Letter from the Vicar 27 September 2015

Fr Andrew Starky

Dear Friends,

Welcome to S. Michael’s. Today I am delighted that Kay and Ian Burgess are with us to celebrate the fortieth anniversary of their marriage here in S. Michael’s on this very day, with Fr Baker officiating. We will add our joyful blessing and pray that they may have many more years together.

The Old Testament reading speaks of the burdens of office that Moses carried as he led a complaining and divided people. The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, might well sympathise as he seeks to find a way forward in the Anglican Communion.

He has called the Primates, or heads of each Province, together to discuss the divided state of the communion worldwide. The Archbishop appears to be recognising this reality by preparing to loosen some of the structural ties that link one Province with another. This is so that the Church may put less energy into internal squabbles over power and sexuality, and much more energy into proclaiming what the Gospel has to say about issues such as climate change, poverty and the refugee crisis.

He says, “[We must find] a way forward, guided by the absolute imperative for the church to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ, to make disciples and to worship and live in holiness, and recognising that the way in which proclamation happens and the pressures on us vary greatly between Provinces. We each live in a different context. The difference between our societies and cultures, as well as the speed of cultural change in much of the global north, tempts us to divide as Christians: when the command of scripture, the prayer of Jesus, the tradition of the church and our theological understanding urges unity. A 21st-century Anglican family must have space for deep disagreement, and even mutual criticism, so long as we are faithful to the revelation of Jesus Christ, together. We have no Anglican Pope. Our authority as a church is dispersed, and is ultimately found in Scripture, properly interpreted. In that light I long for us to meet together under the guidance of the Holy Spirit and to seek to find a way of enabling ourselves to set a course which permits us to focus on serving and loving each other, and above all on the proclamation of the good news of Jesus Christ.”

Climate action: if you would like to help form a S. Michael’s Climate Change Action group please see Mary Hamilton after Mass today, or phone 337 0833.

It is just two days until the great festival of Michaelmas and we are very excited to be welcoming Bishop Victoria to preach and preside this year. Thank you to all who are helping prepare in many ways so that at Michaelmas we can worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness, and offer a warm welcome to our many visitors.

Yours in Christ,

Fr Andrew Starky

Parish Notices

S. Michael’s School is on holiday until 12 October.
Synod 2015 Reports: copies available at the back of the church.
Sales Table: in the hall after Mass. Details Anne Ladd (981 5012).
• There is a cup of tea or coffee after the evening service each Sunday.
Working bees: tomorrow 10:30 am for brass-cleaning, Tuesday 9:30 am for flowers. Come and help—all welcome.
Vege Co-op: orders and deliveries on Wednesdays. Details Kathryn Starky.
Forum-Dialogue: What sort of city are we building? Series continuing on Thursday at 5:30 pm. See www.knoxchurch.co.nz/news for details.
• The Canterbury Shakespeare Society meets on Thursday, 7:30 pm in the parish lounge. Details John De la Bere (981 7582).
Lunch at the Regatta on Avon: next Sunday 12:15 pm. Details Kathryn Starky.
• The Bible Study Group meets next on 5 October at 7:15 pm in the staffroom. Details Peter Oakley (960 0974).
Recital: Paul Ellis with singer Anna Hoetjes. 7 October, 1:00 pm at S. Mary’s Pro-Cathedral, Manchester Street.
Poverty, Inequality and Decision-Making: Bryan Bruce, 10 October, 7:30 pm at the Cathedral, supper provided. Details on poster.
Inasmuch Basket: please continue to support the City Mission with your gifts of food and other household items.

On Tuesday we are celebrating the Feast of S. Michael and All Angels
Michaelmas is our Patronal Festival. Mass will begin at 7:00 pm and
include some very special music. Bishop Victoria will be our preacher,
and following the Mass, all are invited to share in a light supper in the
parish hall. Parishioners are requested to bring a plate of finger food to
share, something that doesn’t require heating. This may be dropped off
in the hall prior to the Mass. We look forward to seeing you all there.