and * WELLINGTON
* Diamond Harbour
Address to the CCANZ strategic visioning and planning meeting 8-9 March 2002
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, Amen.
Thus agreed the Universal Church at the first two Ecumenical Councils. This remains the faith of The Church. The Church is the same now as in the time of the Apostles and at the time of the Ecumenical Councils. Its faith is unaltered, permanent and timeless. It has endured persecutions, oppressions, invasions, and schisms. What is this Church?
I believe in One God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible. And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, Begotten of his Father before all worlds. Light of Light, very God of very God, Begotten not made, Being of one substance with the Father: by whom all things were made. Who for us men, and for our salvation, came down from heaven and was incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary: and was made man. And was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate: he suffered, and was buried. And the third day he rose again, according to the scriptures. And ascended into heaven: and sitteth on the right hand of the Father. And he shall come again with glory, to judge both the quick and the dead: Whose kingdom shall have no end. And I believe in the Holy Ghost, the Lord, and Giver of Life: Who proceedeth from the Father: Who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified: Who spake by the Prophets. And I believe in one holy, catholic and apostolic Church. I acknowledge one Baptism for the remission of sins. And I look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.
Why are various Orthodox Church jursidictions present at this meeting? What do they intend to achieve by being here?
I have sent my representatives here to speak on my behalf - and therefore on the behalf of the Patriarchate of Antioch and all the East, one of the five great Episcopal sees of the early Church. They are not here to speak for The Church as a whole – neither they, myself nor even the Patriach can do that – they can only represent the views of the Antiochian jurisdiction (just as the Ecumenical Patriarchate can only represent its views). However, they are here to act as a beacon to Tradition - to illuminate your meeting, to remind you that The Church is one, was one and will be one: to show you what the faith of The One Church is. How does this relate to Ecumenism?
Ecumenism is a word which appears to have gone through some transformations as time has gone by. To us it means "generalism" or "universalism" or even a sense of "oneness". Thus we believe we are already Ecumenical in such a sense - indeed it is contained within The Church's symbol of belief. A more common meaning of ecumenism appears to be "sharing so as to become one". This of course has many subtle sub-interpretations. Whereas the Orthodox communion would possibly agree to the overt interpretation of such a meaning, it would be on the understanding that the "becoming one" is to become re-united with the unchanging, and timeless, faith of The Church. Many others would undoubtedly disagree with such an understanding - that is their choice.
We see the CCANZ as a body which can help co-ordinate dialogue and facilitate understanding between the various Christian groups within New Zealand. We do not see it as a body to replace, act or speak on behalf of those groups. To be effective in such a role (indeed in any role in relation to the Christian groups who are members) the CCANZ must be comprised of those who are properly representative of and who act with the full authority of their respective groups. It is only by acting in such a manner that we perceive that the CCANZ can be effective at promoting ecumenism in either its narrow or wider senses.
Thus, by being here to-day and yesterday I hope and pray that we will have illuminated in some way the faith of The Church and enabled discussions to take place which will make the CCANZ a more effective body.
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, Amen.
Metropolitan Archbishop of Australia, New Zealand and Dependencies
Patriarchate of Antioch and all the East
The key action points to arise out of the weekend could be summarised
1. to narrow the focus of the CCANZ;
2. to increase the participation rate both amongst member bodies and those who are currently
not members; and
3. make the member bodies responsible for their membership (i.e. there has been a lack of
leadership due to non-authoritative leadership within the CCANZ).
Fr George also attended the meeting and led devotions.
We have chosen three of Spiro's lates batch of photos taken during Fr
visit to Wellington on January 12-13. We have unfortunately only enough space
for these at present..
Matters concerning the title to the Church site at Ashley,
the East Window, etc, are moving to a
favourable conclusion we hope, but more slowly than we at first hoped. On 16th January a balance of $15,015-19 was confirmed in the lawyer's trust account for the Trustees, and a sketch of a contract has been submitted to the lawyer, so that a draft may, we hope, be presented to the Trustees quite soon. Please continue to pray. The Revd Bob Tremewan is leaving Rangiora to be chaplain at Cathedral Grammar; but the negotiations were held with the Churchwardens, and this should ensure continuity.
SUFFER THE LITTLE CHILDREN TO COME UNTO ME
Hope Francesca Duffield, pictured above, was transferred last year by
Social Welfare from
the caregiver at Ashley chosen by her mother to a couple near Greymouth who hope to
adopt her. Her first birthday 30 3 2002 passed without any opportunity for contact with her
own family. Please pray for her and all her family.
On Saturday 10th November 2001, after checking the preparations
for Sunday Fr Deacon George joined with Fr Ilyan Eades who arrived at 11:15
and Father Jack who arrived at 16:40 and Sayedna, and made it to the packed
church of All Saints at Howick where vespers was celebrated by His Eminence
and a crowd joined all at the hall for a nice cup of tea. Afterwards the
some guests had a sumptious meal at "La Mama" as guests of the Haidamous family.
On Sunday 11th November 2001, at St Ignatius Church, Waterview, His
Eminence Metropolitan Paul Saliba, Celebrated the Liturgy and Ordination
Service assisted by Fr Jack Witbrock from Christchurch and Fr Ilyan Eades
from Dunedin during which Fr Deacon George Bosauder was elevated to the
Holy Priesthood, and afterwards invested with the Epigonation (which allows
to hear confessions). Following the service there was a brunch and later dinner at Waipuna. All functions were well supported.
The Dinner at the Waipuna was a great success with 40% increase over
paid up tickets. Speeches were an important part of the Evening with the
Master of Ceremonies John Basily directing an efficient and entertaining
evening. Mr Lahez Haddad delivered a speech for Father George Bosauder,
His Eminence encapsulated the feelings of all present in a fiery speach
that grasped the
attention of all present. Fr George thanked all present and absent. The entertainment section was none but the two children of Fr George Paul and Michael who delivered a first class musical of Rock Pop nature and they had to repeat the performance due to the requests of the crowds. What an
experience we all had during the Liturgy and Ordination. The team prepared a great Brunch afterwards and a sumptuous dinner at Waipuna. It's going to be hard to beat this... or is it?
His Eminence spent the following two days training the new priest. Also, suggested that the mission at Howick is to take St George as Patron Saint. During the training sessions Sayedna recorded for our benefit some parts of the services which we can make available on CD for those interested. The CD in Arabic includes the 8 tones, main Troparions, Kontakions and parts for Christmas and Easter. Another CD would have services like marriage etc covered from a priest's point of view.
Any way the trip to Wellington Saturday 17th to Sunday 18th was full of action and celebrating the first Vespers and Liturgy with His Eminence will always be remembered fondly. The hospitality of the Wellington mission was great throughout, and Sayedna, arranged that Frs. Jack and George fly once a month each to Wellington thus giving the mission two services a month. (This has, however, not been possible yet because of shortage of funds for air tickets).
The first Liturgy at Howick on Sunday 25th November 2001 went well with over 14 attending despite the competition from the Farmers Santa Parade.
Many years ago now, I read the extract below, in a school anthoplogy
of poetry. Over the years its words, or some of them, have remained in
my memory and had, I think, a profound influence on me.
The author, Sir Rabindranath Tagore, was born in Calcutta in 1861 and enjoyed a wide fame not only throughout British India but also throughout the English-speaking world. In 1913 he won the Nobel Prize for L:iterature and in 1915 was knighted by George V. Many of his works were published in English and in the case of the long poem Gitanjali, the English translation was made by the poet himself.
It has always seemed to me that the poet in this passage was addressing our Lord Jesus Christ. If this was not his explicit intention, it seems to me to be a tribute to the degree to which the personality of our Lord has been projected throughout the world and even into environments that were not Christian; a tribute, indeed to the extent that the Hindu world had caught a glimpse of His image.
For some years I have wanted to trace the poem that I remembered, but it was only the other day that the simple thought came to me to make an Internet search for the name of the poet Tagore. I found extracts from Gitanjali and the style seemed like what I remembered. I searched for the whole text and began to work through the sections, and found:
Here is thy footstool and there rest thy feet
where live the poorest, and lowliest, and lost.
When I try to bow to thee, my obeisance cannot reach down to the depth where thy feet rest among the poorest, and lowliest, and lost.
Pride can never approach to where thou walkest
in the clothes of the humble
among the poorest, and lowliest, and lost.
My heart can never find its way to where thou keepest company with the companionless among the poorest, the lowliest, and the lost.
I cannot unfortunately give a simple direction to this page. Its complete "location" as shown on the bar does not seem to lead back to it, but you are referred back to the homepage which is a general literary library: http://www.intratext.com/ - from there you can chose the catalogue, then the title or the author and thus arrive at the text, including this section. Alternatively, search for "Gitanjali" for the poem, or "Tagore" for biographical details, on any engine; there are at least 2 sites containing the whole poem in English.