This past weekend we had the Anglican Diocesan Synod. It was held at St. Paul's in Kāpiti. It was a great weekend of catching up with mates and not many business items but we heard about the City Mission's new building, whakamaru. This is going to be our Advent appeal as a Diocese and we are aiming to raise $365,000 to build the chapel. If you want to find out more about it then click here.
At Synod we also set the Diocesan priorities for 2023:
The most challenging part for me of all of Synod was mentioned in Guy's sermon (you can watch that here), Bishop Justin's charge. Here he talked about churches in our Diocese doing two things:
It was by no means planned like this but is hugely relevant to that challenge as this week we start a new series on Acts. Looking at how a small group becomes a force that the empire is nervous about. How they spread from one small group in Jerusalem to a group that invaded all parts of the Roman society. So as we go through this series and look at how God moved this community to multiply and grow may we pray that too for All Saints. This is a place that has always trained and sent (even if unintentionally) people to do new things. How can we continue to be that place?
I would love to hear what you feel God might be saying to you about multiplication and growth as you pray!
Mā te wā
Kia ora All Saints whānau
Huge week in the life of the Anglican church this week with the funeral for HM Queen Elizabeth II, Many around the globe marveling at the Liturgical worship, the hymns, the message spoke by the Archbishop of Canterbury. Many speaking of the way the Gospel flowed through the service. Praise be to God for such a witness.
My Family and I (Guy) have been in Auckland over the last couple of days on a mission to renew our children’s American Passports as we lead up to our trip at the end of the year. I got to thinking about how people are witnessing the Gospel here in our area and amongst our friends, whānau and neighbors. I am so pleasantly surprised by the way the spirit is moving amongst us. There are so many things I am seeing that fill my heart with Joy. Different House churches meeting together to go deeper together. AYM Houses continuing to push out to young people around them to lead them to a life in Christ that offers so much more than what the world is offering. Watching our intermediate young people have a blast at Intermediate camp (Read the story here). Im involved in several conversations about how different groups can think creatively about meeting people in their community to build relationships in order to share the good news with them.
Continue to pray that Gods spirit would flow through this place! Pray for courage and boldness that each of us would be willing to go out not alone but together in groups. Pray for creativity that groups would spring up with a heart to reach those around them. Pray that our wider parish continues to hold these groups that operate around the edge as we continue to gather.
This week we have our final week of Mission Month which has been a real treat to gather and hear a bunch of different voices in the mission atmosphere over the last several weeks. This week is also Wellington Dio Synod which will mean that 3 out of the 4 of us will be attending and Summer will be here to serve alongside a bunch of our Aym’ers in our central gathering space.
I will be recording a message for us that has been on my heart for a few years now as I worked in the Global Mission arena with NZCMS. We will be looking at the passage from Matthew 28 and the Great Commission. We will be digging into the four building blocks of life, God, Self, Relationships and creation, and how this relates to the brokenness of the world and our part to play in the kingdom of God breaking through here on earth as in heaven!
So gather your House Churches, your prayer groups, your missional communities and encourage them to gather this Sunday at All Saints for our Central Gatherings at 9 and 10:30am to praise and worship, chew through the word of God, pray, and gather around Gods holy table together.
Just as a reminder before I sign off, that this Saturday evening is Daylight Savings change over, so spring forward one hour! and tonight (23rd Sept) is the Youth Group fundraising Dinner 7-9pm suggested koha of $20, please make it along if you can! Its going to be a great time!
Love and Blessings,
Kia Ora All Saints Whānau,
After what has felt like a very long, cold, and wet winter, I’m sure you are all rejoicing with me (and the rest of Wellington) at the sight of the sun once again! Feeling the light and warmth of the sun, even in the cold air, seems to have lifted the mood of most of the city. Everybody is talking about it and getting outside as much as possible because it’s been so long since we have had days like this.
This past Wednesday, Rachel and I took our two youngest to Coolsville to hang out in the community and share a warm cup of coffee (if you remember, it was not one of those sunny days). There were a lot of other mums there, some with their kids and some who had come alone after school drop off. As we all chatted together, a conversation emerged in which these community mums shared how they have been marvelling at how different our church seems to be from what they expect from past experiences with churches or Christians. Some of them go to Mainly Music, others have just gotten to know people from our church family. There they were, all sitting around the table together talking about how friendly people were, how everybody remembers their name, and what excellent coffee we serve (shout out to Warren!). It was the best gossip I’ve heard in a very long time!
This is what we are meant to be about and I’m so proud of the way all of you are engaging deeply, loving fiercely, and being Jesus in our community. It’s refreshing to everyone and apparently causing heads to turn.
In the same way that the sunshine has lifted all our spirits and given everybody a renewed sense of hope for days to come, when we shine the light and love of God to those around us, people begin to desire more.
God is doing something in our midst. It’s exciting to watch and even more exciting to be a part of. I want to encourage you all that people are noticing God within us and the way we love and care for our community. Let’s continue to pour out ourselves so that we can be filled with the Holy Spirit and share that love and light as widely as we possibly can. I’m proud of all of you. You guys are the real deal!
Kia ora All Saints whānau,
What wild weather we've had this week! Snow and sunshine, both blessings in different ways. This week I've been really appreciative of our church family as Leon and I battle yet another bug from crèche (or as I now affectionately call it, the Plague House). When I have to step out of meetings and commitments, it does give me a wake-up call. Who am I when I'm not being useful or helpful? Where can I see God at work when I'm not at work? And does the world stop when I stop - am I that important? This can be humbling for me and reminds me that I am loved by God just as I am, and the fate of the world doesn't rely on me (thankfully).
It is such a privilege to serve alongside you all in our faith community, and I am grateful for God being alongside us. In our cluster of local church leaders we have been learning about and discussing whether we are trying to imitate Christ or be united with Christ. Often we think just of imitation, which can be disheartening as we can never fully achieve it and it relies on our own steam. If we seek to be in unity with Christ then it is Christ doing the work, but we get to join in. Jesus saved the world, not us. Jesus changes lives, not us. Our part to play is important, of course, but if we seek unity with Jesus, His plans become ours and we join God's redemptive work in the world.
These are my musings for this week. How are you growing in unity with Christ? Have you made time to rest/abide in Christ this week? Is your work rooted in Jesus or are you trying to fix the world with your own steam? Sometimes taking time out changes our perspective.
Praying for you all,