At Pentecost we celebrate the action of God’s recreating Spirit. The second creation of Pentecost was no less extensive in its reach than the first creation. What began in creation was renewed at Pentecost. The Spirit is alive to every dimension of life and is not limited to the Church. Indeed a prayer of Pentecost is that the Church be open to the activity of God’s Spirit in the world.
We offer congratulations to our communications manager Jose Reader and her husband Les, who are expecting their first child later this year. Jose expects to take parental leave from mid-August for a period of up to 12 months. During this time, communications advisor Amanda Wells will step into the role of acting communications manager, and we are currently recruiting for someone to fill Amanda’s role.
Marilla Hood, our new human resources manager, has been with us for a little over a month now and is enjoying the diversity that the role offers. Please continue to make Marilla feel welcome as she settles into her position.
Sessions and Parish Councils are encouraged to contribute outstanding assessments by the end of the financial year, 30 June. In this way each parish contributes to the wellbeing of all.
See the finance update for more details about this and other financial matters.
The Charities Commission has delayed the start of the registration process, which was originally scheduled to start in July 2006 and extend until September 2007.
In their recent newsletter, the Charities Commission has noted that they have already received applications for registration based on the draft forms. They have pointed out that there is absolutely no advantage in anticipating the process and until the final forms have been agreed to, so at this stage it is the Sub-committee’s view that there is no need for parishes to commence registration.
The Resource Sub-Committee is continuing to monitor the situation regarding the Charities Act, in conjunction with the Church Property Trustees, and we will keep parishes informed once we have reliable information to work on regarding a likely start date for registration.
Presbyteries are presently selecting commissioners to attend Assembly. Once chosen, people need to register for Assembly through our website. A registration pack containing information about how to register will be sent to commissioners.
A reminder that feedback on the review of the Assembly Assessment framework is due by 15 June 2006. Please take the opportunity to have your say, as feedback that the Resource Sub-committee receives will help inform the final paper that will be put before General Assembly for consideration.
Comment from the wider church has been invited on a number of other papers as well – a stipend review and reviews of the School of Ministry and General Assembly meeting. Check out the General Assembly pages for the latest information about these issues and other matters related to GA06.
Learn more about the theme for this year’s General Assembly – Christ-centered, community-facing – by checking out the website. Decided by the Rev Pamela Tankersley, the current Moderator-designate, the theme has its basis in Jeremiah’s letter to exiles in Babylon.
Reports regarding reviews of the General Assembly meeting, School of Ministry and stipend have recently been sent to the wider church for comment and input.
Feedback on the proposals is welcome and your comments will inform the papers that are put before General Assembly for consideration. The timelines and contact persons to whom feedback should be sent vary for each report, so please check out these pages for more details.
Input has also been invited on outcomes of a review of Assembly Assessment and feedback on this matter is due with the task group by 15 June 2006. Copies of this and the other reports noted above are available via the website.
A paper from Moderator of the General Assembly the Rt Rev Garry Marquand and National Mission Enabler the Rev John Daniel that proposes the establishment of networks, which it is suggested would work alongside presbyteries, has also been circulated for comment. The paper is presented as an option for addressing the dilemma of presbyteries, which are increasingly under-resourced to equip mission.
Presbyteries and Union District Councils have recently been sent information asking them to advise the Assembly Executive Secretary who their commissioners to GA06 will be.
Shortly after the names have been received, each individual will be sent a registration pack, which includes details of how to register online and other important information for commissioners.
Registrations will be taken via the church’s website, and these pages will be available in early June.
If you think you should have received a registration pack, but don’t yet have one, or if you have any other registration questions, please email juliette(at)presbyterian.org.nz
For the first time in several years the church is generating a surplus from operations in the financial year from July 2005. However, this encouraging trend is offset by Assembly Assessment collection continuing to be below that budgeted. Unpaid Assembly assessment is now $250k higher than it was last June and has resulted in a corresponding increase in Church borrowings to enable funding of operations. It is imperative that collection increases significantly in the four weeks to the end of the financial year, and a communication to that effect has been distributed to Parishes.
The preparation of the 2006/07 operating budget continues with submissions received from cost-centre managers. The final draft is to be approved by the resource sub-committee prior to presentation to the Council of Assembly for sign-off in mid June.
A communication and information pack has been sent to Parishes who utilise the General Assembly centralized payroll advising that this service is to be discontinued. It has been decided to delay the implementation date from 1 July to 1 August to support parish transition and this process is progressing smoothly.
It is budget time again. This means that I have to guess the total value of all the donations the GMO will receive from individuals, groups, the APW, Presbyterian and Uniting congregations around the country in the next financial year. All the money we receive is given away and we don’t even cream off an administration fee. So in some ways, it is a strange experience because one wants to be outrageously unrealistic in the hopes that the blessing will flow for others. In the 2005/06 financial year, we budgeted for $125,000 and by year end we will hopefully just tip over the $200,000 mark. Essentially that is double what we estimated, which was 25 percent more than the year before. So what of the next year? Why not a 100 percent increase? Why not half a million dollars? $500,000 is a big number until one breaks it down.
So if 20,000 members (66 percent of the national membership) donated $25 per year – or $2 per month – bingo!! $500,000 for global mission.
If only 10,000 members (33 percent) donated $50 a year we would also get $500,000.
So what would we use the funds for?
We have a vast array of projects to suit just about every desire of the kind of work people like to support. We have a growing list of opportunities to serve overseas and people willing to serve. All of this costs money. But consider just for a moment the challenge of providing disaster relief
As I write:
In each of these and many other places, there are Christians with whom we have a long historical relationship as a Church. People who, when they pray, believe that God will use people like us to answer their prayers. They are our friends.
So why don’t you consider starting a "$25 Club" in your congregation? And in the meantime I will budget to receive $500,000 in the next financial year.
Kids Friendly is an initiative of the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa that recognises the vital contribution children and families make to healthy congregations. It aims to assist and resource churches to intentionally minister to children and families.
For more information about the programme or how your parish can become involved, please contact Jill Kayser or check out the Kids Friendly website.
Kids Friendly Consultant
Ph: 09-5850959, 09-5759836, 027-2103784
Mail: 100 St Heliers Bay Road, Auckland
Applications for Presbyterian Foundation grants open on 1 June.
An overview of the process can be found on this page, with Application forms, Guidelines for Applicants, Guidelines for Presbyteries, and Evaluation forms, also available for download.
Information about the composition of parishes during 2005, broken down by presbytery, is now available online.
The process is well underway for 2006. Thank you to the Boards of Nomination who offered their Profiles to us for the first round of Introductions. We are moving toward the second round and invite Boards to offer Profiles to us by 21 June. While your Profile is with us we ask that you do not make it available to Ordained Ministers.
When a Profile is with us time may seem to drag for Boards. It is not unusual for the first Ordinand to whom a Profile is offered to return it after an absence of a sense of call. It may then be offered to a second, and sometimes a third Ordinand. We leave the Profile with the Ordinand for about 14 days for discernment.
A positive response by an Ordinand is followed by their Personal Information Form being sent to the Nominator.
Where a Parish Profile has not led to a sense of call to explore it is returned to the Board at the earliest opportunity. We would hope to have such Profiles returned by the end of August at the latest.
What kind of Profiles are we looking for given the expressed preferences of the graduating ordinands:
Our experience has been that sometimes when offered profiles outside preferences God generates a sense of call that surprises Ordinands and Workgroup members.
03 453 3052
CWS would like to thank the many churches and groups that supported A Fair Cuppa, to raise people’s awareness of how trade affects people’s lives by using Trade Aid tea, coffee, hot chocolate and sugar after services during Fair Trade Fortnight. The fair trade movement benefits some five million people by paying fair and stable prices, investing in the community and promoting environmentally sustainable production. Consumer demand will help ensure more people enjoy these benefits. Contact gillian.southey(at)cws.org.nz for more information on becoming a fair trade church.
When the FIFA World Cup soccer competition begins on June 9, there is no guarantee that children have not been exploited in the production of the sports equipment, clothing or accessories associated with the event. CWS is again supporting the call from the Global March against Child Labour, to highlight the plight of children compelled to work 12-14 hours a day in exploitative conditions when they should be at school. Despite the introduction of a programme for the Elimination of Child Labour in the Soccer Ball Industry there are still significant violations in the production undoubtedly involving children and also underpaying adult employees. June 12 is the World Day Against Child Labour and CWS encourages people to take the opportunity to write to the Minister of Labour, Ruth Dyson, Parliament Buildings, Wellington and/or John Morris, Chairman, NZ Football, P O Box 301-043, Albany, Auckland expressing your concern for the children still employed in the soccer industry and asking them to strengthen provisions to end child labour. Further information on the Global March campaign can be found at: http://www.globalmarch.org/campaigns/worldcupcampaign/worldcup2006.php3
Please let CWS know if you do write and get a reply. cws(at)cws.org.nz or PO Box 22652, Christchurch.
Watch and Learn: World Watch #52: The latest World Watch, CWS’s magazine for children, is available now. Focusing on the Solomon Islands and how children live and learn, this free resource comes with a Leaders Kit. Contact youth(at)cws.org.nz to receive your copies.
CWS was disappointed that the recently announced Budget did not deliver on New Zealand’s international aid promises. New Zealand is one of only two OECD countries that have not set a timetable to meet the internationally agreed target of 0.7 percent GNI (Gross National Income) on aid by 2015. It remains at 0.27 percent. The OECD average is 0.42 percent. CWS is encouraging the many Point 7 supporters in the churches to write to their local MP to express their disappointment and ask that New Zealand give more money to help the world’s poorest peoples. See www.pointseven.org.nz
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The Church Register lists additions to, deletions from, and changes in status on the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand Ministerial Roll as advised by Presbytery Clerks as at 25 May 2006.
Rev Graham Mansell, Ellesmere Co-operating Parish, Christchurch Presbytery, to Minister within the Bounds, Christchurch Presbytery, 11 December 2005 .
Rev Rob Ferguson of the Methodist Church has started a term as Minister St Ninians, Christchurch Presbytery on 16 February 2006.
Rev Heitapeka Tautau, Turakina Maori Girls College, resigned as Chaplain on 7 May 2006.
Click here to see the full table of vacancies