In early March we attended the Area Principal Conference in Auckland, New Zealand. This is the second year that we attended. The Area South Pacific Church Schools principals attended a week long conference with many speakers. The countries attending the conference were from Samoa, Tonga, Fiji and Kiribati. The South Pacific Area Office is in New Zealand so that is why we were in New Zealand. Most of the time the senior missionaries were in the conference with the principals but then there were times when we separated and had sessions just for the senior ITEP (International Teacher Education Program) couples. Our sessions centered around what we were doing in each country as well as receiving information from BYU Hawaii. The ITEP couples are all adjunct professors from BYU Hawaii. Here are some pictures of out conference…these are principals and church leaders who are responsible for educating the children of the South Pacific church schools. At the present time there are over 6500 students in the church schools of the South Pacific.
This year we used one of the days to tour Auckland and see a wonderful museum and had an opportunity to have a cruise around the harbor and surrounding area of Auckland. It was a wonderful day and evening. Here are some pictures that we took during our tour and cruise in Auckland. We were on the boat call the Ted Ashby which provided a great deal of information about what we were seeing.
These next pictures are of a Russian billionaire’s boat that has been in Auckland for about a month. It costs the owner about $3000 per month for the boat slip. The owner flies in from different parts of the world and then takes a cruise. It must be nice to have that much money to travel the world in a boat like that. They said that there is a crew of 40 that man’s the boat at all times.
The boat is so big that it has smaller boats housed within the larger boat so the owners can have their personal boat when they wants to be by themselves. Must be nice…the owner of the boat owns an oil company in Russia.
The next set of pictures are just scenes as we toured the harbor.
After we toured the harbor we went to the Auckland Maritime Museum and had a tour mostly of the boat and ship industry.
After the tour we went to a museum conference room and had a discussion centering around the maritime industry and how it impacted the education pro gram in South Pacific Schools. Very interesting how the participants connected what they saw with the theme for the schools this year which was to “Embark.”
After we concluded our museum tour and discussion, we went for dinner at Elliott Stables. This was a very unique place. It was a remodeled horse stable in the middle of Auckland. It has over twenty different restaurants and a central eating area. You go to which ever restaurant and order and give them your table number and when your order is ready they will bring it out to you.; They had an international menu as you can imagine with over twenty restaurants.
After dinner we walked back to the harbor were we caught a fairy boat that brought us back to the other side of the harbor were we were staying on Takapunta Beach. We had a wonderful day and a great experience.