UCANZ Forum - 17th Oct 2019

The Standing committee of UCANZ met on Thursday 17 October. It was our usual meeting that is normally held in Miramar, Wellington. In coinciding it with the Forum made sense. Alexandra was in its known fame of sunny days as we gathered. It was business as usual. The nominations for election was made clearer in my understanding.

It was a pleasant meeting, nothing unexpected. It was church business as usual. We had a great Indian dinner to conclude our meeting. The platform was set and we looked forward to the Forum, for the next three days. Folks started flooding in as registration was underway. The Church at Alexandra was fully seated by the Forum representatives.

There was a good, open atmosphere about our Church life in a cooperating parish. It felt comfortable and with the realization of being amongst family. It comes with time and years spent in Church fellowships in many different contexts. You sense that you could mix and mingle, and be yourself. I felt at home.

My presentation was based on my theme for General Assembly 2018 - 2020, of relationship. “Relationship with God, and others, in Jesus”. Basically to being there in person, making time for each other. There were also topical issues in Church life to face up to, like, declining Church attendance and ageing congregations. Matters of racism, subtle and discreet being a regular experience. Also discrimination in many areas ie people of different nationalities, women, the elderlies, youth, etc, etc. It stirred many conversations. To understand generated reality checks.

There was much, much more, business as usual, planning for the future. And having a good look at ourselves as a group that represents ecumenicism. There were a good range covered by speakers, wonderful host, meals, friendships, from the folks of Alexandra parish. I left refreshed, renewed, at peace. The devotions each morning, our closing worship, the atmosphere, one on one conversations, the people on Sunday. It was a great Forum.

My wife Ruth and I returned home uplifted. The last UCANZ Forum was at our home Church in Onehunga, Auckland 2018. So we have been fully immersed in ecumenical, union, church life. We delved deep in it’s life, hopes, future. Life goes on. Our dear secretary Robyn Daniels retired after two decades in the role. We will miss her. Standing Committee has some new members. We all left, parted with the Christian kiss and embrace.

Praise God.


Photos: Mereani Ngari & Southern Presbyterians

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