Tag Archives: Whale_Island_New_Zealand

Whale Island

Whale Island, or Moutohora in Maori (meaning whale), lies five and half miles off the coast of Whakatane, in the Bay of Plenty, of North Island, NZ. It is the remnant of a volcano. Purchased by the government in 1984, the island still displays its history with active hot springs– including a warm sand beach where access is not allowed.  The Department of Conservation has eradicated goats and rats and reintroduced native birds, bushes and trees. 

Meg and I enjoyed a late afternoon kayaking adventure paddling around the island with an outfitter, KG Kayaks. We returned in a gorgeous sunset. We had hoped to see blue penguins coming back on shore for the night, and dolphin. No such luck, but we were well entertained by seals doing wonderful ballet movements as we paddled close to the rocks where they hung out. We also enjoyed the lovely pohutukawa trees that bloom in December and are only found on coastal areas of North Island. We had missed doing this trip on earlier visits.  In the future, it is now on our “to do” list.

Whale Island from Air New Zealand flight to Whakatane

Meg paddling around Whale Island with KG Kayaks

Whale Island, KG_Kayaks

Kayaker with seal on right on rocks

Seal, Whale Island

Whale Island from Ohope beach

Hearing the Word

If we believe God spoke our universe, our world, our selves into existence, then how do we listen to Him?  Here is what Henri Nouwen says:
“The Word of God is not a word to apply in our daily lives at some later date; it is a word to heal us through and in, our listening here and now.

The questions therefore are: How does God come to me as I listen to the word? Where do I discern God’s healing hand touching me through his word? How are my sadness, my grief, my mourning being transformed at this very moment?  Do I sense the fire of God’s love purifying my heart and giving me new life? These questions lead me to the sacrament of the word, the sacred place of God’s real presence.”  Henri Nouwen