The truth couldn’t have dawned at a more inopportune moment.
Alice Gower’s boyfriend, Dr David Lord, was to become an Anglican deacon and, as a talented amateur opera singer, she had agreed to sing at his ordination ceremony.
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Although not a grand occasion, it was significant enough for David to feel the need to invite his best friend from London, a dapper 50-year-old chaplain at St Bartholomew’s Hospital who had helped him adapt to life as a junior doctor when he’d lived in London two years earlier. It seemed natural that David, then aged 25, would want his mentor, the Rev Peter Cowell, to witness his official entry into the ranks of the clergy.
But when she gave Peter a welcome hug on the steps of the Cathedral Church of St Peter in Hamilton on New Zealand’s North Island, Alice smelled a distinctive aftershave on his collar.
Māori culture forms a distinctive part of New Zealand culture.
The word Māori refers to the indigenous people of New Zealand.