New Zealanders for Marriage
Historic Prayer Vigil for Marriage at Parliament
On Wednesday night as the bagpipes played and voices sang "God defend New Zealand" approximately 600 people descended on
Parliament grounds in a Prayer Vigil to pray for the upholding of the dignity of Marriage. The participants represented
a cross-section of society from various Christian traditions and ethnic backgrounds consisting of both young and old
alike, to give a united public witness to the belief in the Traditional definition of Marriage.
“This is not a protest rally, but we have come here to pray” says Gordon Copeland spokesperson of New Zealanders for
Marriage, an ad hoc group organized to uphold Marriage in the face of the proposed Marriage (Definition of Marriage)
Amendment Bill which would redefine Marriage to include same sex couples.
Christian leaders such as Archbishop John Dew, Pastor Rasik Ranchord, Dr Ate Moala and a Korean contingent of pastors
represented by Pastor Boaz Ko and Victory Koh led prayers and reflections based on Scripture. Each shared the belief
that Marriage is a union between a man and a woman not only from a Christian point of view, but also from the witness of
other sciences, including reasons based on natural law.
The participants of the Prayer Vigil were not alone but were also joined by more than 200 from the opposing camp in
favour of the Bill. Situated on the other side, supporters of the Bill attempted to make their voices heard by singing
pop songs and making noise throughout the Prayer Vigil.
The Prayer Vigil took place at the same time that the Bill was being debated in Parliament and while other simultaneous
prayer vigils were taking place in the country. The significance of the Prayer Vigil being held at the same time as Holy
Week when Christians commemorate the Passion of our Lord was not lost on the organisers, but served as a reminder that
as followers of Jesus, they are called to carry the cross but that after the Cross, there will be a Resurrection.
The Bill has now passed through Committee stage without any amendments, but organisers are hopeful that the majority of
politicians will vote against the Marriage Amendment Bill when it comes up for its third and final reading within the
next eight weeks.