Dear Friends,

Although it was very cold, it was a delight to be in Twizel at the weekend, sharing in fellowship and worship with the Pukaki Co-operating Parish. A very special part of the weekend was baptising Elora Beiboer during the Sunday morning service.

Preceding the weekend, on Friday afternoon I blessed the new Cressy wing of St George’s Hospital which was opened by our Governor General, Dame Patsy Reddy. This hospital is certainly not standing still, as new building work is commencing on Heaton Street.

On Monday morning, at the Waikari parish hall, I was pleased to pray a blessing on the new Op Shop which was opened that morning by Hurunui District Mayor, Marie Black. It will be open on Monday and Thursday mornings if you are passing that way.

This Friday morning 9 July, Archbishop Fereimi Cama’s funeral takes place in Holy Trinity Cathedral, Suva. Details for joining the service by Livestream are as follows: from 8:30 am until 12 pm via the Diocese of Polynesia facebook page For any readers who are in Auckland this coming Sunday 11 July, there will be a memorial service for Archbishop Cama at Holy Trinity Anglican Church, 16–18 Mason Avenue. Otahuhu, beginning at 12:30 pm. Ven. Leatuao would like all priests to robe up in their vestments and to please wear a white stole. Please continue to uphold the Cama family and the Diocese of Polynesia in prayer.

Unfortunately, I won’t be able to make it to the memorial service because on Sunday afternoon I am in Nelson in order to preach at the induction service for the Reverend Dr Graham O’Brien who will be the new Dean of Christ Church Cathedral, Nelson.

In our own Transitional Cathedral on Sunday morning at 10 am there will be a special KidsFest service–details are here.

Last week I sowed the seed of the “Get One. Give One.” campaign. This week I write to ask you to support this Anglican Missions Board campaign. The idea of the campaign is very simple: when we receive our vaccine, donate so that one of the world’s most vulnerable can get theirs. Details are here “Get One. Give One.” .  A very good promotional video by Dr Nick Laing is here

This week in our prayer for post flood rural districts, we remember North Canterbury congregations. Where rain has been devastating in some places, it has been life-giving in others. In North Canterbury, the land has been so thirsty for water, that farmers had been anxious about getting enough rain to support crops for feeding livestock. While many welcomed the rain, those along overflowing rivers where flash flooding eroded and damaged the land, are still cleaning up. Below, in the newsletter, is a prayer written by Archdeacon Dawn Daunauda.

Below we are running an advertisement for a public event on housing with Green MPs Dr Elizabeth Kerekere and Julie Anne Genter on Monday 12 July. Generally we won’t promote specific events run by just one political party but the housing crisis is a true crisis and–as discussed at an Anglican Care Board meeting last night–the underlying economic problem to most other social and health problems in our nation. If any other political parties are offering such an event on housing, please let Jo Bean know and we will promote it.

The gospel this Sunday, Ordinary 15, is Mark 6:14-29, in which Mark tells the story of the death of John the Baptist. We often talk about John as the “Forerunner”, the one who appears in public ministry announcing that Jesus is about to come. Here Mark tells the story of the death of John in a way which anticipates the story of the death of Jesus. In that respect note these parallels: John is executed after manipulation of the ruler in charge, and his body is laid in a tomb by his disciples. In life and in death, John is a model disciple of Jesus.

Finally, I ask you to pray for the Reverend Leni Havea. He is making a great recovery after his kidney transplant but please pray for the final completion of the recovery process.