larger map
Corner Nancy Ave & Knowles St
minister [at] stalbansuniting [dot] org [dot] nz (email minister) (03) 385 7545
Send us a message

15 to 20 February 2016

Letter from Hugh

This Sunday I am at Cashmere Presbyterian to take part in welcoming the Rev Silvia Purdie who will be working 80% time in the parish for a year in an arrangement Presbyterians call ‘Stated Supply.’  That simply means supplying ministry for a stated time.  During this time the parish is still technically vacant and the task of the Settlement Board and the Interim Moderator continue.  As Stated Supply is an appointment made by the Session or Parish Council and approved by the Presbytery, there is no special Presbytery service to mark its beginning. However, as this appointment involves the longest term available under Presbyterian rules, Silvia felt that some recognition of the position was appropriate and as interim moderator I need to be part of it.  Silvia has come to Christchurch because her husband the Rev Chris Purdie is a military chaplain on transfer to Burnham.

Last week began with my monthly supervision session and then a meeting with Synod Superintendent Kathryn Walters about Methodist requirements for our building opening.  It was a productive meeting and Kathryn has promised to help further with the aim of producing a framework for the opening service that doesn’t upset either of our denominational partners.  Once that basic framework has been achieved we can build our own ideas around it. 

Wednesday was our weekly Bible Study which has gradually dropped off in numbers and it would be great if we could revitalise this in some way, because those who do attend find it worthwhile and enjoyable.  I also led worship at Wesley Care on Wednesday and in the afternoon I made a hospital visit. In the evening I had a meeting about the Sunday service at Cashmere.

Friday morning began with our regular Mission and Education Committee and then our Worship Committee met in the afternoon.  Both those committees will have input into our opening service and celebration, but the other challenge is to keep the worship and mission life of the parish alive as we wait for the new complex. 

We are now into Lent and there are Easter services to plan and it is important to make the most of that most significant event in the church calendar.  We not only need to keep our Breakfast Church functioning, but think of ways to replenishing the number of younger children as our current members grow older.  We also need to adapt our programme to cater for these older children.  As we continue to keep our outreach programs alive, it has become obvious that the Men’s Shed, Music and Movement, and Community Comment will need to be re-launched in the new complex. We must also rise to the challenge of initiating new outreach activities yet to be dreamed of.


Notices and News

Meetings in February

F P A C: Tuesday, 16 February at 7.30 pm. 58A Bainton Street, Bishopdale.

Parish Council: Wednesday, 24 February at 7.30 in the parish lounge. Reports to be presented to the meeting should be in the parish office by Wednesday 17 February if they are to be distributed along with the agenda. Alternatively, you may email the bulletins to me at—bbaillie [at] xtra [dot] co [dot] nz


Building report

The exterior is changing regularly, but we do not know much about what is going on inside, except that there is a lot of work going on. The chance of a look around last week had to be cancelled at the time because of the activity: not enough room for safety with work in full swing. At the current rate of progress, both inside and out, the project looks set for completion on time.

Painting is ongoing. Spouting is about ready to put up and ramps and the like are boxed in and ready for pouring the concrete.

A brave attempt was made to put the cross on the roof, but it was found to be a little too wide at the base. So the cross is delayed until Monday next.

It is time now to think about some of the things you want to see inside. See the following notice about seating.

Chairs for the new church

The chair proposed for the new church has been on display for two weeks and a chair with arms was displayed last week. The chairs will cost $90.00 each ($105.00 with arms). You may like to consider making a donation for the purchase of a chair. If that appeals to you, make it through the usual offering during a Sunday service. It will be added to your overall offerings for the yearly tax receipt.

The present set of chairs will be used elsewhere throughout the complex. For any other information please talk with Jennifer.


World Day of Prayer

Forty hours of prayer will begin around the globe on Friday, 4 March. . An ecumenical service will be held—

Venue: St Francis of Assisi Parish Church in Innes Road. Time: 10.30 am.


Progressive Spirituality NZ Conference

This conference has been advertised in the bulletin for some time and this repeat notice is a reminder to do something about it if you intend to go there.

Dates: Friday to Sunday, 6-8 May 2016. Venue: St Paul’s Presbyterian Church, Napier. Cost: $90 if paid before Easter; thereafter $110.

Get a brochure from Bruce Baillie if you are interested in this event.

Some background from Rev Sally Carter and the planning committee: The conference has its roots in a commitment to Progressive Spirituality, and follows the successful 'Beyond the Borders' conference in Auckland in August 2014. We believe we have put together a fine and feisty line-up: Robin Meyers from Oklahoma will be well matched by a trio of Kiwi speakers: Jo Randerson, Robert Myles and David Clark, MP. Our theme is "Common Ground" —. although, after committing to that title, we realised that Common Cause was closer to what we envisioned: vigorous presentations of faith-in-action, with faith very broadly defined, and action very variously portrayed.


There are a few copies left of the February issue. It would be a pity to throw them out at the end of the month. So make sure you take a paper and read the many interesting articles it contains. Read about some articles in last week’s bulletin.

St Albans News

The February/March edition of the paper is now available. You may read it on the internet if you have a computer. Go to: and click on the STAN link.

Christchurch Methodist Mission

In the last bulletin we said the CMMhas asked churches to make a special feature of the work of the mission over the period of Lent.

CMM provides services on our behalf to people in many different life situations. Naturally, CMM looks to churches like ours, and people like us, to be the source of its power and energy. At a time (almost all of the time) when money is in short supply, CMM looks to us to help financially.        But there are other ways, just as important, that we may help and you may read about some of these in the leaflet that was enclosed with this bulletin.

We noted Lent is a time for contemplation and one of hope that together we may make a difference in a world that often seems indifferent to the needs of vulnerable people.

Jill Hawkey, the Executive Director of CMM, asks us to ‘… consider what we may do to promote CMM’s work in the community. …. Serving those who are most vulnerable in our community is a mission that we share in common.’ Jill also wrote in a covering letter for the CMM programme, ‘every year the Christchurch Methodist Mission (CMM) makes a positive difference in the lives of thousands of children, families and older people. The people we help all come from different walks of life and have different needs. Although each of them has their own unique story to share, they all share one thing in common, they need help and support from others.

CMM does not pretend that we can provide this help without the support of our community. One of the goals we are striving for is that CMM and the Methodist/Union Parishes … are working together collaboratively to create a just and inclusive society in which all people flourish. Serving those who are most vulnerable in our community is a mission that we share in common

Alpine Presbytery Retreat, 29 February – 1 March 2016

We believe it is a good time to pause, reflect and imagine together what the future Alpine Presbytery could look like. You are invited to gather at Hanmer to take some time out, get to know each other better, hear from God and from each other. Our moderator Andrew Norton will facilitate conversations, plus there will be time for personal quiet and reflection time

St Andrews Hanmer Springs church building. Start with lunch together (byo lunch) Monday 29 Feb at 12pm. End 2pm Tuesday 1 March. · Monday evening meal and Tuesday lunch provided. · Accommodation and Tuesday breakfast – own arrangements. Please register by Monday 22nd February

Next Presbytery Gathering

Dates: Friday, 29 April to Monday, 1 May, 2016. Place: Blenheim. Given that General Assembly next meets in Dunedin in November 2016 Council has determined that we will have only one Presbytery Gathering in 2016. Items included in the Gathering at this stage will be:

Risk Management & Ethics training work-shop – a requirement for all Ministers and those working pastorally and with youth & children; “Justice in Action” – how do we connect with the real needs in our communities?  Appointing Future personnel in our Presbytery: Moderator, key committee Convenors & members; Task groups, etc.; (Possible) Kids’ Friendly resourcing for churches; Mission resourcing as we face opportunities and challenges ahead.

Local Parishes will be providing hospitality for some accommodation and meals. More information to come!

IHC National Awareness and Appeal Month

Mon, 8 Feb, 2016 - Mon, 7 Mar, 2016 People can donate online by visiting, or by calling 0800 746 444

National Bike Wise Month

From 1 to 28 February 2016. Go by bike day was on Wednesday 10 February. But if you missed it (because I did not advertise it much) you may celebrate the day any time you like. Go to for more details.

World Radio Day

Missed this one too. It was also on Wednesday 10 February. It is an annual UNESCO event first observed in 2012.  Radio may seem a little old fashioned today, considering the multiple ways we now have o communicating. But consider: radio still reaches a wide audience around the world, including remote communities, and can be a source of information and public debate for all kinds of people; the illiterate, disabled, youth, and the poor, according to World Radio Day’s website. UNESCO’s executive board sought to recognize these contributions with the creation of World Radio Day.

(Source: Learn more about radio at

Rosters and Lectionary

21 February                 Rev Hugh Perry

M Steward                     Eleanor Monson

D Steward                      Bill Pearcy

Organist                           Diane Comyns

Communion                    Jennifer Delaney

                                           Bill Delaney

Morning Tea                   Raewyn Perry

                                           Margaret Angus

Reader                              Eleanor Monson

Genesis           15: 1-2, 17-18.

Psalm               27.

Philippians     3: 17—4: 1.

Luke                 13: 31—35.


28 February                    Rev Hugh Perry

M Steward                        Rev Bob Coates

D Steward                         David Monson

Organist                            Diane Comyns

Morning Tea                   Margaret Norton

                                             Eleanor Monson

Reader                               Pam Popenhagen

Isaiah               55: 1—9.

Psalm               63: 1—8.

1 Cor.                10: 1—13.

Luke                 13: 1—9.


6 March                                      Rev Hugh Perry

M Steward                                     Bruce Baillie

D Steward                                      Bruce Baillie

Organist                                           Ann Millar

Morning Tea                                  Averil Cullen

                                                          Ellen Howard

Reader                                              Bill Pearcy

Joshua                            5: 9—12.

Psalm                              1: 1-2, 9-16.

Romans                         10: 8b—13.

Luke                                4: 1—13.


13 March                                    Rev Hugh Perry

M Steward                                     Eleanor Monson

D Steward                                       Bill Delaney

Organist                                          Diane Comyns

Morning Tea                                  Jennifer Delaney

                                                          Heather Mace

Reader                                             Rev Glenn Livingstone

Isaiah                              43: 16—21.

Psalm                              126.

Philippians                    3: 4b—14.

John                                12: 1—8.


20 March                                      Rev Hugh Perry

M Steward                                       Bill Pearcy

D Steward                                        David Monson

Organist                                           Diane Comyns

Communion                                   Bruce Baillie

                                                           Lindsay Evans

Morning Tea                                  Eleanor Monson

                                                           Lindsay Evans

Reader                                              Bruce Baillie

Psalm                              118: 1-2; 19-29.

Luke                                19: 28—40.

Log In