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preaching at funerals – reuben munn

Earlier this year I officiated the funeral service of a young woman in our church who had committed suicide. She was in her 20s and had a young family—a husband, a 7-month old daughter and a 2-yr old son. After the birth of both her children she had severe post-natal depression, with the second time […]

yet I call this to mind – geoff new

(This post first appeared on Candour) Lam 3:19-23 19 I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitterness and the gall. 20 I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me. 21 Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: 22 Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions […]

custodians of the word: kaitiaki and kupu – viv coleman

(This first appeared on Viv’s blog in early March 2017) The summer holidays are a chance to worship away from home and experience a different congregational culture and worship style. This year the services we attended offered a smorgasbord of worship and preaching, and the chance to meet some genuine and friendly people. But the […]

the challenging art of artful Challenge – nigel irwin

They say there are two kinds of preaching… comforting the afflicted, and afflicting the comfortable. Most preachers will admit that they tend to specialise in one or the other. I like to afflict the comfortable. If I didn’t discipline myself otherwise, I would probably preach this way 90% of the time. I seem to have […]

pastoral preaching – silvia purdie

Lord save us from boring sermons! Boring sermons tend to be dry or trite. Dry sermons assert ideas about God but don’t connect with real life (“So What?” sermons). Trite sermons address life’s struggles, but stay on the surface and offer easy answers (“Yeah Right!” sermons). A good sermon connects the head with the heart, […]

text and context – sarah harris

In August-September 2017 I am taking a group of about 35 students and friends from Carey to Israel and Palestine to walk over ancient sites, to read text in context, and to meet afresh the historical Jesus. Last year I went there on sabbatical and I became convinced (that wasn’t hard!) that I wanted to […]

dementia, the big five and preaching – shelley west

As much as I love the research and reading (the conversations with other wrestlers of the Word) and discovering new revelation and bringing that before the congregation . . . I wonder if sometimes we make it too hard for ourselves. Part of the joy of preaching I’ve recently rediscovered is this: simply reminding people […]

know thy audience – nigel irwin

The old saying goes, ‘to assume makes an ass out of you and me’. Recently I disproved this saying, showing instead that to assume often makes an ass out of me… and only me. In April I had the privilege of speaking at the 2016 Youth of the Nation Conference here in Whanganui. I admit […]

externally processing extrovert – shelley west

My name is Shelley West and I am an externally processing extrovert. As an externally processing extrovert I tend to get a little excited! It can be a little confusing for the people I know well, let alone those who listen in on Sundays. Moderating myself is one of the harder jobs I have when […]

fast preaching – mark keown

In recent years the demography of our church has shifted radically. It is no longer primarily European as it once was, but praise God it is now a rich blend of Europeans with non-European peoples who have come to NZ to settle. While some of these people have good English, a large number struggle with […]