The LINK October – November 2017
Alpine Presbytery Gathering at Trinity
Over the weekend of 6-8 October our parish had the privilege of hosting the Alpine Presbytery Gathering. The Alpine Presbytery is our regional body which stretches from the Waitaki River to Cook Strait. There are 59 parishes in the Presbytery. Twice a year we gather to encourage each other in worship and mission, and to conduct any business that is necessary.
This month, for the first time since the Presbytery began in 2014, it was Timaru’s turn to host. It was great to make full use of the Trinity Hall which is taking on a new lease of life.
What a wonderful occasion! Over 80 people gathered from as far away as Seddon and Hokitika, and we enjoyed sharing signs of hope with one another. One of the highlights was Robin Humphreys, our new Kidsfriendly coach, leading the whole gathering in Godly play around the story of Noah and the ark. Rev. Dr. Steve Taylor and Dr. Rosemary Dewerse from the Knox Centre for Ministry and Leadership shared their research and asked for our feedback on areas we need to grow and learn as a church to encourage more signs of hope into our future. There were presentations from PSSC, the Lindisfarne Camp trust, and many more.
The biggest gift of a weekend like this is the chance to eat, worship, laugh and talk together. As the young Alpine Presbytery matures, I think that we can feel grateful and blessed that we are developing a real culture of celebration and fellowship together.
One final thing I’d like to draw your attention to. We had an inspiring mural painted by a team of our people. It was a scene of a braided river flowing from Aoraki/Mt. Cook to the sea with the legend “Behold, I am making all things new” emblazoned on high. The mural featured three themes braided together. The motto of the Alpine Presbytery is “Resourcing the braided river”. The theme for the Gathering was “signs of hope”. And our own Chapel of Renewal at Trinity carries the same legend from Revelation 21:5.
The Gathering was a huge team effort, and there is not enough space here to thank you all individually. I came away tired, but truly inspired with hope for our future together in God’s name here in Timaru, and throughout the Alpine region. What a blessing!