Saturday, September 28, 2013

Disappointing News

On my first visit to Dunedin in November 2006 I worshipped at the Cathedral and was taken in more ways than one by the Dean, David Rice.

He was in the local news defending the recent ordination as deacon of Rev Juan Kinnear, a man living openly in a gay relationship. Juan later became a priest and was associate priest at the cathedral. He is now Priest enabler at St John's Waikouaiti.

I was disappointed when I finally moved to Dunedin in 2010 to find David Rice was now Bishop of Waiapu with the cathedral in Napier where I worshipped last month.

However he was still able to support the cause of GLBT people in the Anglican church of Aotearoa New Zealand and Waiapu has been a leading diocese in this development.

Last year the Diocese of Waiapu put forward the following motion to General Synod.

The diocese of Waiapu, which covers Bay of Plenty and Hawkes Bay, has put forward a proposal for dioceses which wish to be able to bless same-sex unions to be able to do so, and for gay priests to be ordained.

The Diocese of Waiapu strongly believes that sexual orientation should present no barrier to ordination, the Motion says.

As a diocese, like others, we have experienced first-hand the ministry of gay and lesbian clergy, some of whom have been in faithful, loving, committed same-gender relationships, and believe them to have enriched the life of our Church.

We are therefore grateful that successive bishops have discerned within the lives of these people a call to ordination, and acknowledge this work of discernment is a serious and significant aspect of episcopal ministry.

We have become concerned in recent years that bishops of this and other dioceses appear to have come under pressure to withhold discernment for ordination because of a person's sexual orientation and their living out of that orientation with a loving, faithful relationship, the Motion continues.

As a diocese we believe such pressure runs contrary to the traditional understanding that the responsibility for discerning and acting upon the call of the Holy Spirit on an individual to a life within the holy order of priests or deacons rests firmly in the hands of the bishop of the diocese /hui amorangi.

We therefore ask that:

This General Synod / Te Hinota Whanui affirms the long tradition and practice of episcopal autonomy in the discernment of a person's call to ordination.

The Diocese of Waiapu has also put forward a Motion for the General Synod to:

Move forward with the provision of an authorised liturgy for the blessing of same-gender relationships to be adopted for use by those dioceses which wish so to do.

So I am sad to learn that Bishop David is to return to the USA as provisional bishop of San Juan. I know San Juan needs all the help it can at this time but pray that a similarly brave bishop is appointed to continue the good work in Waiaipu

Friday, September 27, 2013

Around Auckland

I spent 4 nights in Auckland.

On Day 10 of my trip I travelled on the ferry to Waiheke Island passing Rangitoto Island, one of the extinct? volcanoes.

I took a walk around the coast of the island. Unfortunately I did not take my stick and walking boots and the track was very muddy and slippery so I only completed about two thirds.

On Day 11 I attended Eucharist at the Auckland cathedral.

Then I drove north to Piha Beach on the west coast. It is regularly featured on TV surf rescue programs.

I then drove to Muriwai also featured on TV but not so pretty.

On Day 12 I visited the Auckland Botanical Gardens.

On two evenings I attended concerts in the Town Hall. The first was an organ recital by Dr Indra Hughes of Bach's the Art of Fugue. I like organ music but Dr Hughes gave a very involved lecture beforehand of which I understood little and the piece played was very long.
Much better was the 2nd night when the Australian conductor Richard Gill led the New Zealand Youth Orchestra playing
LOGAN Zhu Rong Fury!
BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No.3

It was a marvellous night.

I had also been fortunate when I stayed in Napier.
I purposely left Dunedin the morning after attending a concert by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra. They toured the South Island with a Mozart performance
MOZART The Abduction from the Seraglio: Overture
MOZART Sinfonia Concertante
MOZART Symphony No.40 in G minor

At the same time they were touring the North Island with a Beethoven  performance
BEETHOVEN The Ruins of Athens Overture
BEETHOVEN Symphony No.2
BEETHOVEN Symphony No.5
and it was in Napier at the art deco theatre opposite my hotel on the night I was staying there.

Therefore I attended 3 marvellous concerts within 2 weeks.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013


Day 6 and I drove to Whakatane with a view of Mt White offshore which is New Zealand's most active volcano.

Then I bypassed Tauranga and drove onto the Coromandel Peninsula. A short stop in the town of Whitianga.

I drove across the peninsula to the town of Coromandel.

I stayed 2 nights and spent Day 7 driving to beaches north up the coast

Then inland to a stand of Kauri trees which covered this area until logged by white settlers.

There was  a view of Castle Rock.

Then I backtracked over the hills to the beach at Whangapoua and I could look back at the other side of Castle Rock.

(Note for non-Kiwis - in Maori Wh is pronounced F)

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Travelling Further North (and to the East)

In the afternoon of Day 4 I headed into new territory towards East Cape.

I passed through Wairoa and spent the night in Gisborne.

Day 5 I drove 360 km right around East Cape through Tolaga Bay with the longest wharf in New Zealand.

Then to Tokamaru Bay with a reminder that Spring was upon us.

I visted the delightful Maori Anglican church at Tiki Tiki. This area is largely settled by Maori and was one of the first areas reached by the early Maori when they sailed to New Zealand.

Te  Araroa is the most easterly point of New Zealand I am likely to visit. From here a 20 km gravel road leads along the ocean edge to East Cape Lighthouse. The oldest and largest Pohutakawa tree is in the school grounds. I must return in November/December when the Pohutakawa are in full flower.

The scenery was great all the way to my overnight stop in Opotiki.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Travelling North

I recently spent nearly 3 weeks in the North Island.
I feel I should post some pictures as I do with my overseas travels.
Day 1 I drove North to a little town called Cheviot then on Day 2 I continued up the east Coast through Kaikoura.

 to Picton and onto the Strait ferry to Wellington.

Day 3 I drove over the Rimutaka Range

and took a break in Greytown which was once the capital of this area known as the Wairarapa so has many old buildings.

The night was spent in Napier which was destroyed by an earthquake in 1931 and rebuilt in the Art deco style of those times.

In the evening I went to a concert by the NZ Symphony orchestra in the art deco theatre.

Day 4 I attended Eucharist in the Cathedral built after the earthquake.

Then I went to the NZ National Aquarium which had some kiwis as well as sea creatures.