The Mission of God in our Diocese will be shaped by ...Waikato Archdeaconry Speaks Out
Thanks to the hospitality of St David's and St George's, representatives of the Waikato archdeaconry met last night in Dinsdale to engage in the work set out by the Episcopal Commission. It was a pizza-driven evening that replicated meetings taking place across the Diocese and giving voice to the hopes and challenges that we see in our future.
The final question of the evening considered what the major factors influencing the future of God's mission in the Diocese might be. To that end we split into groups and recorded what each group identified. We encourage you to reflect on these lists to see where you agree and disagree; to identify what the gaps might be; and to pray. In order for the Diocese to respond to these challenges we will need to work together - every part of the Body of Christ has a contribution to make.
Story Published: 19th of June - 2019
Connected June 2019The world is changing before our eyes
In this edition:
- Pentecost and climate change?
- Insulation laws for rental homes
- Paid staff on Vestries
- Register for the clergy conference
- and much more...
Story Published: 5th of June - 2019
Bishop PhilipA video message from Bishop Philip - May 2019
Bishop Philip has recorded a new video message. To see it, click on this link. If you wish to receive it regularly please click on the subscribe link at the bottom of the message and enter your details.
You may also wish to subscribe to our new youtube channel: Diocese of Waikato & Taranaki.
Story Published: 13th of May - 2019
ConnectedConnected May 10, 2019
In this edition:
- Reflection: Choices
- NZ Sign Week Challenge - PIZZA prize
- Episcopal Commission Update
- Strandz Newsletter
- and more ...
Story Published: 10th of May - 2019
ConnectedConnected Easter 2019
connected easter 2019
In this edition:
- Chrism, Ordination and Renewal of Vows
- New Vicar installed at All Saints', Matamata
- Aaron Hardy becomes Chaplain at Waikato Diocesan School for Girls
- Acts of Kindness: Dio Girls strike again
- Bishop Philip's address on Euthanasia
- and much more ...
Story Published: 18th of April - 2019
EuthanasiaDiocesan Response to Euthanasia and End-of-Life Care
For the past few months a Diocesan Team has been working to compile a set of resources that responds to issues raised by the Hon David Seymour’s End-of-Life Choice Bill. This process revealed the need to place such a bill in the context of death, dying, and end-of-life care. Therefore the resources compiled by the team extend well-beyond legislative issues. There are five main areas covered by the "Euthanasia and End-of-Life Care Reader" that has been distributed to all our ministry units.
- Terms and Legislation: a short video; an overview of the terms associated with euthanasia and end-of-life care; some clarification around what Hon David Seymour intended by sponsoring the End-of-Life-Choice Bill.
- Care of Dying and Palliative Care: a series of lectures on death, dying and funerals; assorted approaches to spiritual care provided to those who are dying; suffering from a medical perspective.
- Theology and Ethics: a miscellany of theological rationales and secular perspectives.
- International Voice: submissions made to our Select Committee from a Dutch medical practitioner, and a journalist; a short article considering some international aspects of euthanasia.
- The Stories: video-links and select committee submissions from people experiencing end-of-life care or living/working those in a palliative condition.
The Reader includes secular and non-secular opinions and arguments. It is intended to reflect a wide spectrum of beliefs held by groups and individuals inside and outside the church. You will not agree with everything you read. Some of the material may upset you. We encourage you to engage with this in the spirit in which it was prepared: prayerfully.
In addition, Bishop Philip has recorded an address on Euthanasia that we urge you to watch and share with your ministry unit. It has been uploaded to our Diocesan YouTube channel and is available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YxXpHMb4feM&t=15s. The address runs for approximately 20 minutes and we invite you to share it widely; some of you may wish to show it on a Sunday morning during the sermon slot.
Peace and courage be with each of you as you engage with this important material.
Diocesan Team (Rev Julian Perkins, Heather Major, Rev Andrew McKean, Rev Canon Sue Pickering, Rev Juliet Drage, Ven Stephen Black)
Story Published: 5th of April - 2019
ConnectedConnected 28 March
In this edition:
- Reflection: Take a Breath
- Deacons - new resources available
- Waikato Chaplaincy seeking volunteers
- New liturgical resources in te Reo Maori
- Update from Episcopal Commission
Story Published: 30th of March - 2019
Joint Press Release50 tolls of the bell at 3pm today
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
Following careful discussion with the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet who are representing those government agencies working with the Christchurch Muslim community, we invite all Churches who are able to do so, to ring the bell of their Church 50 times, once for each of those killed in Christchurch last Friday.
It is imperative that this tolling of the bells throughout our communities happens at precisely 3.00 pm tomorrow Friday 22 March.
This has been timed to occur between the broadcast Call to Prayer starting at 1.30 pm and funerals of victims which are to take place at 4.00 pm tomorrow.
This is to be a tangible expression of aroha and solidarity from communities across Aotearoa / New Zealand. The bells of our Churches are another way that the voices of all our communities across this country can be heard.
Cardinal John Dew – Roman Catholic Church of Aotearoa New Zealand.
Archbishop Philip Richardson - Anglican Church of Aotearoa New Zealand
Archbishop Don Tamihere – Anglican Church of Aotearoa New Zealand
Story Published: 22nd of March - 2019
Remembering those who have diedTwo-minute silence and tolling of bells
Dear sisters and brothers in Christ,
Our Prime Minister has called for two minutes silence tomorrow which I encourage all Waikato and Taranaki Anglicans to observe. It will follow the call to prayer that will be broadcast live at 1.30. The two minutes of silence will be at about 1.32.
You will have received a notice from me already about the tolling of bells 50 times for the 50 victims at 3.00pm. Please do not ring the bells at any other time other than that agreed to with our Prime Minister.
Many other observances and vigils are planned and you will make personal choices around those.
If there is a Mosque or Islamic Centre near you I encourage you to go and express support.
If there is an inter-faith group in your community can I encourage you to join it. The one I have been a member of for several years now is a great blessing.
If you are in communities where these options are not present then please open our churches for prayer, especially around and during the two-minute silence. If you have Muslim neighbours, invite them into our church to use for prayer. Be with them in solidarity ensuring hospitality and protection.
With every blessing
Bishop of Waikato and Taranaki
Story Published: 22nd of March - 2019
Anglican Youth ResourcesHELPING YOUNG PEOPLE PROCESS THE CHRISTCHURCH TRAGEDY
The National Anglican Youth Educator network has put together a series of resources to help young people process and articulate their grief. Please read the full article here.
Story Published: 19th of March - 2019
Connected ExtraConnected Extra: Archbishops respond to terrorism in Christchurch
This issue records the Archbishops' response to the shocking attacks in Christchurch as well as some liturgical resources.
Story Published: 19th of March - 2019
ConnectedConnected 6 March
Highlights from this issue:
- Lent-in-a-tent (Reflection)
- ELS: Bishop of Waikato and Taranaki releases first webinar
- Children and Families resource link (Strandz)
- New Te Paipera Tapu Bible App from BSNZ
- St John's College Funding
- Waikato Cathedral Parish of St Peter : Tuesday April 16, 10.00am
Taranaki Interim Cathedral: Thursday April 18, 10.30am
Story Published: 6th of March - 2019
ConnectedConnected 22 February
Highlights from this issue:
- "Wear your heart on your sleeve" - Ash Wednesday
- St Andrew's, Inglewood Update
- Seasons for Growth - Volunteers and Sponsors
- EfM Graduation (New Plymouth)
- Kiwi Bible prize winners
- Prayers, Vacancies, Registrations for Bishop's Training Day ...
Story Published: 22nd of February - 2019
The Clark ScholarshipA scholarship for the children of Clergy
The James and Edna Clark Scholarship paperwork is now available.
1. The purpose of the scholarship is to provide assistance towards the cost of tertiary study to the children of any person who has been, or is, a clergyperson of the Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand.
2. The scholarship will be awarded to those who have shown pronounced talent in some aspects in the study of science or biology at secondary school and wish to continue their studies in the fields of science or medicine at a university.
To find out more about this opportunity please access the following documents:
Story Published: 16th of February - 2019
ConnectedConnected Extra - February 7
- Vacancy: Priest-in-Charge, Te Kauwhata (0.25)
- New Vicar appointed to All Saints', Matamata
- Diocesan Prayers
Story Published: 7th of February - 2019
ConnectedConnected 1 February 2019
- Induction and Installation of Rev Julie Guest to St John's Te Awamutu
- Update on Motion 7 Roadshow
- Update on Euthanasia-Response Team
- Update on Episcopal Commission
- Prize Draw
Story Published: 1st of February - 2019
ConnectedConnected 19th December
- Staff update
- Christmas hours
- Education and Formation 2019
- And more ,,,
Story Published: 20th of December - 2018
Children and Families Ministry NetworkC&F Advent Resources and more ...
Keep up-to-date with the Child and Family Network Newsletter!
Connecting Our Child and Family Ministries – A Quick Intro
A Very Merry Christmas
This communication includes link to Advent and Christmas resources, plus a request for the parishes to send in details and/or pictures of your child and family focussed Christmas activates, celebrations, and worship services.
Story Published: 17th of December - 2018
ConnectedConnected 5th December
- Diocesan Ordinations
- Anglican Schools Internship Awarded!
- Education and Formation 2019
- And more ,,,
Story Published: 7th of December - 2018
ConnectedConnected 21st November 2018
Story Published: 22nd of November - 2018
Connected ExtraThe Esablishment of the Bishop's Commission
Story Published: 16th of November - 2018
Towards a world without rape and violence"Thursday in Black"
Tēnā koutou katoa,
The Council for Ecumenism recently endorsed the WCC Ecumenical initiative “Thursdays in black”. The campaign grew out of the WCC Decade of Churches in which the stories of rape as a weapon of war, gender injustice, abuse, violence, and many tragedies, that grow outward from such violence, became all the more visible. But what also became visible was women’s resilience, agency and personal efforts to resist such violations.
This is where we, as a Province, make a stand against rape and gender-based violence by wearing black on Thursdays. The campaign is simple but profound. Wear black on Thursdays to declare you are part of the global movement resisting attitudes and practices that permit rape and violence. Show your respect for women who are resilient in the face of injustice and violence. Encourage others to join you.
Information can be found on the WCC website: https://www.oikoumene.org/en/get-involved/thursdays-in-black
In their most recent October Conference the Methodist church in NZ adopted a resolution commending wearing black on Thursdays to all their members. It would be an important stand if Anglican Churches would join them to halt such horrific social behaviour.
The Rev Jacynthia Murphy Operations Support Manager Anglican Church General Synod Office
Story Published: 13th of November - 2018
He Taonga TongarewaA Highly-prized and Precious Gift
In Advent 2019 our Province will celebrate the 30th Anniversary of A New Zealand Prayer Book | He Karakia Mihinare o Aotearoa. This extraordinary expression of our faith is recognised around the world for its language and theology. To help people understand how it came into being Geoffrey Haworth has completed a history: He Taonga Tongarewa : A Highly-prized and Precious Gift . It was launched at General Synod | Te Hīnota Whānui and copies are available for just $20 (plus P&P) from the General Secretary's Office. To get your copy email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 09 521 4439.
Story Published: 9th of November - 2018
Liturgical Te Reo ResourcesGeneral Secretary Releases HKMOA Audio Files+
The General Secretary's Office has made some historic and invaluable Te Reo Maaori liturgical resources available to the Province. We strongly recommend them to you and celebrate this gift to the church. For us in the Diocese of Waikato and Taranaki there are some very familiar voices. Bishop Ben Te Haara, Kiingi Ihaka, Meremere Penfold, Te Miringa Wynyard, Bishop David Moxon and Tureiti Moxon all contribute to this important project.
- Te Poi -Kiingi Ihaka
- HKMOA 404
- HKMOA 476
In addition, you will find pdf versions of:
- Readings from the Apocrypha
- Celebrating Common prayer
Our thanks to Rev Michael Hughes, Jacynthia Murphy and the team for making these available!
Story Published: 9th of November - 2018
Connected 7 NovemberDiocesan News
Story Published: 7th of November - 2018
ConnectedConnected 24th October
Story Published: 24th of October - 2018
Connected ExtraDiocesan News
Story Published: 16th of October - 2018
Homeless HamiltonCollaborative Event 2018
Homelessness continues to be a major issue throughout New Zealand. Recently Anglican Action, te Whare o te Ata, Poverty Action Waikato and Go Eco worked together to help people understand (and experience) the seriousness of this issue. Below is a short excerpt from the website that records what happened.
To remember those who are homeless in Hamilton and to educate our youth (and ourselves!!) an event for youth at Te Whare O te Ata in Fairfield, Hamilton was organised. It included discussions, real-life stories, art, music, movies, and food focused around homelessness in Aotearoa New Zealand. While most of the kids created sleeping areas out of what we could find, some of us adults slept in our cars...
Story Published: 16th of October - 2018
Connected 10 October 2018Diocesan News
Story Published: 12th of October - 2018
Otago UniversityProfessional Development: Chaplaincy & Leadership
The Department of Theology and Religion at the University of Otago offers qualifications in Chaplaincy: the Postgraduate Certificate in Chaplaincy, the Postgraduate Diploma in Chaplaincy and the Master of Chaplaincy.
These programmes are designed as professional qualifications for those who serve as Chaplains in a variety of settings and who seek advanced professional education to enhance their work, and also for those who want to train to be Chaplains. With the help of chaplaincy organisations in New Zealand, they have designed practical programmes that will meet the needs of chaplains in diverse settings.
· All papers are offered by Distance Learning
· Admission requirements are a degree or equivalent three-year qualification (not necessarily in Theology).
Papers offered in 2019:
- MINS 410 Pastoral Care in Dying, Grief and Loss (Semester 2, 2019)
- MINS 411 Chaplaincy in Diverse Contexts (Semester 1, 2019)
- BIBS 412 The Book of Job (Semester 2, 2019)
- CHTH 415: Reconciliation, Christian Ethics and Public Theology (Semester 2, 2019)
- CHTH 422: Citizenship, Democracy and Discipleship (Semester 1, 2019)
- CHTH 423 Theology and Human Well-Being (Semester 1, 2019)
Papers offered in other years:
- MINS 408 Cultures, Migration and Faith
- MINS 409 Chaplaincy Studies
- MINS 412 Church in Mission: Theology in Changing Cultures
- MINS 413 Missional God, Missional People
- BIBS 413 God, Suffering and Justice
- CHTH 416 The Theology of Bonhoeffer
- CHTH 420 Public Theology and Social Justice
For more information on Chaplaincy qualifications please see here: http://www.otago.ac.nz/
This includes information about the new Masters of Faith-Based Leadership and Management, and Postgraduate Diploma of Faith-Based Leadership and Management, which may be of interest.
To find out more about Theology and Religion at Otago:
Or for more information, contact email@example.com
Story Published: 9th of October - 2018
Motion 7 Update: Post SynodMotion 7: What's next?
Grace and peace to you,
At General Synod Te Hīnota Whānui earlier this year, a motion was passed about how each Bishop or Pīhopa may proceed to safeguard their integrity as well as the integrity of the priest and ministry unit when same-gendered couples who are in a civil union or civil marriage approach them seeking a blessing. This is commonly referred to as “Motion 7”.
This motion and the associated legislation:
- Agreed that the decision to allow an individual priest to offer a blessing of a civil union or civil marriage would not rest with General Synod but with an individual diocesan bishop. This recognised that the primary unit of the Anglican Church is the Diocese not the General Synod and that this was a matter which should be worked out locally in and through the relationship between a bishop and that bishop’s clergy and people;
- Provided for a new declaration, to be signed by office holders (lay and ordained), who would no longer have to assent to the General Synod itself and its decisions, but to the Constitution and Canons (the rules) of the Church;
- Determined that—apart from the above change to the declarations—the only other change to the Canons is one which guarantees the integrity of Anglicans who either approve or disapprove of such blessings. It achieves this by making it clear that however individuals exercise their conscience, they cannot be subject to any disciplinary action. This also provides protection from any civil action (for example under Human Rights legislation) against an individual priest who does not agree with blessings.
At our Waikato and Taranaki Diocesan Synod (Sep 28-30) a presentation was delivered to all present that briefly outlined how the Anglican Church had reached this decision; described the assorted legislative effects; and outlined a roadshow available to all ministry units. The purpose of such a roadshow is to provide insight to the Bishop (by way of feedback) as he approaches any decisions he is obliged to make arising from Motion 7.
It is important to emphasise that no one has to change their position in relation to blessing civilly-ordered same-gendered relationships and furthermore, the beliefs of individuals and ministry units are safeguarded and need not alter.
At this time Bishop Philip has not made any decisions about whether to authorise any applications to bless a civilly-ordered same-gender relationship. This is because he wishes to better understand where his Ministry Units locate themselves on this issue. Furthermore, it is important to note that the Bishop is not seeking to re-visit the theology but rather hear the voice of the ministry units.
A roadshow/presentation will soon be available to any ministry unit that wishes to contribute to this process. This presentation is flexible and will offer:
- A short history of the Anglican Church’s 50-year exploration of issues of sexuality;
- An overview of the legislation passed at General Synod (including written and recorded experiences of our General Synod Representatives’ experience of Motion 7);
- The effect of such legislation;
- A resource booklet;
- A confidential spectrum exercise (miniature survey) which will be used to reflect participants’ views on this matter in a more nuanced way than a ‘yes – no’ straw poll; and
- A multi-media facilitated discussion on issues of sexual identity will also be available.
In addition to this, it was acknowledged that some additional work needed to be done to understand the effect of this legislation for Co-operating Parishes and also how this impacts on Chaplains in a variety of related or independent entities such as Hospitals, Tertiary institutes and Schools.
If you have any questions regarding this process or wish to invite the Diocesan Team to meet with your ministry unit please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Diocesan Team consists of:
Ven Stephen Black
Ms Imogene Burgess
Mr Haydn Burke
Rev Sue Burns
Prof Sue Court
Ven Malcolm French
Ven Joyce Marcon
Story Published: 5th of October - 2018
Bishops Charge 2018We are family, we are disciples, we are servants
The Most Reverend Philip Richardson
Kia whakakorōria ki te Atua i runga rawa, kia mau te rongo ki runga ki te whenua, kia pai te whakaaro ki nga tangata katoa.
Hōnore ki te Arikinui te Kingi ko Tūheitia. Ki te kāhui ariki katoa, ma te Atua rātou e manaaki e tiaki i nga wā katoa. Ki te waka Tainui tēnā koutou. Ki te iwi o Ngāti Maniapoto, tēnā koutou. Ki te Pīhopatanga o Aotearoa ki te Amorangi ki Te Manawa o Te Wheke, tēnā koutou.
E te maungatapu e tū ra, ko Taranaki, tēnā koe: ki te waka Tokomaru, te waka Aotea, te waka Kurahaupō, tēnā koutou. Nga mihi nui ki te Pīhopatanga o Aotearoa ki te Amorangi ki te Upoko o Te Ika.
We have glorified God with the first language of this country.
We have honoured Kīngi Tuheitia and his household, we have greeted the Tainui tribal confederation, including Ngāti Maniapoto, as well as our partners in mission from the Maori Bishopric of Te Manawa o Te Wheke.
We have acknowledged the presence of the sacred mountain of Taranaki. We have acknowledged the Taranaki tribes as well as our partners in mission from the Maori Bishopric of Te Upoko O Te Ika.
Thanks to all of you who gather for this synod – you have had two synods this year – which is probably one too many!! However, this is my fourth Synod and my fourth Charge. I want to thank my very good friend and colleague Jeremy Johnson who is the acting Chancellor for this Synod. Jeremy is the Chancellor of the Diocese of Christchurch and one of my two Primatial legal advisors. Jeremy has, more than anyone I know, worked tirelessly to assist the Church to address the challenge of facing into the realities of identity in Christ and human sexuality. He has brought grace, dignity, intelligence and experience. I am in his debt, the Church is in his debt. He is a passionate disciple of Jesus and an inspiration to me.
My thanks particularly to the senior leadership team of this Diocese who have carried significant additional demands and workload since the beginning of this year. You are absolute stars and it is a genuine privilege to call you my colleagues
I want to acknowledge Belinda and our children who have been so patient and kind in the face of my absences. I love you more than I can find adequate words to express.
For those who have served the Diocese, and this Synod in particular, who have died during this last year we give thanks to God. And we also hold the many others known to each of us here tonight in this moment of thanksgiving. The names of those notified to the Bishops office will be included in the final version of this Charge for the record of the Diocese. They include; the Reverend Geoff Ginevar, Mr Ian Mitchell.
Please stand. May they rest in peace and rise in glory
Artirikona Tikituterangi Raumati
Archdeacon Tiki could trace his whakapapa back over 1,000 years. They say every great preacher really only has one sermon and many ways of saying the same thing! Tiki had three sermons: “The truth shall set you free”, “peace at all costs”, “he tangata, he tangata, he tangata”. Rooted in whakapapa and whenua, - Gospel driven proclamation.
These simple Gospel messages straddle the fault lines between Maori and Pakeha in Church and Society. In the end we will all, in the prophetic words of Te Whiti o Rongomai, be speckled potatoes, we will all be of mixed whakapapa Maori and Pakeha, all that might divide us from our past and present will be drawn together – so honestly face the past and we will be liberated for a new future, a society based on peace, truth, justice and right-relationship.
Much to the consternation of many, Tikituterangi – great, great grandson of Te Whiti o Rongomai - asked to be buried in the churchyard at St Mary’s New Plymouth; a conflicted and difficult space, especially for Maori. This Church stood on one side of the war that saw the illegal confiscation of all land from Taranaki Maori. In death he wanted to build bridges, to help us face into our history in order to build a future for our children and their children. That was his life’s work. We are all into this together. For him this was the message of the cross, the message of the Gospel. This was the focus of his discipleship of Jesus. So he asked to lie next to the soldiers and the Crown agents who took the land of his people. Reconciliation is the Gospel: It cost the life of the son of God. Reconciliation is almost unknown - we have peace in many places but that is not reconciliation. That deep God-given gift: that takes time, sacrifice, perseverance, honesty, it is costly – it cost the life of the son of God. Presence is essential in reconciliation. You have to be there it is intergenerational work.
Manawa o te Wheke and Upoko o te Ika
The past year has seen considerable deepening of our relationships with nga Amorangi o te Manawa o te Wheke me te Upoko o te Ika. This has been at a local level and at a Diocesan level. In particular it is wonderful to welcome our partner in mission the Reverend Ngira Simmonds. Ngira you are highly respected and you are among family. Your role as Manutaki is demanding and wide ranging. Whatever we can do to support your ministry we will try to do. We need to address our common mission collaboratively and distinctively. We will seek to be good partners. Thank you for being here.
Repeating the heart of it:
Over the years, in successive Bishop’s Charges, we have repeatedly identified that there are three intersecting priorities in the proclamation of the Gospel, three points of focus:
worship / prayer / thanksgiving;
discipleship / formation / education;
commitment to community / service / outreach / evangelism.
To repeat the heart of it: the Gospel that Jesus and all the New Testament writers proclaimed was simply “the present availability of life in the Kingdom of God to everyone through trusting Jesus”. It’s the good news that you can begin a new kind of life with God right now by placing your trust in Jesus and his words. It’s an invitation to participate now in the life of God, joining him in what he’s doing right now on Earth. Life under God’s rule is available to anyone who wants it, and we enter that life by trusting Jesus (which is what “believing in” him means). That’s the good news Jesus and the apostles preached.
As we live out and incarnate this gospel, we also need to be ready to “give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope you have” (1 Peter 3: 15). We need to be ready to tell someone the good news when the opportunity arises, with gentleness and respect, of course, but also with clarity and boldness. But there’s a challenge for us here: When was the last time someone asked you to give the reason for the hope (or faith or love) you have? It’s easy to become consumed by coming up with answers to questions that nobody is asking, rather than focusing on living authentically faithful lives in close enough proximity to people who might actually ask us some questions about the hope we have!
State of the Diocese:
Let me talk a little about the state of the Diocese. The Road Map presentation tomorrow will provide the third update on the work that has been undertaken by many people to address the serious financial, governance and management challenges we have had to face in the Diocese. We are facing squarely into some up-hill challenges.
Our congregations are growing older, there is decline in attendances and traditional congregational life is tough. It is hard to make traditional congregational life work in the midst of significant social trends that have been going on for decades. This is especially true if we wish to remain embedded in particular communities, serving the whole community. “Gathered” congregations are sustainable especially in large urban areas.. Bishop Helen-Ann and I detailed these social trends in the Synod Charge last year, based largely on the research work of Dr Kevin Ward over the past 40 years. So much of this will not to be addressed by ‘doing what we have always done harder or better’.
Here is the key message from last year: belonging needs to happen before believing can occur. And this is the key question: How do our churches become the kinds of communities to which those completely outside the Church may make come kind of connection, and therefore might possibly someday end up belonging, and so eventually come to believe?
All of that said, it has been my privilege to visit many communities across the Diocese and indeed across the country where this ‘place to belong’ has been very evident. Those visits have shown me some remarkable examples of “mission against the odds”. Just to mention two. I had a great visit to Katikati earlier this year. The Reverend Brendon Gibbs has been there as Vicar for as long as I have been a bishop in the Diocese. It is a strong, diverse, positive congregation with a varied range of ministries and responses to the local town and district. In no small part this is due to Brendon’s leadership. It was abundantly clear to me just how embedded in that community he is. His intimate knowledge of the people and their lives, his clear delight in them and the way his life is woven with theirs. This is the heart of ordained ministry, faithful, deliberate, dealing with the ordinary stuff. Ordinary - extraordinary ministry!
Another visit that touched me was a recent visit to St Mark’s Nawton, to Joel and Suzanne Rowse. They kept telling me how ordinary their ministry is, how they were doing nothing particularly innovative. Well …. I am not sure I agree! Again what I witnessed is their deep commitment to that community and its people; faithful, resilient, surprised by how God won’t let them leave. People clearly have a place to belong. This is deeply sacrificial ministry.
There is great strength and courage in these types of ministries and I honour them.
I am delighted in all sorts of signs of God’s faithfulness in the Diocese. The way God honours our endeavours. Here is a list of many new initiatives or developments. Let me highlight a few:
- 23 younger people (in their 20’s and 30’s) offering themselves for ministry across the Diocese over past 3 years:
- Food Together
- Marfell Community Housing Opportunity
- Recycle a Bicycle and Red Cross relationship
- Waitara Community: Jared and Jess Dixon – sacrificial, intentional engagement with those on the edge.
- New Youth Programmes in Waikato and Taranaki
- Seasons for Growth in Hamilton
- Collaboration with Auckland and Waiapu over discernment
- Collaboration with Te Manawa o Te Wheke (25 years+)
- Kuching Exchange resulting in increased collaboration and new youth exchanges Hamilton Urban Deanery
- Missional collaboration in Hamilton: Anglican Action plus Claudelands
- Lay Leader of a Cooperating Parish: Heather Major
- LiFT Programme: technology, educational quality, 160 people over two years aged from under 10 to over 80
- Two new PhD students in theology for Diocesan Clergy
- Funding for new narrative web portal
- Funding for new youth Catechesis resource.
- Funding for Provincial App with significant Waikato and Taranaki input: eKarakia
- Introduction of Good Soil Collective (3DM) to Diocese
- EfM made available for up to 120 people
- New regular online communication FREE
- New regular Bishop’s Training Days for clergy
- New stewardship resource made available
- Formal exploration and promotion of Parish Nursing
- Normalised use of online feedback and registration tools
- New community Garden at St David’s and St George’s (Dinsdale) directly benefitting school children and families
- Two new Selwyn Centres (Chartwell and Dinsdale)
- Collaboration with Te Rautini providing significant income to Dinsdale, refurbished interior, and youth worker(s)
- New lay Deans in North Taranaki with the “Workshop” project underway
- Archdeacons with portfolios: demonstrating delegation and experimentation
I want to pay tribute to the leadership of the Diocesan Manager and the small Diocesan administration team and the greater interdependence which is growing with the Bishop’s Staff team.
- Diocesan Staff:
- Additional staff capacity within the Diocesan Office within existing budgets
- Increasingly vibrant office environment
- Rhythm of annual staff reviews introduced
- Balanced 2019 operating budget
- Revised Parish Accounting fee structure using assessment formula and continuing to be subsidised
- Refreshed Finance and Audit and MMRS committees operating
- Developing partnership with Manawa o Te Wheke including prospect of co-location with Rev Ngira Simmonds.
- Growing policy and guidelines portfolio addressing key issues
- Growing understanding of the management requirements for the future of the Diocese
I want to also affirm:
- Trust Management are providing up to date, easy to access and robust financial reporting and analysis and we are developing an increasingly positive and proactive relationship;
- Diocesan team have responded to changes and additions really well and continue to embrace new challenges and opportunities;
- Stephen Black for his enthusiasm for exploring what might be in his role as Director of Vocations;
- Robin Brockie as Executive Financial Governor for his continuing insight and analysis over financial matters across the entire Diocesan structure;
- Bishop’s Staff for engaging on a journey about their growing leadership role
- Standing Committee for working with a new management approach and allowing time to test this
The bishops spoke last year about a major initiative to develop a range of self-sustaining embedded communities.
Small communities of Christians, embedded in our towns and suburbs, living out a rule of life with a focus on
- Prayer - a daily rhythm of prayer
- Discipleship – lifelong commitment to growing into Christ and intentional discipling of others
- Service – particularly of those most vulnerable and marginalized in our society
What might these look like? (from the 2017 Bishops’ Charge)
- A group of families and individuals living in their own homes who gather together for prayer and eucharist, intentional reflection on what it means to be disciples, and committed in their local context to serving the last, the lost and the least
- A couple of houses in the Catalyst housing initiative which Simon Cayley will speak about tomorrow, one house could be home to a family who commit to that community long term while the other house is for others to come for shorter periods of time to be part of the ministry of that place.
- A retreat centre with a focus on healing and education, spiritual formation and refuge. Again with a small community of hosts at it’s heart offering hospitality and committed to prayer, discipleship and service.
- A social enterprise such as a cafe with a couple of families owning and running it, as a means of income and community connection.
- A social enterprise responding to employment among young men run by members of one of the embedded communities.
- An embedded community offering support to young people in one of our smaller towns where there is little for young people to do and where gang culture is strongly determinative.
- What would it look like if an embedded community of young adults was linked to one of our schools and involved in the provision and training of Chaplaincy.
- Or a community associated with the life and ministry of our Cathedrals?
- There are some exciting possibilities for partnership with Manawa o te Wheke and Upoko o te Ika in a number of our communities.
- A current discussion is taking place about what a relationship between some of these embedded communities and our Theological College St John’s College might look like. Perhaps with students living in one of the embedded communities within our Diocese while continuing with their studies. So for a period, say a year, their theological training and education will be from within the context of this disciplined life of prayer, intentional discipleship and service.
So this new mode of being, which is as old as our faith, might be that, instead of the vicar in the vicarage, the local expression of ministry and mission could be a small community of Christians living in a way that commends the gospel to the wider community in which they are set. It is not hard to imagine that this way of being church would also have an impact on how we might gather the local Christian community together for Sunday worship. We are seeing the establishment of such communities in a number of places in the Diocese. By next year Synod we will have some of these speaking for themselves.
Bishops staff team:
I want to particularly acknowledge the Bishop’s Staff team: Archdeacons, Deans, Diocesan Manager and Director of Vocations. My goodness you have stepped up! To the Reverend Sue Burns, thank you so much for working with us at each meeting, helping us to build a healthy culture, and to help us reflect carefully and strategically.
I signalled at our special Synod in January that I believed smaller clusters of parishes was important to foster closer relationships, inter-dependence in mission and mutual support. I have been deeply grateful for the hard work of Trevor Harrison, Christine Scott, Paul Weeding, Joyce Marcon, Val Riches and Malcolm French. In Waikato Archdeaconry the model of co-Archdeacons seems to be working well with Paul and Joyce supporting each other while also having particular ministry units they give particular attention to individually. In Piako we are moving to splitting that large and spread out Archdeaconry into two. This will happen immediately following this Synod after final consultation with ministry units about where the line will fall. Archdeacon Malcolm will be responsible for the southern part of Piako. Val Riches has served this Diocese at the most senior level throughout her ministry career. She has been an archdeacon in two archdeaconries and Vicar General for an extended period. She brings wisdom, compassion and an extraordinarily generous spirit to everything she does. Val has indicated to me that she wishes to step down as Archdeacon and while I am sad about that, and will miss her experience and knowledge of the Diocese from Bishop’ Staff, I have had to agree that the time is right in order for her to be able give greater focus to some exciting ministry developments. I am very pleased to announce that the Reverend Terry Ellis has accepted my invitation to serve the northern part of Piako as Archdeacon. Terry has served as a priest throughout the Diocese and in Paeroa for a significant period of time. He also shared his considerable passion and skill as part time diocesan children and family worker for a number of years. Terry brings a humble, pastoral heart to the Bishop’s staff team and I am looking forward to his perspective and his wisdom.
Archdeacons are also picking up specific portfolios and I am grateful that Val will continue to chair Boards of Nomination in the Waikato.
Episcopal leadership going forward
In 1997 this Synod agreed to the amalgamation of the northern parishes of the Diocese of Wellington into the Diocese of Waikato. At the same Synod final agreement was reached on the establishment of a second Bishop for the Diocese. At General Synod in 1998 these developments were approved and on the 14th of February 1999 at Stratford in Taranaki an electoral college of the Diocese elected me as the first bishop in Taranaki. In 2008 the General Synod made the necessary constitutional changes to enable two bishops to share the one position of Diocesan bishop. A first for the Anglican Communion. Dual Episcopacy in that formal sense has lasted for a decade. With the resignation of Bishop Helen-Ann Hartley and the recognition that funding from the Episcopal endowment had not been enough to cover the costs of the Bishops for some years we resolved on the 20th of January this year that I would be the sole bishop in the Diocese. It was agreed that each subsequent synod would receive a report on progress towards resolving matters in a way that would allow consideration of a second bishop. More will be said about financial realities in the “Road Map” update tomorrow. But in short income from the endowment has shrunk, and despite significant cost cutting over the years and especially with only one bishop, we still are not breaking even. Steps are being taken to address that which will be described tomorrow, however I can say that three years ago I wrote a paper for the SJCTB setting out an argument for St John’s funding for the ministry of Bishops. This, after extensive consultation has been approved and from 2019 some funding will be available. This will allow our current structure of one bishop to be fully funded next year and to provide support for those who carry the load of shared leadership.
However I need to say as clearly as I can that the point made by Bishop David Moxon in 1997 that this large and diverse Diocese cannot be adequately led in mission by one bishop remains true. A bishop has unique missional opportunities across Church and Society. Such leadership is necessary in both Waikato and Taranaki. Setting aside the matter of funding we need to urgently address the shape of leadership going forward.
To this end I am intending to appoint a small commission to explore all options. This Commission will be made up of up-to three commissioners from outside the Diocese but will be supported by an advisory group drawn from Standing Committee and Bishop’s Staff.
I will announce further details within the month.
It is true this has been a demanding period to be Primate of the Church in some way a perfect storm. Not only an unprecedented number of changes in episcopal leadership across the province but also generational shifts in leadership of the other two Tikanga which has on several occasions left me feeling as though I was the ‘last primate standing’. We have also had an unprecedented number of complaints to deal with and my small office has been under constant pressure as a result. One of the many reasons I am so grateful to Jeremy Johnson is because of some work he and a colleague are doing for us which will provide a strong and consistent way of addressing complaints.
The passing of Motion 7 at General Synod marked a significant decision point in a process which has been in train since the first Commission on Human sexuality in 1976. The need to facilitate and support processes, especially in the Diocese of Christchurch to support those individuals wishing to disaffiliate, has been demanding and time consuming. The fact that this coincided with an episcopal vacancy in that Diocese added to the challenges. I am grateful for the leadership Archbishop David Moxon provided through the electoral process in Christchurch and the role other bishops will provide in the upcoming Episcopal vacancy in Nelson.
All that said the opportunity to lead this Church at a critical time has been a profound privilege and I am grateful for the support of colleagues and the Grace of our loving God.
Finally a word about the relationship with the Diocese of Kuching. This has spanned more than 25 years and is a fruitful as it has ever been. The Bishop of Kuching, Bishop Danald and Julita have just left the Diocese with a strong commitment to deepen the partnership and to widen it to include our brothers and sisters in Manawa o te Wheke.
Remember the three points of focus we have had before us over the last 5 years in different forms: worship / prayer / thanksgiving; discipleship/ formation / education; commitment to community / service / outreach -evangelism.
Can I leave you with a simple vision that can guide us over the next year:
As the Diocese of Waikato and Taranaki
we are family, we are disciples, we are servants.
Story Published: 2nd of October - 2018
Waikato Anglican YouthWAY on track
In John's Gospel, Jesus described himself as the Way, the Truth and the Life. He called us to follow him and become his disciples. He announced that the only way to the Father was through him. As his disciples we are called to draw people to the Way - to talk to them with great enthusiasm and accuracy about Jesus. In the Diocese of Waikato and Taranaki we commit ourselves to be those disciples who make disciples and we celebrate the launch of Waikato Anglican Youth (WAY).
The first event attracted 60 people from Hamilton and surrounds to an evening of games, LOUD music, and prayer. Check out this video to get an idea of what youth ministry looks like (with a huge thank you to Wayne Speedy, All Saints', Hamilton).
Thanks to Aaron, Wayne, Bradley, Chee and all those who helped to make this event such a huge success at Chartwell Community Church!
And, if you want to help support our Waikato Youth Mission then please purchase a WAY hoodie for yourself or a young person near you! For more details contact email@example.com.
Story Published: 28th of September - 2018
ConnectedSeptember 26th 2018