On a cold but sunny Saturday morning, at the beginning of July, Helensville’s John Issott was inducted as a Member of the Order of St John.
The ceremony, at St Patrick’s Cathedral in Central Auckland,was attended by over 600 people. He was one of 44 members of St John joining that day, with another 14 being promoted within the Order.
John is currently the St John Helensville Area Committee treasurer.He has been a volunteer committee member since arriving in New Zealand from England, 10 years ago. In that time he has worked hard to keep the committee going, along with supporting fundraising and the Helensville St John Op Shop, in Commercial Road.
The Order of St John was founded in Victorian England and recognises service to the organisation. It is an official order of chivalry, with the Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II at its head.
Nominations to the Order are anonymous and can come from anyone within St John. They are first approved by the Priory Chapter (in New Zealandthe supreme governance body of the Order and also St John). The nominations are then sent to the Queen, for final approval.
The Governor General is, by tradition, the Prior or head of the order in New Zealand.
The investitures were performed by Sir Jerry Mataparae, as one of his last official functions, before he steps down this month. After presenting each award, Sir Jerry spoke individually to the recipients, who came from all sections of the organisation.
The investiture ceremony was followed by lunch at the Heritage Hotel for the recipients, their families, friends and senior members of the Order.