kia ora and welcome to st paul's, a vibrant community gathering in auckland's oldest city church. come along, get stuck in and help us in creating, relating, restoring and whole pile of other 'ing' words...

sun 25 feb & 4 mar | after the 18:30 | $5
Get along this Sunday as we welcome students to Auckland and to St Paul’s. It’ll be informative and inspiring, as we look at all God is doing and will do in the life of St Paul's. We’ll begin with worship and a talk as usual, then kick back with some pizza, beer and live music. If you know any new or current students that may be interested invite them along. Bring $5 and your ID.

In 1977 St Paul’s became home to the only 'biblical garden' in Australasia. Planned by landscape architect Paul Tritenback, the garden was transformed into a quiet inner-city haven. A guide for guests helped them to locate the diverse species of plants; the tree used to build Noah’s Ark, the papyrus used to weave the basket for baby Moses, and dozens of other significant biblical plants.

beginning thu 15 feb | 12pm-1pm
In recent times, Christians have begun giving the practice of 'sabbath keeping' more attention in response to a culture that is becoming increasingly circus-like. Join us in this season of Lent as we explore ways to allow time in our busy lives to find freedom in the rhythms of rest. The church will be open on Thursdays between 12pm and 1pm - feel free to come for the whole hour, or just a part of it.

fri 23 feb | 7pm | st paul's church
We want to say 'Thank you!' to all of our amazing volunteers. You make St Paul's what it is so we are throwing a party just for you! Please RSVP if you haven't done so - registrations close at midnight on Mon 19 Feb. If you are on a team but haven't heard from us, get in touch - we want you there!
PS: Not involved yet but want to be? Join a team quick!

tue 27 feb | 7.30pm | st paul's church
You are invited to join us at The River, where we will be releasing breakthrough for every situation in need of the miraculous power of God. Jesus calls us to set captives free, open blind eyes, and heal the broken! If you need prayer for anything then this is the place to come. Free parking at Wilsons.

We are looking for someone to join the team to oversee a wide range of events at St Paul's. The ideal candidate would have formal training in event management, experience in the not-for-profit sector, and availability in evenings and weekends. If this position interests you, please send your CV and cover letter to Doreen before Friday 2nd March. A job description will be available on request.

thu 8 mar | 7.15pm | st paul's annexe | free parking
Are you, or is someone you know, quietly struggling with conception, pregnancy or fertility issues? Our women's baby prayer group is getting together to pray and support one another By His power and grace, couples are overcoming medical odds, miscarriage, unexplained infertility and more. All welcome. Completely confidential. Contact Sally for more info.

sun 18 march
Our next Infant Baptism & Dedication services are coming up in March. If you're interested in having your little one baptised or dedicated with the support of our wonderful church family please email Shelley by Fri 2 March.

sun 18 march | after the 11am
One of the many great things about being a part of our church family is gathering around the longest table in town and enjoying church lunch together. The kids can go wild on the bouncy castle while you have a chance to meet some of the many new faces who have recently joined us and catch up with a few familiar faces! We'll be serving mouth watering BLT's prepared by our superstar volunteers - email Jennifer if you'd like to be on the team.

It’s the start of the year and we are looking for new recruits to join the AV (Audio & Visual) team to help us operate sound and lyrics, and the worship team. We couldn’t sustain such a vibrant and rich worship & course life at St Paul's without all of the wonderful people who help out and serve in these areas. If you would like to talk to someone about joining the worship team, or if you have any experience with doing sound or lyrics - or you’d like to learn - please get in touch. Training can be provided and it’s a great way to serve and get involved!

We live in a world that’s given its basic rhythms by the familiar seasons of the year. Just as they do for the ‘natural’ world, these cycles are designed to give us rest, renewal and flourishing with different emphases at different times. The Christian calendar picks up on this same rhythm, using the annual flow of the year to retell the story of God’s redemption plan through Jesus, as we celebrate Christmas, Easter, Pentecost, and so on.

But living within this seasonal cycle does not mean living in circles, like a repetitive Groundhog Day. As we journey through the Christian seasons of the year, they’re meant to lead us deeper into the radical ramifications of what it means for us to be the leading edge of the new creation that has broken into our world through Jesus. This is life-changing, world-altering stuff, if we can grasp it.

So, how do we live into the radical cycle of the Christian seasons, without just going around in circles? The answer lies in our unique attribute as human creatures. Unlike other animals, which live instinctively and reflexively, we are what philosopher Charles Taylor calls “hermeneutical creatures,” meaning that we have “desires about our desires.” Simply put, we get to choose whether the desires and habits we have, are the ones we want. For example, we may resist our craving for sugar because of a greater desire to be healthy. This means that, in a world of persuasion, we get to choose what sort of life we want.

We see this vividly in Jesus’ forty-day encounter with the Devil right before the start of his ministry. Jesus’ ancient enemy offers him some easy outs, appealing to his lower cravings and tempting him to live according to the rhythms of the old creation — to make the same choices people always had. But Jesus, filled with the Holy Spirit, resists these cravings and chooses something different. He chooses to embrace the radical path of following God’s calling and trusting His purposes and plans, and the rest is history.

The Early church took Jesus’ bold example seriously, and used the forty days leading up to Easter as a time of refocusing their lives around him, and preparing for the coming of Resurrection Sunday. That’s why we observe Lent, because it encourages us to live further into the radical mysteries of following Jesus. So, I want to invite you into this positive season of preparation for Easter with two practical suggestions. First, you could “take up & read,” by reading a chapter of the Gospels every day. Luke and John have 45 chapters between them, so you could read both and still have a day to spare before Easter (there’s actually 46 days between Ash Wednesday and Easter)! My second suggestion is to take up courage in the Spirit. We can only follow Jesus and do what he did because we have the same Spirit within us. So why not commit to the adventure of stepping further into engaging God’s empowering Spirit within your life. You could start by coming to the movie we’re showing at St Paul’s this Friday night, “Christ in You.” It will challenge you, but it will also call you into the radical journey of following Jesus.

Rev Jonny Grant

As I write this, PM Jacinda Ardern has just announced that she’s pregnant and due in June. It takes me back to those foggy early days after the arrival of our first child, when all of life seemed to merge into a sleep-reduced haze. I remember the mixture of joy and terror, holding this fragile child with all of the potential and uncertainty that lay ahead.

Today we’re looking at the nature of faith and what it means to put our fundamental trust in an unseen God in the age before Jesus returns. Faith can, at times, feel like holding a vulnerable child. The great theologian Karl Barth named it well when he said that everything we believe and do as Christians is enabled and sustained by the Holy Spirit — our faith “hovers in Mid Air.” Barth’s point is not that our faith appears to hover in Mid Air, but that it actually does, held up by the wind of God’s breath. This leaves us in a challenging place as people of faith living in a materialised world, where we’re taught to put our trust in tangible things like houses, careers and our own bodies (Bitcoin being an obvious exception to this rule!).

But Jesus calls us to live boldly in the time between his coming and his coming again; a time when our faith “hovers in Mid Air.” This is swimming against the tide of our world to say the least, and we need to be attentive to what faith looks like. As I said last week, more than anything else, faith takes courage. Karl Barth was a Swiss German theologian who resisted the rise of the Nazis and their adjusted vision of church. He mentored another pastor called Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who also refused to let the church become a shape-shifter for the Nazi cause. Bonhoeffer’s faith took huge courage, but it was also fuelled by the perspective that God’s greater, yet still invisible, kingdom made sense of our faith. Bonhoeffer believed that God had a destiny for each of his followers. After a year in a Nazi prison, he wrote, “I’m firmly convinced—however strange it may seem—that my life has followed a straight and unbroken course, … and is being determined necessarily and straightforwardly by a higher providence. I believe that nothing that happens to me is meaningless.”

I’ve been struck over the last few years how challenging faith can be. Like the Israelites eating manna and quail in the wilderness, God sometimes doesn’t give us more than we need, often laying down the track as the train rolls over it. This is designed to strengthen us in our faith, so that we come to know that the divine breath sustaining us is the most secure place on which to build our lives. That’s the challenge of faith and it's the challenge for us this year — to entrust every aspect of our lives again to the wind of the Spirit for the glory of God and His greater purposes.

Rev Jonny Grant

It already seems like an age ago that we celebrated our amazing array of Christmas services, remembering the story of God coming to us in Jesus in a whole host of creative ways. But there’s nothing quite like the Kiwi summer — tropical storms included — to take a break from the hard yakka, and to recharge for the year ahead. I hope you’ve had a safe and restful break and are desperately missing church. Thankfully the wait is over and so welcome back to St Paul’s. At this time of year, we are joined by new members of our congregation, and I want to extend an especially warm welcome to you. We’re looking forward to a great year ahead.

As we look ahead to what’s coming, it’s critical for us as followers of Jesus to remember the story that we find ourselves in. One of the characters in the Christmas story that particularly stood out for me recently was John the Baptist’s father Zechariah. He was a priest stationed at the Temple in Jerusalem who drew the lot to enter the holy place to burn incense at the altar. When the angel Gabriel gave Zechariah the good news about his wife Elizabeth’s conception, he totally missed the moment and was struck dumb for his lack of faith until after John was born. God clearly takes this priest on a journey because when John is circumcised, Zechariah is filled with the Holy Spirit and prophecies about God’s saving grace — known as “The Benedictus.” What I find most challenging about Zechariah is that he was a man of prayer, working in the very place where God was expected to be present, and yet he was shocked and off-balance when God’s messenger actually showed up to fulfill the very thing Zechariah had been praying for all these years: a child. I think that’s our challenge too!

As Christians we boldly follow the God who can do all things — who is in the business of confounding human expectations and changing the scope of our horizons. But to enter into what God has in store, we need to go on the same journey of faith that Zechariah went on. Over the holidays, we’ve been reading our son Theo’s Marvel-inspired “Action Bible,” which is quite a ride! It’s impressed on me again the constant challenge God lays down throughout Scripture not to look back at the advancing Egyptians but to turn and face the new path that God is opening up in front of us — to put off fear in all its subtle forms, and to embrace faith and courage. That is the essence of the Christian life and it’s the choice we are faced with as individuals and as a church.

So, I want to welcome you into a new year, full of new challenges and God-inspired adventures. I want to encourage you to consciously choose faith and courage as your travelling companions this year. My prayer this summer is that God will refresh our bodies, renew our minds, and enlarge our spiritual imaginations for the surprising work that He is preparing us all for.

Rev Jonny Grant

The essence of the Christmas story is the advent of a world-changing reality unfolding in secret. It is a pattern that’s been embodied and played out in the lives of Christ’s followers ever since, through their humility and service. Recently, we witnessed a vivid example of this from our own community of faith. In November, our organist Michael Jenkins received a national award in the Parliamentary buildings, presented by Simon O’Connor MP. This “Unsung Heroes Award” was in recognition of Michael’s “faithful and sacrificial service in demonstrating a heart for mission in the local church and for being an inspiration and example to all Christians around New Zealand.”

Michael grew up aware of his family’s heritage in Christian mission, especially among Maori. Coming to faith in his teens, he was actively involved in teaching at children’s church and worked with ‘at-risk’ young Maori in Ponsonby. St Paul’s is an historic church, founded in the same year as the city, but it’s rare to have someone whose ministry here also spans the decades. Over the last 25 years, Michael has taught and ministered to young people, and particularly international students, through St Paul’s. As a professional music teacher, he has given many hours of free music tuition to promising students, as well as providing open and free keyboard lessons every Saturday morning in the church. Michael has given countless hours of free English lessons to international students over the years, with this hospitality providing an invitation to explore the Christian faith through social events and bible studies.

For decades, Michael hosted Friday night “gospel services” at St Paul’s for mostly Asian international students and immigrant families. He and his team of helpers served those who came, providing home groups and pastoral care. Michael has a huge heart and has generously opened his home to those who are most in need over the years.

Finally, Michael is St Paul’s resident organist, playing with passion and faithfulness in and out of season. We hope that forthcoming repairs will enable him to further harness its beauty and power for the sake of the church’s worship for many years to come.

This morning we want to thank Michael for his radical hospitality towards people from many nations and cultures over the years on behalf of this church. As this award suggests, he is one of our Unsung Heroes, whose humility has kept his ministry hidden in plain sight. And yet, like the Advent story, it carries the world-changing power of the gospel. So, today we want to shout his praises from the rooftops!

Rev Jonny Grant

One of the church’s early fathers located our core personal identity in “our memory”—essentially our consciousness about who we are and where we’ve come from. Developmental psychologists encourage families to tell children the stories of their heritage—how their grandparents or parents first met, where they came from, some of the challenges they’ve had in life and how they got through them. Our memory is the very foundation that we live upon and so curating our memories is a key part of what it means to “be in Christ”—progressively bringing our imagination and identity under the goodness of God’s grace.
My warmest memory from living in North America was spending Thanksgiving with various friends in all different parts of the US and Canada. Aside from the madness of Black Friday, there was something magical about families travelling from all over the country to be together for a few days of feasting and reflection. Thanksgiving has its genesis way back in the 1600s when the original pilgrim settlers arrived in America. It was a harvest festival that was about thanking God for His provision.
As we look ahead to the New Year, it’s important to take time to pause and reflect on what God has done in this past one. Thanksgiving is not about covering our memories with the mist of fantasy but, rather, it’s about thinking well of the year by redeeming our memories with the good that God has done. It’s significant that the Thanksgiving tradition was forged during the most challenging times, when they needed it most. It began with a group who were far from home facing an uncertain future. Many years later, Abraham Lincoln finally set a common day for the whole country to share Thanksgiving at exactly the worst moment in its history—during the Civil War. It was a symbol of the peace and unity they yearned for at a time when it seemed furthest from their grasp.
Out of the complex busy-ness of the year, it’s often challenging to separate out what we’ve journeyed through and to make sense of it all—to find a coherent thread. For some of us, the year may have been dominated by life-changing events like a serious illness or injury, the end of a relationship, a different job or stage of life, or the death of someone close. In times like that it can feel easier to look forward than to reflect on what’s gone before. But the Christian art of Thanksgiving comes into its own at times like this. The Christmas story reminds us that God has stepped into our shoes and has walked where we walk—including through the uncertainties and inevitable pain of human life and death. Not only does He understand the struggles of the world as it is, but He has also breathed into life the promise of the new creation.
So, as we pause to think well of the year, we thank God for what He’s done, and we renew ourselves in the hope that as we turn towards Him, the source of light, all shadows fall behind us.
Rev Jonny Grant

The end of the kiwi year can feel like a Doomsday Clock as we rush to cross every imaginable task off our list before the impending end of the world on Boxing Day! As we approach our annual “silly season,” we’re faced with a word that sums up an essential part of the human condition—limitation. We’re unique creatures because we are aware of the infinite (God has placed eternity in our hearts), but we are also constrained by the intimate (we can only do what we can do, even at the limit of our stretch).

We are limited across so many dimensions: by our time and energy, by our health and finances, by our relational states, by our families of origin and what we learned there, and by our capabilities. One of the most frustrating constraints we face is that we’re partial creatures, possessing some gifts but not others, and so we’re reliant on others to experience fruition. U2’s Bono once described the rage he felt knowing that he couldn’t write a song without the band, that his fullness lay in them.

It’s timely that our silly season coincides with Advent, because it is here—in the Incarnation—where the astounding message of Christmas and the Christian story really grip our experience. The idea that Jesus, being the Infinite One, chose to be constrained by the limitations of the intimate for our sake is staggering beyond comprehension. We tend to think Jesus’ temptations in the wilderness must have been easier for him because of who he is, but they also posed a challenge that we don’t face. Satan offered Jesus what he’d already known, an opportunity to step out of the frustrating limitations of the intimate and seize back the power of the infinite. Jesus, of course, famously chose to humble himself and embrace the will of his Father in heaven.

The Incarnation—God taking on human flesh—radically transforms our lives because it redeems our limitations; they’ve been shared by God. It allows us to make peace with the frustrating constraints we face, and to be present to the here and now of our lives, rather than always facing into what we don’t have. And, as we make peace with what is before us, it also opens up the possibilities of the infinite through the One who can do all things.

I’m always struck by the Apostle Paul’s orientation to his calling to preach the Gospel to the gentiles. Because we read history backwards, it’s easy to read Paul’s letters and ministry with the confidence that they would eventually shape the western world through the power of the Holy Spirit. But, the daily reality of Paul’s experience involved dealing with small, fledgling and often-dysfunctional communities, which existed on the margins of their societies. Paul is a great model for us because he embraced the intimate with conviction and passion, and God breathed the infinite into his work and ministry. As we approach the silly season, let’s make peace with the constraints of the intimate and be present to what God has given us. And, as we make space at this busy time, let's fill our minds with the One who has placed eternity in our hearts and can breathe new life into all things.

Rev Jonny Grant

I hope you’ve been enjoying the Alt Carols album this week. Aside from the diverse musical genres and creative artistry, for me the power of it has been lighting up age-old lyrics in a way that has landed for me in a new way. It has brought our essential story—the Christmas story—to life.

A few centuries ago, during the Enlightenment, it was decided that this story would have to justify itself according to the scientific principle, meaning that the Christian faith had to be proved through reason and evidence. Instead, the true curve of the universe is not revealed through scientific discoveries, but through the daily realities of our lives. We find there that we are not masters of our universe, but worshippers within it. It’s the heart as much as the head, which steers our daily lives and our future destiny. As Augustine says of our Creator, “You have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in you.” We are restless creatures, drawn to God as the Source of our yearnings, and yet also bent towards other loves.

The late novelist, James Foster Wallace, describes this struggle in his famous commencement lecture at Kenyon College in 2005. He says: “In the day-to day trenches of adult life, there is actually no such thing as atheism. There is no such thing as not worshipping. Everybody worships. The only choice we get is what to worship. And the compelling reason for maybe choosing some sort of god or spiritual-type thing to worship … is that pretty much anything else you worship will eat you alive. If you worship money and things, if they are where you tap real meaning in life, then you will never have enough, never feel you have enough. It's the truth. Worship your body and beauty and sexual allure and you will always feel ugly. And when time and age start showing, you will die a million deaths before they finally grieve you. On one level, we all know this stuff already. It's been codified as myths, proverbs, clichés, epigrams, parables; the skeleton of every great story. The whole trick is keeping the truth up front in daily consciousness. Worship power and you will feel weak and afraid, and you will need ever more power over others to keep the fear at bay. Worship your intellect, being seen as smart and you will end up feeling stupid, a fraud, always on the verge of being found out. And so on. Look, the insidious thing about these forms of worship is not that they're evil or sinful; it is that they are unconscious. They are default-settings. They're the kind of worship you just gradually slip into, day after day, getting more and more selective about what you see and how you measure value without ever being fully aware that that's what you're doing.”

Wallace brilliantly names the human struggle to live an authentic life. It’s a big project and one that took nothing less than God himself taking on the human condition and breathing heaven’s new life into a weary world. As Advent approaches, we’re seeking to let this story fill our imaginations afresh and to invite others into this wild adventure.

Rev Jonny Grant

Every Sunday we gather together and do a strange and counter-cultural thing—we sing songs of praise and worship. We do this, in part, because God’s people always have. No less than 41 psalms tell us to “sing unto the Lord.” Carrying on this tradition, Gordon Fee says the early church was characterised by its singing; wherever the Spirit was, there was singing! And whenever there’s been spiritual renewal in the church’s history, there has been an accompanying explosion of Spirit-inspired songs. So, it’s timely that our stunning new Alt Carols Album lands today. It’s putting a fresh spin on those timeless, Spirit-breathed songs of worship. We’re chuffed with how stunning this album is, so be sure to grab a handful and pass them onto others!

So, why do we worship? What’s the point? Christian philosopher James K. A. Smith calls worship “the heart of discipleship” because it’s in worship that we regularly train our hearts to trust God, to aim our desires, longings and aspirations towards Him, and to turn away from other sources of our identity. Smith puts it like this: “To be human is to love, and it is what we love that defines who we are. Our (ultimate) love is constitutive of our identity. So we’re not talking about trivial loves, like when we say “I love pizza”; we’re not even quite talking about significant loves, like when we say we “love” our parents or we “love” a spouse. Rather, we are talking about ultimate loves—that to which we are fundamentally oriented, what ultimately governs our vision of the good life¬—in other words, what we desire above all else, the ultimate desire that shapes and positions and makes sense of all our other desires and actions.” (Desiring the Kingdom)

To be human is to love, and that means living our day-to-day lives in a dense forest of competing sirens that draw us towards different sources of light. But we soon find out that not all that glitters and shines leads to life. As we gather on Sunday to worship, we re-tune our hearts to the melody of heaven. In Revelation 4, John describes a scene of unceasing praise as God sits on His heavenly throne. Probably echoing one of the early church’s songs, the elders in John’s picture sing: “You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they existed and were created.” In worship we join the praise of heaven and remind ourselves that our Creator is the source of life, the only One who we can trust with all of our longings and desires and fears.

St Augustine knew firsthand what it was like to be pulled in all the wrong directions by his cravings. He once famously prayed, “Lord, give me chastity and self-control, but not just yet!” Describing worship, he said, “You never go away from us, yet we have difficulty in returning to You. Come, Lord, stir us up and call us back. Kindle and seize us. Be our fire and our sweetness. Let us love. Let us run.”

Rev Jonny Grant

As the world eagerly embraces the release of Taika Waititi’s “Thor: Ragnarok”, it’s a powerful reminder that kiwis can compete with the best. But, more than that, the film shows our enduring appetite to create imaginative worlds beyond our own, which shine a light back on our reality. As we’ve journeyed through the Apostle Paul’s letter of encouragement to the young church in Colossae, I’ve been impressed more than ever just how important it is for us to exercise our spiritual imaginations at full stretch, that we might come to understand the unimaginable riches we have in Jesus.
It may seem far-fetched watching Thor battle a green rage-monster in a far off galaxy, but Paul presses our imaginations even harder with his description of the Gospel in this letter. Paul says we live under a Big Sky, a sacred canopy which reshapes our perspective on every aspect of our lives and relationships, as well as our ultimate future. At the start of the letter, he reminds the Colossians that, in Jesus, we see the God who spoke creation into being, who brought order out of chaos, who spread out the heavens like a tablecloth, and who set the stars in their allotted places. For Paul, putting Jesus in proper perspective is fundamental for understanding our own lives, because it is this Jesus who has bound himself to us, who calls us his friends, and who invites us to share in his resurrection life now. Once we are established on this foundation, Paul says, why fool around with the frail and powerless things that we used to trust in?
This week we continue our journey under the Big Sky Paul paints for us in Colossians. It shows us that the key to the Christian life is engaging our spiritual imaginations about who Jesus is and what he’s done. Once we really grasp that, we can put our full trust in him, leaning the whole weight of our identity and aspirations on him, and the rest is detail.
At the beginning of chapter 3, Paul encourages us to get up high and see life from God’s perspective. Not to let our ambitions be earthbound, but to see everything from where Jesus sits. We’re called to judge everything from the standpoint of the new creation to which we now belong, not by the standards of the old world order that we buried at our baptism. So today, I invite you to let your imagination expand to fit the world Jesus has called us into, a new creation that has dawned with his resurrection, and will one day be revealed in its fullness when he returns. As G. K. Chesterton put it: “The trumpet of the imagination, like the trumpet of the Resurrection, calls the dead out of their graves.”

Rev Jonny Grant

Over the last couple of Sundays we’ve been speaking about the ways we’re called as a church to be a living expression of the “new humanity” founded in Jesus right here in Auckland. Unlike many political slogans, this audacious vision is not just wishful thinking. It’s based on the hope of the resurrected Jesus, the author and king of all things, who brings the new creation.

So, it’s fitting that we spend the next month or so in Paul’s letter to the fledgling church in Colossae. Paul writes under pressure (he’s in prison for preaching the Gospel) to a group who are under pressure (they’re finding it hard to live out their new faith in a world that’s wired in a completely different way). What Paul delivers is nuclear. Whereas the Colossians are trying to add Jesus to their existing lives, like a new patch on an old pair of jeans, Paul says Jesus is a whole new wardrobe for a brand new body.

In this short but amazing letter, Paul describes this radical new way of being. In the Colossian church watertight social boundaries were beginning to break down, which was causing stress among them. For instance, Paul refers to a slave (Onesimus) who’d run away from his owner (Philemon). Although it was Philemon’s right to demand the slave’s death, Paul asks him and the community to welcome Onesimus back into the church as an equal brother. Paul’s point is that the new creation which arrived in Jesus is a shockwave that has changed everything, and the church is the place where these new sorts of relationships take shape.

Over these next few weeks I encourage you to make this letter your daily meditation, to read it slowly and repeatedly, to connect it up with the challenges and opportunities of your own life and relationships. To get us started, Paul prays the “messiah poem” in Col. 1:15-20, which is the lens through which every part of our lives makes sense.

“We look at this Son and see the God who cannot be seen. We look at this Son and see God’s original purpose in everything created. For everything, absolutely everything, above and below, visible and invisible, rank after rank of angels—everything got started in him and finds its purpose in him. He was there before any of it came into existence and holds it all together right up to this moment. And when it comes to the church, he organises and holds it together, like a head does a body. He was supreme in the beginning and—leading the resurrection parade—he is supreme in the end. From beginning to end he’s there, towering far above everything, everyone. So spacious is he, so roomy, that everything of God finds its proper place in him without crowding. Not only that, but all the broken and dislocated pieces of the universe—people and things, animals and atoms—get properly fixed and fit together in vibrant harmonies, all because of his death, his blood that poured down from the cross.” (The Message)

Rev Jonny Grant

Part time nanny wanted starting late Feb. Two mornings a week 9-12pm to care for one awesome 2 year old. Light housework/cleaning/cooking needed. Full license preferred but not essential. Must be reliable, trustworthy, hard working and easy going. Days are flexbile, would suit a uni student as this could be ongoing for 3 years. Based in Morningside/Mt Albert Text/call 02102402697.


Hi there,  I am a 20 year old female student looking for a Christian flat or accommodation. Contact Giselle:

Hey! We are looking for someone to join our lovely flat.  It's a medium size, sunny room. It comes with a small wardrobe, but room is unfurnished. The home is 3 bedrooms and is fully furnished (to share with female flatmate) and the two male flatmates live out back in sleepout with their own lounge. They share the kitchen and the two bathrooms.   It has good off-street parking - a shared double carport and two carparks (behind the house). Also has a nice private back courtyard perfect for chilling in the summer. All flatmates are in their early 30's and are all working.  Everyone has busy schedules but are pretty laid back and friendly when we're home. Ideal flatmate would be a similar age, easy-going, preferably female, Christian, keen to hang out sometimes, but also able to do your own thing. No pets. Cost for the room is $150 and expenses are around $25-30 a week including utilities, Netflix, internet, some basic shared food and cleaning products. Move-in cost: 2 weeks bond ($300) and notice is two weeks.   We like a clean and tidy home and hope you will be willing to help with the chores. It is easy to get onto the South-Western MW. There are buses that go to town but would recommend having a car. Available from Saturday the 27th of January, so get in touch if you'd like to find out more. Thanks Debbie

We are seeking a trustworthy early-riser who can multi-task morning vespers and coffee.  It is a 5:30am start in order to open at 6am and serve customers with a smile until 9:30am from Monday to Friday.  It is an ongoing commitment and more hours can be offered if the perfect someone needs a more full-time position.  We can train in all aspects of restaurant service however care, consideration, creativity and patience are a prerequisite.  

All those interested or curious are welcome to come down in person and speak directly to me, Anna.  I am there from 9:30am-9:30pm M-F.

Ci vediamo al Divino Bistro, 15 Nicholls Lane, Carlaw Park, Parnell.


Grazie mille.


Anna Holt

021 057 6937


Hi there, 

We're looking for a new flatmate to join our great lil flat in Onehunga! We are 2 girls and 2 guys, all in our 20s, all working.

Our ideal tenant is a 20-35-year-old working professional. Preferably a girl as she will be sharing a bathroom with the other girls. 

We are all involved in different churches but enjoy hanging out when our busy schedules allow. 

It is a modern room with great views of Manukau Harbour.

Rent p/w is $175 including expenses.

Text or call Rhys on 027-677-9888 to discuss further.


We are an older reliable Kiwi couple who have been engaged in mission work in Thailand for 10 years.  We are coming back to NZ for a couple of months and are looking for a house-sit in the Auckland area for the two of us for the period of 2 December - 8 January.  It doesnt have to be for the whole time.  If you can help can you please drop us an email at  Keith & Joy

Im looking for a place to live till christmas,

27 Years old, Christian, does not smoke, apprentice builder Keeps Tidy and clean, & cooks

021 023 00987 Mobile number





I'm looking for a 3+ bedroom flat to rent from February 2018 on (have the flatmates sorted, just need a place to stay!) We're looking for a house a short way out of the city centre (e.g. Mt Eden), rent preferably under $200.  We are a very tidy, organised and respectful group :)  If anyone has a rental or knows someone moving out of a flat, I'd love to hear from you!  Please contact me on 021 030 6163 or   Thanks,  Johanna 

To all those interested in social justice, ethical trade, consuming with integrity, restoring right relationships and making a difference... The Fairfield Trust warmly invites you to the inaugural Fairfield Conference, 10-11 February at AUT.

Empowering producers, traders, retailers and consumers to make ethical choices which bring freedom, integrity and allow all people to enjoy the work of their hands.

Through speakers, seminars and participatory workshops, a marketplace and documentaries, we will explore different approaches, models, issues and strategies.

Everyone is welcome! Attendance and food is free.

See the amazing speakers at  and to register.

We're a pretty social lot at St P's. So if you have great shots of our community, please share them on our photo social channels. 
You can get to them by clicking the icons at the top of our website, or here for Flickr, or here for Instagram
On Flickr, add your album or shots to our photostream. On Instagram, tag your shots #stpaulsauckland
Or if you have shots of anything and anyone in our community that you think might look ace on Happening or our Welcome sheet or as a website header or in a film, send em to me at
We're a pretty diverse lot, so the more contributors and the more creative the better. Shots of 'official' events are great. But so are pics of you and your church mates just doing your thing.

Want to know more about our story as Auckland's oldest church? The "Mother Church" of Auckland in fact? I've been beavering away at our formerly sparse Wikipedia article over the last few months, incorporating Kate Hannah's wonderful brief history, the Parish Profile we all helped create, various written and pictorial historic sources and some contemporary stuff including Tom Roberton photos. Hit the W icon at the top of this page or click here.