St Andrew’s is a member of the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand (PCANZ). PCANZ is a nationwide church. It has a family relationship with other Presbyterian churches worldwide and the Uniting Church of Australia.
St Andrew’s plays an important role in resourcing discussion about social justice issues within the PCANZ. Several members have and do serve in national groups.
We benefit by PCANZ support through theological and liturgical resources. There is also practical support in the areas of buildings, compliance and employment.
Settler Presbyterians were governed from Scotland until the Presbyterian Church of New Zealand (PCNZ) formed in 1861. It was not until 1874, that St Andrew’s on The Terrace joined PCNZ.
The national church was re-named PCANZ in 1990 to acknowledge our bicultural nature. Through St Andrew’s founding minister, John McFarlane, we have a warm relationship to Te Aka Puaho, the Māori synod of the PCANZ.
It is a feature of Presbyterian churches that our governance is carried out by a mix of clergy and lay people, who are ordained as elders.
Governance of the PCANZ is achieved by a series of councils which are a mix of clergy and lay people. The General Assembly meets biennially.
Seven regional Presbyteries meet twice yearly and in smaller cluster groupings as needed. St Andrew’s is represented on Presbytery Central by the minister and an elder.
Individual parishes are governed by their own Parish Council or Session.
St Andrew’s on The Terrace has declared its dissent to the 2006 ruling of the Presbyterian Church, which forbids gay or lesbian people, or those living in a de facto relationship, from taking up lay or ordained ministry.
We are committed to a stance of ecclesiastical disobedience and will recognise the leadership gifts of people regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity or relationship status.
Progressive Christianity Aotearoa
St Andrew’s progressive stance includes the creation of a Progressive Christianity Aotearoa website which offers resources in this important developing area of Christianity.
St Andrews’ partners with other churches in maintaining a progressive approach to Christianity: