Living in testing Times

Our Gospel for today immediately follows a most incredible event. Matthew recounts the story of Jesus had coming to the Jordan River to find John Baptist, his cousin. John, depicted as a wild man emerging out of the wilderness [always a metaphor for the place of deep inner searching]; John, in his powerful charismatic message was calling the people to repentance and to be washed, cleansed in the waters of the Jordan. It is dramatic indeed for the one whom he... read more

Christlike Living

Leviticus 19:1-2, 9-18 1 Corinthians 3:10-11, 16-23 Matthew 5:38-48 We’ve heard three extremely challenging readings this morning, all of them guidelines or instructions so as to become more the kind of people God wants us to be. Let’s briefly go back to the opening verse in our first reading Leviticus 19:1-2 The Lord said to Moses, “Speak to the entire assembly of Israel and say to them: ‘Be holy because I, the Lord your God, am holy.” The OT reading is... read more

Waitangi Day

Isaiah 42:1-9 Ephesians 2:13-18 Luke 2:9-14 Tomorrow is Waitangi Day. What does that mean to you? How will you spend it? Have you ever been to Waitangi? Have you ever read the words of the Treaty? The document presented to many Chiefs on the 6th of February 1840 for signing. Which version have you read? The Treaty is considered the founding document for this nation. Yet this day of remembering has much in it that may make us feel uncomfortable. What... read more

Finding words for Parihaka

Rob Ritchie played a part in organising the recent Parihaka Day service at the Interim Cathedral. It occurred five months after then-mayor Andrew Judd led a procession to the coastal settlement, and it was 135 years to the day after the settlement was invaded by British forces. He reflects on the service and its ‘found poem.’ On November 5 a beautiful reunion occurred at the Interim Cathedral/St Mary’s Peace Hall between two Parihaka Hikoi participants: Sue and Chris and two of... read more

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Telling the old story in new song

A tune telling the story of peaceful protests at Parihaka township has been reworked, with its first public performance at a service in the Interim Cathedral on November 5. Musician Rob Green was part of New Plymouth band The Orange & Green back in 1991 when the city was celebrating its sesquicentennial. Commissioned to produce a cassette tape, it included the song ‘Parihaka’ which the group had recorded in 1990. Fellow band member Grant Dawson penned the words and at the... read more

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Singing with the angels

Luke 2.1-20 Christmas 2016 Yesterday evening we had an angel in here at the Children's Christmas Service. Can you believe it? [Karen appears on the stage singing Hark the Herald — first line]. Crikey what was that? [congregation shouts it's an angel] I don't see an angel? Where is she? [Congregation point and shout — angel disappears as I turn around. I do a bit of the business around this and end up saying 'wow, well fancy that. Here is... read more

Be Not Afraid

A few days before Christmas, two young brothers were spending the night at their grandparent's house. When it was time to go to bed, and anxious to do the right thing, they both knelt down to say their prayers. Suddenly, the younger one began to pray in a very loud voice. "Dear Lord, please ask Santa Claus to bring me a play-station, a mountain-bike and a telescope." His older brother leaned over and nudged his brother and said, "Why are you... read more

Cheap eats grow profit and community spirit

An idea to serve a cheap, flavoursome breakfast while raising funds for charity – and bringing people together, turned two last month. The Community Café in the cathedral’s Hatherly Hall is a regular Tuesday morning (7am-10am) event. Thousands have flocked through its doors, feasting on items such as crepes, coffee, porridge and toast for $1 an item. read more

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Remediation Update

The November earthquakes were a timely reminder of the importance of the earthquake strengthening project. While there is no discernable damage to the cathedral, Jenny Goddard, Cathedral Remediation and Design Manager, said she was pleased not to have been inside the building when the quake struck. “It was scary enough at home - definitely the biggest and longest shake I have felt in New Plymouth”. Currently Holmes Consulting are working on the Preliminary Design Stage of the engineering works and at... read more

Pasifika take on local parish work

Mele Prescott boasts a Tongan background but it’s the Pakeha branch of the Anglican Church she’s starting her ‘apprenticeship’ in. She began as curate and Youth Enabler at the end of November this year, the first time Taranaki Cathedral has had a person in such a position, in recent history. Mele comes to Taranaki from St John’s Theological College in Auckland where she completed her three-year study. Born to Tongan parents who migrated to NZ in the 1970s, she grew up... read more

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