Press Release – Anglican Church in Aotearoa
The funeral of a Fijian teenager who died while on holiday in New Zealand has taken place in Suva today with recognition of a short life that impacted on three countries.Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia
The funeral of a Fijian teenager who died while on holiday in New Zealand has taken place in Suva today with recognition of a short life that impacted on three countries.
Representatives of the Anglican Church of New Zealand and in Australia have travelled to Fiji to farewell Deepika Kumar. They knew the 18 year old through their support and work with the St Christopher’s Home in Suva who cared for her.
Deepika was taken into St Christopher’s Home, run by the Sisters of the Community of the Sacred Name, after her mother, grandmother and aunty died.
Since her body was returned to the home yesterday the 27 children she lived with, her ‘brothers and sisters’ have sung and prayed round her Speakers at the funeral spoke of her desire to be a journalist as a way to find her father and to make things better for her community. Deepika had won an essay competition in 2012 organised by the NZ High Commission in Fiji.
The New Zealand High Commission Head of Mission, to Fiji attended the funeral and spoke of a life from adversity that had achieved so much.
Mark Ramsden said Deepika’s achievements reflected a great deal about her and about St Christopher’s care for her. He said her death was a tragedy but within, and beyond the church, there was also a story of hope in how she had achieved so much.
Deepika had been in Wellington in an Anglican parish since December and died in Waikato Hospital after being found in the pool of a motel in Hamilton last Saturday. She was to return to Fiji to begin university this week.