The Women Who Minister

Mary and Ailsa. Two different women. One more famous than the other – but with parallels between the pair. The ordination to priesthood of Ailsa Claridge took place on Sunday August 14 in a 7pm service at the Interim Cathedral in the Peace Hall, New Plymouth. It coincided with the patronal festival, the Feast day of Mary, mother of Jesus. In his sermon, Dean Peter Beck noted a connection between the ordination of a woman on the day Mary’s significance to... read more

170th Anniversary of the first service in St Mary's New Plymouth

‘For all that has been, thanks. For all that will be ,yes!' Some years ago I was at a lecture given by Marc Pachter, the then Director of the National Portrait Gallery in Washington DC. It was most interesting and entertaining. The site of the NPG is at the centre of the grid which is Washington. The site was designated by Pierre Charles L'enfant who designed the city of Washington. What is interesting is that L'enfant saw that at the heart... read more

Battle of Britain Sunday

A chicken and a pig were best of friends. One day, they were looking at a newspaper and read about an orphanage not too far from them that needed food. The chicken said, “Brother Pig, why don’t we go down to the orphanage and make a donation of food? We could donate a ham and egg breakfast.” But the Pig replied, “Wait a minute, Sister Chicken! For you, that’s just a contribution, but for me, it’s a total commitment! It’s laying... read more

Cost of cathedral repair and restoration released

Taranaki Cathedral’s earthquake strengthening and remediation is expected to cost between $8-10 million, according to a preliminary report. Cathedral Dean, the Very Revd Peter Beck, said the church community is pleased to receive the quantity surveyors report, which provides certainty as well as a ballpark amount with which to approach funders. “This is an early estimate – but it gives the cathedral and the Taranaki community something to work with. Already there are individuals and organisations interested in contributing to fundraising... read more

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Tell Me the Same Old Story

Deut. 13.15-20, Luke 14.25-33 ‘I call heaven and earth to witness against you today that I have set before you life or death, blessings and curses. Choose life so that you and your descendants may live, loving the Lord your God’. I remember – when I was a priest in England – a very fine priest who had been made vicar of a parish in North Oxfordshire where I worked as the diocesan youth officer – it was a long time... read more

Actions Speak Louder than Words

Luke 13:10-17 I think the Gospel reading is about how institutions can get in the way of compassion and care. It is specifically about repressive religion. And we know enough about that in our own time, and not only repressive Islam. The Church has enough of it too! The passage opens with Jesus teaching in a synagogue. As was the tradition and the rule according to the Law, the Torah, any man present could read from scripture and then teach or... read more

Remediation Manager appointed

Significant funding has enabled Taranaki Cathedral Church of St Mary to appoint a local architect as its Cathedral Remediation and Design Manager. Jenny Goddard, a New Plymouth architect with an interest in heritage buildings, took up the new position on August 1. Her appointment follows a grant of $80,000 from the TSB Community Trust as well as $50,000 from the General Trust Board of the Anglican Church of Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia. The historic church building on Vivian St was... read more

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Ordination to Priesthood of Ailsa Claridge

Glory to God on high, God of power and might. You are my God. I can neither add to your glory Nor take away from your power. Yet I will wait upon you daily in prayer and praise. In a few minutes, Ailsa you will make this statement of praise and faith in the living God. And in these words you will acknowledge that God is so much more than we can barely begin to imagine. I can neither add to... read more

St Mary's Day

My granddaughter was sitting on my lap when I read her a bedtime story. From time to time, she would take her eyes off the book and reach up to touch my increasingly wrinkled neck . She was alternately stroking her own neck, then mine again. Finally she spoke up, 'Poppa, did God make you?' 'Yes, darling,' I answered, 'God made me a long time ago.' 'Oh,' She paused, 'Poppa, did God make me too?' 'Yes, indeed,' I said, 'God made... read more

Peace Hall swings on Dance Nights

The popular dances of yesteryear are brought back to life once a week by the New Plymouth Modern and Old Time Dancing Club. The club meets in the Peace Hall on the second and fourth Saturdays of the month, and in the Methodist Hall in Liardet St on the first, third and fifth. Visitors are welcome to go and try their hand – or foot – at dances such as the veleta, waltz, foxtrot, two-step, maxina and Gay Gordons. Live music... read more

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