You heavens above, rain down my righteousness; let the clouds shower it down. Let the earth open wide, let salvation spring up, let righteousness flourish with it [Isaiah 45:8]
Kia ora whanau,
Today we are a calendar month from our Synod gathering and it has been a good time for me to reflect back on how we might take Synod forward in the future.
The relatively light agenda on the table enabled us to focus on the bigger picture of our direction, our principles, and our accountability to one another:
Direction – Reverend Ellie Sanderson led us with skill through the Exodus story and helped us to understand our need to use active perception to discern where God is calling us as a Diocesan family; trusting that God’s ideas might be very different from our own.
Principles – the insightful teaching offered by Professor Chris Marshall offered us a process of working through thorny issues to develop respectful and trusting relationships with those whose opinions we might find difficult to accept.
Accountability – in our mandating of people for Diocesan roles and our trusting of them to fulfil them.
This Synod for me was a reminder that the gathering is a ‘big picture’ place, where we move from micro management to tackling big decisions with trust, honesty and respect.
Thank you too to all those who have already offered their enthusiasm and ideas for ways to take forward our three Synod challenges for 2016: child poverty, climate change, and generous hospitality. It’s going to be exciting to see what initiatives we can develop over the next year and I’m looking forward to seeing how this mission plays out.
This month I also had the privilege of attending the Common Life Mission Conference in Auckland. As usual it is a delight to attend a gathering which meets across our three tikanga, and to meet up with colleagues from Australia, Africa, Melanesia and the Pacific. What a blessing it was also to see such a strong Wellington contingent there and to know that our Diocese continues its strong missional focus.
I hope you are all enjoying this beautiful spring weather with its reminders of God’s refreshing, renewing energy.