Meeting the Mayor

Yep, met Mr Hubbard. Brilliant chap, into all sorts of fab things. He loved the idea of Auckland being a Fair Trade town and invited us to present to the economic development comittee. Yahoo! The Social Policy Unit is now officially Fair Trade, with a flash certificate to say so. The territorial leadership is still yet to make a call, but I hold firmly to the hope that they will.

Justice and the Army

This is an excerpt from Campbell's (Roberts- Director of the Social Policy Unit) Coutts memorial lecture he just did over in Ozzy. Its pretty awesome.

The voice of The Salvation Army must be heard and we must act to live out justice. This is our Biblical mandate, that we be conveyers of hope in a dark and injustice-ridden world. Injustice can be defeated in Christ. But this requires a response both as The Salvation Army and as individual Salvationists.

The voice and action of The Salvation Army globally where people suffer injustice must be clear and forthright. We must show courage whatever the source of human suffering, whether it be government policies, the actions of global or national corporations, the inaccuracy of the media, a racist public, self-interested political lobbyists, secular ideologies and philosophies, or just plain apathy. This requires engagement with international organisations who work for justice and truth. Regretfully, for a movement with such a global spread it would seem we often fail to commit sufficient time and resource to work in international forums and organisations.

Where are the contemporary voices of The Salvation Army speaking our clearly at this time of global oppression and injustice? Yes, we are involved in significant acts of human care, and we have voiced comments on the scourge of human trafficking, particularly now under the able leadership of Commissioner Helen Clifton. But is this enough? Where is the connection between the huge injustices and the everyday practice of Salvationists around the western world?

Is it time for a global forum of international biblical and theological expertise that can reflect on matters of global injustice in the light of our Biblical and missional mandate? Such a body could give a theological framework and direction to our mission in the world’s international forums. It would also provide an encouragement and unity to national leadership that is engaging with these issues. The international Salvation Army needs to be expressing a gospel of hope in contexts of depressive suffering, ethnic and regional conflicts, environmental destruction, hardening poverty, and unjust trade regimes.


Auckland NZ's first Fair Trade Town?

Have fancy dress party tonight (love those) and line dancing at church tommorrow night!

Meeting the Mayor in the morning to chat about Auckland becoming a Fair Trade Town which will be pretty wicked...maybe I should turn up in my line dancing garb, just to really impress him?

23rd psalm by Mike Riddell

urban shepherd
you lead us through skyscraper canyons
past carbon monoxide
and mirror glass
and busker
you make us to lie down on park benches
and rest beside sewage settlement ponds
you keep our feet on pavement
and escalator
and lift shaft
and guide us through the back alleys
of our city
though we enter the concrete crevasse
we will not fear the chaos
for you are with us
you grant us a site in the sun
at a sidewalk cafe
where we drink cappuccino and are glad
you give us doughnut stalls
and film festivals
and neon signs
surely your goodness and poverty
will follow us all the days of our lives
and we will come at last to the holy city


Te Reo Maori Week

It is Maori Language Week! I wish I could express a few words of celebration, courtesy of the Maori class me and Tim took, but I can't- WAH! (Come on though, I can count to 1000! Hmm) Instead I will share one of the most known Maori Proverbs, which sums up what it's all about ay. Even that prior post, about church....
"Ui mai koe ki ahau he aha te mea nui o te ao, Māku e kī atu he tangata, he tangata, he tangata!"

"Ask me what is the greatest thing in the world, I will reply: It is people, it is people, it is people!"


here in the house of the great king????

Mike Frost: "When I go to a church and they say "Welcome to the House of God" I am sitting at the back blowing rasberries- N0 building is the house of God! WE are!"

Howard Snyder: "The gospel says "Go" but our church buildings say "Stay". The gospel says "Seek the Lost" but our church buildings say "Let the lost seek the church""

Stephen (you know, from the Bible): "The most high doesn't dwell in buildings made of human hands."

Steve Molen (Salvation Army youth worker): "Burn the church buildings! Burn 'em down!"

How much do you reckon our investment in buildings restricts the Salvation Army's kingdom work? Do you reckon there needs to be a bit of healthy pyromania?

(symbolic pyromania!) (dont wanna get the sack for being a pyscho)


missional church

Our last day in Wellington last week was a workshop with Mike Frost on missional church. Flipping inspiring. He spoke of the need for our "new look for church" to spring from our knowledge about God, and the devestation of mission being seperated from church- they need to be one and the same. I hope to post some of the striking things discussed on my blog over the next wee while.
Meanwhile from his book, "The Shaping of things to come"
"Perhaps the birth of the missional church will depend on whether enough people will be found willing to respond to the critical issues of our time and have a go at dreaming up new forms of church and creating new ways of doing ministry and mission. We believe that the actual experimentation, the revolution if you will, will be actively led and executed by younger people- most revolutions are....
Our heartfelt prayer is that our youth will find the necesary courage to break with the enslaving power of the habitual and the familiar."

You can check out Mike and his crews community on smallboatbigsea.com it is a rad site.

winter woes

Last night I introduced Tim to a great treat- microwaved cheese. It is truly scrumpscious, all melted and chrispy on the edges. Kind of like microwaved mars bars. (Another treat). Tim busted out and added pickle to his plate of goodness. Unsurprisingly crazy dreaming was in store for us.

I dreamt of lolling in the green pastures of my homeland -as my family and friends are at the moment: the sun scorching their skin like berrys, dipping in the fresh sea on the devon coast.

Today I sit at my desk, sheltered from the freezingness of the outside: my skin so pasty it is see through and my mind as unclear as the cloudy skies above. Wah. Winter woes.


lab rats

I'm down in Wellington at the mo for territorial youth meetings. I am a bit sick though...woe me, the snots, the cough, the whole deal, blagh.
Today we are planning Kaivata, the tri-territorial youth conference coming up in January. This week have also been working on our Youth Councils in August, this mad 24 hour bash with Nathan Rowe and Rowan Castle for Oz. Noth you can check out on our youth site- Firezone.co.nz

It's funny cos my motto for ventures i'm involved in/ life in general is "give it a crack". You know, get risky. I like to try new stuff for events. I dig people that do church different.
And then C.S Lewis's words ring in my ear "Jesus said feed my sheep not do experiments on my rats"


kids camp is all over

Wowzas! We made it to the end of Kids Camp! It was without a doubt, the hardest, most stressfull thing I have ever done. But what a flippin amazing time! It finished on Friday and I just spent the whole weekend feeling completely overwhelmed and humbled by the way that God used those few days so powerfully in those kids lives. Up until the first day of camp my attitude was so stink "oh well, if kids camp has to be done then we had better do it well" kind of thing, and felt well out of my depth the whole time- so then to watch God move amongst those kids was just mindblowing! A massive reminder that God is not confined to our effort/attitude/fallibility. A few posts ago I wrote a vague hope for camp that "God would be strong in our weakness"- Man! If I had only known! We saw so potently that Gods power is made perfect in weakness!

Top 3 highlights:
3- The Crazy Opshop Ball- we had tons of 2nd hand clothes, a cheesy covers band and a whole lot of insanity. It was SO rad to watch the kids just let loose big time!
2- Praying with my small group for the Holy Spirit, 8 seven to eight year olds laying hands on each other, wanting to get "plugged in".
1- Hunting for beach treasure with these two young brothers who had just had a bit of fisty cuffs, and seeing how they valued someone spending precious moments with them.


from the Kairos Document

‘The moment of truth has arrived … The Church should challenge, inspire and motivate people.
It has a message of the cross that inspires us to make sacrifices for justice and liberation. It has a message of hope that challenges us to act with hope and confidence. The Church must preach
this message not only in words and sermons and statements but also through its actions, programmes, campaigns and divine services"

Fair Trade Flick

Black Gold is a movie about the injustice of the Coffee industry showing at the NZ Film Festival.
You can check out the movie site here. You should go see it! There are panel speakers after too!

confessions of a bad blogger and kids camp

Oh. I am an unloyal and easily diverted Blogger.It has been an age since I last posted! Life has just really gone mad.
Next week we are putting on a camp at Motutapu Island for a whole bunch of kids, numbers are exceeding 160! We feel pretty out of our depth really. Kids are a whole different ball game to teens. But, I guess we are going: God be Strong cos We are Weak! Which He is ay.
So, thou shalt here from me noteth. But please pray for us! (Kids are a bit scary) (Hehe, but also pray that we will be all moved closer to being like Jesus, knowing and loving Him)


Neil's July 3rd morning devo

My father in law just faxed his devo through to me, it is rad. Here is an excerpt:

"God designed the human soul to be passionate, abandoned and committed. That is the way the soul functions best. It sinks into restlessness, boredom, passivity and function if it has nothing worthy of giving its life to or sacrificing itself for. In other words if we have nothing to die for, then we really have nothing to live for. God intended our souls to be captured, consumed and enthralled with Jesus. Our highest development and greatest fulfilment lie in worshipping and serving him with an abandonment that will sacrifice everything.”

Amine, and may it be so.

yes its true- Tim went to school like this: