Kia ora All Saints whanau
This week in the life of the Anglican Province we are celebrating two different days together; Te Pouhere Sunday and Disability Awareness Day. These two days together create a beautiful expression of what it means to celebrate and engage with our diversity. The theme of moving from being “them and us” to being “us together” weaves together Te Pouhere and Disability Awareness through the concept of becoming united in our diversity. Our differences can strengthen our communities, our faith and the expressions of our faith.
There is a strong theme in our readings this week of going beyond our comfort zones, seeing a new way and learning to love each other through the differences. In John 15:9-17 Jesus speaks about no greater love than laying down one’s life for one’s friends. Jesus commands us to love. We are to love each other by doing so in a way that goes beyond our own interests and seek to put ourselves in another’s shoes. Seeing things in a new way, loving others and reconciliation is not easy. It is, however, fundamental to our faith in Christ.
If you would like to engage in more resources around Te Pouhere Sunday and Disability awareness Sunday please click the link below.
We have a new sermon series starting next week called “A Kingdom of…” where we explore one of Jesus' most famous sermons, the sermon on the mount, looking in particular at what are famously called the beatitudes. Let us begin to prepare ourselves by starting to consider who Jesus is talking to, what sort of Kingdom Jesus is announcing, what does it mean for his hearers then and now and how do we see God in the face of Jesus?
I have been reading the novel “The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe” by C.S Lewis to my girls each evening and I recall the conversation between the siblings and Mr and Mrs beavers where the children are told about Aslan and assume Mr Beaver is talking about a person and when it is revealed that Aslan is, in fact, a lion. Lucy, the youngest, becomes afraid and asks if he is safe. Mr Beaver chuckles a wee bit and says “Safe! Of course he isn’t safe. He is a lion. But he is good! ” We can think about this statement as we think about what it means to give our lives fully to Christ and embrace all that Christ is calling us to. The act of giving our lives to Christ pulls us out of our comfort zones and challenges us to see new ways that we should go about loving others and practicing reconciliation (which by the way looks like putting yourself in the middle of a group of people who in that present moment do not get along). Is it going to be safe! Probably not. But it is going to be good!
I pray this week that God will continue to help us see the Kingdom breaking through in our communities and that we have stories to share of the great things that God is doing amongst us.
A reminder to check out the things that are coming up at All Saints over the next week while, particularly the Matariki working bee and intergenerational dinner.
Much love in Christ,
Bishop Justin asks us to join in prayer for the friends and family of Ven Ian Bourne who passed away last week.
Ian held many roles within our Diocese, including Vicar of Haitaitai-Kilbirnie, Vicar General, Canon Emeritus and Archdeacon of Wellington, before he and his wife Margaret moved to Christchurch.
His funeral will be held in Christchurch on Monday 20 June at St Peter’s Church, Riccarton Road at 11:30am.
May he rest in peace and rise in glory.
+Peter has sent us his words from the Christchurch eLife newsletter this week: On Friday night Archdeacon Ian Bourne died peacefully, at the age of 90. Ian trained for ministry at College House and was ordained deacon in 1956 and priested in 1957. While at College House and in the St. Martins’ Spreydon Bible Class, Ian met and courted Margaret Bruhn (one of my lovely aunts). Throughout their married life Ian and Margaret have served Christ and Christ’s church together. With the exception of ministry in Epsom, England, 1965-67, Ian was a parish minister in the Diocese of Wellington from 1956-1995, notably serving as Vicar of Haitaitai-Kilbirnie from 1971-1995. This period included two periods as Archdeacon of Wellington and a long period of service on the Prayer Book Commission which produced the 1989 NZPB. In retirement Ian continued in ministry in Wellington in a variety of ways. Several years ago, Ian and Margaret moved to Christchurch and have been worshipping in the Parish of Upper Riccarton-Yaldhurst. The funeral service for Ian will be at 11.30 am Monday 20 June at St. Peter’s, Church Corner, Upper Riccarton. Clergy are invited to robe with white stoles and asked to arrive by 11.15 am. Please remember Margaret Bourne and their three children and their families in your prayers.
Kia ora All Saints Whānau,
Colossians 3:12 This week I (Emily) went to a funeral of a wonderful woman of God. She had been at our church in Christchurch for over 50 years, and had a loving (and cheeky!) marriage for a few months shy of 50 years. During the service I reflected on my relationship with her, being my mentor in my late teens and a great role model of a generous woman who was faithful to God and her community. One of her sons shared that on the day she died he happened to glance at his phone which had a verse for the day:
"Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience." - Colossians 3:12
He felt this summed her up well. It got me thinking, what characteristics am I 'clothing' myself with? What would I like to be known for? Andy spoke last week about Pentecost meaning we as the people of God are mini temples - God dwells in us. So do we look like the ultimate example of God's temple - Jesus? I have been reflecting that this verse doesn't just say we should have compassion, kindness, etc., but perhaps implies actively cultivating these things. Clothe yourself in these characteristics. Choose to cover yourself in them.
So as I consider the inspiration dear Jill has been in my life, I am challenged to look at my actions, thoughts, words and attitudes, so that I can take a pause and choose to clothe them in the words of Colossians 3:12, and other qualities I know Jesus to have. I encourage you to do likewise and watch the Spirit of God, which dwells in you, overflow to impact our community and our world.
Bless you all, Emily
Kia ora All Saints whanau,
What a great day had by all on Sunday!
We went into the community and met a lot of people. I started the day at 10am in prayer with a bunch of committed people who prayed for close to 45 minutes for all the activities happening throughout the day. I then rushed up to Hataitai Kindy to see the crowd of people there cleaning the yard and interacting with neighborhood families. Emily in the afternoon attended the Litter Blitz and popped into Food for thought and said it was so encouraging to see the groups of people just serving and meeting our local neighbors. Watch this space for more news on Go Sunday as we release more of the good stories coming from the day.
This week is Pentecost and our Sunday reading speaks of God doing amazing things as they were together and then the crowd notices and comes asking 'what is going on?'
This picture of Pentecost spoke to me about what we just did on Go Sunday. A community came together, did some amazing things, and I have heard that then sparked conversations at work or school about why you would do that as a church.
So as we come together this week and celebrate Pentecost and the birthday of the church - may we be full of expectation that God again will move.
We are doing a combined service at 10am on Sunday and are looking forward to seeing you all!
This past few days we have been joining in with the Thy Kingdom Come Prayer. Some have held prayer at 6.30am and 10am others have really enjoyed the videos that have been posted to our Facebook page here. This has been a great time of putting towards God people that you think should know him and learn to know his message.
Our young adults will be away at AYM Houses Hui this weekend and they are talking about how Jesus was subverting the Roman empire. This will be a great opportunity for them to break, reset and be encouraged in their walk of faith so please pray for them this weekend.
When you come into the centre on Sunday poke your head into the office and have a look at the new layout of the office. As I write we are still working through the new layout and trying to create a space where people can come and work with us. It looks amazing and thanks to Heather and Hayley for helping out with it. Remember you can come and join us for Morning Tea Tuesday - Friday at 10.30am. We need all the help we can to be better at the Quiz!
Until Sunday - have a blessed rest of the week!
Nga mihi nui,
Kia ora All Saints Whānau
“If the church doesn’t look, act, sound and think like Jesus its probably not the church of Jesus” This is a quote from Mike Frost from a Podcast he was on with his good friend Alan Hirsch where they discuss the re release of their book Re:Jesus A wild messiah for a missional church.
As I heard this I was spurred to think about who we are as a community of Jesus followers and do we look, act, sound and think like Jesus? I’m sure on some level we would all respond with YES YES YES of course! But then again I know in my own life there are things I hold back or try to do on my own or through my own strength. The journey of aligning our lives more and more with Jesus is a process that requires all of us to admit that we don’t have it all together and that we are together pushing and pulling each other closer to the Messiah.
This week we are shifting the culture in our parish by turning ourselves outwards. Towards those who don’t show up in our building not only on Sundays but ever! Increasing the missional DNA of our parish life with our first Go Sunday, stopping our usual gatherings as we collectively step out into our community. We have spoken about the Up In and Out Triangle before (see image) by which we are seeking to model our lives as Jesus lived, by connecting to the father (up) discipling one another, walking together, pushing and pulling each other along (in) and thirdly going out, as we watch Jesus reach out to those around him we too are called to go out! Connect, build relationship, proclaim the Good News. We get a great glimpse of this in Luke 6:12-19 Jesus went to his father to pray, then when morning came he gathered his people, his disciples, and following that he went to the crowd to those around him.
“If the church doesn’t look, act, sound and think like Jesus its probably not the church of Jesus” Let us not become a place that doesn’t reflect Christ! Let us continue to push more and more, to hunger and thirst for more, to see the kingdom come in real and powerful ways. May we stand together, even when its hard and goes against what society or friends and family think or say, and say YES JESUS more of you, more like you and let us declare that to others.
Change can often bring a sense of uncomfortableness, anxiety or even fear of the unknown. I would like to lay down a challenge in this season that following a wild messiah comes with spaces we find ourselves in that are uncomfortable. As we take a collective step in an environment we haven’t been in before or at least for a very long time that we look to one another to support, encourage and invite along. Whether its Care for creation on Mt Vic, connecting with local families at the Kindy Clean, Clearing Litter with neighbors, feeding the community in Kilbirnie or being part of a group who are wrapping the community and Go Sunday opportunities in prayer step out together and follow a wild messiah into our community. Step out and create memories with our parish family.
Its not too late to sign up or if you are not sure where to land feel free to pop along to the All Saints Centre at 10am on Sunday for the community prayer opportunity led by Andy, or email me on email@example.com.
May you be profoundly impacted by the space you are engaging in on Sunday, may you see the kingdom shining through, we pray for divine connections and conversations. But my biggest prayer is that we as a church family, our hearts are aligned more and more to the wild messiah Jesus
Love in Christ