Dear Friends,

I am very pleased to announce that from 1 December 2022, the Reverend Ruth Blair will be Priest-in-Charge of the Parish of Marchwiel and the Reverend Sue Dickson will be Priest-in-Charge of the Waimate District Cooperating Venture. Thank you, Ruth, and Sue, for your availability for these roles in South Canterbury.

It was lovely to be part of two uplifting inductions for new vicars in the past week: on Sunday afternoon for Archdeacon Indrea Alexander, now Vicar of Ashburton and also installed as Archdeacon of Mid Canterbury, and on Tuesday evening for the Reverend John Shoaf, now Vicar of Halswell-Prebbleton. Thank you to all who were involved in arrangements for these services.

I enjoyed being at the Transitional Cathedral last Thursday evening for Bishop John Bluck launching his latest book, Becoming Pakeha, and I am looking forward this evening at 5:30pm, also in the Transitional Cathedral, to participating in the launch of Edmund Bohan’s book Heart of the City: The Story of Christchurch’s Controversial Cathedral. All are welcome.

Teresa and I had an excellent time visiting the Cooperating Parish of Pukaki at the weekend, enjoying a meal on Saturday evening in Twizel with parishioners, and then a Sunday morning Communion service in All Saints church.

Thank you for your prayers for the electoral synod of the Diocese of Polynesia at the weekend. The synod has made a nomination which is now in the process of being sanctioned by the bishops and by members of General Synod/Te Hīnota Whānui. In due course an announcement will be made when the sanctioning process is completed.

Please pray for the people of Indonesia, following a devastating earthquake earlier this week in which over 260 people are known to have died. Thankfully a stronger earthquake since then in the Solomon Islands has not resulted in loss of life.

This Sunday 27 November 2022, Advent 1 means we begin a new church year and we move in the three-year cycle of readings from the Gospel of Luke to the Gospel of Matthew [Year A]. This Sunday’s gospel is Matthew 24:36-44. In this passage, Jesus provocatively reminds us that life can be dramatically interrupted. In particular, Jesus says to his hearers, then and now, there is a day coming, unknown to human minds, when God through the agency of Jesus (the Son of Man) will disrupt history with dramatic finality. Are we ready?