Thursday, 18 October 2007

Moving to Methven

I am excited to announce that next year Amanda and I (and the boys) are going to be going to All Saint’s Anglican church in Methven, in mid-Canterbury.

Methven is located here...

... and
the church looks
(at times!) like this.

Methven is a town of about 1400 people in summer, but doubles in size in winter because of Mt Hutt and other local ski fields.

Unlike a normal curacy (a curacy is similar to an assistant minister), I am going to be on my own in Methven – there is no vicar there. The church is about 40 people, which meets on a Sunday morning, with a small Sunday school. From what I understand (which, to be honest, isn’t a huge amount at this time!) the church is broadly evangelical and keen to have a presence in the community – certainly the people I have met already want to reach out with the good news that the church is entrusted with.

As well as being at Methven, I am also going to be involved in two surrounding parishes which have adopted a form of ministry call ‘local shared ministry’. This means that they don’t have a full time vicar, but rather have a team of parishioners who are ordained to specific roles within each church. My role will be to get involved with these teams, to listen to them, to help them think about their strengths and weaknesses, and to offer them support and training as they need. The split is 60% at Methven, and then 40% with these two other parishes.

We’re very excited about going there, as are a number of friends who are excited about having somewhere to stay so close to the snow! In God's kindness the church comes with a large house, so if you are planning on coming through mid-Canterbury, we’d love to have you stop by.

Please thank God with us for his kind provision, and pray that we would be faithful and fearless in serving Him in Methven.


The intercession of Christ

I have been working on a project on Christ's intercession which is described in Romans 8:34 and Heb 7:25. The issue of Christ's intercession raises a number of important questions. How should it be understood in relation to the atonement and indeed to our justification? Should it be understood as actual communication or metaphorically? In other words, should we understand Christ as interceding by his death or by on-going prayer? If the former, does this fit with a close exegesis of the relevant texts? If the latter, why does the Son need to pray to the Father and if he does pray what is the goal of his prayer? I am hoping to post a few thoughts over the next few days discussing some of these things.