The Messenger – Spring 2018

Surprise, Surprise
The Auckland Diocese Department of Archives
Language in Our Church Services
Two prayers and three hymns – a few of my favourite things
From our Priest in Charge
Report on the 55th Synod of the Diocese of Auckland
Services at Christmas

Surprise, Surprise

By Joan Osborne

On Thursday Morning July 4th, a message came through from the reception desk at Remuera Gardens; there was a large parcel waiting there for Steve (Osborne). So down he went, looking neither left nor right.

When he was nearly down he heard “Dad, Dad!” It was his only daughter, Kate, from Harrogate, UK.  Gladsome greetings and happy tears all round.

Stephen had thought that some of the family would be around for his 90th birthday on 7th July. Although nearly blind, he had noticed Joan’s very large birthday cake freshly baked.  We pointed out to him the notice in the Garden’s weekly News Sheet which said there was going to be something going on in the main lounge on the afternoon of 7th July. “Is that for me?” he asked, and we nodded nonchalantly and said “Yes”.

At 2.00 PM on the 7th, he was duly paraded down stairs.  The lounge was crowded as everyone was given a drink. Seated in one corner was Bill Mitchell, at one time a partner in the Whakatane law firm “Osborne & Partners”. Along with Bill were the other partners, Dave Gray, Tim Richardson and Ian McCombe.

Then of course, there was the family, as follows:

  1. Eldest son Stephen and his wife Andrea from Melbourne, and two of their three sons, namely
    1. Sam, their second son and his wife Natalie, and Rocco (great grandson No. 2). The three of them were in St Thomas’s on Sunday morning 8th July; and –
    2. Will, their youngest son, and his partner; who were also in St Thomas’s on 8th July.
  2. David (our No 2 son) and his wife Ruth. All of these arrangements had been made by them, including collecting “the parcel” from the Airport and delivering it to the Gardens. With them were their daughters Emily and Ava.
  3. Kate, our third child, comes next in the hierarchy. Unfortunately she had to attend without Andrew her partner or her children Matthew and Clarrie (grandson-and-granddaughter). She was also in St Thomas’s on 8th July.
  4. Richard (4th child) and his partner came North from Oakura, Taranaki. His daughter Greer and her brother Hunter were also part of the Church Group. Hunter and his wife Alison live in Auckland and are parents of Rex, great grandson No 3.
  5. And last but not least from San Diego, California, came Matthew with his partner and two sons (grandsons 6 and 7) Griffin and Rhys, the latter with his girlfriend Jess; they were all in Church on Sunday.
  6. It was a wonderful afternoon tea party; the lounge decorated with lots of silver tinsel and balloons. The balloons included two very large gold ones, a “9” and and “0”, which Rocco had great fun trailing around the floor until their strings broke and they sailed up to the high ceiling of the lounge. He rather expected his father to retrieve them.  Not until July 26th did they in fact come down.

Needless to say, we were visited by the family members at various times during the next day or two before all (except for Kate, who did not depart until early Monday 16th) went their various ways.

The Auckland Diocese Department of Archives

By Joan Osborne

With a few other embroidery friends, I recently visited the Auckland Diocese Department of Archives, which is situated under the Cathedral in Parnell, where there is a specially constructed area, where the temperature is kept constant.

Not only were we shown through the rows of cases by Sarah Padley the Chief Archivist, we were also shown several pieces of beautiful embroidery.  One was a set of vestments in red and embroidered in very fine gold by Doreen Taylor for St Paul’s, Symonds St where she was a parishioner, probably made in the 1930’s.

We also saw 2 very old stoles worked on silk fabric.  One was especially beautiful, worked on ottoman silk which is accorded silk.  The exquisite small flowers were stitched in shaded satin stitch in a very fine thread; I don’t think we could find such a fine thread today.

The ottoman silk stole was a light beige colour, and I wonder what season of the Church year they were made for.  Does anyone know?

Also on show were some chasubles done in the 70’s by Colin Cole. Altogether a very interesting Monday morning.

Language in Our Church Services

Tony Poole

This is the second in a two part essay, spread over two editions of The Messenger.  The first part was entitled A Brief History of the English Language. In it we traced the English language through an invasion by Roman armies, then an invasion by Angles, Saxons and Jutes, then an invasion by Norman conquerors, and finally, its (relatively) peaceful transformation into modern English.  We saw the way in which the original Celtic languages were modified by Greek, Latin, the languages of the Angles, Saxons and Jutes, by the French spoken by the Norman conquerors, and by the Great Vowel Shift.

You might find it useful to re-read that essay, before proceeding to this one.

The Christian Church has existed throughout the 2,000 year development of the English language.  Many of the customs and rites of the Church came from a time when English sounded quite different to the Modern English we speak now.

1. One such example is the word Collect as used in the Eucharist.  We have the Collect of the Day which may be said just before the Readings, or after the Sermon.  Similarly, just after the Sentence of the Day comes the Collect for Purity (Almighty God, to whom all hearts are open etc….), although in our Modern English Prayer Book it is not labelled as a collect.

The word Collect is pronounced col-lect, with emphasis on the first syllable, rather than on the second (as when we mean to collect something). It comes from the 5th Century Latin word collecta (literally meaning to gather). Its most likely meaning, as used in the Eucharist, is that it is a prayer that gathers into one the prayers of the individual members of the congregation. As such, it is a formal prayer, rather than an extemporary prayer, and generally (but not exclusively) has five parts to it (Address, Acknowledgement, Petition, Desired Result, and Pleading), as illustrated (below) in the Collect for Purity:

Address: Almighty God,
Acknowledgement: to whom all hearts are open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hidden;
Petition: cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your holy spirit,
Desired result: so that we may truly love you and worthily praise your holy name;
Pleading: through our Saviour, Jesus Christ.
(The Response of the congregation (Amen) is not considered to be part of the Collect itself.)

Collects have been written for, and can be said, on all sorts of occasions. Some examples are the Collect for (or of) Peace, the Collect for Grace, a Collect for aid against Perils, the Collect for the Holy Trinity, the Collect for the Holy Spirit, the Collect for the Holy Angels, and the Collect for the Incarnation.

Because a Collect is a prayer that gathers together the prayers of all the individual members of the congregation, it is generally said in unison by the congregation.

2. A second example, of the use of foreign language terms in our Eucharist, is the Gradual Hymn.  The gradual hymn is not sung very slowly!  The word Gradual comes from the Latin word “step” (gradus), and refers to the two steps which typically exist at the front of the Church. In some churches they are quite narrow, in others they are very broad, as explained below.

  1. The higher step has the Altar of God on it, and forms the floor of the sanctuary (from the Late Latin Sancturium, literally meaning a sacred place). This is partly for practical reasons of visibility, but also because in the symbolism of medieval times, increasing height denoted increasing importance and sanctity.
  2. The lower step is known as the Chancel. The word “chancel” comes from the Late Latin word cancellous meaning lattice. This is because it includes (or included) a lattice screen, generally fashioned out of wood, designed to stop people looking directly into the chancel from the nave; instead, they had to look through the latticework.  The latticework extended from the walls or pillars on both sides, but with a gap in the middle, so as to create an entrance-way giving access to the sanctuary. The priest’s and deacon’s prayer desks, from which morning and evening prayer were typically said, were on the altar side of the latticework.

In some churches, the cancellous was developedinto a full blown rood screen. It still included the cancellous, which was often made of stone or wrought iron, instead of wood, and was very ornate. Above the cancellous, on a horizontal beam, was erected a giant crucifix or cross, known as the giant rood.  The word rood, although quite possibly originally from Latin or Greek, came into English between the 6th to 10th centuries via the old English word rod, taken from the Old Saxon rōda, and possibly even the Old Norse word rōtha.

In many churches the chancel step too was quite broad, and is where the choir sat. It is from the chancel step that the Clergy, the interface between God and the people, operated. The pulpit is raised up above this lower step (presumably for increased visibility), and the Lectern is generally also on that step.

In the Eucharist, the Bible is taken from the altar, and the gospel reading is read from the chancel step; hence the Gradual Hymn which immediately precedes the gospel reading. The gradual hymn is named after the gradual steps, rather than after the name of the step (chancel) used from which to read the gospel.

In modern times, this has all changed a bit. Now, the celebrating priest officiates from behind the altar; i.e. facing the congregation. This make the priest more visible, and in pre-microphone times (and still in smaller churches today) it also made for better audibility; it isn’t intended to elevate the priest to equality with God! Similarly, it is now deemed more modern to read the gospel from the nave, amongst the people (although some clergy still read it from the pulpit, so as to take advantage of any microphone installed there). Despite all of this, the hymn that precedes the gospel reading is still called the Gradual Hymn.

3. The offertory (from Medieval Latin offertorium and Late Latin offerre) is the part of a Eucharistic service when the bread and wine for use in the service are ceremonially placed on the altar.

A collection of alms from the congregation, such as may take place at the Eucharist and also at non-Eucharistic services, often coincides with this ceremony. But strictly speaking, it is the bread and wine placed on the altar which make it the “Offertory”; in many Churches alms are collected at the same time, but not in fact placed on the altar.

The 1662 Book of Common Prayer of the Church of England (and later revised books of prayer) includes “offertory sentences” that are to be read at this point. Current practice in Anglican churches favours the singing of a congregational hymn (the “offertory hymn”) or an anthem sung by the choir, and sometimes both. In some churches music at the offertory is provided only by an organist.

4. The word Eucharist itselfcomes to us via Latin from the early Greek wordeucharistia, which is itself a translation of the Hebrew word berekah. All three of these words have the meaning of thanksgiving, or praise, for the wonderful works of God.

Bishops, Priests and Deacons are the three levels of Christian Ministers.

5. Bishops appear to have existed almost from the beginning of the Christian Church.  The earliest reference to bishops is in Acts 1 20, where following his suicide Judas is referred to as having his “bishoprick taken by another”. In Philippians 1 1, Paul addresses his letter to “all the saints in Christ Jesus who are at Philippi with the bishops and deacons”. In Timothy 3 1 – 13 Paul sets out the attributes of bishops and deacons, and in Titus 1 7, Paul sets out again the attributes of a bishop.  In 1 Peter 2 25, Peter refers to Christ as being the shepherd and bishop of our souls. This idea, that Christ was the first bishop, in whose footsteps all later bishops have followed, is well established in Christianity.  From the word Bishop comes the Greek word epískopos, meaning overseer, guardian, from which we also get the English word episcopal, and was adopted into Latin and thence into English.

6. A Priest is a person under a Bishop, who is authorised to perform sacred religious rituals, especially the celebration of the Eucharist. In many ways they are merely a Christian redefinition of Jewish priests.  The earliest reference to a priest in the Bible comes in Genesis 14 18, where Melchizadec is referred to as the priest of the most high God.

The meaning of the word “Priest” is a little uncertain. The word in biblical Greek for priest is presbuteros, from which we get “Presbyter”, and “Presbyterian”. The word in Latin for priest is sacerdos, meaning he who celebrates the sacrament. It is possible that sacerdos then got incorporated into German, to re-emerge into Old English as “Praist”.

7. Deacons also appear in the Bible, as mentioned previously, especially in Philippians 1 1 and 1 Timothy 3 10. The word deacon is derived from the Greek word diákonos, literally meaning deacon, but also “servant”, “waiting-man”, “minister”, or “messenger”. It is generally assumed that the office of deacon originated in the selection of seven men by the apostles, among them Stephen, to assist with the charitable work of the early church as recorded in Acts 6.

Bishops, Priests and Deacons date from the earliest Church practices, and are the ranks of “Holy Orders”, in descending order. In most Churches their appointment is considered “a sacrament” – an outward sign of an inward grace, directly from God.

8. Archbishop, Archdeacon (from Latin archi-, from Ancient Greek ἀρχι- meaning “to begin, rule, command”): Archbishops (who are over a group of Bishops) and Archdeacons (who perversely are over a group of priests, not deacons!) are, as their prefix implies, over (above, super, in charge of) the group of bishops or priests below them.

9. Two Church Wardens to oversee the property of each Parish is provided for in the 14th Century Latin rites when the Anglican Church was still with Rome. They are assumed to be included amongst the “Elders” in the writings of St Paul.

10. Easter comes from the Latin and Greek word Pascha, and is the principal festival of the Christian church, which celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ on the third day after his crucifixion. The earliest recorded observance of an Easter celebration comes from the 2nd Century, though the commemoration of Jesus’ resurrection probably occurred earlier.

The English word Easter, which parallels the German word Ostern, is of uncertain origin. One view, expounded by the Venerable Bede in the 8th century, was that it derived from Eostre, or Eostrae, the Anglo-Saxon goddess of spring and fertility. That view now appears dubious. There is instead widespread consensus that the word derives from the Latin plural of alba (meaning “dawn”), which became eostarum in Old High German, and then ostern, the precursor of the modern German and English term Easter. (It is unclear whether estrogen also comes from the Latin root, or the High German root.)

The Latin and Greek Pascha (“Passover”) provides the root for Pâques, the French word for Easter.

Fixing the dates on which the Death and Resurrection of Jesus are observed has always been controversial.  The death of Jesus is tied to the date of the Jewish Passover, which occurred on the 14th day of the first full moon of spring.  Easter Day, therefore, occurs on the 16th day of spring.  That much is simple.  Problems occur because of the need to celebrate Easter day on a Sunday.  Problems were compounded because there are, or historically were, at least 40 different calendars used at one time or another in the world!

Despite this, today Easter is celebrated in most Christian Churches on the first Sunday after the first full moon after the vernal equinox, as calculated according to tables based in Western churches on the Gregorian calendar and in Orthodox churches on the Julian calendar. Good Friday is celebrated two days earlier.

Complexity in religion is not, therefore, due solely to changes of language over 2000 years!

Two prayers and three hymns – a few of my favourite things  

John Goodwin

When I came from Tasmania to NZ in 1993, I fell in love with the New Zealand Prayer Book. It was like a breath of fresh air! One of the prayers I came to like most in the NZ book is found in the Night Prayers, and I have often used it for evensong services at school.

Lord it is night.
The night is for stillness.
Let us be still in the presence of God.

It is night after a long day.
What has been done has been done;
what has not been done has not been done;
let it be.

The night is dark.
Let our fears of the darkness of the world
and of our lives rest in you.

The night is quiet.
Let the quietness of your peace enfold us,
all dear to us,
and all who have no peace.

The night heralds the dawn.
Let us look expectantly to a new day,
new joys, new possibilities.
In your name we pray.  Amen.

This gentle prayer took on heightened significance when Bishop David Moxon told me the story behind it. Before he was a bishop, he sat on the committee writing the new NZ Prayer Book with liturgists, luminaries, bishops and a secretary who took the minutes. Some of their meetings were pretty fractious as members representing different church styles and traditions did not always see eye to eye on matters liturgical.

One meeting was particularly heated, and the bishops were not in the best of moods with each other by the end of the night. It was the custom to end each meeting with a prayer led by a Bishop, but no bishop felt particularly prayerful at the end of this meeting! The task of giving the final prayer was given to the secretary.  He was taken aback but he quickly penned this graceful prayer, and then thinking no more of it, he put it in the bin. David Moxon retrieved the paper from the bin and said, “We must have this in our prayer book!”

Of all my favourite hymns, the ones I remember best are associated with moving events. Two of them have been burnt into my childhood memory.

Every Anzac Day at the Cathedral in Hobart we would sing the powerful 1919 Anzac Hymn O Valiant Hearts which combines faith with stirring music, national pride and sad remembrance. It ends with this note of great hope of resurrection for the fallen:

O risen Lord, O Shepherd of our dead,
Whose cross has bought them and whose staff has led,
In glorious hope their proud and sorrowing land
Commits her children to Thy gracious hand.

My next hymn was one I “ran into” by chance when I was a lad. I was practising the organ and a man came into the empty Cathedral and asked if I’d play a hymn – Hark, hark my soul, angelic voices singing. I found the music, and as I played he sang and his voice filled the cavernous space and so moved was he by the words and the tune that tears spilled down his face. Though I have not sung the hymn since, I keep alive that powerful moment, and the tune of that hymn with its refrain:

Angels of Jesus, angels of light,
Singing to welcome the pilgrims of the night!

A third hymn that springs to mind is Love Divine all loves excelling. Being here at St Thomas’ has rekindled my enthusiasm for this hymn, especially when sung to the tune Blaenwern. Whenever I sing, play or hear it, I associate it with that Sunday morning when we heard that Stephen was grieving the loss of his beloved brother. Love Divine was the final hymn of the service, and he sang the words with such conviction and with his brother in mind – looking forward to that day when “we cast our crowns before Thee, lost in wonder, love, and praise!”  Since then I have used it often in our school chapel!

I’d like to finish with my favourite go-to prayer for evenings and funerals and for times when reassurance is most needed.  It was written by Cardinal John Newman:

O Lord, 
support us all the day long of this troublous life,
until the shades lengthen and the evening comes,
the busy world is hushed,
the fever of life is over and our work is done;
then Lord, in your mercy, grant us a safe lodging, a holy rest,
and peace at the last, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

From our Priest in Charge

Rev Bob Driver

A subdued, large, low voice spread into the air of the room from behind the heavy walls at the back.  “What is it?” said Sue, her spasmodic breathing suspended. “The organ of the College chapel”, Jude replied. “The organist practising I suppose.  It’s the anthem from the Seventy-third Psalm: ‘truly God is loving unto Israel’.  Sue sobbed again. “O, O my babies! They have done no harm! Why should they have been taken away, and not I?”

There was another stillness – broken at last by two persons in conversation somewhere without. “They are talking about us, no doubt” sobbed Sue, “We are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men”.

Jude listened. “No, they are not talking of us” he said; “They are two clergymen of different views, arguing about the eastward position. Good God – the eastward position, and all creation groaning.”

In Thomas Hardy’s most sceptical novel, Jude the Obscure, Jude and Sue have found all their children dead, hanged by the eldest child because he knows their parents cannot support them.  The story above is used by Dr David Tripp1 as an example of the clash between worship in church and our actual everyday experience in life which can lead to a crisis in belief.

However, I merely want to look at the “eastward position” the clergymen were arguing over.  One of the things that strikes me (and others) as we walk into St Thomas’ is the beautifully elaborate window at the west end above the organ, and the much less elaborate window at the east end above the altar.

Normally, the most elaborate window would be at the east end. Did the Church builders make a mistake, or was there some special reason for There is a lad here to be where it is? It is of course a very good message to have – it allows us to finish the sentence ourselves – “There is a lad here with 5 loaves and 2 small fishes, let’s offer our gifts to God too, and see them multiplied.”

“The eastward position” – how come? We need to go back to the synagogues of Jesus’s time. The synagogue was the place where the Torah, the Books of the Law, were kept – they were by way of being the Ark of the Covenant. This ark always pointed beyond itself to the Holy of Holies in the Jerusalem Temple.  So synagogues were built with an orientation towards Jerusalem.

But for Christians, the synagogue facing the Temple was no longer needed – God no longer resided there for them, especially after the destruction of the Temple by Roman forces in 70 AD.

Christians looked east, towards the rising sun.  This was not because they worshipped the sun, they worshipped the Son. Psalm 19 is often interpreted as a story about Christ. “The sun comes forth as a bridegroom leaving his chamber … its rising is from the end of the heavens and its circuit to the end of them.” The sun speaks of the whole of creation worshipping Christ.  Christ comes forth from the bridal chamber of the virgin mother and now pours out His light on the whole creation. Christ is the place where the glory of God resides – with his incarnation, our human nature becomes the place where God resides; we enthrone him in our hearts, we become other Christs.

Our word “orientation” comes from the Latin “Oriens”, meaning east. Prayer towards the east has been part of the Christian tradition probably since apostolic times; prayer towards the east means going out of our chambers to meet the coming Christ. He comes with the dawn, shedding His light in the darkness. “Behold he is coming with the clouds, and every eye shall see him, everyone who pierced Him, and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him” (Revelations 1 7, and see also John 19 37, quoting Zechariah 12 10). In Matthew 24 30, “Then, (on the last day) the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and all the nations of the earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky, with power and great glory.”

The sign of the Son of Man is of course the Cross, the sign of God’s Love, the sign of His victory over the darkness, the victory of the One who rose from the dead.  The Cross and the East therefore come together – I’m reminded of that each time I celebrate at St Thomas’; if I lean back only a little, the cross with its Crown of Thorns behind the altar touches my head! It’s a sign to me that I share in Christ’s resurrection life, I also share his passion and death.

Jude refers to ‘creation groaning’, thinking no doubt of St Paul’s words in Romans 8. Creation, like us is in need of redemption and our liturgy, as Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI says2, is a cosmic liturgy – the whole cosmos prays withus. “I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all to Myself” (John 12 32).

The same Pope goes on to talk of the altar which also looks east. The altar enables us to become the contemporaries of the Sacrifice of the Lamb, bringing Heaven into our assembling together and takes us beyond ourselves into the communion of Saints. The altar is the place where heaven is opened up, and we look up to Jesus, the Lamb that was slain.

This is what the book of Revelation is all about, the heavenly liturgy.

St Paul echoes the feelings of Sue and of Jude in our opening quotation. “We know the whole creation has been groaning as if in childbirth right up to the present. Not only that, but we ourselves, who have the first-fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of

our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? But if we wait for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently” (Romans 8 22 – 25).

We live in “in-between times”, but always looking east for Christ’s coming. Meanwhile, there is this constant call for us to follow Him, not arguing about the “eastward position” but, groaning ourselves, being with those who like Sue and Jude are also groaning at what life sometimes inflicts. “Truly God is loving unto Israel.”

1. Dr David Tripp, The Study of liturgy, SPCK 1992
2. Joseph, Cardinal Ratzinger, The Spirit of the Liturgy, St Ignatius Press, 2000

Report on the 55th Synod of the Diocese of Auckland
6 to 8 September 2018

Synod commenced on Thursday evening with an opening Eucharist in St Mary’s Church.  In a break with past years the Sermon was delivered by a lay person, Chris Clarke from St George’s Epsom.  The theme was Lost in Translation’ and Chris began with Rev Samuel Marsden’s Christmas service in 1814.  Marsden had some fluency in Te reo, and a friend Ruatara to assist with translation.  Even so, how much did the 400 Maori gathered really understand a story involving sheep and shepherds, a census, a baby in a manger?  Yet, to quote Chris, “Marsden’s words, inspired by the Holy Spirit, helped ignite a movement that continues to touch each one of us.” 

200 years later we have another Marsden moment where the good news message is being lost in translation.  Only 16% of New Zealanders attend services at least once a month (9% attend weekly) and over 57% feel their local church has either no impact, or a negative one, on their community.  We are at a tipping point where either:

  • Faith is seen as increasingly irrelevant; or alternatively
  • Faith is reimagined and the good news is both ‘seen and heard’

The reasons for optimism are our courage and humility, our ability to hold diversity together, and our faith that God is active in our world.  We know the good news story – we need to tell it well.

Following the service, we assembled in Holy Trinity and the Bishops’ Charge was delivered by Bishops Ross Bay and Jim White.  We all stood in memory of the 10 clergy and 3 laity who had died since the last Synod. 

The main points covered in the Charge were:

At its meeting in May the General Synod passed legislation which provides for the blessing of same sex relationships.  It is evident after many years of discussion there will never be a clear consensus.  It is very difficult to reach a compromise when the underlying issue is the interpretation of Scripture.

Auckland City Mission is preparing for a $90 million building redevelopment on its current site.  The project is called Mission Home Ground and will accommodate administrative and social services plus provide detox beds and apartments for the homeless.  This is a first for New Zealand.  The need for Mission services and support is ever increasing and the Mission treasures the relationships it has with parishes. $72 million has already been raised out of the $90 million needed.  There will be an appeal in Lent 2019 for parishes to contribute to the building.

The general business of Synod included discussion and voting on several Bills and Motions.  The two we consider of most interest to the Parish are:

Motion 3   Suicide Prevention and Intervention:

This expresses concern at the scope of the suicide problem in New Zealand and establishes a policy whereby suicide intervention training be compulsory for all stipend clergy and paid youth ministers, and recommended for all unpaid youth ministers.  We are encouraged to consider ways our churches can become safe places and sanctuaries.

Motion 10 Rationalisation of Ministry Units and a Process for the Closure of Churches:

This is of some relevance to us as it encourages Ministry Units to develop their own criteria for the process of rationalisation when times are challenging.  The initiative for developing a strategy or ‘way forward’ comes from the Ministry Unit itself and the Diocesan Council’s role is a consultative one.

The Healthy Church model was presented in the Bishops’ Charge (and at our recent General Meeting with Archdeacon Michael Berry). It is a pie graph divided into four dimensions: Knowing God / Shaping Community / Growing in Christ / Living Beyond Ourselves

“We exist not for ourselves, but to see God’s reign come on earth.  We want to develop each person’s ability to bear witness and to serve.  Because mission is part of the Church’s DNA, we long to see a church visibly serving its community and confident in inviting others to be part of its life.”

If any of these matters raise questions or concerns please feel free to talk with one of your Synod representatives.  A copy of the Synod Sermon is available on request.   

Signed by Synod Representatives:
Rev. Bob Driver, Steve Anderson, Pat Sallis

Services at Christmas

Patronal Service (21 December) at 6.00 PM. Picnic on the Lawn, Carols in Church, a Christingle service with the children. Further details in the Pew Sheets

Christmas Eve (24 December) at 11.45 PM

Christmas Day (25 December) at 9.00 AM