From the Moderator
Owen and Bronwyn Rogers have a news article on their fridge about parkour, “the art of movement” – that curious “sport” of running, climbing, jumping over buildings, cars, walls etc. One paragraph states, “Although there are people offering advice, it’s not a formal lesson and not a sport that can be taught in the regular way. It’s more like teaching and challenging yourself, in the company of like-minded people”.
We know that some things are caught more than taught. I suggest that includes prayer, evangelism, hospitality and integrity. Maybe Christ-likeness is learned best by observing the example and teaching of mentors and “teaching and challenging ourselves in the company of like-minded people”.
We might wonder at times how effectively we are impacting people’s lives. Of what value is all that sermon preparation? I believe in preaching but, as a life-transforming method it is one-dimensional. Jesus modelled something more like the parkour description.
Given Jesus’ example, do we see more genuine life transformation when we use a relational, mentoring approach that includes instruction but relies less on “formal lesson” and more on practice and challenge in the company of like-minded people? Do we see greater Christian growth when we emphasise actually practicing evangelism, prayer, etc in the supportive environment of like-minded people? Do we achieve more when we focus on the transformation of a few?
Some of our ministers and elders are already intentionally mentoring younger believers the parkour way. I’d be really interested to know who, and what models are being used. Maybe we could network. Also, who would like to learn more about Jesus-styled disciple-making? If you fall into either group and would like to dialogue about it, please contact me.
As Moderator, farewell to you all. Welcome, Ray – May God bless you as you make disciples.
From the Assembly Executive Secretary
Dear Friends and Colleagues
It was a pleasure attending the 40th Anniversary of the Te Whaiti-nui-a-toi scholarship awards at Lindisfarne College in Hastings in August.
The history of the scholarships goes back to the 1930s during the establishment of a Maori boy’s training farm at Te Whaiti, north of Waikerimoana, by Maori and Pakeha leaders of the Presbyterian Church. The farm was eventually sold, but the money it generated has been used for 40 years to provide scholarship support for high school students mainly attending Lindisfarne College. Many of these students have gone on to excel in their careers and include people like Justice Joe Williams and All Blacks Taine Randall and Israel Dagg.
The late Sir Rodney Gallen was a key supporter of the scholarship programme, and the weekend provided the opportunity to acknowledge and give thanks for the generosity and vision of people like Sir Rodney. It was great to be able to celebrate with some of the Te Whaiti ‘old boys’ and to recognise the success and importance of the scholarship programme – based as it is on a strong ethos of pastoral care and support. These scholarships have made a real difference in the lives of over 140 young people over these years.
2012 General Assembly
The Assembly will open at our national marae at Ohope at 11am on Thursday 4 October 2012 and continue at Rotorua Boy’s High School from Thursday afternoon until its conclusion at lunch time on Sunday 7 October.
Late proposals for legislation and notices of motion
Late proposals, which may only deal with matters arising after the closing date of proposals (i.e. 3 August), and any notices of motion which you would like sent out in late papers, need to be sent to me by 13 September. All other notices of motion, apart from those which arise from dialogue or debate, need to be with the Assembly Business Work Group by 9pm on Thursday 4 October.
Assembly documents on the website
There are a number of documents and background papers which, largely because of their length, cannot be published in the White Book. These will be added to over the coming weeks. Please take time to read these from the GA 12 website.
Church Council voting for the 2014 Moderator
Thank you to all those Church Councils who voted. The Moderator-designate will be announced on the Sunday of the General Assembly.
Uniting Congregations of Aotearoa New Zealand (UCANZ) new guide to procedures
At the General Assembly, Commissioners will be invited to vote for the adoption of new procedures governing the operations of UCANZ congregations. We will not be printing out the entire document in the Assembly papers and invite all Commissioners to download their own copy here for study and consideration.
Risk management and ministry ethics workshops
Attendance every three years at one of these workshops is now mandatory for all ministers seeking to maintain their Certificates of Good Standing. While we are now fully committed for 2012 there are openings for these workshops for 2013. All Presbyteries need to schedule in one of these half day workshops which are being funded from the national budget. Please contact me for further details.
Looking for a newly trained minister?
In November this year, seven well-trained , enthusiastic and committed interns will be available to be called to a ministry. These students bring with them a range of experience, skills and gifts. Several of them have many years of church ministry experience and all draw from a range of backgrounds which will contribute to the richness of their ministry and leadership. Information about all current interns including those in their final year, can be found here.
If you are the Convenor of a Ministry Settlement Board and would like more details about the students who are completing their training this year, please contact the Rev Allister Lane who is providing the liaison between interns and ministry settlement boards.
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 three 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.
Certificates of Good standing are valid for 6 years with a review to be undertaken every 3 years. Please note that the guidelines have been updated to take account of ministers serving overseas and active ministers who are not currently serving in parish or chaplaincy positions.
Thank you again for your generous support and for all the ways you help our Church and its mission.
After 16 and a half years of ministry at St. Margaret’s in Bishopdale, Christchurch, and 22 and a half years parish ministry overall, I began in my new role as Global Mission Coordinator on 1 August. It is a big change for me and I am still adjusting to the different lifestyle. Not only has it meant a move from Christchurch to Wellington, but a significant change of focus as well. It was a difficult thing to say goodbye to the community at St. Margaret’s after being there so long. The public speeches and expressions of appreciation were meaningful, but I was also moved by the individual conversations I had with people who quietly came up to me and expressed their gratitude for my ministry, and the impact it had had on them and their faith. It has been a privilege to walk alongside those who have drawn nearer to God in the time they have been at St. Margaret’s.
My new job was full-on from day one, attending the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in Vanuatu. I travelled with the Very Rev Pamela Tankersley, the outgoing Global Mission Coordinator, and it was a valuable time of learning for me. The Assembly included the annual PWMU conference (the PCV’s equivalent of Presbyterian Women) and there were hundreds of delegates there, on the tiny and remote island of Aniwa. We were supposed to begin with a pre-Assembly consultation but travel disruptions meant that this was delayed. So we used that time to get to know people and visit villages on the island.
I have been able to work alongside Pamela for a few weeks, shadowing her and learning some of the important facts and figures that will help me understand what I am doing. As a result I take on the role with confidence that our commitment to global mission is in good shape, with exciting possibilities for the future. I would like to record my thanks to Pamela who has done a great job and accomplished a huge amount in the two years she has been in the position.
Global Mission Coordinator
Christian Education and spiritual formation
I’ve been thinking a lot about faith formation this year. It was a topic of interest during my recent sabbatical at Cambridge University and again as I prepared a workshop for religious education for teachers and chaplains of church schools called “Christian education and spiritual formation”.
I’m inspired by the writing of Thomas Groome in his book “Sharing Faith” – “I have been convinced for some time that the learning outcome of Christian religious education should be more than what the western world typically means by ‘knowledge’; that it is to engage the whole ‘being’ of people, their heads, hearts and life-styles, and is to inform, form and transform their identity and agency in the world”.
This has been on my heart for years. So much of our ministry to (and with) children falls short of transforming children’s identity into disciples of Christ. (But to be fair to ourselves, how much ministry to adults grows disciples for Christ?)
Ivy Beckwith in her book “Formational children’s ministry” suggests there are many creative ways to help children engage with the story of God’s vision for humankind. Beckwith also encourages us to create opportunities for children to participate in Christian rituals and practices including communion and service to others.
“We can employ teaching processes that treat people as dependent objects that rob them of their capacities for reflection, imposing our own thoughts, worldview and version of story and vision upon them; or we can choose processes and create environments in which children are actively engaged as participating subjects in story, events and communities marked by relationships of inclusion and mutuality, and see for themselves the truth in the faith handed on and come to decisions together as responsible subjects of living Christian faith,” says Beckwith.
If you want to explore these ideas more, contact Kids Friendly.
Kids Friendly Coach
Presbyterian Women Connect
I attended the Presbyterian Women USA triennial national gathering in Florida from 18-22 July as a global guest. This gathering was led by the Psalm 46:4-5 “River of Hope” and we enjoyed sharing our thoughts about prayer, Bible study, mission, peace, justice, worship and community. Thought provoking daily plenary sessions, forums and workshops were led by women ministers.
Presbyterian Women USA is very focused globally like us here in New Zealand. With 300,000 members throughout America, they have supported many projects like providing women with clean water in South Sudan and opportunities for self-sufficiency in Northern India. I felt very much at home in the company of these women and was surprised to learn that I made connections with Presbyterian Women USA, their global partners and Presbyterian friends back home in New Zealand. It was like feeling part of a large global family.
The plenary sessions were full and were followed by an astounding array of forums and workshops. I particular liked the “New Life at the Church” session where I discovered some familiar but also some new ideas for church organisations. The devotions and hymns were modern and spiritually uplifting with the energisers keeping everyone on their toes! The best description I would give of the gathering was that it was truly amazing, enriching and just so much fun. I felt God’s presence with me throughout the whole journey which was very memorable.
Warm wishes and blessings,
Enter the draw to attend the Christianity and the Ecological Crisis conference in Wellington
The Church has 10 free registrations for the conference "Christianity and the Ecological Crisis: Lament, Hope, Action", 6pm Friday 5 October – 4pm Sunday 7 October 2012 at St John's in the City Presbyterian Church, Wellington. If you are not attending GA12 and would like to go in the draw, email your name, church and contact details to firstname.lastname@example.org by 14 September. You will need to pay your own transport and accommodation - discounted accommodation here. The conference is hosted by A Rocha Aotearoa-New Zealand, Caritas, and The Centre for Theology and Public Issues (University of Otago). Details here.
Presbyterian Investment Fund
The Church Property Trustees advise that the interest rate paid on Presbyterian Investment Fund deposits remains at 5 percent. This rate became effective from 1 February 2012. The Fund is open to parishes, but not to individuals. For further information, email the Secretary to the Trustees, Heather McKenzie.
Presbyterian Church Property Trustees AGM
The 2012 Annual General Meeting of the Presbyterian Church Property Trustees will be held at 4pm Thursday 27 September in the Conference Centre at St John’s in the City Presbyterian Church, Wellington. Friends and associates are invited to attend. Presbyteries are welcome to send representatives. Afternoon tea available from 3.40pm. For catering purposes, please RSVP to Heather McKenzie or phone (04) 381 8290.
Glen Innis vacancies
September 10 - 17 Homestead
October 1 - 8 Homestead
October 15 - 22 Homestead
October 22 - 29 Homestead
November 5 - 12 Homestead
Presbyterian Church of Myanmar visit
Global Mission and our local church partners have a number of opportunities for you to come and meet our friends from Myanmar.
The three coming are the PCM General Secretary – the Rev Ring Lian Thang; the PCM Mission Secretary – the Rev Cin Za Lein and a lecturer at Tahan Theological College – Ms Lal Hming Sangi.
Several gatherings will be held at St Columba Botany in Auckland, St John’s in the City in Wellington, St Margaret’s Bishopdale in Christchurch and Knox in Dunedin.
If you would like to attend please contact Andrew Norton on 09 274 4864 or visit our website.
Heart of Leadership workshop
New Book for reflection and Bible study
The Rev Ivan Pierce has written a book explaining Mark’s Gospel, called ‘Read Mark and think about it’. It is very readable and thought-provoking, and good for house or after-church study groups, ministers, lay preachers, and for personal Bible reading. Send $25 (includes p&p) to 17 Ashton Mews, Casebrook, Christchurch 8051.
Forrest Hill Presbyterian Church Jubilee
Our 50th Jubilee is being held over Labour Weekend 19-21 October at 151 Forrest Hill Road, North Shore, Auckland and you are invited to join in our celebrations. For details please phone Rosalie Horne on (09) 410 3602, email email@example.com or visit our website.
Global Leadership Summit October-November
The Global Leadership Summit exists to transform Christian leaders around the world with an injection of vision, skill development, and inspiration for the sake of the local church. Speakers at this year’s summit include Bill Hybels (Founder & Senior Pastor, Willow Creek Community Church); Condaleezza Rice (Former US Secretary of State); Jim Collins ( Acclaimed business thinker and author); Geoffrey Canada (President & CEO, Harlem Children’s Zone) and many more. This year, Willow Creek Association NZ is bringing the GLS to a site near you and invites you and your team to take advantage of their early bird offer that expires 12 August. For more information contact Tash McGowan firstname.lastname@example.org or 07 825 8665.
School of Theology celebrates 10 years
To mark the decade since it was created, the University of Auckland’s School of Theology is holding a two-day symposium on 2-3 September themed ‘Theology in the city: a focus on Auckland’. The symposium will be held at the Fale Pasifika at The University of Auckland. The cost to attend the full symposium is $20. A single day’s attendance is $10. The registration cut-off date is Friday, 24 August. To register, please contact Melissa Rodger on 09 923 6676 or email email@example.com.
Bibleworld Museum & Discovery Centre Rotorua
A place where adults and children can explore what life was like in Biblical times. See over 70 real artifacts from Biblical times including bronze weapons used in Old Testament times and daily household items from the time of Jesus. Visit our website for more information.
Study grants for ministers
Are you a Presbyterian minister planning on further study? Do you know that you can apply for a study grant from the Knox Centre for Ministry and Leadership? 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.
Enquiries to: The Registrar, Knox Centre for Ministry & Leadership, Knox College, Arden Street Opoho, Dunedin. firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: 03 473 0783. Applications close 30 September 2012.
ARPA annual conference Wellington September 7-9
The Australasian Religious Press Association is pleased to make available up to 20 places to people in the greater Wellington area who are responsible for compiling their church’s regular newsletters. Local delegates will have full access to the plenary sessions on Friday evening and Saturday morning and a selection of nine seminars and workshops during Saturday including one workshop especially for those who compile their own church’s weekly newsletter. Although subsidised, there will be a registration charge of $90 per person for the Friday night session and all day Saturday. Saturday morning and afternoon teas and lunch are included in this cost. Local delegate registrations are strictly limited to 20 people and they will be allocated on a first-in, first served basis. For further information and an application form please go to www.arpanews.org or email the conference chair.
We are planning our next Toolbox Parenting course for those with children 0-6 years old. It will begin on 17 September 2012 at the Island Bay Community Centre for six Monday evenings from 7.30pm. Cost is $90 per couple and $67.50 single (subsidy may apply). For more information contact Liz on 04 3835114.
NZ Brass Festival
21-23 September in Wellington. Showcasing the world's finest brass players in concerts and educational workshops, great for all ages. Visit www.nzbrassfestival.org.nz for tickets and information.
The role of spirituality and religion seminar
The Selwyn Centre for Ageing and Spirituality - in association with The Goodfellow Unit (University of Auckland) and Mercy Hospice Auckland - presents a half-day presentation by internationally renowned researcher into ageing and spirituality, Harold G Koenig MD, who will outline his major findings on the relationship between health, religion and spirituality in older people. This event will be of interest to members of the clergy and religious leaders, chaplains and pastoral caregivers, clinicians, managers and those working within an aged care environment. Date:5 September 2012, 9.30 am – 12 noon. Venue: Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences, University of Auckland Tamaki Campus, 261 Morrin Road, Glen Innes, Auckland. Cost: $75.00 per person (GST inclusive) For further details and to register, please email Trish Purchase at The Selwyn Foundation: email@example.com, or via www.selwyncare.org.nz.
Living with Uncertainty
We are living in uncertain, unsettled times. Since the Christchurch earthquakes began in September 2010, New Zealanders have an increased awareness of our vulnerability and the fragility of our built environments. The global financial crisis is serious and ongoing. Two additional areas of uncertainty that have become part of our everyday lives. The four part series ‘Living with Uncertainty’ provides us with an opportunity to hear from people with expertise and experience in the areas of geological, spiritual, economic and social uncertainty.
September 4: Economic Uncertainty – Brian Easton Economist
September 11: Social Uncertainty – Rev Dr Geoff King Presbyterian Minister and Counsellor
St Andrew's on the Terrace 12:15 to 1pm
For more info email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 03 472-9211.
International Day of Prayer for Peace
Each year on 21 September the World Council of Churches calls churches and parishes to observe the International Day of Prayer for Peace. This date is also the United Nations-sponsored International Day of Peace.
Survey on newborn babies
Natural Winding, a service that focuses on natural prevention, natural cure and early intervention is doing a survey on inconsolable crying, colic and reflux in newborns. If you’d like to be part of the study, email Phillipa Murphy.
Live Below The Line poverty campaign
The Global Poverty Project have begun their 2012 ‘Live Below the Line’ campaign which calls for thousands of New Zealanders to live for 5 days in September on only $2.25 per day for their food and drink. The symbolic act of empathy is part of a world-wide movement to raise awareness through direct experience of the challenges and hardships of extreme poverty. Live Below the Line is welcoming participants to sign up for the 5 day challenge on their website. The challenge will run from the 24th until the 28th of September.
Transitional Ministry training
The NZ Branch of the Interim Ministry Network (US) is facilitating a training event for Transitional Ministry at Trinity Church, Dunsandel, Canterbury Plains, from 10–14 September 2012. Trainers will be the Rev Chris Bedford, the Rev Derek Harding and the Rev Marilyn Welch. More information here. This training is for those interested in developing skills for an intentional ministry during the period between the departure of one minister and the arrival of the next minister or ministry team.
Week of Prayer for World Peace
The week will be observed in New Zealand from 14-21 October. A leaflet has been produced with prayers, readings and affirmations from many faiths to use each day. Religious communities throughout New Zealand are encouraged to celebrate the week both in their observances and together with people of different faiths. For further information or to order leaflets for your community to use please email WeekOfPrayer@xtra.co.nz or visit the Interfaith website.
White Ribbon Men’s Hui 21–23 September
If you’re a man and want to end violence in your community then you need to put Friday 21 September and that weekend into your diary. If you’re an organisation send your men to this hui. White Ribbon aims to generate a movement of men who will take the White Ribbon kaupapa of non-violence, and spread this throughout Aotearoa. This hui will help inspire and equip those men to effect change in their communities. Featuring terrific speakers, hands-on workshops and outdoor activities to take learning out of the classroom, this is real, effective, and interesting training for men. Click here to find out more.
The Caughey Smith-Preston Memorial Fund
There is a small amount of funding available that could be available for church or denominational projects that would fit within the criteria of employing evangelists to hold missions in the large cities and towns of New Zealand, or to employ young evangelists to go to the backblocks of New Zealand, or open Sunday Schools for young people wherever possible. All requests are to be submitted to Kelvyn Fairhal.
Study Leave Reports needed – now!
Have you undertaken study leave at any time during the past 10 years? Do you have a study leave report languishing on your desk or filed in your study, or almost completed on your computer? If so, NOW is the time to share it with the rest of the Church. Please find it, dust it off, give it last finishing touches if required and send it to us – we will be happy to accept them in whatever format you have them - paper copies or electronic versions. The reports can then be made available online, and will be a wonderful resource for many. We will also be interested to receive copies of relevant dissertations, theses and doctoral research. As is the current procedure, hard copies will continue to be filed with the Presbyterian Archives Research Centre. Study leave reports already filed with the Archives are listed here. The postal address is The Registrar, Knox Centre for Ministry and Leadership, Knox College, Arden Street, Opoho, Dunedin 9010. Email: email@example.com.
PCANZ Yearbook 2012
The Church’s 2012 Yearbook information has been updated to include recent changes to contact details. Please download for August 2012 here using the username and password emailed to you in March.
CWS in line for Government funding for Tonga development project
Christian World Service has been keeping up with new Government funding schemes despite resolving to become a donor funded organisation. As a result a recent funding application for a project in Tonga has cleared the first hurdle to move toward full and final approval.
The application under the Sustainable Development Fund is for $500,000 over three years. The project funding application was filed in April and has now secured approval for the concept part of the project to start in January next year.
Because it is a Pacific based project it will also qualify for a four to one funding ratio for funds raised for the Tongan scheme by churches. Tonga is the subject of special projects for Presbyterian Women and the Methodist Women’s Fellowship next year.
CWS has worked with the Tonga Community Development Trust for eight years supporting their Ama Takiloa (Village Women’s Development) programme.
Ama Takiloa is a network of 319 women’s groups engaged in building healthy, self reliant and resilient communities through training for income generation and livelihood sustainability. It works in the repair and maintenance of rainwater tanks and related water hygiene training, as well as disaster and risk reduction.
The Trust works in Vava’u, Ha’apai, Eua and Tongatapu and recently opened an office in the Nuias.
The groups have developed a number of demonstration plots for community gardens to demonstrate mixed cropping for food security and traditional and new coping mechanisms including cyclone resistant crops and food preservation.
The Tonga Trust has a related programme of climate change adaption working with schools and communities in Ha’api and related programmes in Tongatapu.
Ms Libia Rua, Te Aka Puaho, to licentiate, Te Aka Puaho, 21 July 2012.
Ordination and Inductions
Rev Libia Rua, Te Aka Puaho, to Amorangi Minister, Southern Urewera Māori Pastorate, 21 July 2012.
Changes in Status
Rev Feiloaiga Taule’ale’ausumai Davis, Other Recognised Minister, Northern Presbytery, to Member, Northern Presbytery, 9 August 2012.
Rev Rubin Donald (Don) Elley, Ministers Emeriti, Northern Presbytery, died on 5 August 2012.
Rev Gordon Hall, Ministers Emeriti, Manawatu Wanganui Presbytery, died on 6 August 2012.
Flagstaff Presbyterian Church, Southern Presbytery, became Flagstaff Community Church, 28 June 2012.
Rotorua St Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, Kaimai Presbytery, was dissolved on 13 August 2012 (BOO 5.9 (3).
Check out our listing of national and regional events.