July 2008


From the Moderator

Dear friends,

My 21st presbytery visit was to beautiful Central Otago; the Creator is always powerfully present in this part of New Zealand. Central breeds hardy people and hardy churches. As they search for their community mission niche they must always have an eye on the tourist market. Many of these areas are growing hugely, as holiday home and luxury retreats, but also to house those who come to service the area, often an international work force. As the local churches develop buildings to work in mission, the question is being asked, “What comes first, the community buildings or the sacred space? What if being church means being a community centre with a sacred space at its heart?” (Rather than have a “sacred place” that has some other adjoining rooms to be used for the community?)

Other industries in Central include orchards and market gardens; the workers here are also a transient population. It was a delight to see the Teviot Union Parish in Roxborough welcome to worship (and find warm jerseys for) a large number of Ni-Vanuatu Presbyterians, come to pick the fruit in summer.

Now the “Standing Out” workshops have been completed, I can announce that I received six applications for the Moderator’s Grant, for seed money for Christ-centred community facing projects. I am delighted to be able to meet all their requests.

Thank you PSDS for your generosity

Here is the list:

  1. St James’ Uniting Church Onerahi, Whangarei have released their minister Barry Tetley to be involved in community affairs, in particular in editing the Onerahi Orbit, the local suburban magazine. They will use the money to support the magazine and put some advertising in it for St James own Christian/community programme.
  2. St Andrew’s Featherston, Wairarapa want to provide a point of contact with young children and their parents/caregivers and have decided to do this with a Kiddie Gym in their hall. They will use the money to help buy equipment.
  3. St Andrew’s at Rangi Ruru Presbyterian Church and St James’ Spreydon are setting up a Friday Night Community Youth Programme in the shopping precinct in Papanui for year 7 and 8 young people.
  4. St Andrew’s Manurewa has an ongoing relationship with Women's Refuge, which is significant in the light of South Auckland records of violence.
  5. The Pohutukawa Coast Presbyterian Church has a project reaching out to lonely women in the community (including single mums).
  6. Christ the King Pacific Island Church in Porirua has a youth programme focusing on sport that reaches out into the community.

These gifts will be given to help parishes create legends about their churches as passionate about the well-being of their local communities and engaged with them.

For your encouragement, these are the indicators for Christ-centred, community facing projects:

The project will

  • Bring “shalom” to the community, not just to the parish
  • Target those outside the church community (but is not just a tool for evangelism)
  • Intentionally raise the profile of the parish in the community as Christ-centred
  • Work in partnership with other shalom-bringers in the community, recognising that Christ is working “out there” as well as “in” our churches
  • Hold expectation of relationship/continuing connection with partners and with those targeted
  • Empower the more marginalised in our society
  • Intentionally strengthen the community facing attitude of the parish
  • Involve a significant proportion of parish people in “outreach” service.

The Leadership committee has recently released proposals for Ministry and Parish Appraisals. You will have received copies with Candour and in the mail. It is the result of many consultations and some years of deliberating how we can both honour our call as minister and make sure that we have competency and accountability. For many of us, these concepts challenge us to take our growth seriously and yet also leave us a little uncomfortable. What will it mean to be assessed every three years? What if it’s my parish that is limiting my development rather than my choice? On the other hand, is this an opportunity to assess and develop my skills, and to have a “professional” approach to our Church’s calling as ministers? At this stage all the Church is invited to consider the documents and respond so that they might be presented in an acceptable way to the Assembly. I urge you to read them with an open mind and respect the tremendous amount of work that has gone into them.

Next month I will travel to Vanuatu with Andrew Bell, to make a church to church visit with the Presbyterian Church of Vanuatu. Then I will do what many groups in our Church have done really successfully in the last couple of years: I will go with a team from my home parish, St David’s, Palmerston North, to connect in mission with a village in Vanuatu.  We are expecting to work with the local people at Talua College and at Tata Primary school on Santo Island. It is quite wonderful to see the strength of relationship that has developed between our two churches, not only at leadership level, but on the ground.

But before then will be the fantastic Connect, the Presbyterian Youth Leaders Conference, in Christchurch this time. Maybe I will see you there?

Have a great month….
            God go with you in all that is gentle
            Christ go with you in all that is brave
            and the Spirit go with you in all that is free

Kia Kaha

Assembly Office update

Dear Colleagues and Friends,

I am out of the office quite frequently at the moment as I enjoy the privilege of visiting presbyteries and other groups to discuss the growth and resource sharing strategy, which we have called “Press Go”. I am greatly encouraged by people’s readiness to engage and contribute to what are a quite difficult and challenging series of issues associated with how our resources may be shared and used to best serve our Church’s commitment to “making Jesus known”. At my first meeting with Christchurch presbytery, a former moderator challenged us to reflect on a ‘theology of dedication” in relation to the commitment we make each week to offer ourselves, and what we have to God. With the attachment many of us share to money and buildings I am still thinking about what our weekly act of “offering” might really mean. Let’s keep the discussion going.

Our communication manager, Amanda Wells, has just completed her “Standing Out” road show around the presbyteries. With over 600 people taking part this has been an outstanding success.

Members of the Trustees are bringing important information to presbyteries in regard to changes in the Beneficiary Fund (in relation to Kiwi Saver); the Leadership Committee is seeking immediate feed back on their plans relating to a proposed ministry review process.

As the work involved in preparing for the General Assembly continues to build, I am pleased that we have welcomed Clare Morrison to our Assembly Office staff. Clare, who was formally Wellington presbytery clerk, is working two half days per week in an administrative and support role with our employment advisor, Juliette Bowater.

Commissioners to the General Assembly

Thank you to all the presbytery clerks and UDC secretaries who have indicated the numbers of elders and ministers attending Assembly 08. We now require the forms listing the names of those attending. There should be four lists: ministers, elders, youth and observers.

Shortly we will finalise details about the cost for each commissioner and will also be sending out registration packs. We agreed some years ago that the General Assembly needed to be self –funding, which means that every commissioner needs to negotiate with the group they are representing in terms of meeting attendance costs.

Nominations for Moderator-designate

We have entered the third stage in the process for nominations for the Moderator-designate. A list of the top four polling nominees with their biographical information has been sent to every congregation. Each congregation, through its own decision-making processes, needs to list the candidates in order of preference on the voting form included and send the form to the assembly office for counting. We need completed voting forms to the office by 14 July 2008. The counting will take place under the supervision of a JP.

The voting papers have been sent to the address we have for your parish. If your parish has not received this information please contact me immediately.

Bringing issues before the General Assembly

The Assembly Office has sent information to presbytery clerks and UDC secretaries outlining the format and process of submitting proposals and references to the General Assembly. If you are planning to bring any matter before the General Assembly, contact heather@presbyterian.org.nz

While we have not finalised details of the cost of the General Assembly, it seems to me that it would make good sense to keep an eye on specials like Air New Zealand “Grab a Seat” for those who will need to fly to Wellington. If you know that you will be coming, early bookings save a great deal. You need to be at St John’s in Wellington city by 11 am on Thursday 2 October, departing on the afternoon of Monday 6 October.

Council of Assembly

Last week the Council approved the ’08 - ‘09 Assembly operating Budget. Our finance team, led by Brendan Sweeney and working the Resource Committee, has worked hard to finalise the budget. A number of factors including very restrained national expenditure have enabled us to reduce the Assembly budget by $700,000 and meet the target of reducing Assessment to below, on average, 10% of a parish’s accessible income. An important note is that now about 40% of contributions made by congregations to the assembly assessment represent their support of the minister’s beneficiary fund.

The Council will be holding its July meeting in Wellington on 10 and 11 July. Our main focus will be to process papers requiring the endorsement of the Council or motions going to the Assembly from the Council. We will also be approving the names of those on the Nominating Committee.

All other groups who write reports need to have these to the office by the end of July.

A spare church?

Colin Holmes, Mayor of Whakatane, has written to ask if anyone knows of a spare church in the North Island that the council could move to Whakatane to use as a chapel for their Crematorium. They are willing to pay for the costs of moving and restoration, so let me know if you have one sitting around somewhere and I will put you in touch with the mayor. (Better check first with your Board of Managers!)


We have a number of groups and individuals who are working very hard to meet tight deadlines in preparation for the General Assembly.

Last week the Rev Richard Lawrence, on a visit to Pyongyang, brought out greetings to the church in North Korea. They greatly value the knowledge that we are holding them in our prayers. Our brothers and sisters in Myanmar continue to face almost unimaginable difficulties and persecution by the authorities. We have been asked by the World Alliance of Reformed Churches to especially remember the people of Zimbabwe at this time.

Thank you for your generous support of the work we do together as a Church.


Finance update

Payroll giving

The government is planning on introducing payroll giving from next year. This means that donors can donate to registered charities directly from their gross salary, reducing their net income (and PAYE expense), and removing the need for tax refund applications at the end of the year. The scheme is designed to make giving easier and make government contributions instant and easy to administer. Employer establishment and donor use of the scheme is voluntary, but this is something that parishioners should be made aware of. For further details go to the government website:

I will keep you informed of legislative (and governmental) developments prior to implementation.

Beneficiary fund contact

The Church Property Trustees have decided to take over as point of contact for enquires and administration of the ministers’ Beneficiary Fund from Financial Services Department. The contact at AON will continue to be Ashley Goss, however from now please direct internal enquires to trina@presbyterian.org.nz at CPT. Margaret Fawcett will still be involved and accessible during the training/handover period.

Langmuir Estate grants for retired medical ministers

I have been advised by the Global Mission Office that applications for grants to retired ministers from the D.I. Langmuir Estate are now open. Please contact Rev Andrew Bell, globalmission@xtra.co.nz for details on application criteria. Please note that ministers will also be advised of this grant by the Global Mission Office. 

Insurance reminder

Thank you to parishes that have returned their insurance amendments for the coming renewal. The information is used by our brokers to negotiate the premiums. There are still some parishes who have not completed their insurance review, as the renewal is not completed until 31 July 2008 there is still time to advise us of any insurance changes. It would be helpful to have the amendments by the end of June 2008.

Brendan Sweeney
Finance Manager

GA08 News

Church communications staff are planning to send out an email every evening of GA08, which starts on Thursday 2 October and concludes on Monday 6 October. This daily email will summarise decisions and events, as well as providing links to fuller information on the GA webpage.

Kids Friendly update

Rich Melheim and faith inkubators -  A gift to NZ ministers 

The GIFT - ‘Growing in Faith Together” Conference features the fresh voice of Rich Melheim addressing critical areas of church life and ministry. 

St Columba@Botany, Auckland

Friday 8 and Saturday 9 August 2008

If you are grappling with how to effectively:

  • Teach and engage children and young people in the life of the church
  • Get parents and caregivers involved in ministry with their own children
  • Bring the generations together in learning, life and worship

Then this conference could assist you. 

Rich is a Lutheran pastor and the founding director of Faith Inkubators. He has rich insights into broad aspects of children and family ministry and is a stimulating and engaging communicator.

For more detailed information on the conference programme and registration forms (old link removed). For more information on Faithinkubators go to www.faithink.com.

The deadline for presbyteries to endorse and forward applications is 15th September.

Global Mission update

Hot Topic

Nothing seems to focus the world’s attention like the Olympic Games.  World unity through sporting competition as symbolised by the five inter-connecting rings (representing the five inhabited continents) is seen as a far more important objective than using the opportunity to focus on world crises.  However for millions of oppressed people around the world, it is an opportunity to highlight their plight that is simply too good to miss.  The plight of the Tibetans has already been moved ‘centre stage’ by the protests accompanying the torch.. A recent challenging YouTube video (view here)  talks about China’s role in propping up the Burmese Military Regime, it asks those who view it to participate in a simple protest by not watching the television broadcasts of the Games or purchasing the sponsors products. The same principle questions can be raised about many examples of exploitation and brutality.  How come Zimbabwean athletes be allowed to compete when the world blocked participation by neighbouring Apartheid South Africa for so many years?  Or closer to home, it seems that the most dramatic response by New Zealanders to the military coup in Fiji has been to take advantage of the cheap holidays that have resulted from the instability. Do we even stop to ask who is actually funding the discount?  It is likely that it isn’t the airline or multinational hotel chain, but the lowly paid workers. What if the roles were reversed?  What if we were the ones being oppressed.  Would we be happy with our stance if it was taken by others?

Opportunities to serve overseas

There seems to be a blockage in the system. We have opportunities for people to serve on short term mission experiences opening up all the time.  We also have a few longer term ones but we are short of applicants.  To name just three opportunities available: a builder to spend a month in Kenya, a lecturer and a secondary school teacher for a year in Vanuatu.  We have negotiated accessing opportunities through the Uniting Church in Australia as well and we have access to opportunities through CWM.  Our preferred way of working is to work with the individual who senses a call and to design an opportunity to ensure a ‘best fit’ and a positive outcome for all.  So if you have a person in your congregation who is interested in serving overseas please encourage them to give us a call.

Presbyterian Schools

An exciting development is the growing relationship between our church schools and the GMO.  Many of our schools have responded with donations to various special appeals or regular contributions to specific projects from their Chapel offerings.  Columba College and St Kentigern College have been particular supportive of our appeal for Myanmar.  Others have started to forge a friendship with Onesua Presbyterian College, Vanuatu.  St Andrew’s College and Rangi Ruru Girls’ School have both sent a team of students for the second year in a row.  St Orans College and Turakina Maori Girls College have teamed up and will send their first group this July.   Lindisfarne are investigating the possibility of visiting in 2009.  Youth group members are encouraged to have a similar ‘immersion experience’ into the daily life of a ni-Vanuatu student. 

In hope


Continuing with what Andrew has written about opportunities to serve overseas, I was recently in Vanuatu and I had the amazing experience of humility.  In one way I went to learn about the history of our two churches, i.e. the Church and the PCV and to visit some New Zealand missionaries, but I also went with the mind set of finding out how we could help more or help in a more efficient way. It is still very clear in my mind when talking with some ministry students that it was I who had been the blessed recipient of their loving community.  It was I who had witnessed relationships of respect. I left Vanuatu knowing that it was I who had received more than I took. The Global Mission Office is here to enable churches not only to serve overseas, but to also become good hosts, willing to learn from our brothers and sisters from around the world.

Young People

Ministers and church leaders if you know of any young person who you think would benefit from a short term mission trip, please don’t hesitate to contact us. You might be the only one who recognises a calling in that young person’s life.  You might be the only one who opens that door of possibility. 

Here are some opportunities:

South Africa and Zambia:  The Global Mission Office is providing an opportunity for a group of youth leaders to go to Zambia and South Africa in January 2009

Vanuatu:  Are you interested in Vanuatu? The Global Mission Office can enable your youth group to go to Vanuatu and experience and take part in what the church is doing there.

Training in Mission: Run by the Council for World Mission. Ten young adults from around the world.  South Africa and India. Fully funded.  Applicants for the 2010 programme please apply to the Global Mission Office.

Thailand:  Are you interested in prison ministry in Thailand?  Are you interested in experiencing the ministry of Kathryn McDaniel? A two month stay in December and January, partly sponsored by the GMO.

Nepal:  “Every one of the 14 days we spent in Nepal was amazing”.  How would you like to become part of the relationship between the Church in Nepal and the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand?  Become part of a mission trip to Nepal from November to December 2008.

Global Internship: “My Year at the Global Mission Office was fantastic; I was blown away by how much I learnt.” “My year consisted of working for the GMO two days a week, involvement in St Andrew’s Church in Otahuhu and some study, plus two mission trips”.  Internship can be flexible, if a year is too long.

New Zealand:  Want to host a group from overseas? Why not host a group who will come and share their stories.  An opportunity for us as a church to be hosts, to share our faith and to be encouraged by what is happening in other churches


There will be a gathering to celebrate the Centennial of the Punjab with the Governor General of New Zealand at the Wellington College Auditorium on Wednesday the 1st of October. If you know of anyone who has an interest in attending please contact the Global Mission Office as soon as possible.


National Mission update

Work on adding material from the National Mission Office to the Church website continues to progress. We now have all the presbytery profiles uploaded to the National Mission section of the website here. These were put together late last year using the statistics from the 2006 Census and cover demographics for all the presbyteries throughout the country.  

Next in the pipeline will be the production and uploading of “Power Points” relating to the presbyteries. These will present the same material in a more visual way, highlighting both areas of strength and weakness as identified from the profiles.  

Alongside these we will gradually be adding a series of overviews. Again, similar to the profiles they will also offer information not previously included: backgrounds to the different areas, points of interest, details of the churches in the presbytery and what they’re doing, population projections and much more.

Another area soon to appear in the National Mission section of the website will be called “packages”.  These are works in progress and relate to different ministry areas, such as “Youth in NZ”, “Urban and Rural Contrasts”, “Asian people in NZ”, “Focuses on Maori and Pacific Island People”. We will be uploading these as they become available.

The aim of all these different materials is to assist presbyteries in planning mission for the future, in understanding more about the areas they live in, and in offering other helpful insights about the people in the community around them.  

None of these resources is the last word on the subject and we appreciate feedback and stories that may be included in future revisions.

Youth Ministry update

We are looking forward to our National Presbyterian Youth Leaders Conference, Connect. This is being held at Living Springs just outside of Christchurch from the 4th – 6th July 2008. John Daniels will be our key note speaker and there will be plenty of workshops, fantastic worship led by the Connect band from PIPC Newtown, Wellington, great people and wonderful food. There is still time to register.

For further information contact youth@presbyterian.org.nz or Steve Millward stevemillward@xtra.co.nz

Also, check out the Youth Web page for more information.

Presbyterian Archives

Connecting past present and future

Exploring our past - discovering who we are!

Our work in the Archives Research Centre is not just processing collections for posterity but encouraging people to access them. In the last decade there has been a significant increase in assisting people as they explore the collections for information on families, parish anniversaries, academic publications, academic theses and ordinand assignments, as well as the in-house research we undertake for the Church staff and parish employees. The increase in this aspect of the work is partly due to the World Wide Web where we attract many inquiries as well as the regular advertising through Universities, Genealogical Societies and the Church at large.

Family Research:

2008 has been one of the busiest years to date for the archives research centre. Our family history research requests (95 and counting) have come from all around New Zealand, as well as Australia, Canada, the Netherlands, United Kingdom and the United States. A notable feature this year has been the number of early Presbyterian ministers whose lives we have explored, 15 so far. Our researchers are immensely grateful for the information we can provide from the extensive parish collections held in Dunedin, not just for the personal details we can provide, but also for the Christian witness revealed in the faith journeys of their ancestors. An Australian researcher sums up her request, “Many thanks for any assistance in reviving this Christian heritage.”

When exploring the ministers we discover not only their faith journeys but those of the congregations of the past in which they ministered.

“…I think it is right to refresh your memory as long as I live in the tent of this body, because I know that I will soon put it aside, as our Lord Jesus Christ has made it clear to me.”
Peter 1: 12-14 (NIV)

Academic Research:

Academic researchers and students make extensive use of the Presbyterian Collections. The diversity of topics investigated by students is an exciting and interesting challenge. This year University Students and Ordinands are researching topics such as the role of photography in mission work, effects of WW2 on Vanuatu, analysis on NZ society up to 1960s using the Public Questions collection, Christian attitude to abortion, the Westminster Confession, the Declaratory Act, immigration, church planting and the role of the Deaconess and the contributions of the Revs. William (Bill) Temple and Bob Blaikie.

Parish Research:

Information has been gathered for several Parish anniversaries including the reproduction of photographs for a parish history. Anderson’s Bay Parish is celebrating 145 years and a most successful photographic and ephemera display has been compiled by Donald Cochrane. Other visual displays on show at Knox have been on Anzac and currently, Presbyterian Youth Work.

View a Historical ‘Lantern Slide’ tour of the Holy Land:


The Archives Research Centre holds a fascinating collection of 144 glass lantern slides of various scenes from the Holy Land. The majority appear to have been taken in the latter years of the 19th century. This photo gallery features some fascinating and historic old images taken in the Holy Land together with some relevant Biblical texts.

Presbyterian History Network:

The Network is into its second year. Our first lecture for the year was given by Dr. Peter Matheson, past lecturer of Church History at the Hall. He presented an insightful paper “The Riddle of Christianity in Aotearoa” where he questioned the lack of analysis of religion in the writing of New Zealand history.

 “[H]ere is the riddle: given the virtual inseparability of the religious and the secular for most of our history how [do we] explain the apparent decline in the churches’ influence and standing in society today?” He questioned further, “And how is this, in turn, related to the interpretive difficulty so many of our secular historians have in doing justice to the religious dimension? What contribution can we make as historians of religion in New Zealand to resolving this riddle? 

A challenge indeed and one we in the Archives attempt to come to terms with as we assist the many researchers who cross our threshold.

Up-coming Events.

The lecture by the Director of Archives to Year 3 History Students “Practising History” – Religious Archives;

Workshop on Religious Archives at the Archivists’ Conference in Dunedin, organised by the Director of Archives.

Presbyterian History Network Lecture 22 July 2008 on “Ecumenism to Denominationalism: The Canterbury Plains Parish of Lincoln” to be presented by Dr. Jennie Coleman.

Regularly check Archives Snippets on the Web Site. Soon to be uploaded a series on the “Valuable and Significant Documents held in the Archives”

Explore the Archives Research Centre Web site 
You will discover many interesting facts and useful guidelines for maintaining your parish records. We would appreciate any feedback.


Presbyterian Foundation Grants

Applications are now open for this year’s Presbyterian Foundation grants. Guidelines and applications forms are available on the Church’s website www.presbyterian.org.nz. The deadline for presbyteries to endorse and forward applications is 15th September.

All information on the Presbyterian Foundation is located in the Resources for Parishes section.

The Introduction Workgroup

The Introduction Workgroup seeks further church / parish profiles for the exiting ordinands from the Knox Centre of Leadership and Ministry. 

Please consider an ordinand for your vacancy. 

Although this will be their first fulltime post, they bring life-skills from previous employment, church experience and fresh ideas and knowledge gained from their training that could be beneficial to your setting.

Please contact: Amanda Guy, IWG Convener, 4 Mount Street, Wakari, Dunedin

Ph: (03) 476 6559 or email amanda.guy@healthotago.co.nz

Ministry as white water rafting: Rethinking ministry and leadership when the only constant is change: A ministry refresher intensive for those over 50

Thinking and reflecting together on the changed nature and requirements for church and ministry in the very different context we now find ourselves in.

Lead by Kevin Ward, Knox Centre for Ministry and Leadership.
A reminder that registrations for this should be in by July 4.

Seminar will be held in Wellington, from midday Monday 11 August to midday Friday 15 August.

For further information email Kevin: kward@knoxcollege.ac.nz

Upper Clutha Presbyterian Parish

Celebrating 100 years
1908 – 2008
18 - 19 October 2008
For further details or to register please contact:
Centenary Committee, PO Box 354, Wanaka.
Phone (03) 443 8565 Fax (03) 443 4396 Email u.c.pres.church@xtra.co.nz

Professor Bob Neimeyer presents death, loss and the quest for meaning

2 day workshop
Tuesday 8th and Wednesday 9th July 2008
School of Population Health, Tamaki Campus, University of Auckland

Professor Bob Neimeyer is internationally recognized and respected as a leader in teaching and research on loss and grief. He is a Professor and Director of Psychotherapy Research in the Department of Psychology, University of Memphis, Tennessee. Since completing his doctoral training at the University of Nebraska in 1982, he has conducted extensive research on the topics of death, grief, loss, and suicide intervention, publishing 20 books and is the author of over 300 articles and book chapters, and is currently working to advance a more adequate theory of grieving as a meaning-making process.  


Registration is $350.00 and cannot be guaranteed if received within 5 working days of the workshop. To register your attendance, complete the registration on our website www.mercyhospice.org.nz  and send to Angie Poi, Mercy Hospice Auckland, PO Box 47693, Ponsonby, or fax to (09) 3615977, attention Angie.

Inglewood united Church

Methodist / Presbyterian

Surf & Ski in the same day!

A growing, enthusiastic, warm and caring bible-based family church seeks a like minded full-time minister.

Sense of humour essential!

For full details including a copy of our church profile, please contact the Settlement Board Convener:
Neil Walker:  (06)278 7541
Email:  familywalk@xtra.co.nz 
Final applications close 21st July 2008.

CWS notices

Zimbabwe Crisis

The situation in Zimbabwe remains volatile and uncertain. The economic situation is horrific. Whatever the outcome of the elections or the continuing violence, we know that the people of Zimbabwe will be in urgent need of help. CWS partner, Christian Care, is ready to resume food distribution as soon as Mugabe’s restrictions on the work of non-governmental aid organisations are lifted. CWS asks all parishes to keep the people of Zimbabwe in your prayers and reminds supporters an appeal for Zimbabwe is open. Donate at www.cws.org.nz or phone 0800 74 73 72.

Emergency Appeals

CWS Appeals for Burma and China remain open and the humanitarian needs are great. In May, Cyclone Nargis devastated southern Burma, killing over 130,000 people and leaving 2.5 million in need of assistance. A week later, an earthquake of magnitude 7.9 struck the Sichuan region in central China. More than 50,000 people may have died and 4.8 million are homeless. CWS partners through ACT International are assisting in both countries. Despite reported logistical difficulties in Burma, CWS partners were already there and have been providing relief since day 1. Already more than 171,600 people have received emergency relief including food, non-food items and tarpaulins. In both countries ongoing assistance with food, rebuilding of water services, rebuilding homes and community building and re-establishing livelihoods is need. Donate at www.cws.org.nz or phone 0800 74 73 72. Appeal leaflets can be downloaded from www.cws.org.nz

Focus on Darfur: Can you help?

In August, CWS is joining with Caritas to focus New Zealand churches’ attention on the continuing humanitarian crisis in Darfur. Five years on, over 400,000 people have been killed in the ethnic and government sponsored violence and 2.5 million people have been forced from their homes. They are living in displaced persons camps, dependent on international aid for their survival. CWS and Caritas will be launching a joint appeal and supporting vigils, prayer and other events in August to renew attention on this crisis. We are hoping parishes will offer their support and organise special fundraising events for Darfur such as concerts, stalls, and quiz evenings. Contact CWS for assistance. cws@cws.org.nz, 0800 74 73 72

Peace Sunday

Peace Sunday will be held on 10 August, the first Sunday following Hiroshima Day. This is an opportunity to remember the victims of the atomic bomb attacks in Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945 as well as celebrating and supporting efforts for peace today. CWS will prepare worship resources. Contact cws@cws.org.nz or download from www.cws.org.nz for your free copy.  Available from 14 July.

Global Youth Encounter for Peace

Get in quick to take part in the Global Youth Encounter. It’s not too late to register but places are filling fast. This event, as part of the Decade to Overcome Violence, brings together youth representatives from Timor Leste, Fiji, Sri Lanka, Kenya and Zimbabwe with New Zealanders aged 15-25 years to discuss experiences of conflict, violence and peace building. Live-in youth conferences will be held at Te Maungarongo Marae, Ohope (18-20 July), Camp Wainui, Wellington (25-27 July) and Cracroft Guide Centre, Christchurch (1-3 August). Application forms can be downloaded from www.cws.org.nz or contact Liz Whitehead on 0800 74 73 72 ext 108.

Public meetings with the overseas guests will be held in Auckland (16 July), Palmertson North (23 July) and Wellington (24 July). This is a unique opportunity to hear about young people’s strategies for peace.  Contact mary.cavanagh@cws.org.nz for more information or phone 0800 74 73 72 ext 111. All welcome.

CWS Philippines Partner seeking Typhoon Relief

Developers Foundation, a CWS partner since 1993, has reported widespread devastation amongst the poor rural and coastal communities they work with in the Aklan Province on Panay Island, Central Philippines. Typhoon Fengshen, which battered the Philippines for two days with winds of 120 km and torrential rain, has caused severe flooding. With communications down, they are still assessing the extent of the damage. Water and electricity services are destroyed. Flooding through houses reached 8 feet. The Developers office was flooded to desk height. Already casualties stand at 120, with the death toll expected to rise. Developers are yet to account for some members of staff and have not been able to contact all the communities they work with. CWS has sent an initial grant of $6300 to support relief efforts. There will be need for much more once the damage is fully assessed. If you would like to help, CWS is receiving donations online or by phone 0800 74 73 72.

Association of Presbyterian Women (APW)

Please note this is the same event APW told you about last month. Same place, same time, same wonderful speaker, same warm welcome - only the topic has changed.

Invitation to Northern Regional Day hosted by Auckland Presbyterial.

All women are warmly welcomed to share a day with us in the company of the Moderator of the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand Rt. Rev Pamela Tankersley.

Pamela has prepared a programme: ‘Jesus calls us each by name’.

Come to:
St John’s Presbyterian Church,
422 Mt Albert Rd, Mt Roskill
Saturday 30th August 2008
9.30 am – 4.00 pm.
cost is $10 including lunch. 

We are happy to offer beds for those who need to stay over.

 “I have your name written on the palms of my hand,” says our God,
“You are honoured and precious in my sight and I love you.”

RSVP. 15th August 2008.
Mary North,
6 A Corta Bella Place, Golflands, Manukau 2013
Phone: 09-2770201 Email: dagme@xtra.co.nz

For the South Island

A Regional Conference hosted by women of the Ashburton District will be held at:

St Andrew's Presbyterian Church, Ashburton.
5th - 7th September 2008 

 “Many Branches, One Burning Bush” Conference is open to all women in Presbyterian and Union Parishes. Every parish has a copy of the brochure. If you require an email copy of the brochure please contact Dellwyn Moylan, Convenor, email: dgmoylan@clear.net.nz

The Conference theme is "Many branches one burning bush". This reflects that though we are from many different APW groups and parishes we are all one in the Church. The conference will look at the diversity we as a Church, and as communities, now face.

3.30 pm - 5.00 pm Registrations
6.00 pm - 6.30 pm Registrations

7.30pm Welcome, and opening Worship Service in St Andrew's Church to be followed in the church by key note speaker Very Rev. Michael Thawley former Moderator of the Church. The evening will conclude with a high supper in the Sinclair Centre.

8.45 am pre-conference singing in the church.
9 am devotions to be followed by Maori welcome. Day will have speakers and workshops from the Samoan and Asian communities. Our study programme has been written by Mrs. Almond Royds. This part of the conference will conclude at 4.30 pm

6.30 pm conference dinner beginning with Scottish dancing, the “Piping of the Haggis”, followed by a two course meal interspersed with key note speaker Rev Dr Graham Redding Moderator Designate of the Church and Principal of the Knox Centre for Leadership, then a performance from the Cook Island community.


10 am Worship at St Andrew's Presbyterian Church led by Rev David Brown, Minister of St Andrew's Presbyterian Church, Ashburton followed by morning tea and lunch in the Sinclair Centre.


The total cost for the conference is $55 per person this includes supper on Friday evening, Saturday morning tea, lunch, afternoon tea and conference dinner and Sunday morning tea and lunch. We are not providing an evening meal on Friday night. We are able if you request it to provide you with information about transport to and accommodation in Ashburton. The costs for these are not included in the registration cost. Full payment is requested at the time of registering. If your partner would like to attend the partners' programme on Saturday including morning and afternoon tea and lunch it will be “pay your own way”. Partners are welcome to join us for dinner on Saturday evening at a cost of $30 per person.

All registrations are due in by Friday 22nd August 2008.
Contact Dellwyn Moylan, Convenor, 5 Oxford Street Ashburton, 7700.
Ph (03) 3086598 Email: dgmoylan@clear.net.nz

APW Study Grant

APW is pleased to offer a grant, to help with course costs, to women in our Church seeking Christian training in 2009.
Application Forms may be obtained from:
Jill Little, National Secretary, APW, PO Box 489, Feilding.
or Phone: 06 323 -8218 or Email: jlittleapw@orcon.net.nz 
Applications close on 30th September 2008


Hewitson Library latest acquisitions

Click here to see the new acquisitions list for March 2008.

Church Register

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 June 2008. Please amend the roll in your yearbook accordingly. 

Transfers and Change of Status:

Rev Bill Francis, Minister Emeritus, Waikato Presbytery to Wellington Presbytery, 23 June 2008.

Ministerial vacancies

Click here to see the full table of vacancies

General Vacancies

For the latest job vacancies click here


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