.00 per slice.

Upcoming Events

  • Thursday 23rd May - Afternoon house event for Y12-13
  • Tuesday 28th May - Y12's Career Expo
  • Friday 31st May - Teacher Only Day (whole school closed)
  • Tuesday 4th of June - Teacher Only Day (whole school closed)
  • Wednesday 12th June - E1 Bakesale for the persecuted church
  • Thursday/Friday 13/14th June - Secondary Sports Exchange at HCS