St Anselm's is a Christian community seeking to live the positive values of openness, acceptance, affirmation, encouragement and mutual respect. These values, together with the underlying philosophy of working things through with God in mind, are the guiding principles of parish life.
St Anselm's Union Church seeks to draw people into a caring Christian fellowship by providing:
Study of the gospel
Crèche and childrens programme
We try to do this in a manner that provides opportunity for individual spiritual growth.
The gospel is the good news that God is present, both through the life of Jesus and within the worshipping Christian community
The gospel message has the power to change the way people live their lives and hence is able to change society
We express this by building a community of people who care about and for each other, and who affirm and celebrate the diversity within it
We have an ecumenical outlook.
As a uniting congregation, we have roots in the Congregational Union of New Zealand, Associated Churches of Christ in New Zealand (now known as the Christian Churches of New Zealand) and the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand
Today, we find these denominational lines have become blurred
We emphasise the importance of putting the Gospel into today's language and context by:
Believing it is important that the church should have many faces: theological, pastoral and social
Aspiring to being an outward looking, open community, presenting a credible way of being Christian
Working with other Christian communities in the Karori Valley to meet the diversity of needs
We facilitate the faith journey of the members of the St Anselm's community. For this to happen, the quality of ministry is very important. We look for:
Ministry of the Word and Sacraments that takes seriously the informed and exploratory use of the Bible to help us understand its meaning for us in the modern world
A celebration of Communion that aims at returning us to an experience of God's presence
Quality pastoral care where the community supports each other in critical human situations, and celebrates with them the milestones of their journey
We believe in the ministry of the whole people of God.
We believe the future of our church lies in fostering a strong community identity, and in giving the people who belong "hands on" responsibility for their life together and their own destiny.
Today, St Anselm's represents the coming together of Congregational, Presbyterian and Associated Churches of Christ traditions. While these origins are reflected in the congregational mix, other strands also exist. There is an increasing number of people who don't see themselves with any "label", who call themselves Christians or "uniting". With such a strong union philosophy, St Anselm's continues to be active in establishing ecumenical links with all churches.
As a Union Church, St Anselm's is part of the Uniting Congregations of Aotearoa New Zealand (formerly the Forum of Cooperative Ventures) and is creating its own ethos, making its own decisions and planning its own life and work.
A regular 10am service each Sunday which includes Sunday School activities
Special services at Easter and Christmas or at other times as appropriate.
Communion, celebrated on the first Sunday of each month and at other times such as Easter and Christmas. The minister and approved elders share the role of celebrant, which means we enjoy a variety of styles of service. Communion services are open to all.
A typical Sunday morning service follows a standard order in a relaxed and informal atmosphere. After the children's talk and offering, the children go to Sunday School or Crèche. Special events such as birthdays and anniversaries are acknowledged during "news time".
Everyone in the St Anselm's community has a parish visitor who keeps in regular contact. Visitors report regularly to the Pastoral Committee convenor. The Minister has overall responsibility for the care of the parish. Prayer chains are available.
These groups provide a community network within the parish. Current groups are:
St Anselm's emphasises the importance of major decisions being made through congregational meetings. The congregation delegates the daily operation of the parish to the Minister, the Parish Council and various committees.
The Parish Council consists of the Minister, the Secretary, the Treasurer and about five elders. Elders are appointed to the Parish Council for up to six years (two terms of three years).
Parish Council is appointed by the congregation to:
Provide spiritual guidance
Plan and coordinate activities within the parish
Ensure the smooth operation of the parish
Ensure effective communication between the congregation and various church bodies