Showing posts from April, 2014

My thoughts on Reconciliation: Gate Pa Commemorations, 2014.

Your Excellency, Lt General Sir Jerry Mataparae; King Tu Heitia, Ministers of the Crown, Chief of the Defence Staff, Mayors and Councillors, Rau rangatira ma, me nga iwi o Tauranga Moana, me nga hau e wha – iwi Maori iwi Pakeha – tena koutou, tena koutou, tena koutou... It is a huge privilege to be asked to speak today. I am the vicar of St. Georges Anglican Church here at Gate Pa, on the hill of Pukehinahina. Our story is entwined with the story of the events we remember today The church was conceived as a memorial Church in 1880's and built in 1900 in honour of the British troops who died here. It was named after St. George. There is a Muslim saying about St. George which says that the righteous act is to confront the tyrant. George died confronting the Emperor Diocletian. We remember those today who stood against the tyrant and fought here. George is a very apt saint to be named after In 1960's a new entrance was built in memory of Maori who died here. The n

To doubt like Thomas

This weeks theme is written by our guest writer, Bonnie Hebenton.   In this week's gospel Jesus has a conversation with Thomas, who doubts that his leader is alive because he was not with the other disciples when they first saw the risen Christ. As a consequence of this conversation Thomas is henceforth known as Doubting Thomas. This tends to have a negative connotation and we use the term Doubting Thomas to critically describe someone who seems to be hesitant or stuck because of doubt Doubt is not always bad. Sometimes doubt is absolutely essential. Doubt may be analogous to pain. Pain tells us that something nearby or within us is dangerous to our physical body. It is a call for attention and action. Similarly, doubt tells us that something in us … a concept, an idea, a framework of thinking … deserves further attention because it may be harmful, or false, or imbalance. Christians are committed to lifelong spiritual growth. That means that five years from now, our

Resurrection Now

Gate Pa – Easter 2014 Readings: Hebrew Scripture:                Acts 10:34-43                        Epistle:                                    Col 3:1-4                  Gospel:                                  Matthew 28:1-10                   What I want to say: Use the ppt of Marks version of the resurrection story to invite people to consider how resurrection affects their daily lives What I want to happen: where do you meet the resurrected Christ The Sermon 1.      Introduction: PowerPoint of story from gospel – Mark 2.      Marks version Gospel writers do not agree on details of resurrection some appearances in Jerusalem only some Galilee some both That version resurrection in movie just saw is different from what just heard from Matthew lot less Gospel as written by Mark that has survived until today finishes at 16:8 - nearly all scholars agree with that as just heard - only the women see risen Jesus Told to tell discip

Easter Lost

This last week has been a very busy time at St. George’s Anglican Church in Gate Pa. Our church sits on the site of battle of Gate Pa. And the 150 th anniversary of that battle is in less than 2 weeks. We are hosting an Exhibitions of Images of the Battle in the church, our hall is being used to display the entries to Art Competition, we have hosted a number school visits, and will be hosting a series lectures next week. Outside builders and carvers are at work preparing site for the commemoration. And some of us are busy preparing our various roles in those commemoration events. At times it is hard to keep track that Easter is close. It is hard to find time to even think about those events 2000 years go. As I retell the story of that battle and think of those who were killed or wounded, all  that carnage and death, it feels like we meet our own Good Friday here on this hill; filled with all the hate, angst, fear, pain and despair of that initial Good Friday. And like that firs