It’s a sunny day so far this Friday, but rain was on the forecast. We’re entering that uncertain time of year when it could be winter, could be spring… or not.
Today I drive to Palmerston North for a ministers’ afternoon. The topic is Conflict Resolution – run by Rev Steve Jourdain. Can’t imagine why a bunch of ministers would need training in conflict resolution!! Steve spoke a little on this at a previous Gathering. It sounded interesting.
On Saturday, I, together with Lois Robertson, your new Presbytery elder, will be at the all-day Presbytery Gathering. This begins with a general session in worship and a guest speaker – this time Dr Deborah Bower who is described as a leadership support advisor, teacher and spiritual life coach. Her topic is: ‘Haerenga whakamua, titiro whakamuri – Walking into the future with our eyes wide open to the past.’
There are workshops in the afternoon, then a Presbytery dinner & speaker at night. This time there’s AGM stuff to do, including elections for different positions. If you’re interested in serving Presbytery workgroups in mission, property or ministry settlement, let me know.
The twice yearly Gatherings are open to anyone. So, if in March or August you feel like a top up of information and inspiration let Lois or me know and we can car pool perhaps.
Presbytery is an important regional level in the Presbyterian church. It gives us a body closer to us than the national church to consult. Presbyteries set up Ministry Settlement Boards and process calls; they organise ministry and parish reviews; they can be a mediator between ministers and their parishes if needed, officially they are the minister’s employer so provide a place for details to be sorted. Presbyteries also approve parish’s building plans and applications for money. This Presbytery has quite a coffer of money at the moment. This is about to be offered for churches to apply for funding for mission in their area. (What mission does St Andrew’s need funding for?).
The larger Presbyteries have geographical challenges, but gathering people resources from a wider region so there are experienced people to run the Council and workgroups is a good thing. Please keep Lois, me, and the rest of the Gathering in your thoughts this weekend.
This Sunday is Peace Sunday and as you will have seen in the order of service notices, Fiona with quite a team will be bringing you something special. It is also communion but NOT community brunch. After church the congregational conversation will be happening. I won’t see you there, but you’ll see each other!
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