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From the Moderator
From the Assembly Executive Secretary
Presbyterian Youth Ministry
Knox Centre for Ministry and Leadership
Presbyterian Church School
Presbyterian Children and Families
Presbyterian Research Centre
Visit to the Church of Scotland
In the week of 9 August, I was in Scotland and held meetings with such an interesting mix of people in the Church of Scotland. In the first instance, I had a long and helpful meeting with their Moderator the Right Rev Dr Iain Greenshields, their Principal Clerk Rev Fiona Smith and their Ecumenical Officer Rev Dr John McPake. The next day I meet with the clerk of the Glasgow Presbytery and convenor of the Church of Scotland Legal Questions Committee Rev Grant Barclay, and then with the Rev Professor Andrew McGowan, Professor of Theology in the University of the Highlands and Islands. He has been a leading voice for the Evangelical side of the Church of Scotland for many years. The following day I caught up with our own Mark Johnston and Carolyn Kelly who are both working at the University of Glasgow, Mark in the Department Theology & Religious Studies and Carolyn as the University Chaplain. Mark took me to meet the Rev Dr Liam Fraser, minister of the very historic St Michael's Linlithgow and convenor of the Church of Scotland’s Theological Forum.
It was wonderful to connect with the Church of Scotland in this way on behalf of the PCANZ given our shared history. There was a rich mix of voices able to give deep insights into issues of common interest and concern for both of our churches. Of particular focus were discussions around strategic directions. The other issue that caused significant discussion and reflection was in relation to recent decisions the Church of Scotland has made on sexuality. In addition to this, there was a great deal of mutual sharing around a myriad of other issues of church life. It was a visit that both helped cement the relationship that our churches share and will help to inform things like the upcoming Inclusivity Dialogue and Strategic Hui.
World Council of Churches Livestream
I will represent our Church at the World Council of Churches 11th Assembly in Karlsruhe, Germany, from 31 August to 8 September 2022, along with our Global Mission Director Rev Phil King. You can watch the Assembly livestream and videos here and check out the daily news.
Right Rev Hamish Galloway
Dear friends and colleagues
When I was recently on sick leave and study leave, most days I would go for a walk in the suburb where we live. I would pass a building with a sign out the front that told me that three different church congregations meet there every Sunday – all in a building not designed to be a ‘church’ building.
Every now and then in our life together we have what I call an ‘aha’ moment. I suggest we had one at our recent Special Assembly in April. Let me quote from our minutes:
[22.026] That, in the light of the Trustees’ call to action, the General Assembly:
(a) invite presbyteries to work together with the Church Property Trustees and the Synod of Otago and Southland, and its joint Property Work Group, to develop a plan and to enable over time fit for purpose buildings to be located in appropriate places in New Zealand, and that ‘fit for purpose’ include attention to the energy and waste efficiency of buildings with the aim of reducing environmental impacts as much as possible.
(b) invite the Trustees to report to the 2023 General Assembly with the plan and an assessment of what it will take to achieve this; and
(c) invite the Trustees to report to the 2023 General Assembly on compliance with the amended Earthquake Policy timetable.
This invites us to honest conversations about buildings; that growing numbers of these are no longer fit for purpose; that a growing number are a burden to a local congregation; and that ‘the building’ is not our mission.
I read that one in eight churches meets in a space that was not designed to be a ‘church’. I wonder, can we hear what the Spirit is saying to the Church in these days?
AES Study Leave
I have been asked what I did on study leave…
My study leave could be divided into three key parts. The first part was a reminder of the importance of caring for the soul; for that I read, listened, and reflected on Dallas Willard’s book The Divine Conspiracy. Richard Foster writes, “Like Michelangelo’s Sistine ceiling (this book) is a masterpiece and a wonder. And like those famous frescos, it presents God as real and present and ever reaching out to all humanity. A soul-satisfying banquet…a feast for the mind and the heart.” And that is what it was for me!
The second part was based around reading; using evaluative tools and reflecting to deepen my self-understanding and mode/s of operation in my current role. I recall a quote attributed to Socrates, ‘the unexamined life is not worth living’ and used my reading to learn and supervision to reflect on these aspects. The third part was loosely called organisational. This reading was more related to my current role and the breadth and scope reflects the scope – and so maybe the extensiveness of that role. This reading covered a number of areas that might be broadly defined coming together around the theme of encouraging the heart – self- leadership; character development; spiritual growth and maturity.
One thing I read that I carried around and reflected on during my study leave were these words: ‘The most important thing in your life is not what you do; it is who you become. That is what you will take into eternity. You are an unceasing spiritual being with an eternal destiny in God’s great universe’.
Making changes to the Book of Order
Any person, committee, workgroup, or council of the Church that has a right to bring a proposal or recommendations to the Assembly, can propose changes to the Book of Order. See the correct process in this Book of Order Advisory Committee document, A Guide: How to make changes to the Book of Order (Aug 2022).
ONE National Leaders Conference
This conference is for everyone in your congregation who leads in some capacity and will be held 17-19 November at St John’s in the City Presbyterian Church, Wellington. We encourage you to come as a team so you can learn and reflect together. Come along for inspirational stories, great worship, practical breakout sessions, good kai and the opportunity to connect and laugh together. Early registration is $99 until 10 Sept. More information on the conference website.
Calling a newly trained minister
This year another group will complete their training as interns. They represent a range of backgrounds and experiences. All are eager to commit themselves to ministry within the life of a congregation. Profiles for each person are available from the Rev Brendon McRae who coordinates introductions and discussions between final-year interns and ministry settlement boards. For more information, please contact Brendon.
Thank you for your ongoing partnership as together we seek to bear witness to the Kingdom of God.
Assembly Executive Secretary
PYM recommended pay scale for staff working with young people
The PYM Recommended pay scale has been recently updated for employed staff due to the increase in the Living Wage on the 1 Sept 2022. The Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand adopted the Living wage at GA2012 as the minimum an employee should be paid. The Living wage is currently set at $23.65. This is the minimum amount any lay ministry staff member should be paid. In addition to the current living wage, it is recommended churches take into account qualifications, experience, responsibility and their location when determining the pay.
It is hoped that the pay scale will encourage lay ministry workers to work longer for churches and to get better qualified.
This pay scale ranges from $23.65 per hour for an inexperienced, unqualified lay ministry worker in a rural setting to an annual salary of $76k for a lay ministry worker - who manages a team of youth workers in a large ministry context in a major city, is qualified, and has over nine years of paid experience. It is recommended once employed, the lay ministry worker should be reviewed annually, with an increase in salary set on 1 July based on the Labour Cost Index to March, issued by the Department of Statistics.
National Youth Manager
Pakistan Flood Appeal
Christian World Service is the PCANZ’s humanitarian aid and development partner. Global Mission encourages support for the CWS emergency appeal for Pakistan in response to the devastating floods that have occurred there. We encourage donations to be sent directly to CWS. Information about the appeal, how your donation will help and how to donate can be found here.
In early August I attended a Presbyterian Church of Myanmar Partners Roundtable meeting in Singapore. Hosted by the Council for World Mission it included representatives from partner churches around the world. Previously these meetings have been held in Myanmar - not possible this time due to the political instability and violence throughout the country. We heard from the three PCM delegates about the current situation and the many challenges they face. While the international media has moved elsewhere, the political, social and economic situation in Myanmar remains very troubling, so it was good to be able to gather and extend our support. Read more about this, and some of the ways Global Mission hopes to continue supporting the church in Myanmar in the Mingalaba newsletter.
In 2018, the PCANZ hosted three delegates from the Presbyterian Church of Myanmar, including Pastor Cherry Takleum, the PCM’s first female minister. In a recently published book about Myanmar church women leaders, Cherry mentions this visit and the encouragement she received from women leaders in the PCANZ. Her comments are a warm affirmation of the value of our partnership and the contribution we have been able to make. Download the book from the PCANZ website here.
Vanuatu’s borders are now open providing opportunities to reconnect in-person with the Presbyterian Church of Vanuatu. Preparations are underway for a small team to visit in October to meet the new PCV leadership and explore options for re-engaging in 2023. Talua Theological College has already invited us to find an English teacher who is available to live and teach onsite next year. The position does not come with a salary but accommodation is provided and travel costs and living expenses will be covered. Those suitably qualified are invited to view the job description here and contact me for further information.
Global Mission Director
Kia ora, August was a busy month. We met with the six or so incoming NOM interns for 2023; we are currently engaged in discerning where the best placement might be for each. Thank you to those churches who have expressed an interest in hosting an intern. This is a process which we hope will be completed by October.
MDP/NAW Administrator – new appointment
The Ministry Development Plan (MDP) and National Assessment Workgroup (NAW) needed an administrator so we advertised the role twice in the last 12 months. The administrator’s task is to provide logistical and organisational assistance so that MDP facilitators can focus on their work with ministers, and NAW members can focus on discerning candidates for ministry. We are pleased to announce the appointment of Rev Steve Jourdain. Steve brings strong admin skills; just the kind of backroom support that MDP and NAW need to run smoothly. The role is part-time and Steve starts this month.
KCML and others partners are engaged in reflecting and reviewing on the progress of Forge Aotearoa with a view towards 2023. An extensive feedback report has been written and the oversight team is considering how the journey has been so far.
Two preaching workshops were held in the Pacific and Northern presbyteries in August. The engagement and creativity of the participants was a highlight. KCML interns also enjoyed time at Te Maungarongo marae (Ōhope) with PYM, PressGo, and others who attended (including receptions ministers). We enjoyed profound teaching from our kaiako Rev Dr Wayne Te Kaawa and Rev Dr Murray Rae. We engaged with stories of the Māori prophets, Pākehā missionaries and Māori evangelists, the history of the PCANZ in the midst of that. We explored Te Tiriti o Waitangi. If you missed out, we are thinking through options to do it all again.
Study funds & scholarship
Finally, applications for study funds for ministers and also for the Begg Dickie Scholarship are being called for. Details can be found here. The deadline for applications is Friday 30 September, 2022.
Yours in Christ
Acting Principal/Dean of Studies
Knox Centre for Ministry and Leadership
Lindisfarne College & Women's Refuge
Our Church Schools’ service-learning series now moves to Lindisfarne Boys College in Hastings. Some years ago, they started supporting their local Women’s Refuge. The first activity; the provision of care boxes. When every client, and their children, arrive at a safe house they are given a beautifully decorated care box filled with small toys, toiletries (both essential and ‘frivolous’), chocolate bars and the like. Women’s Refuge say this may be the first nice thing any male has done for a clientsin their life - so the gift has a huge impact.
For the boys, this project opens their eyes to the issue of male violence and gives them a way to combat it. The entire school is regularly asked to provide items for the boxes which also gives them an opportunity to think about what a person needs when they have to leave them home suddenly, and also what items will show they are cared for. When the call comes from Women’s Refuge to top up their supply the boarders spend their own spare time decorating and filling the boxes. These are then loaded into College vans and delivered to Women’s Refuge for distributing as needed.
An additional project is organising teams to do regular property maintenance at the Refuge safe houses. Along with College staff and parents, students weed and prune gardens, mow lawns, clear rubbish and generally make the surroundings useful and beautiful.
At the recent Presbyterian Church Schools Conference, Service Prefect George Esson spoke glowingly of the impact of this programme on his personal development, as well as the pride he has in all those participating. I can tell you we were all inspired as we listened to his impassioned description of this activity and envisioned the long-term impact on all concerned.
Stephanie Wells (Rev)
Director of Presbyterian Church Schools Resource Office
Kia ora from the PCFM team!
As we head into the second half of the year, we are so thankful to God for the various events happening, both online and in person! Our recent Connect Zoom event saw a number of CFM workers gather online and spend time praying, reflecting on Scripture and networking together. We trust that this was a meaningful time for those involved as we focused on making space to encounter the Holy Spirit together.
Intergenerate Conference, held in both Christchurch and Auckland, has also been a particular highlight this past month with a fantastic turn out to both events!
Advent Zoom event
Yes, it is that time of year where we start thinking about Advent! We are planning an Advent Zoom event for Wednesday 28 September, where we will share resources and ideas for celebrating Advent in a meaningful way. There will be a range of ideas, from at-home resources, through to ideas for celebrating Advent together as a church! We will also make space for breakout sessions, each focused on one of the following themes: After School and Holiday programmes; Sunday School; Intergenerational Worship; and Nativity Services. Register for the Advent Connect Zoom event here.
Season of Creation
From 1 September until 4 October, churches worldwide mark the Season of Creation. We have developed a simple Family Faith Moment for use by families or children’s ministries, to help reflect on God’s creation. With Scripture, reflection questions, an activity and a prayer, we trust that this resource will help you and the families in your church whānau engage with the Season of Creation. View our Season of Creation Family Faith Moment here.
Kia noho a Ihowā ki a koutou (the Lord be with you),
Robin Humphreys and Karo Wilson
Presbyterian Children and Families
Presbyterian Women gathering at Ohope
Presbyterian women are gathering at Te Maungarongo Marae, Ohope, the weekend of 15 & 16 October 2022. All women are invited to join us, to take time out of their regular daily lives together for a weekend where we can focus on sharing our stories and replenishing each other.
Recently PresCare invited churches to have a week of prayer for children, so that “our faith and commitment can respond to needs and nurture the well-being of children and families in Aotearoa”. The gathering in Ohope is an opportunity for women to consciously hold each other in prayer through wonder, giving attention, innocence, curiosity, playfulness, on-going questions and trust.
For more information on our gathering email Ruth Steven.
Presbyterian Women Aotearoa NZ
An important part of the work of the PCANZ has always included involvement with congregations in other areas of the world, at first in a traditional mission relationship and later in fuller partnership. Lately, we have received several collections of material in the Archives relating to PCANZ involvement in other global regions. These include a photographic collection which reveals the life of a missionary family in India in the 1930s; a collection of books, photographs and other items gifted by Rev Robert Paterson, which relate to his years of work in Indonesia; and a collection of archives from Rev Bruce Deverell which focus on the Pacific, particularly Samoa and Fiji.
We were also delighted to hear that copies of some of our early photographs taken by New Zealand Presbyterian missionaries in Vanuatu have been taken back to where they were originally taken, the community on Epi in Vanuatu.
Hewitson new books
The Hewiston Library recently received a number of new books, including one edited by Rev Sillvia Purdie, Awhi Mai, Awhi Atu: women in creation care (Call number: BR115.N3 P87 2002).
Other new titles include:
- God's exemplary graduates: character-oriented graduate attributes in theological education / edited by Peter G. Bolt and Peter Laughlin. Call number: BV4019 .B65 2021
- All things reconciled: essays on restorative justice, religious violence, and the interpretation of scripture / Christopher D. Marshall ; foreword by Willard M. Swartley ; afterword by Thomas Noakes-Duncan. Call number: BR115.J8 M37 2018
- The great emergence: how Christianity is changing and why / Phyllis Tickle. Call number: BR121.3 .T53 2012
- A unique and glorious mission: women and Presbyterianism in Scotland 1830-1930 / Lesley Orr Macdonald. Call number: BV4415 .M33 2000
Presbyterian Research Centre
Thank you to everyone who has prayed for Operation Refugee 2022. We encourage congregations and groups to keep refugees in their prayers and to consider organising a meal or walk to raise funds to help with what they need. You can make a donation or contact CWS for resources: 0800 747372.
Murray appreciated the opportunity to take part in last month’s Presbyterian Church Schools’ Conference in Hawke’s Bay. “It was a great programme based around the whakatouki, ‘Ka mua ka muri - walking backwards into the future’. Being able to meet and talk with principals, chaplains, staff and trustees was very worthwhile. I was fascinated to learn more about the schools, their history and hear of the service projects and community work they have underway.
I spoke about CWS, specifically about Operation Refugee and other ways young people can respond to the need for justice in our world. Some examples of the ways schools (and churches) can help by fundraising are: to help an HIV and AIDS affected family build a rainwater tank in Uganda, support refugees with tuition and medical support in the Middle East, or train rural women to set up small canteens to improve their livelihoods in Fiji. We are grateful to the Church Schools that raised funds for our emergency appeals for Tonga and Ukraine, and used the resources for Peace Sunday and Christmas in chapel and classes.”
Bangladesh: Flood Relief for Garment Workers
CWS made a $3,000 emergency grant to the National Garment Workers Federation to provide food rations and water purification to 150 flood affected families in Bangladesh.
Christmas Appeal 2022
We are preparing resources for this year’s Christmas Appeal with stories of people making hope in very challenging spaces. Plan to share the Advent season with us.
Eco Church Hope Seminar, Christchurch. 11 Sept
We Are Connected’ is the theme and speakers include Rev Silvia Purdie, Jolyon White and James Beck. There will be practical creation care activities, resources, and all-age interaction, worship and social time - includes afternoon tea. Children and whanau welcome. Please bring your mask. Held at Papanui Baptist Church, 11 Sept, 3pm - 5:30pm. Waged: $15 per person. Free for children, students, senior, unwaged. Register here.
Short course: Living Faithfully in the Anthropocene, 23 & 24 Sept, Wellington
Surrounded and daily reminded by the ‘ecological wounds’ of our current reality, how might the Church live faithfully? This short University of Otago Faith Thinking course explores how the Christian tradition might awaken our imagination and nourish new (ancient) ways of inhabiting the world – theologies and practices that respond to the ecological challenges we face. Dr Andrew Shepherd – Lecturer in Theology and Public Issues. Fri 23 Sept 7pm-9pm, Sat 24 Sept 9am -12.30pm at St John's in the City Presbyterian Church, Wellington. $20. Register here.
NZ Christians in Science – online series Thursday nights from 8 Sept
NZCIS Conversations 2022, series two: Visions of the Future; online talks and discussion Thursday evenings at 8.30pm. New series of ISCAST–NZCIS Conversations led by specialists to explore the intersection between visions of the future and the Christian faith. Presenters include Prof Neil Dodgson, Jonathan Gunnell, Pete Armstrong. Read more.
Season of Creation 1 Sept - 4 Oct, celebration guide
What events could you host for Season of Creation? Host an ecumenical prayer gathering that unites all Christians for the care of our common home? Lead a clean-up project that helps all of creation thrive? Raise your voice for climate justice by participating in or leading an ongoing campaign? Hold your worship service outside? Host a Creation Walk? See more ideas in the 2022 Celebration Guide and also here.
Resources for Māori Language Week, 12-18 Sept
This year is the 50th anniversary of the Māori Language petition that was presented to Parliament on 14 September 1972. Every year since 1975, New Zealand has marked Māori Language Week, and te reo Māori became an official language of Aotearoa in 1987. See resources, including Presbyterian and for parishes, for Te Wiki o te Reo Māori - Māori Language Week 2022 here.
Presbyterian Investment Fund
Deposits and withdrawals can be processed as normal during current Covid-19 settings, observing the requirement to provide advance notice for major (>$100,000) withdrawals. The current interest rate paid on the PIF On Call Fund is 2.0% p.a. The Trustees have determined that the rate will increase to a minimum of 2.25% from 1 October 2022 (it may be higher depending on market activity between now and then). The interest rate on the PIF Long-Term Fund remains at 3.0% pa plus inflation. Rates are subject to change. The PIF is open to parishes, but not to individuals. For details on the Long Term Fund or further information, email the Trustees’ Executive Officer, Russell Garrett.
Beneficiary Fund – changes to eligibility for contributions
The Council of Assembly has made some changes to the Conditions of Service manual that affect membership of the Beneficiary Fund. In particular, a minister who is over the age of 65 and has retired (been granted the status of Minister Emerita or Minister Emeritus) is not eligible for contributions. In practice, this is designed to prevent the need for retired ministers who are engaged for occasional stated supply services (and the parish that engages them) to contribute to the Fund. It is also worth noting that the Trustee of the Beneficiary Fund may revoke membership where a member has been removed from the Roll (and is unable to satisfy the Trustee that continued membership is consistent with the charitable purposes of the Beneficiary Fund). If you have any questions about these or any of the other changes, please email the Trustees’ Executive Officer, Russell Garrett.
Edward Carter Special Assistance Fund, apply by 30 Sept
The outreach committee of St John’s Church seeks applications for up to $5000 from organisations who work with and assist, for example: people serving a custodial sentence; young people in contact with the criminal justice system; recent arrivals in New Zealand as displaced people, former refugees; persons of any age or gender at risk of poverty, racial discrimination, social exclusion, mental ill health, violence, including family violence and/or homelessness etc. Projects may be local, greater Wellington area or alternatively, national in scope. Apply by 30 September, see more.
ONE Conference 17-19 Nov Wellington
Register for the One Conference, "an amazing opportunity for all PCANZ and Cooperating church leaders to come together and to reconnect, to be inspired by creative and innovative ideas, and encounter the Spirit of the living God together. We welcome all leaders from across the PCANZ and cooperating parishes to join us for inspirational stories, great worship, practical breakout sessions, fantastic kai, the opportunity to connect and laugh together with no business items to debate!". Read more.
NZ Christian Writers Retreat, April 2023
NZ Christian Writers are hosting their 40th anniversary retreat at Flaxmill Retreat Centre in Whitianga. Programme includes speakers and seminars. Costs are all-inclusive per person for three nights. 27-30 April 2023. Read more.
Ngaio Union Wellington, Little Film Festival, 23 Sept
Come and get cosy with Naio Union as they screen a series of movies with "Little" in the title. They have blankets, cushions, popcorn, hot chocolate & marshmallows, and great company. Movies begin around 7pm. Admission by koha. Read more.
Bill and Margaret Best Travel Fund
A reminder that this funding is available to assist church workers wanting to further develop their area of service to the Church. The term ‘church worker’ includes ministers, lay ministers and elders, and funding is intended to assist with training and study courses. The Personnel Work Group administers the Fund, and applications close 30 September each year. See more details here
Glen Innis holiday home for ministers - spring and summer holiday vacancies
There are still some vacancies available over the Spring and Summer holidays for minister families with school aged children. See dates available for the original homestead (now known as James McNutt House) and the former gardener’s cottage (Maud Hooper House) for September 2022 and the summer holidays 2022/23 here. Proof of vaccination is no longer required to stay at Glen Innis.
For any queries concerning the Church register, contact Kate Wilson.
Rev Des Botting, minister stated supply Scots Presbyterian Church Hamilton to Minister Emeritus, Kaimai Presbytery, 1 February 2022.
Rev Dr Mario Weyers, minister Hamilton - St Andrew’s Presbyterian Church to other recognised minister, Kaimai Presbytery, 22 July 2022.
Non-PCANZ Ministers in Co-operative Venture Ministries
Rev Dan Yeasel, minister Presbyterian Church USA, to stated supply Waikari Presbyterian Church and Kowai-Cheviot Presbyterian Church, Alpine Presbytery, 1 August 2022.
Rev Margaret Anne Low, Minister Emeritus, Northern Presbytery, 6 July 2022.
Rev Brian Thom, Minister Emeritus, Southern Presbytery, 9 August 2022.
Check out in one handy place the links to the social media of the Presbyterian Church and its ministries including websites, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and video.
Check out details about upcoming events including training workshops, opportunities to serve and more. Learn more