Dear Friends in Christ,

I am delighted to announce that the Reverend Meg Harvey will be the next Vicar of Amberley, beginning 1 August 2022. Meg is currently Assistant Priest and School Chaplain in the Parish of Christchurch St Michael’s.

After nearly eleven years as CDHB Hospital Chaplain, with the last two years as Chaplain based at Christchurch Women’s Hospital, the Reverend Alexa Evenden is concluding her chaplaincy ministry on 12 May 2022. Thank you, Alexa, for your faithful ministry, through many challenges, especially in the Covid years. I am very glad that Alexa is available for locum ministries in our Diocese.

COVID UPDATE IN ORANGE MODE Daily figures show that we have a continuing significant number of infections in our Diocesan region. As we conduct our services, it is important that we are safe and act in ways that give people confidence about their safety in our gatherings. Masking remains essential. Ventilation is vital. Here I want to update directions re communion, following a discussion with our Senior Leadership Team last week.

  • Local ministry unit decisions are to be made about moving from communion in one kind to communion in two kinds.
  • Where communion is offered in two kinds, the chalice must be offered in a such a manner that people opt in and not so that people have to reject the chalice.
  • There is to be no intinction in the Orange Mode unless a separate chalice is offered for the purpose of intinction, and the wine in that chalice is no more than 3-4 mm deep (so that when the wafer is dipped into the chalice, fingers do not touch the wine.
  • It is appropriate for a chalice bearer with a sipping only chalice to discourage intinction from that vessel.

Thank you for your prayers for our Diocesan Discernment Weekend, during which we discerned eight people within the life of our Diocese. Please pray for this wonderful group of people as they receive and reflect on the outcomes of the weekend.

Over the weekend past, the Cathedral Project was a very popular part of the Open Christchurch architectural festival. Within this article about the weekend tours, we are reminded that while we have funds in place for construction through to mid-2025, we have some $55m to raise to complete the Project by the end of 2027. Very exciting news, also mentioned in the article, is that next week a remote-controlled digger will be entering the cathedral in order to begin clean-up of the interior.

It was lovely to be at Evensong at the Transitional Cathedral and to hear the Choir again. After a Covid-induced hiatus, the brilliance of our Cathedral Choir is back!

This Sunday’s Gospel passage, John 10:22-30, means we can call Easter 4, Good Shepherd Sunday. As our Good Shepherd, Jesus speaks to us, leads us and we follow him, confident that not even in death will we be taken away from him (verses 27-29). Yet verse 30 means that our Good Shepherd does not act on behalf of God. In the person of the Good Shepherd, God the Father and God the Son are one.