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Despite persistent drizzle, a crowd of several hundred people sheltered beneath umbrellas and under shop verandahs near the < apex of the Town Hall this afternoon to hear the official peace proclamation read by the Mayor, Mr. Allum. City councillors, consuls and representatives of the churches were assembled on the dais and the Minister of Internal Affairs, Mr. Parry, was also present.

"It is my privilege to-day, to call you together so that we may thank Almighty God for His mercy in giving us final and complete victory over the last of our enemies," said Mr. Allum. "This is a very important, if not the most important, time in our lives, because it marks the defeat of the attempt of our enemies to destroy our way of life, and to enslave us."

, "We recall to-day," he said, "the deeds of the men and women of the Allied nations during the war years, both in the combat areas, in the merchant navies, in the fields, in the factories and workshops and wherever the war effort has been prosecuted. Dominion's Prestige Enhanced "Our admiration of the men of the fighting service is unbounded and we remember with pride the exploits of our own men in North Africa, in Europe, in the islands of the Pacific, on .the high seas and in the air over Europe and the Pacific. New Zealand sailors, soldiers and airmen have upheld, and, in fact, enhanced the prestige of our Dominion. We thank those men for the sacrifices which they have made on our behalf, and pledge ourselves to do our utmost to see that now they have achieved final victory, they shall be properly and adequately reinstated in civil life."

"During the war years," continued Mr. Allum, "there have been periods of great peril and anxiety, and in celebrating final victory, we shall remember the fortitude and courage of the peoples of all the allied nations, both servicemen and civilians. We remember with sorrowful pride the fighting men and civilians who have given their lives that we may be free, and we do not forget those who have sustained grievous permanent disabilities. The war is ended, and we thank Almighty God for vouchsafing us the victory, but our task is not finished, we have yet to win the peace, and we pray for wisdom and courage, so to act as to ensure lasting peace in a changed world." "My remarks to-day are brief," said Mr. Allum, "but I speak with a full heart. I invite all citizens to attend the thanksgiving service to be held in the Town Hall, on Sunday at 3 p.m.

"On this great and momentous occasion let us again affirm our loyalty to His Most Gracious Majesty, King George VI. God save the King!"

Following the reading of the proclamation by Mr. Allum, a citizens' choir, under the baton of Mr. Colin Muston, led the singing of the "Old Hundredth." A short prayer was offered by the Rev. W. R. Milne, this being followed by the singing of the hymn, "Now Thank We All Our God." The cerfemony concluded with the singing of the National Anthem.

Service personnel were present and the Papakura Camp Band accompanied the choir.

After the ceremony returned prisoners of war and their relatives were entertained by the Mayor and Mayoress at afternoon tea.

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Bibliographic details

IN THE RAIN, Auckland Star, Volume LXXVI, Issue 193, 16 August 1945

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IN THE RAIN Auckland Star, Volume LXXVI, Issue 193, 16 August 1945

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