July 2007

From the Moderator

I fulfilled a goal of mine the other day: a visit to Stewart Island. Then it was off to Mataura Presbytery, where I discovered a presbytery that knows how good the Book of Order is and what excellence there may be found in the Standing Orders!

Two community-facing missions caught my attention here – both regarding youth and meeting needs in local communities. One was in Tapanui, where the youth group, tired of the atrocious behaviour of some of their peers in the after-the-school-ball function, asked and received warm support from their church elders to hold an alternative “dry” and safe party in the church premises (and yes, it still had loud music til 5am.) And then there were the energetic and mission-oriented leaders at Camp Columba, north of Gore, who have established a kind of partnership with an outdoor adventure outfit to meet the needs of local young people; body, mind and spirit.

This month I have also had a week in Northland. As in the south, this is rural New Zealand with rural churches. They are small, very much local community centres, and often led by capable lay ministry teams. Being Christ centred and community-facingRobyn McPhail chairing a conference in Brandon, Canada, later this month.

The Presbyterian and Union parishes in Northland have joined with other churches to become the “Churches Together in Northland” – and it seems denominational loyalty is a lower priority than unity. The CTN acts in place of the Presbytery. How different from the South’s strong Presbyterianism – and another aspect to our rich diversity.

Did you read the amazing story of the building in two days of the Cromwell and Districts Presbyterian Church in the June 2006 edition of sPanz? I was due to be present at the opening last weekend but sadly mere Moderators cannot mock the weather. My email words had to suffice as a “virtual” blessing.

But winter won’t last for ever, will it? May the warmth of our fellowship sustain us all.

Many blessings,
yours in Christ, 

Global Mission update

A number of people have made contact with me in recent weeks to highlight that the centenary of the commencement of our mission work in the Punjab will be in 2009. This of course is when Dr Porteous left Cashmere Hills in Christchurch to travel to India. Many, many people have followed in his footsteps since then. I am pleased to report that Council of Assembly concurred with the Moderator Designate who has agreed to commence the year of celebration at General Assembly 2008. The Church of North India will be invited to attend Assembly as the Moderator’s special guests. I would also like to hold a banquet just before the Assembly and gather together all the friends of mission in India. If you are interested in being part of a committee to arrange this, please let me know. The Assembly will be held in Wellington on 2-5 October 2008.

As the end of the year begins to loom on the horizon, there is always the return of overseas staff to consider. We have once again been served so well by those in Vanuatu. If we do not replace them, our ability to do several other tasks will be severely hindered.


Rob and Barbara Meier have done an outstanding job at Ebule. VSA has agreed to continue to fund this placement and is currently advertising. We would really like to get one of our own into that position again. Do you know of somebody with carpentry/engineering/wood or metal work teaching skills who would be interested? Please ask them to contact VSA or the GMO if you do. This is a two-year appointment and fully funded by VSA.


This is one of the success stories of our mission endeavours over the years. Onesua is always looking for suitably qualified staff to teach the core curricula subjects. As they have now introduced Year 13 classes, they are particularly interested in people who can teach in the senior school. It is important that the person can serve for a whole school year.


Jon & Viv Parkes and their family will return at the end of 2007. They have also done an outstanding job in so many ways and will be sorely missed. Lecturers in Church History and Theology would be welcomed. Again a commitment for at least a whole year is required.

Overseas Minister

We have received an expression of interest from a minister from the Presbyterian Church of Southern Africa - Zambia Synod to serve in NZ. Rev Henry Mbambo is currently completing an MA in the USA. He would like to extend his ministry experience through a six-month to two-year interim appointment. If anybody would be interested in learning more, they can contact either the GMO or Juliette Bowater in the Assembly Office.

I will be making an official visit to the Presbyterian Church of Myanmar and the Church of Christ in Thailand during September. I will also take the opportunity to visit our longest-serving missionary, Kathryn McDaniel in Thailand. I have never done an official visit to any of our partners churches in Asia in the five years I have served as Global Mission Enabler so it is long overdue. I am grateful to CWM who has helped with sponsorship for the travel costs. I will be accompanied by Rev Andrew Norton (from St Columba at Botany) and his daughter Angela who have self funded to accompany me to see how they may be involved as well.

Kerry Jones (GMO office manager) has just returned from a CWM forum on child trafficking and the abuse of women in Darjeeling, India. Being so close, she also visited Jagadhri Hospital and St Thomas School.

If you would like to know more about our endeavours and are not on our mailing list, please let us know. The September edition of the Global Mission Gazette is hot off the press.

Youth Ministry update

Mission Possible gathering

On Wednesday 8 August the Mission Possible team under the leadership of John Daniel and Heather Simpson met together in Auckland for a day of bonding, synergy and dreaming.

Leaders from all over the country and from all different ministries and positions throughout our national Church make up the mission possible team, which meets twice a year at various locations. This time we were hosted by the Rev Geoff New at Papakura East Church in Auckland and we were looked after very well as we moved our way through the day’s agenda.

The devotions from Geoff and the Rev Mark Chapman were inspiring and challenging. We spent time connecting with each other by sharing stories of what is happening in our patches. We talked about some of the challenges that we are facing in our context and some of the things we need help with. John spoke to us about looking ahead to the future and “catching the next wave” and of course we spent time in prayer for each other, for our Church, and for all of you who serve with us.

It is encouraging to hear the stories about what is happening in the life of our Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand as we continue to step forward making mission possible. May you all be encouraged and know that there are a team of people who are serving you, who are praying for you and who believe in what you are doing. The future is looking bright as we endeavour to turn the seemingly impossible into mission possible!!!

Steph Redhead
PYM Team Leader


The Alan Brash Memorial Appeal

On Sunday, 30 Sept parishes around New Zealand are being invited to join together to celebrate the life of one of the country’s great ecumenical leaders – the Rev Dr Alan Brash. 

Dr Brash is being remembered with an appeal in his name, and funds raised will contribute to CCA-funded aid, development, peace and justice programmes abroad.

Click here to donate

https://secure.godzone.net.nz/CWS/donations/ProcessDonation.cgi.  More information about Dr Brash and the appeal are available at here.

Wairau Presbyterian Jubilee

Wairau Presbyterian is holding a Jubilee in Blenheim celebrating 50 years of Mission over Labour Weekend 19 – 21 October 2007.   You are warmly invited to attend and share these celebrations with us, everyone welcome.

For further information contact the Jubilee Convener: Rita Paynter Ph/Fax: (03) 5788637 or E-mail: rita.paynter(at)nettelnet.nz

The Presbyterian Foundation

Applications to the Presbyterian Foundation may be made from 1 June. Application forms, and guidelines for both parishes and presbyteries, are available on the Church website.

Parishes should submit applications to their presbyteries well before September, to allow time for presbyteries to evaluate and forward the applications to the Foundation by 15 September.


Hewitson Library latest acquisitions

Click here to see the new acquisitions list for April 2007.

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 2007 Please amend the roll in your yearbook accordingly.

Ordinations & Inductions

Rev Young You, Minister within the bounds, South Auckland Presbytery, to Minister, Hospital Chaplain at Waikato Hospital, Waikato Presbytery on 14 May 2007.

Rev Warwick Hambleton, Minister within the Bounds, Waikato Presbytery, to Minister, Huntly Co-operating, Waikato Presbytery on 12 June 2007.

Rev Wayne Matheson, Minister, St Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, Northland Presbytery, to Minister, Knox St Columba Lower Hutt, Wellington Presbytery on 28 June 2007.

Rev Donald Hegan, Minister, St Aidan’s Putaruru, Waikato Presbytery, to Minister, St Columba Tauranga, Bay of Plenty Presbytery on 1 February 2007.

Rev Paul Loveday, Minister, Richmond St David’s, Nelson-Marlborough Presbytery, to Associate Minister, Calvin Community Church, Mataura Presbytery on 25 February 2007.

Rev Helen Martin, Minister, St John’s in the City, Wellington Presbytery to Minister, Trinity Temuka, South Canterbury on 26 April 2007.

Rev Robert Clow, Lodged Certificate, Manawatu Wanganui Presbytery, to Minister, Wyndham Parish, Mataura Presbytery on 24 May 2007.

 Rev Glen Ashton, Minister Emeritus, Auckland Presbytery, to Minister, Raglan Parish, Waikato Presbytery on 4 March 2007.

Changes in Co-Operative Venture Ministries:

Rev Tony Wescott, Minister, Anglican Church, to Minister, St Francis Co-operating Venture, Waikato Presbytery on 21 April, 2007.

Rev Margaret Parsons, Anglican Church, concluded her appointment as Chaplain, Waikato Hospital on 14 May 2007. 


Rev Elizabeth Smith, Minister, North Otago Presbytery, to Minister Emerita, Central Otago Presbytery on 20 May 2007.

Rev Mervyn Aitken, Minister, St James’, Auckland Presbytery, to Minister Emeritus, Auckland Presbytery on 8 April 2007.

Rev David Jack, Stated Supply, Orakei Parish, Auckland Presbytery, to Minister Emeritus, Southland Presbytery on 30 June 2007.

Removal from the Roll:

Mrs Marilyn Wilkinson, Deaconess, Wellington Presbytery, removed from Wellington Presbytery roll on 20 February 2007.

Rev Ron Gibb, Minister within the Bounds, Wellington Presbytery, removed from Wellington Presbytery roll on 20 February 2007.

Mrs Leung Eileen Kwong, Deaconess, Wellington Presbytery, removed from Wellington Presbytery roll on 20 February 2007.


Rev George Lynds, Minister Emeritus, Waikato Presbytery died on 21 May 2007.

Ministerial vacancies

Click here to see the full table of vacancies

Highlighted vacancies