Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Marx on Maori Anglican aspirations

I have been paying attention over the weekend to a series of Tweets recording progress at the annual synod of the Diocese of Aotearoa, also known as Te Runanganui o Te Pihopatanga o Aotearoa. For a solid reportage of two key items of business Taonga offers a guide to the substance of the meeting: this report and this report with this final report the one I refer to here.

I understand Marxist analysis of society in these terms: Follow the money. Understand society in terms of what happens to money and you understand a lot. Who earns the money, who spends the money, who doesn't have money and who gets to tell people what to do with their money are all grist to the Marxist analytical mill. For people outside our church and islands the final Taonga report may be incomprehensible. Do not worry, it will also be so for many Pakeha (i.e. European-derived immigrants to these islands) inside our church! However, with Karl Marx's help I will attempt to be your guide.

I suggest that the aspiration of the Maori diocesan synod (Te Runanganui o Te Pihipatanga o Aotearoa) for tino rangatiratanga (i.e. sovereign control) is worth exploring in strictly monetary terms.

For Pakeha Anglicans we exercise our tino rangatiratanga without thinking about it. First, note that we have access to a variety of funding sources, weekly offertories, parish trust funds, diocesan trust funds and (when pushed) fundraising among pakeha. Further, we have associated institutions such as schools which broadly speaking do not consume the financial attention of our dioceses (cf. difficulties with Maori Anglican schools referenced in the Taonga articles). This means that largely we are in control - tino rangatiratanga - of our destiny as Pakeha Anglicans (i.e. Tikanga Pakeha, the seven NZ Dioceses).

When we go to meetings which discuss applications for funds from the St John's College Trust Board (our $300m assets/$12m annual distribution taonga (treasure)), we are glad for the share which comes our way. But engaging in discussion does not affect our sense of control over our affairs because discussion about those funds is about a portion of our gigantic pot, not about nearly all of it.

Put another way: if we lost the St John's College funding, people like me - educators - would (likely) be sacked, but the stipended clergy in parishes would continue their work. (Albeit poorly trained ...!!). Our life as parishes and other mission units bound together as dioceses, and our control of that ecclesiastical life would continue, albeit diminished in significant ways.

By contrast, and to quote a friend and colleague immersed in the life of Tikanga Maori,
'The St John's Trust Board is our economy.'

Thus to go to meetings about the control of the growth of the assets and about the distribution of the earnings of the Trust Board is an exercise in partial control of Maori Anglican economy, a control which always involves discussion, even argument with Pakeha and Pasefika partners. However oriented those conversations are towards a favourable outcome for Maori, the fact is that Maori do not have control over the outcomes. Pakeha and Pasefika (Diocese of Polynesia) do not have control either, for all are equal partners at the table of discussion. But for Pakeha, the lack of control is more than mitigated by the immense control we exert over our overall 'economy' which is only partially funded by the Trust Board. (Life for Pasefika is different again and I won't attempt here to reflect on it).

Hence we might be able to understand this part of the Taonga article:

"In his paper to Te Runanganui, Professor Winiata outlined his thinking about why Tikanga Maori should exercise sovereignty over half the assets of the SJCTB:

“The current funding processes used by the church,” he wrote, “do not provide Maori with the opportunity to express tino rangatiratanga” (as guaranteed to Maori by the Treaty of Waitangi.)
  1. “At the St John’s College Trust Board, where the decision is made about the size of distribution and allocations of the distributions, Tikanga Maori is required to negotiate with Tikanga Pakeha and with Tikanga Pasifika – the negotiation process denies tino rangatiratanga.
  2. “The amount to be distributed then goes to Te Kotahitanga, another group where Tikanga Maori negotiates with the other to tikanga for the resources to undertake its planned activities – tino rangatiratanga is denied.
  3. “The funds then find their way to Te Waka Matauranga, finally into Maori hands for management – however the need to account for spending and reporting practices including the requirement of returning unspent funds at the end of the year denies any real tino rangatiratanga is present.”"
However, I think Professor Winiata's words are in danger of misleading all readers of Taonga. What is at stake - in my view - is not whether Maori have an 'expression' of tino rangatiratanga as though if Pakeha and Pasefika partners remained silent when discussing Maori applications for funds all would be well.

Rather, what is at stake is the state of their own ecclesiastical economy. Control of that economy, tino rangatiratanga, is important but more important is the monetary wherewithal to achieve all mission and ministry aspirations. 

The fact is that it is not at all clear that changing the control of the St John's College Trust Board in the way being sought would improve the state of Maori Anglican ecclesiastical economy. My reason for saying this is that the funds of the Board are tightly focused by trust deed and civil law - there is a SJC Trust Board act of parliament - on the provision of education, and that is not education in general terms but in specific terms which include instruction in Christian principles. The accounting for spending which Professor Winiata appears to want to void (section 3 above) is an accounting according to the prescriptions surrounding the funds. 

As the Taonga report makes clear, Maori Anglican economy desperately needs improving so that (e.g.) its ministers are stipended. But can that improvement be achieved by gaining control of the St John's College Trust Board funds in the way being pursued here. Those funds have limited applicability to the payment of general clergy stipends (let alone for, say, repairs to church roofs). Tino rangatiratanga over the SJC Trust Board funds would certainly be a step forward for Maori aspirations but I wonder if it would fulfil the deepest aspiration running through the Taonga reports, the aspiration for overall improvement in the economy of Maori Anglican life and mission.

Pakeha reading here should be clear, in my and Karl Marx's view, that what is at stake here is what we largely take for granted, money to do things in Christ's name. What is at stake is not simply another way of doing things to gain the same (or slightly more) amount of funding. What is at stake, I suggest, are the material circumstances in which the mission and ministry of our Maori Anglican brothers and sisters are conducted.

None of us should be sanguine about this weekend's Runanganui resolution. The unity of our church is a fragile bloom. It is largely held together by our discussions over money. True tino rangatiratanga over half the trust board money would - in my view - mean a cessation of those discussions. The separation of Maori Anglican church life from Pakeha and Pasefika life would be more or less final. But if readers here do not like that outcome we need to attend to the monetary situation of the Diocese of Aotearoa and not to theological considerations, whether they are about unity or about the exercise of tino rangatiratanga. 

(Yet, let the reader understand, when the Taonga report tells us of speakers stressing the importance of 'unity', of kotahitanga, we are being given a glimpse of an intense debate within Tikanga Maori concerning relationships with the other tikanga, with Pakeha and Pasefika. In my understanding all Maori Anglicans are concerned to improve the circumstances of Aotearoa's mission and ministry but there is difference over the extent to which this should be conducted in partnership or in a separated but focused independent Maori church.)

Karl Marx tells us that the surest way to avert revolution is to engage in sharing the material goods of society. In our NZ Anglican case, do Pakeha need to rethink our approach to supporting Maori mission and ministry? 

Are there ways we have not yet thought of in which we could improve an uneven playing field? Aware of previous thinking about 'resource sharing' which has largely failed, what if we took a different tack such as Pakeha parishes tithing income and sending that tithe to the local Maori bishop? In Pakeha terms, tino rangatiratanga would mean the gift would be sent with 'no strings attached.' 

There would be consequences to undertaking such a gifting programme. As Pakeha we would want to 'discuss it' (discussion is often our way of exercising tino rangatiratanga over situations!). But the question remains, again as Marx would have it, has the time for talk begun to end and the hour for action arrived?

Incidentally, for anxious readers perturbed by Karl's presence here, I suggest Karl and St Paul are united on the matter (2 Corinthians 8:13-14)

Declaration: I am Chair of Te Kotahitanga Scholarships Committee, a three tikanga body responsible for a small portion of the distribution of St John's College Trust Board funds, and part of the chain of review and recommendation about that distribution (for which the highest authority is the Trust Board itself).


Unknown said...

Tena Koe Peter.

Firstly, thanks for your analysis of the situation in Tikanga Maori. As you usual you make some astute observations on our life - although I'm sure some of your more right-leaning readers will let the Marx-Maori connection confirm their worst fears :)

One of the challenges of your analysis is your source material. Unfortunately the Taonga reports reflected the usual Taonga focus, so there is an emphasis on how this will affect Tikanga Pakeha in particular. We actually spent the bulk of our hui discussing future directions for individual Hui Amorangi (Episcopal Units), with the subtext being the united future of Te Pihopatanga o Aotearoa (Tikanga Maori). In the end we had five completely unrelated plans alongside strong calls for unity. I'm not sure how that works...

Although some of our most senior voices live in a world of committees where issues of partnership, money and control are all-important, on the ground it is much more a balance of fears about survival and excitement about proclamation of the Gospel.

As a people we are moving into a "post-settlement world", where we need to leave behind grievance and find new ways forward in our communities and iwi. This is the thinking of many on the ground. This is hard, because we are struggling to retain our culture and we minister among the poorest people in this land, but we need to try.

We are also becoming aware of the increasing internal inequalities within iwi, where the rich are getting rapidly richer while the rest continue to live on the bottom. And so our challenge now is stop circling the wagons and looking for the "Pakeha enemy", and instead look at ourselves and where we need to go.

Having said this, structural and institutional inequalities remain embedded in our society and in our Church and we will continue to challenge them. We also resist those who tell us to let go of our culture and move into a "post-cultural" world - because that is the age-old Pakeha (European/American) dream of assimilation. And unfortunately the recent developments at St Johns College are part of this new wave.

But there are many of us dissatisfied with the current direction of our Tikanga, who struggle to find a voice and who know we could do so much more for our people. If you are interested, check out a new site http://toitu.org.nz

Anyway, those are my somewhat disjointed thoughts, but thank you once again for putting some productive time and thought into your partners here in this land, and I hope one day we can return the favour.


Rev Hirini Kaa

Peter Carrell said...

Thanks Hirini!
I shall look that site up.
Marx is our friend in many situations!
But I am most appreciative of the wider and deeper view of the things which are important at this time for Tikanga Maori.
Thank you!

George Armstrong said...

I never thought I'd see the day when such quality stuff appeared within the bosom of New Zealand Anglicanism. Hallelujah!

Father Ron Smith said...

"We are also becoming aware of the increasing internal inequalities within iwi, where the rich are getting rapidly richer while the rest continue to live on the bottom. And so our challenge now is stop circling the wagons and looking for the "Pakeha enemy", and instead look at ourselves and where we need to go."

- Hirini Kaa -

Tena koe, Hirini. I, for one, do appreciate your input here. And, having in mind the fact that we are a 3-tikanga Anglican Church in these Islands of the South Pacific, I, too am concerned for our unity - in Christ, as well as in the society which we share.

I am aware of the inequities that co-exist in our society - both internally, in each Tikanga, and externally, within the joint mission territory which is ours.

I was present in the debates in local diocesan and General Synods when, under the chair-person-ship of Archbishop Paul Reeves, we discussed the implications of power-sharing in the Anglican Church, and the need, at that time, of devolution into the 3 Tikanga model of 'being Church'.

Sharing of resources (political as well as practial) was discussed with obvious reservations on the part of some Pakeha delegates; but ending with a general recognition of the fact that the Maori Tikanga especially, needed room to breathe and to outgrow its dependence on Pakeha management, in order to flourish in Aotearoa as a branch the 'Local Anglican Church'.

I, personally, was disappointed - because of the implication of separate development of the joint mission, which meant that I would no longer encounter my Maori and Pasifika colleagues in diocesan Synod meetings. It meant for me, at the time, the end of my own participation in Te Haha Maori - which I had begun to enjoy through the new emergence of the exciting culture of Pihopatanga Maori.

However, it seemed that this cultural separation is what was really wanted by the Maori Tikanga and, encouraged by them, the Pasifika Tikanga; so it went ahead - with a mixture of blessings for all of us.

I, personally, did not quite understand what was going on at my alma mater, St. John's College, with the recent re-organisation of the College management structure, but then, I was not a part of it.

However, what seems to have now happened at the latest meeting of Hui Amorangi, is the suggestion that the Saint John's College Trust Board has lately become the 'Economy' of the Maori Church, rather than - what it has always been - the provider of Education for ACANZP, the 3-Tikanga Anglican Church.

This would seem, to me, to be a signal departure from provision of education facilities for the joint mission focus of our Church ACANZP towards everyone in Aotearoa, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands, in which our Church is engaged, and not to just one particular sector of the community.

Bearing in mind the specific reason for the establishment of the St.John's College Trust, which was to fund the education needs of the ministry of our Church; one has to question the wisdom of changing the emphasis of this particular missionary objective.

Surely, any variation of the Trust Deed would need the consent of all the parties concerned - not only the prospective beneficiaries?

Anonymous said...

What exactly does it add to the discussion by larding it with Maori phrases like 'tino rangatiratanga'? Do they have any difference in meaning from the English phrases in brackets? This only obfuscates attempts to understand that we are dealing with the law.
The questions of trust law are in principle straightforward: who owns the trust and what is it for? If these are disputed by Professor Winiata, the courts can decide the matter.
Otherwise, the suspicion arises that this is just an attempt at asset-stripping. Why not be honest about that?
As for Karl Marx, I doubt if he knew anything about New Zealand or about pre-literate stone age cultures like the New Zealand Maori, who didn't have money let alone any concept of banking or capital. What you have here is the age-old story of the modern European world meets the pre-modern (pre-literate, pre-metal smelting) world, always to the disadvantage of the latter. The fact that Asia followed a different course from the Americas and Australasia is precisely is because it was far more culturally advanced.
Learn a lesson from Maori Australians.
Time to give up racially-based cultural fetishism and enter the 21st century.


Anonymous said...

Hi Peter

Not being familiar with the Anglican church, can you tell me how many worshippers go to each tikanga in the church? Are they about equal in size? I assume from your post that they must be, but I thought I would ask.

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Martin
1. Kiwi English mixes Maori and English. Bracket translations are provided by me for non-Kiwi readers here. No larding - stop insulting Kiwis, please.
2. Take care about phrases like 'culturally advanced'. Your comments with such phrases might head straight to the WPB.
3. Instead of offering a provocative sentence such as 'Time to give up racially-based cultural fetishism and the enter the 21st century', how about engaging with Hirini Kaa's comment which IS about Maori entering the 21st century in a potentially productive manner for all races living in NZ?

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Mary
It is difficult to provide precise figures because statistics are not well kept across our whole church, not supplied to head office and not published on an annual basis for the whole church.(Dioceses publish annual figures in their year books).

An important point to keep in mind is that Pakeha tend to measure (or 'measure') ministry via Sunday attendance and Maori tend to measure ministry via a variety of occasions not confined to Sunday worship, including tangi (i.e. preparation days for plus funeral itself), for which counting can be difficult (as people come and go from the occasion).

However let me proffer the following figures for the South Island (= 3 dioceses and 1 hui amorangi).

Bearing all that in mind, I suggest Sunday attendance in the pakeha South Island dioceses/hui amorangi as follows: Nelson is circa 2000-3000; Christchurch circa 6000-7000; Dunedin is circa 1500 - 2000; Te Wai Pounamou is 100 - 200.

Another possible measure is via stipended clergy. Again, off the top of my head, Nelson circa 25-30; Christchurch circa 50-70; Dunedin circa 12-15; Te Wai Pounamou 1-2.

Anonymous said...

Dear Peter

Can you explain better the sharp divisions (“we/they”) between the Tikanga. Although you don’t know numbers at services, can you indicate how many Tikanga Maori parishes there are in, say, Christchurch? How many are there in, say, Timaru? How many Tikanga Polynesia parishes are there in Christchurch? How far does a Maori have to drive to get to church? And a Polynesian? And where should an Asian go to church? Or an African person?



Peter Carrell said...

Hi Alison,
There is no division in the sense that all Maori (and other races) are welcome in all Pakeha churches; and all Pakeha (and other races) are welcome in all Maori churches. There are (for instance) Pakeha who choose to worship in Maori Anglican churches.

In my understanding there are regular Maori congregations meeting for Sunday worship in Nelson, Blenheim, Christchurch, Arahura (near Hokitika), Dunedin and Invercargill.

There is no Tikanga Polynesia congregation meeting regularly in Christchurch. Until recently there was a monthly meeting of a congregation made up of Tongan families. (Those families worship regularly in Pakeha parishes).

Asians and Africans are found worshipping in a number of Pakeha parishes. We recently installed an Asian as vicar of a Christchurch parish and recently ordained a coloured South African who is serving a curacy in a parish here.

A Maori Anglican living in (say, since you mentioned it) Timaru would be welcome in any local Pakeha parish, likely would associate with the Arowhenua marae, and occasionally worship with other Maori at the local Arowhenua church (but I believe that Maori services there are quite irregular).

Anonymous said...

Peter- yes, I was being a little provocative with my remarks. But for the record, to answer your three remarks:

1. I'm a NZer myself and doubt (but could be wrong) that most NZers, not even lawyers, typically use phrases like 'tino rangatiratanga'.
2. 'culturally advanced' is a simple, objective expression from archaeology and prehistory. It refers to literacy, urbanisation, record-keeping, metal-smelting and other technologies that were absent in part or whole from most of the non-Eurasian world before c. 1700. The subsequent history of the non-Eurasian world - and much of its unhappiness - can be explained by this simple fact: the fallout of colonialism. The encounter between 'west' and 'south' has never been happy because it was always a meeting of unequals. Why do you think Japan wasn't colonised? The term 'cultural advance' doesn't carry any racial overtones, because any race can acquire any culture. For thousands of years the Chinese were more culturally advanced than Europeans. They were eclipsed in the 18th and 19th centuries, but now some of them at least (in Singapore and Taiwan) are surpassing the west - largely though adopting many western technologies without so many western flaws.
3. Success in the 21st century is about embracing education, technology, financial acumen, and personal responsibility. Having a romantic view about the past is no use, not least because the pre-European Maori past was no golden age. Maori should learn from the successful new New Zealanders and promote: 1. family and marital solidarity (who so much illegitimacy?); 2. educational success, esp. high achievement in literacy and numeracy (why so much school failure?); 3. freedom from addictions (why so much drug use and so many in prison?); 4. good forms of association for youth (why the gangs?).
A revolution is needed from within. It's a simple fact that every people in the world - the ancient Greeks, Romans, Hebrews, Celts etc - were tribal in origin, but all of them, even clan-conscious Scots - left this behind for a larger, more relevant identity.

In Hans Christian Andersen's famous tale, the child pointed out what everyone could see but felt inhibited from saying.


Bryden Black said...

Hi Peter; my post from yesterday morning seems to have dropped out; so I repost.

An important post Peter; many thanks! I too was trying to get my head around some of the implications of the Abp’s address over the w/e. To that effect, I’m not sure invoking the ghost of poor old KM will actually assist. Unless, that is, you wish to invoke also the ideas of “false consciousness” and “ideology”, as well as economic substructures.

That said, I wonder myself, when you speak of “flowers”, whether in fact what we are finally witnessing is the due flowering of those seeds sown in the 1980s that eventuated in the ‘New Constitution’ of the ACANZ&P in the 1990s. Not a good ploy, IMHO - in light of the Gospel’s message of catholicity and unity. But too late for all that! I guess now it’s a case of mitigation in light of these new developments and/or pressures. And may we find a way forward that genuinely advances the planting of the Gospel and its growth amidst a post-colonial setting which allows wholesome partnering among all sorts of peoples. One that forbids either a bland postmodern homogeneity or a modernist (bourgeois?) search for pseudo universality. For both of these surrender to ‘objects’ I’m sure KM would decry!

Anonymous said...

So, Peter, continuing your Marxist analysis, when you state that “we Pakeha have access to a variety of funding sources, weekly offertories” that Pakeha money includes Maori and Polynesian money (and Asian and African – who do not fit your Tikanga model). You may brush my point off as trivial, but the logic only flows in one direction. You have now also implied that Asians and Africans can comfortably be lumped with Pakeha, but Polynesians are to be kept hermetically separate. Your model is cracked at the foundations.


mike greenslade said...

Kia ora Peter,

A simple and logical solution would be to give Tikanga Maori full oversight and use of the SJCT finances for the next century. Over that time, a model of mutual guardianship could be developed.

The point Martin makes about te reo Maori and inadequate translations is a good one. As the first language of the Anglican Church in this country, it should not require translations that only approximate the depth of meaning imbued within it. For those who are not yet bilingual, there are plenty of courses they can be encouraged to attend.

Mauri ora,

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Alison
It is probably me who is cracked and not my model!

I failed in my comment above to make the point in response to your questions that there is (notwithstanding the welcome to all by each tikanga) a very strong, hermetic even division between the tikanga in the sense that only at General Synod level ("governance") do we engage with each other on ordering our life commonly. Each tikanga "manages" its life separately. Thus 'common funds' such as the SJC Trust Board are a matter of common discussion and accountability; tikanga funds or diocesan funds not so (with the exception of some trusts which specifically provide for both Maori and Pakeha in a given region).

The stronger congregational life of Pakeha means that we have a great ability to call on our people to give through the offertories that which provides stipends and roof repairs.

Pakeha money is the money of those identifying with Pakeha life: Africans, Asians, Maori and Polynesians included (I thought I made clear that in Christchurch Polynesians are part of our parishes).

But, well, at this point I am confused by what you are saying ... and I do not understand the cracked foundations jibe.

Peter Carrell said...

Simplicity, indeed, Mike!

Anonymous said...

Peter, it would help if you put up some Ven Diagrams how you understand the Tikanga model actually works, and how you understand it should work.

You describe money from Maori Christians who go to church will generally end up in a Pakeha church, because there are so few Maori parishes. You describe these church-going Maori as “identifying with Pakeha life”.

From the statistics you provide, would there be about 1,000 Maori “identifying with Pakeha life” in the South Island? [If not, why not, and where are they?] And should there not be a system (Marxist analysis) so that “their” people can “give through the offertories that which provides stipends and roof repairs” of Tikanga Maori, rather than giving it to “our” people?

The cracked foundations refers to acknowledging that your model with its hermetic sealing is unworkable in the real complexity of Africans, Asians, Polynesians, Maori, Pakeha and others. Deckchairs and Titanics come to mind, or fiddles and Rome.


Peter Carrell said...

Hi Alison
OK am clearer now!
1. It is hard to justify the hermetically sealed three tikanga church in a multi-cultural age/sets of societies across our islands. If the foundations are cracking, perhaps the model will come to an end. Nevertheless I would justify: Polynesia governing its life in Fiji, Tonga, Samoa without interference from Aot NZ Anglicans. Within NZ the special place of Maori justifies there being a Maori tikanga for those Maori wishing to be together as Anglican Maori. 'Pakeha' then takes on the flavour of 'the rest of us.'

2. No Maori worshipping in a Pakeha congregation is compelled to give to that congregation's life and by extension to the work of Tikanga Pakeha. I am sure donations posted to the local Maori bishop's administration office would be gratefully received. I do not think a new system needs to be invented for that to happen.

3. I do not know how many Maori are worshipping in Tikanga Maori congregations across the South Island but would be surprised if it was as a thousand. Where are they? They are in our midst and we have an obligation to share the gospel with them.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Peter. It seems that we are moving forward in this discussion. Your third point is not mine – I’m wondering how many Maori are in Tikanga Pakeha congregations – not as you phrase it.

You will have to persuade me that every human-constructed country boundary needs to have separate church governance. Why do you suggest that Fiji, Tonga, Samoa share governance, but “without interference from Aot NZ”? Why not, following your principle, separate governance for each of Fiji, Tonga, Samoa, etc.? In the past you have argued insistently for interdependence, now, to me, you are arguing for its exact opposite!

I understood that the Tikanga structure is relatively new. If you now find it “hard to justify the hermetically sealed three tikanga church in a multi-cultural age/sets of societies across our islands” have things changed so drastically so recently that, using your example, not long ago it was justifyable to have Polynesia accept interference from Aot NZ Anglicans, but now it no longer is? And were there no Asians in Aot NZ when the structure was constructed?


Anonymous said...

Thanks Peter for your attempt to give a sense of the scale, but as most Maori still live in the North Island the ratio suggested by your numbers (90 to 100 Pakeha: 1 Maori) is probably unfair to the Maori. It does sound however like splitting the funding 50:50 does not represent the demands that could be legitimately said the funding was for.

On the issue of counting - I too have heard that argument, and of course Pakeha also have wedding and funeral "Anglicans" but isn't there something about unless you are committed to Christ attending the odd tangi or hui is not going to be enough to be recognised as a Christian -- or are you suggesting it is if you are a particular ethnicity?


Peter Carrell said...

Hi Alison
In the ideal church to which I aspire and contribute my tiny little bit of nothing much, we would live interdependently, and geographical/national boundaries wouldn't matter.

In the real church we live with where we are at and (hopefully) aspire to better futures.

Practically speaking the governance/management structure re Polynesia seems to work, reflects historical arrangements in the Diocese of Polynesia, and provides for the strongest centre (Fiji, many congregations) to support the nations with much fewer congregations (Tonga has a half dozen parishes, Samoa only one parish (I think).

The question of a 'Tikanga Asia' arises from time to time (I find) in discussion. Perhaps such a time will come.

In the end I suggest our three tikanga arrangements involve a decision about specialism (that there will be a tikanga for Maori as first people of Aotearoa NZ and as Treaty partner) and about maintenance (that we will maintain a historic link with Polynesia.

If I had my way as Autocrat of the church I would (a) request Polynesia to form a separate Anglican province; (b) organise funds so that financially such separation was not financially disadvantageous to the Province of Polynesia.

I would then re-organise the life of the Anglican church in these islands to express great inter-dependence between Maori and Pakeha.

But I am not the Autocrat!

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Mary
I am not trying to define who is a Christian by observing that Pakeha measure their ministry one way and Maori measure it another way.

Pakeha could measure their ministry by parish magazines dropped into letter boxes of people who only darken the doors of the church twice a year. But we don't. When we count the numbers attending Sunday worship I am not aware that we presume every attendee is a Christian by virtue of their attendance.

The North Island? Foreign territory with which I am less familiar re numbers. Try the NSA!

Paul Powers said...

Wouldn't one reason that an Asian from, say, Singapore, or an African from, say, Kenya, would be more inclined to attend a Pakeha church is that s/he is more likely to speak English than Maori?

Peter Carrell said...

True, Paul!