Cathedral Life
Buying fresh grows friendly communities

A bid to get more people eating fruit and veg – at discount prices – is building communities and Christian interdenominational networks throughout NZ. Now the Food Together programme is spreading to Taranaki with the cathedral pivotal to its local distribution. It started as a three-week pilot in June, and has now become a permanent social enterprise in the region. It works like this: People view the fruit and veg menu each Friday on the Food Together Facebook page, place their... read more

Visual tour of the cathedral's interior

Taranaki videographer Keith Finnerty has filmed this video of the cathedral’s interior. Watch it above or here. The short visual walk-around reminds us of the beauty and serenity of the historic building – one of the top 50 sites to visit in New Zealand. It also helps to see parts of the church you would not normally view such as the very tops of the organ pipes and the soaring roof. Note that the video was filmed after the removal... read more

Athletic Clergy Shape Early Days

Two vigorous churchmen who walked immense distances during their ministries were key figures in the history of St Mary's: Bishop Selwyn, the first Anglican Bishop of New Zealand, and William Bolland, the first Vicar of St Mary's. In 1842 Bishop Selwyn reached the tiny settlement of New Plymouth after a walk from Thames during which he was delayed by floods and nearly starved. Only 31, he was an athlete who made extraordinary physical demands on himself and expected much from others.... read more

US pair attracted by gospel in action

A sense of community was the drawcard to Taranaki Cathedral when Nancy and Doug Getson looked around for a place to worship. New Plymouth has been their home for just over two years; sadly a change in Doug’s work means they’re leaving in the next few months. Churchgoing is something they have always done. She was brought up a Baptist, he a Catholic but when they got together neither of those denominations suited. Instead they ended up (initially) in an Anglican... 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

Planting hope, one child at a time

As a teenager kicked out of home, Ugandan woman Lillian Nakabiri wanted to poison herself. Her family didn’t want her, life was characterised by loneliness and poverty and killing herself seemed the only answer. In despair, she started reading letters she’d received over the years as a sponsored child. “I wanted to die happy, reading them. They gave me joy,” she told hundreds of school students in a moving talk about her early years. The written words from her Australian sponsor... read more

Fair trade + faith = freedom

After five years of “living a life of heartbreak and hope”, Dan and Mai Lander have swapped the streets of Kolkata (formerly Calcutta) for a ministry closer to home. The couple and their two young boys, Bobby (almost 4) and Thom (2), recently returned to New Zealand from India, where they had been living with and helping some of the world’s poorest and oppressed people. Dan’s parents, John and Angela Lander, attend St Mary’s, and Dan was keen to return to... read more

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

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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