Sunday, April 23, 2006

October 2005

22 September 2005

Dear friends

Statement of Purpose

Thank you to everyone who has taken the time and made the effort to be part of helping us revisit and further develop our Vision, Mission and Values. In the interests of brevity we have combined these in to a Statement of Purpose, and at our September Parish Council meeting the principles expressed in this statement were officially accepted. It reads as follows:

Corpus Christi is a Christ-centred, traditional Anglican community guided by the Holy Spirit. We offer inclusive, flexible, reverent, and dignified worship opportunities. Our mission is building the Kingdom of God in the wider community through outreach and service. We focus on being a place where others meet Christ, offering opportunities for spiritual and relational growth, care, fellowship, and ministry development. We value friendship, youth participation and broad-based parishioner involvement.

“… go and make disciples of all nations …” (Matthew 28:19)

Diocesan Synod 2005

This was a most meaningful and encouraging time in which there was genuine commitment demonstrated to being mission focused. The diocese will now focus on developing the western area in this regard – there is only one full-time priest (who is also archdeacon!) in that vast area – although there are many apparently thriving lay-led Anglican communities throughout the region. Our archdeaconry mission focus, also backed by Synod, will be to develop a new parish around Ekangala, a most exciting development. As a parish our mission – together with the Waterkloof and Lynnwood parishes – is to grow the Anglican Church out into the fast developing east of Pretoria, a substantial challenge!

Stewardship ... and … Leadership

One of the focus’ of Diocesan Synod relates the ordering of our parish processes: one was an agreement that it becomes normal practise that Churchwardens’ term of service be limited to three years consecutively, after which they are required to step down for at least a year, although they remain eligible to serve as Councillor; the spouse of a Churchwarden may not serve as an office-bearer (Councillor, treasurer, etc) while the Churchwarden is in office; and, Clergy “Spice” are no longer eligible to serve as office-bearers in the parish or diocese. This is, however, not an exclusion from ministry positions – only elected ones – in parish and diocesan life. It was also agreed to discourage – but not specifically enforce – husband/wife teams from both serving as Councillors together at any one time, in the interests of encouraging broad-based parishioner involvement (one of our parish values!) in leadership positions.
To a greater degree our calling as Christians is to a lifestyle of Stewardship, and this includes our stewardship of responsibility – a gift of Creation! The exercising of Leadership is in essence our stewardship of responsibility, and one can exercise this gift in different ways. As a parish we elect new Churchwardens and Councillors during October for the new year (2006), and as both Paul Pretorius and Jeanne Jackson have completed three consecutive years as Churchwardens, we have the opportunity to draw others into this important parish leadership role. In reflecting on whom we should nominate, it is important to realise that we all carry responsibility in this area, as although only "the few" may become acknowledged community leaders at any one time, "the many" also exercise the gift of leadership responsibly in the background through prayerful and thoughtful nomination and election of others to these positions. Both are legitimate community leadership roles. As "the many" we are equally accountable and responsible before God for the leaders ("the few") that we elect, as they then are for the manner in which they choose to exercise their resulting responsibilities.
At a Special Vestry on Sunday 23 October we will be electing new Churchwardens and Parish Councillors for 2006. Nomination forms will be available from Sunday 2 October 2005: please be prayerfully proactive and nominate parishioners whom you believe can best represent the breadth of our increasingly multi-cultural parish community!

Yours in Christ


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