From the Moderator
I write this about to leave Myanmar. It has been an enormous privilege.
I came primarily to support Angela Norton at a Round Table meeting of churches that partner with the Presbyterian Church of Myanmar through CWM. There were representatives from the Presbyterian Churches of the Republic of Korea, Singapore, and Malaysia. I have also seen some of the projects the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand (PCANZ) is involved in and heard some of the desires for the future.
Watching Angela at work, seeing the affection people here have for her and seeing the projects themselves made me very proud. Angela is skilled and the projects are making a real difference. Seeing “PCANZ” on the side of a truck or a water tank or a piece of hospital equipment was a thrill.
It seems that a little money can have a significant impact. A few thousand dollars seems to go a long way here. So much more could be done with a few more thousand.
I know this is only one of our mission foci. Whether God directs our attention to Myanmar, India, Vanuatu or somewhere else, God can use our efforts to very significantly extend God’s Kingdom amongst people who have very little.
I have also tried to understand the Presbyterian Church of Myanmar’s local mission. I still don’t understand what it is like to be in a majority Buddhist country. I heard Christians say that the church’s witness is weak because Myanmar Christians don’t live distinctive, attractive Kingdom-of-God lives. My superficial impression was that they were gracious, committed, and prayerful in very difficult conditions.
Either way, it remains true that whether in New Zealand or Myanmar, God seeks disciples of Jesus Christ who will make disciples. We need both countries praying for the other. May God’s Spirit make us all missionaries.
From the Assembly Executive Secretary
Dear Friends and Colleagues
I certainly could not be accused of depleting New Zealand’s inshore fishery stock over the holidays. A large kahawai and a 3kg snapper were about it as far as my fishing exploits were concerned. The Great Barrier Island scenery was amazing, as always, and the company was good, so catching the fish was really just a bonus.
I was reading that stories around fishing form one of the most consistent global narratives. In every maritime culture there exists fishing related stories like ‘the one that got away’. It does seem that everyone who has ever dangled a piece of string with some sort of hook on the end into some water somewhere, comes away from that endeavour saying quite similar things – and that all these people, to some extent or other, can share in those stories.
A critical challenge for us as a Church is in creating the opportunities of expressing the commonality we find in the Gospel story. In the midst of nationalism, racism and global uncertainty, what more powerful witness to our faith is there than to affirm that whoever we are, whatever we have done in the past, whatever our background, we can testify to the transforming and uniting power of a story which bring us together in praise and service.
Thanks to the generosity of the Council for World Mission (CWM) we are now able to support two new Assembly staff to work with the Church to strengthen our cross cultural mission and our unity within our increasingly diverse cultural context.
The Rev Don Ikitoelagi began as the Pasifika Misionare in mid-January. Over the next two years, Don will be working closely with the Pacific Island Synod and the Assembly Office team. His first task will be working to provide a comprehensive picture of the worshipping life of our Pacific communities and the challenges they face.
The Rev Kyoung Gyun, a missionary from the Presbyterian Church of Korea, is the new Asian Ministries coordinator. Kyoung Gyun takes up his role in February and will be based in Auckland. Along with building relationships across our Church he will, over the next three years, have a special focus on the needs of the younger people whose parents have immigrated from one or other of the Asian nations represented in our Church’s life and work.
Family Violence, the Church, Presbyterian Support and Lent
The commitment by the Presbyterian Church and Presbyterian Support to express our shared concern about the wellbeing of families in all their diversity, and to support efforts to care for children and young people, who are the victims of family violence, is called PresCare.
We are inviting congregation to particularly focus on these issues over the 40 day period of Lent from 22 February to 7 April 2012. Our belief that peace and justice and the care of the most vulnerable are central to our Christian faith, lead us to prayer, practical action as well as supporting a prophetic voice that might speak to the underlying causes of such high levels of family violence in a country which is blessed in so many ways.
We will shortly be sending out to all congregations a number of booklets which focus on these themes through a series of Lenten reflections and also express our support for the work of Presbyterian Support’s Family Works, by providing you with an opportunity to donate to their work. If you would like more copies of this booklet please contact our office.
Voting for the Moderator-elect, 2014. Stage 1 – Deadline Friday 10 February 2012
As the first stage in the election process, all presbyteries, UDC’s and Te Aka Puaho are asked to nominate one person each to enter the voting process coordinated by the Nominating Committee. Parish Councils etc should suggest names for consideration by a meeting of their presbytery, UDC or Te Aka Puaho. Each presbytery, UDC or Te Aka Puaho should send one name to the Convenor of the Nominating Committee, the Rev Ian Hyslop, 10 Cox Street, Geraldine 7930 - firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note the deadline. The nomination must be with Ian by Friday 10 February 2012.
Shortly almost all our congregations will be receiving new invoices for their insurance premiums. The background to the changing issues relating to insurance can be found in the memo I have recently sent out and the more detailed explanation provided by the Secretary of the Presbyterian Insurance Group, Doug Langford.
2012 General Assembly
The Assembly will open at our national marae at Ohope on the morning of Thursday 4 October 2012 and continue from there to Rotorua Boy’s High School from Thursday afternoon until its conclusion on Sunday 7 October. It is not too early to start thinking about any proposals for legislation or any other matter that a church council or presbytery might like to bring to the General Assembly. All such magterial will need to be at the Assembly Office by June 2012.
Council of Assembly
The Council met in Auckland on 14 January. You can read more in Council News here.
Ministry Development Programme
In order for ministers to retain their certificate of good standing, it is essential that they participate in the Ministry Development Programme and complete their first ministry review by October 2013. Many have already benefited from the review process. Ministers will not be in good standing if they do not have a review that is less than two years old as at October 2013. This does not apply to retired ministers, unless they are in, or plan to return to, some active, recognised ministry role. Full details here.
General Assembly, Church of Scotland
Each year the Church of Scotland graciously invites a delegate to the Assembly from our Church. Their Assembly will be held on 18-25 May, in the Great Hall in Edinburgh. While unfortunately we can’t offer to cover any of your costs, if you were planning a trip to Scotland and would enjoy this experience, please contact me as soon as possible. Our delegate would participate in a number of events and would also bring greetings from our Church.
Thank you again for your generous support and for all the ways you help our Church and its mission.
Knox Centre for Ministry and Leadership
Mark Johnston will deliver the 2012 Inaugural Lecture, titled “Uneasy Rider: Challenges Facing a Ministry of Word and Sacrament in a Post-Christendom Missional Climate.” It will be held on Tuesday 7 February at 1.30pm in the Cameron Hall at Knox College, Dunedin. All are welcome.
Towards the end of 2011, the Knox Centre produced a Leadership Handbook, which follows the Eldership Handbook produced earlier in the year. Copies of the Leadership Handbook can be purchased for $5 a copy or downloaded for free from the Knox Centre website.
The 2010 General Assembly asked the Knox Centre to produce a study resource on inclusive language in worship. We are pleased to announce that this resource has been completed and can be purchased for $5 a copy or downloaded from the Knox Centre website.
Joining Together in Mission
Is your parish looking to be involved in Global Mission?
A great way to support our partner churches is to offer a scholarship for a student to attend high school or higher education. Many of the institutions we support struggle to keep their rolls viable because students can’t afford to attend, yet we all agree education in a Christian context is the most valuable tool for mission development – we empower the partner church’s programmes and the individuals.
This year we are looking for funds for the following (and we are very grateful for those who already support the projects):
- Onesua Presbyterian College – or another of the Vanuatu Presbyterian Church’s High Schools
- Theological Education at Talua: Bush Missioners, Diploma of Ministry students, or Bachelor of Ministry students
- Students at the Community Health School at the Korvan Centre, Port Vila.
- Nursing School at Christian Hospital, Jagadhri – nurses or medical technology students
- Training for senior nursing staff in New Zealand (at UCOL in Palmerston North)
- St Thomas School, Jagadhri – through the Doreen Riddell Fund (for needy students).
- Women’s theological studies at Tahan Theological College or internationally – through the Rice Bowl Appeal.
We will be delighted to help individuals or parish groups pick up such a project, and will put you in touch with a student personally, so you can support and follow their journey in prayer and with funds. Contact me on email@example.com for more information.
We highly recommend participation in Lent Event produced by Uniting World. This has great resources during Lent for group and personal reflection on living in the way of Christ and encountering those who live in poverty in our world. Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, 22 February in 2012. For more information click here or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Global Mission coordinator
Presbyterian Youth Ministry
There is a good chance that as you read this I am on Great Barrier Island at Going Further hopefully enjoying much better weather than was experienced over the summer break.
I want to highlight two things in this month’s Bush Telegraph.
Firstly, the Diploma in Presbyterian Youth Ministry is now underway. Some of you will already have read about this if you receive PYM’s BUZZ newsletter.
The Diploma is based on an internship model of learning. The integration of theological learning and ministry context provides a richness that cannot be achieved in the classroom alone. The Diploma is a sign of the Presbyterian Church’s commitment to youth ministry and the training of youth workers. More deeply it recognises the importance of having well-trained practical theologians dedicated to working with young people. This is why the Diploma sits within the context of a Ministry Degree at either Laidlaw College or Carey Baptist College. In other words, the courses for the diploma are taught by either of these two colleges.
There has been an encouraging and positive response to the Diploma following its announcement just before Christmas.
If your church would like to explore hosting a youth ministry intern or you are interested in applying then get in touch with me at email@example.com. You might even have someone in your church who would be good to shoulder tap for this and begin the journey of youth ministry as a vocational calling.
Check out the website for more information.
The second thing I want to highlight is Going Deeper: in youth leadership. After a successful pilot testing the material with youth leaders from around the country we are beginning to run it regionally. The first one for 2012 is in Invercargill for Otago Southland. If your Presbytery is interested in the National PYM team helping to run this in your region then get in touch with us.
May 2012 see our Church grow in its ministry to young people.
Youth Ministry Development leader
A time to fly
“Vision comes from individuals not from corporate leadership (sessions)” says visionary Rev Mark Chapman of Clevedon Presbyterian. “Church leaders need to recognise the vision of individuals and give them permission to fly.”
We talk about Kids Friendly being a “whole church approach to children’s ministry”. Experience shows that when the whole congregation embraces the Kids Friendly ethos many visionary children’s “ministers” emerge and fly. Some have a vision for serving community, others have a passion for sharing their faith with children, others pastorally care for families.
Unfortunately we still too often hear despondent visionary people say: “I dreamed of doing XYZ but my minister or session or church wouldn’t let me!”
One persistent leader said to me: “I’ve decided the best thing to do regarding the introduction of new Kids Friendly initiatives badly needed in our church, is simply to go ahead in a decisive but agreeable way, smile sweetly, and act as if all things are possible (once we had our minister’s and session’s approval). This way even the most negative opponents suddenly get it and contribute to helping children belong and participate.” Hallelujah!
Becoming a Kids Friendly church often requires a change of culture and to effect culture change in your church you need three things.
First, you need dissatisfaction with the status quo i.e. there should be more people dissatisfied with the way the church is for children and families, than satisfied.
Secondly, you need a shared vision of how things could be; and finally, you need energy, passion and positivity to realise that vision.
So if you recognise people with a vision for ministering to the children of your community, encourage them to grow their wings and fly!
Kids Friendly national coach
PSDS $10,000 Ministry and Mission Innovation Award
The Presbyterian Savings and Development Society (PSDS) are seeking applications for the second of four annual Ministry and Mission Innovation Awards for an innovative ministry and/or mission initiative.
Your idea needs to be:
- Innovative (applies a new idea to a particular issue or need)
- Demonstrating leadership and the involvement of others
- Expressive of the mission of the Church
- A completely separate initiative – not part of an existing or previous programme
- Project based.
Write to Mark Bartlett, PSDS, PO Box 26-210, Epsom, Auckland 1344, explaining the objective of your project, what your innovation is, how it expresses the mission of the Church and what your budget requirements are. Applications close 29 February 2012.
Lent Event 2012 Journey Guide - ‘This One Life’
Uniting World has produced this great resource for group and personal reflection during Lent. How can we live authentic lives that honour God with the transformational love Jesus showed? The Lent Event 2012 Journey Guide leads us into a six part conversation with a small group to explore options for walking more closely in the way of Jesus Christ. Using the Journey Guide, individuals also engage in the spiritual discipline of daily devotional time through forty days of prayer and reflection. For more information or to order the resource, click here or contact Global mission at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ministers’ Study Grants
Applications are invited in March and September each year for post-ordination study grants for ministers in good standing of the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand. These grants are made possible through the generosity of the Mary Ann Morrison and M S Robertson estates and are administered by the Senatus of the Knox Centre for Ministry and Leadership.
What are the rules?
1. The proposed course of study will aid the applicant's professional development.
2. There is a potential benefit to the Church and the probability of significant service to the Church.
3. Parish and presbytery approval has been obtained for the study, where appropriate.
How do I apply?
Applicants are asked to address the criteria and set out their expected costs including conference fees, tuition fees, basic accommodation and travel, and to supply any other information that may be relevant.
Enquiries to: The Registrar, Knox Centre for Ministry & Leadership, Knox College, Arden Street Opoho, Dunedin. Email: email@example.com Phone: 03 473 0783
The closing date for the next round of applications is 31 March 2012
For more information click here.
Theology Study Grants
The Knox Centre for Ministry and Leadership is once again delighted to be able to offer a limited number of scholarships in 2012, to Presbyterians doing part-time or full-time theological studies through Otago University, Auckland University, Laidlaw College, Carey Baptist College and the Ecumenical Institute of Distance Theological Studies. If you know of anyone who might benefit from such a grant, please encourage them to apply. They should send a letter of application detailing their course (and costs) of study, and what church they’re involved in. They should also include a brief letter of support from someone in their church (preferably their minister so we can discuss their church’s involvement and the course of study). The deadline for applications is 31 March 2012.
All letters of application, together with letters of support from parish ministers, should be sent to:
Very Rev Dr Graham Redding, Principal
Knox Centre for Ministry and Leadership
Knox College, Arden Street
World Council of Churches Stewards Programme 2012
Young Christians from around the world are invited to apply to the WCC Stewards Programme for a hands-on learning experience at the WCC Central Committee meeting, 23 August – 7 September 2012, in Crete, Greece. Applicants must be between the age of 18-30 years. For more information click here.
The Spiritual Growth Ministries Programme
The Spiritual Growth Ministries Programme of Events for 2012 and the latest revamped edition of Refresh entitled "Wooed by God" are now available on request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Selwyn Centre for Ageing and Spirituality
The Selwyn Centre for Ageing and Spirituality is running Module One of the Certificate in Pastoral care of Ageing People in Dunedin on 2-3 March and 23-24 March at St John’s Anglican Church in Roslyn, Dunedin. The course will also be held in Wellington, Auckland and Christchurch later in the year. More details and registration forms will be available here or contact Dr Chris Perkins at email@example.com.
Michael Hardin public lecture in Dunedin
Michael Hardin is an acclaimed Christian thinker and communicator and the founder of Preaching Peace
Public Lecture by Michael Hardin: The Sacrifice of the Cross: by whom and for whom?
Tues 6 March, 5.10 – 6.15pm, Archway 2, University of Otago
Seminar: Reading the Bible with Rene Girard
Wed 7 March 12 noon – 1.15pm, Castle D, University of Otago.
Both events are co-sponsored by the Centre for Theology and Public Issues and the National Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies at the University of Otago.
Presbyterian Investment Fund
The Church Property Trustees advise that the interest rate paid on Presbyterian Investment Fund deposits is now 5.00 per cent, effective 1 February 2012. The Fund is open to parishes, but not to individuals. For further information, email the Secretary to the Trustees, Heather McKenzie.
Glen Innis Vacancies Feb and March 2012
Ministers, the following dates are available at Glen Innis:
February 13 - 20 Homestead/Cottage
February 20 - 27 Cottage
February 27 - March 5 Homestead/Cottage
March 19 - 26 Homestead
March 26 - April 2 Homestead
New acquisitions at the Hewitson Library
For all the latest acquisitions, click here.
New office for Christian World Service
Christchurch-based Christian World Service is pleased to announce that February will mark their return to the central city area and a new office. The move into modern premises at 7 Halkett Street near South Hagley Park is a big step toward returning normal working life to CWS.
The first time CWS lost access to its former Manchester Street offices was after the first big September quake in 2010. After the catastrophic February 2011 Christchurch quake the former office has only been available for fleeting retrieval trips but remains part of the inner city exclusion zone. CWS staff got used to operating as a virtual office with shared access to information via an online portal structure. To this was added a small scale office space courtesy of the Christchurch North Methodist complex which was adequate for core administration staff and staff meetings.
This building has also felt the collective impact of over 500 days of quakes and after the major quake “swarm” of December 23 has been cordoned off for safety reasons. The Christmas break period has been broken for some CWS staff as they again retrieve essential gear and mail from a building that has become off limits.
The move to the modern Halkett Street office will give CWS a more stable base and it will hopefully bring an end to moving and a very stressful way of working.
Christmas Appeal Thanks
Early indicative reports are that the 2011 CWS Christmas Appeal has drawn a strong response from CWS supporters. Many individual donations are much larger than the historic norm indicating that CWS's move to a fully self funding organisation is understood and backed by supporters. If you have had a delay with your receipts CWS apologises but as outlined above, we’ve had access problems to some mail after the latest swarm of significant earthquakes.
Fast For Life - Ash Wednesday, 22 February
Join internationally with churches and people of faith to pray and reflect on the food that we eat and what happens to the waste. Find out more in the Food section of the CWS website.
Ms Heather Simpson, Intern, Southern Presbytery, to Licentiate, Southern Presbytery, 1 December 2012.
Mr Rory McLeod, Intern, Southern Presbytery, to Licentiate, Southern Presbytery, 1 December 2012.
Ms Margaret Garland, Intern, Southern Presbytery, to Licentiate, Southern Presbytery, 1 December 2012.
Mr Ryhan Prasad, Intern, Wellington Presbytery, to Licentiate, Wellington Presbytery, 9 December 2011.
Mr Antony Wood, Intern, Wellington Presbytery, to Licentiate, Wellington Presbytery, 9 December 2011.
Ordination and Inductions
Rev Tarei Charles Temoni, Licentiate, Te Aka Puaho, to Amorangi Minister, Southern Urewera Maori Pastorate, Te Aka Puaho, 4 December 2011.
Rev Monika Redman, Minister of the Church of Scotland, Stated Supply Minister, St Ninian’s Uniting Church, Karori, Wellington Presbytery, appointment extended to 7 December 2011.
Rev Mika Fa’amausili, Other Recognised Minister, Northern Presbytery, to Onehunga Samoan Presbyterian Church, Auckland, Northern Presbytery, 8 December 2011 (part-time).
Rev Monika Redman, Stated Supply Minister, St Ninian’s Uniting Church, Karori, Wellington Presbytery, to Minister, St Ninian’s Uniting Church, Karori, Wellington Presbytery, 8 December, 2011.
Rev Rory Grant, Licentiate, Southern Presbytery, to Minister, Timaru Presbyterian, Southern Presbytery, 14 December 2011.
Changes in Status
Rev Sung Kook Kim, Member, Northern Presbytery to Other Recognised Minister, Northern Presbytery, 28 February 2011.
Rev Bruce Howat, Member, Northern Presbytery to Other Recognised Minister, Northern Presbytery, 28 February 2011.
Rev Sione Faitala, Member, Northern Presbytery to Other Recognised Minister, Northern Presbytery, 28 February 2011.
Rev Leanne Munro, Other Recognised Minister, Wellington Presbytery, to Member, Wellington Presbytery, 15 November 2011.
Rev Ra Koia, Chaplain, Te Aka Puaho, to Other Recognised Minister, Northern Presbytery, 2 June 2011.
Changes in Co-Operative Venture Ministries
Rev Bob Sidal, Minister (Methodist appointment), Halswell Union, Christchurch Presbytery, completed term 1 February 2011.
Rev Dr Martin Williams, Local Ordained Minister, Tokomairiro Co-operating Parish, completed term ,20 November 2011.
Rev George Robertson, Other Recognised Minister, Kaimai Presbytery, to Minister Emeritus, Kaimai Presbytery, 23 November 2011,
Rev Peter Kirkpatrick, Other Recognised Minister, Northern Presbytery, to Minister Emeritus, Northern Presbytery, 30 June 2011.
Rev Glenn Duncan, Other Recognised Minister, Wellington Presbytery, to Minister Emeritus, Wellington Presbytery, 6 December 2011.
Rev Susan Sara, Other Recognised Minster, Christchurch Presbytery, to Minister Emerita, 22 December 2011.
Rev Dianne Smith, Other Recognised Minster, Christchurch Presbytery, to Minister Emerita, 13 December 2011.
Rev Geoffrey Holding, Other Recognised Minister, Southern Presbytery, to Minister Emeritus, 30 November 2011.
Rev Barrie Keenan, Other Recognised Minister, Wellington Presbytery, to Minister Emeritus, Wellington Presbytery, 6 December 2011.
Rev Norman Knipe, Other Recognised Minister, Wellington Presbytery, to Minister Emeritus, Wellington Presbytery, 6 December 2011.
Rev Nio Daniela, Other Recognised Minister, Wellington Presbytery, to Minister Emeritus, Wellington Presbytery, 31 October 2011.
Removals from Roll (inactive in ordained ministry within the Presbyterian Church)
Rev Lesley Shaw, Other Recognised Minister, Wellington Presbytery, removed from the Ministerial Roll of the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand, 15 October 2011.
Rev Bonnie Robinson, Other Recognised Minister, Northern Presbytery, removed from the Ministerial Roll of the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand, 7 December 2011.
Rev Christina Loughton, Other Recognised Minister, Christchurch Presbytery, removed from the Ministerial Roll of the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand, 15 December 2011.
Rev David Caldwell, Other Recognised Minster, Southern Presbytery, removed from the Ministerial Roll of the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand, 15 December 2011.
Rev Keith Fuller, Other Recognised Minster, Christchurch Presbytery, removed from the Ministerial Roll of the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand, 15 December 2011.
Rev Va’alotu Solofa, Other Recognised Minister, Wellington Presbytery, removed from the Ministerial Roll of the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand, 21 December 2011
Rev Iona Su’a, Other Recognised Minister, Northern Presbytery, removed from the Ministerial Roll of the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand, 6 October 2011
Saeng Myong Saem Presbyterian Church, formerly of the Presbyterian Church of Korea, joined the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand, Northern Presbytery, 2 April 2011.
Full Love Presbyterian Church, formerly of the Presbyterian Church of Korea, joined the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand, Northern Presbytery, 18 November 2010.
The following ministers were incorrectly recorded as having resigned from the Presbyterian ministry. They have been removed from the Ministerial Roll but remain Presbyterian ministers. We apologize to Eric and Peter.
Rev Eric Pierce, Other Recognised Minister, Christchurch Presbytery, removed from the Ministerial Roll of the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand, 15 August 2011.
Rev Peter Armstrong, Other Recognised Minister, Northern Presbytery removed from the Ministerial Roll of the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand, 14 October 2011.
Check out our listing of national and regional events.