Theological Signposts for Re-purposing Presbyterian Churches in God's Mission
Rev. Dr Mark Johnston & Rev. Dr Mark Keown
We need to be honest about the difficulty we are in as Regions and as a presbytery. The reality we are facing is that collectively we are in crisis. A number of our churches are at risk of not being viable, of an uncertain future. In our Presbytery, shrinking and aging memberships, loss of leadership capacity, rocketing costs for property, and multiple compliance measures prompt us to ask significant questions of our future sustainability.
The Three Mission Imperatives
Very Rev. Garry Marquand
To our bewilderment the journey has gone awry, and we’ve ended up travelling on a side road far from the main. And somehow we’ve lost some of our fellow travellers and on this itinerary few have come on board. The landscape is interesting enough, but we are realising that our navigators are using an out-dated map, and we are wondering whether we might run out of road.
Study leave is one of the ways we care for and provide refreshment for our Ordained Ministers. Study leave has three purposes: It is for personal growth and refreshment, it is secondly for the benefit of a minister’s current ministry and thirdly it is for the benefit of the Kaimai Presbytery and wider church.
Thank you to those who have shared their work.
Mission, Community & Worship
‘Public Worship in a Post Christendom, Missional Context’ by the Rev I. Garry Marquand
Christians today, individually and together, live in a time of transition and turbulence for the church. A primary tension is between Christendom theology and practice that remains the predominant determinant forming the life and ministry of the current church, and the theology and practice required in a radically different post Christendom and missional world. Christendom has long disappeared from the socio-political (European-Western) world, but the church resolutely or unwittingly holds to its assumptions, priorities and expectations.
Developing an Ars Moriendi
Developing an Ars Moriendi (The Art of Dying) for the 21st Century by the Rev. Donald Hegan
This project that I have undertaken is concerned to develop not just and understanding of Ars Moriendi (the good death) but to see how the art of dying is expressing itself in the 21st century. For even if we try to ignore death it will always intervene in our lives and those we love. If we don’t come to terms with death we and our loved ones will have no skill or resilience to deal with what is often seen as an unwelcome intruder and disruption in our lives. I commend to the reader to embrace death and its unwelcome intrusion and learn from the experience of previous generations where death was an every present reality, acknowledged even if not welcomed and surrounded by the communities embrace.