So how about I let you the reader do the work today?
First, here is a list, as reported by my bishop, +Victoria Matthews, in a recent letter to her clergy of some of the topics for discussion at our General Synod in a few weeks' time. (I am not a member of GS so do not have access yet to the full set of papers - hence grateful for this list):
"The papers for General Synod which arrived last week are extensive and some weighty topics will be discussed. The Ma Whea Commission Report which looks at possible directions for our Church in response to the many voices calling for action and reaction about same gender relationships and the request to have these relationships blessed, is now up on the Diocesan web page and is also attached to this letter. Included in the Ma Whea Commission Report, as an appendix, is the Report of the Doctrinal and Theological Commission on the Theology of Marriage with its theological rationale for same gender marriage. Other resolutions address the possibility of mutual recognition of Holy Orders with the Methodists in this country; a request for a Decade on Mission; a proposed revised Communications Commission; Fossil Fuel Divestment; an HR package proposal; two Constitutional Amendments; and the motion from last General Synod which seeks episcopal autonomy with respect to those in same gender sexual relationships. There are a number of Bills including one which requests a name change of our neighbour Hui Amorangi to become the Anglican Maori Diocese of Te Waipounamu. Reports from the three Tikanga Commissions are also included in the General Synod papers."
The Herald article, secondly, about the state of church life in Auckland city is here.
My question, dear readers, is this: should our list of topics at our General Synod be different in the light of the success the mega churches in Auckland are having at connecting the gospel with Kiwis in this secularised, post modernized new agey 21st century?
Depending on the answers and our willingness to work on them, we may yet look forward to the resurrection of our church in the course of this century as the largest national church of Aotearoa New Zealand.
Or not. Perhaps our will is focused in another direction. If so, what do we think our future is?*
*My focus here is on Anglican life in Aotearoa New Zealand. Our church includes the island nations of Polynesia but the mix of culture, history, church relationships and politics is different across those islands and less familiar to the life I am familiar with here in these islands.