Today the Moderator wrote to all parishes, ministers, presbyteries and synods encouraging them to support the Upper South Island Earthquake Appeal he launched at General Assembly 2016 in response to the earthquakes of 14 November which caused devastation across the northern part of the South Island and Wellington.
The Moderator, Right Rev Richard Dawson says the Presbyterian Church has many churches in these areas led by able and faithful ministers of the Gospel who love their people and the communities they serve. "These people and their communities are now facing levels of unprecedented stress because of the disruption caused by the 7.8 earthquake. They face long delays, perhaps indefinite, before normal services resume, such as the provision fresh water and the resumption of sewage service. Many are now feeling the bite of post-traumatic stress symptoms as they contemplate the enormity of what has happened to them and their livelihoods."
General Assembly 2016 raised $8,000 to start the Appeal fund, and Richard says more is needed as "the needs are great and we want to give all our parishes and people a chance to contribute."
"As a Church we have four parishes within the hardest hit quake area: Hurunui led by the Rev Nancy Jean Whitehead; Amuri Cooperating covering Culverden, Rotherham and Waiau led by the Rev Colin Price; St Paul’s Presbyterian in Kaikoura led by the Rev Alistair McNaughton, and then further north the Awatere-Flaxbourne parish lead by the Rev Dawn Daunauda. We recognise too the Blenheim parishes of St Andrews and Wairau (St Ninians) who have also had a significant shake; and the significant damage to the Wellington CBD. We are in contact with these folk and are praying that their energies and wisdom may be sufficient for the day – each day! However, they will need extra support and care, to say nothing of their families."
Richard asks congregations to give generously to the Upper South Island Earthquake Appeal, and "for your prayers of intercession for our people and the communities they serve there. I will be visiting these areas in the next week and will bring further news".
Donations to the Upper South Island Earthquake Appeal can be made by deposit into this bank account, please use these details:
Local congregations are encouraged to take up special offerings, which can be sent to the address below. Please make cheques out to the PCANZ: