I write this piece for our Church Blog with anticipation and hope for the future of the Hibiscus Coast Presbyterian Church. A bold decision has been made. At a congregational meeting on Sunday, 30 August 2015 the congregation voted overwhelmingly to move to holding combined worship services each Sunday morning, alternating between St Andrew’s Whangaparaoa and St Andrew’s Orewa.

The key points to note immediately about this move are as follows:

  • combined worship services will commence on Sunday, 20 September 2015 with a service at 10:00 am at Whangaparaoa;
  • the starting time of combined services will be 10:00 am;
  • in each month on the first and third Sundays combined worship will be at Whangaparaoa and on the second and fourth Sundays combined worship will be at Orewa; and
  • if there is a fifth Sunday in the month, the combined service will be a special service with the timing, venue and details of the service being notified in advance.

This move may be a little confusing for some, particularly to start with, so we will be using several different ways to get the message across. For example, the parish activities calendar on the back page of the monthly newsletter will always give the dates, timings and venues of our worship services. The activities calendar on our church website ( will also provide the details of each Sunday’s worship services.

Over the next couple of weeks, we will be putting together a worship team to plan and oversee the combined worship services for the first six months. The worship team will play an important role in ensuring the success of our combined worship, bringing together different talents and ideas and sharing the worship preparation load with me. It doesn’t mean that the worship team is going to be doing everything, though, and we will be looking for people to participate in the conduct of our worship services, whether they are on the team or not. It is, above all, participation and variety that we are looking for – the combined worship services are the vehicle for this. It is through participation that we will be able to ensure that our worship remains vital, relevant and encouraging, all of which are important for helping us to be part of God’s mission in the world.

Yours in Christ’s service,