The Bulletin

This section of the St John’s in the City website lets you know what is happening at St John’s and beyond our doors. The Bulletin is given out every Sunday at our services. You can also check out the 2018 St John’s Calendar.

Here’s what’s coming up:

Summary of the Congregational Meeting of St John’s in the City Presbyterian Church on Sunday 15th July 2018 at 11:30am to approve earthquake strengthening

(Please note: these are NOT the detailed Minutes of the meeting)
(Further details to this summary can be viewed here in the separate file of visual slides from the presentation)

1) The meeting was constituted by Rev Allister Lane with a reading of scripture (Ephesians 2:19-22) and prayer that, as we listen and discern together, we will catch the wind of God’s Spirit.

2) St John’s Session recommended that the Congregation:

  • Agree that the St John’s Church building must be earthquake strengthened in accordance with the requirements of the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand and the requirements of the Building Act 2004;
  • Agree the construction and related work be undertaken by LT McGuinness Limited who have the specialist resources and experience to undertake earthquake strengthening of heritage buildings;
  • Approve the total cost estimated at $4,200,000 and that the cash flow to meet the monthly contractor and other related costs be met from the capital of the Trust Fund currently invested in the Presbyterian Investment Fund; and
  • Agree that a fundraising campaign will be undertaken to meet the majority of the costs estimated at $4,200,000.

3) The presentation addressed the substantial aspects of this recommendation:

WHY  is this recommendation coming to the congregation?
Primarily, to maintain a presence on this site for continued Ministry and Mission of Christian witness. We want to be here for the long term – Past / Present / Future. We also recognise our obligations to protect life (Presbyterian Church rules and the Building Act), our Trust Fund Rules and 1987 covenant with the Wellington City Council to look after the building, and to protect  a Heritage Category 1 building.

WHAT strengthening work – The target for strengthening is 70% NBS
This is the optimum level at which building bracing structure can be augmented rather than changed and which also minimises interference with building heritage fabric. The cost would increase significantly if targeted more than 70% NBS.  The strengthening largely involves replacing the existing “house pile” like foundations with reinforced concrete and steel beams.  The existing structure will have additional bracing and be tied to the new foundation.  The construction method will involve lots of hand work, buttress by buttress, and skilled carpentry to remove and replace heritage timber, which is why it’s so expensive.  In addition to the actual construction costs, there are also design and monitoring costs – to ensure a successful outcome.

There will be disruption to how we normally use the St John’s site. The main impact includes: reduced parking, organ, Sunday use only, all furniture and fittings removed from end spaces, dust coverings.

HOW  we will fund the total cost of the project
The total estimated cost includes: Design, monitoring and consents, Contractor Costs, Contingency for the unforeseen (e.g. repair work for rotten/borer damaged timber, potential sprinkler water damage to foyer interior and chapel, fire service  & security callouts, etc.), Project management, St John’s preparatory costs (including insurance, moving sprinkler system and other pipes and electrical conduits, packing and storage of furniture and fixtures, etc.), Funding of lost income (e.g. reduced interest, room hire and carpark rentals), Contingency for additional costs (relating to staff, project co-ordination and security).
Proposed Funding: we finance $1,200,000 from existing sources such as funds left over from manse sales and money set aside for painting and that we aim to raise (internally and externally) $3,000,000 over the next three years to cover the rest. The bigger picture is that overall the church should be able to reach a breakeven position by the end of 2023.

4) The next step is to conclude permissions and contracts to enable work to start on 30 August.

5) Questions and Discussion

Why not just pay for the project from the Trust Fund? The Trust Fund allows us to cashflow the project but we want to fundraise the majority of the capital, so that we do not permanently reduce the income generated by the Fund and therefore income for ministry and mission. Without committing to fundraising, we would lose about $120,000 of income every year, in perpetuity and would have to cut back what we do now.

Do we have the option of doing nothing? No. The church is below 33% of code and it must legally be taken up to above 33%. To raise it to just over 66% of code (as required by the Church Property Trustees (CPT)) can be achieved with a reasonable amount of additional work. To get to 33% of code the majority of the work that is proposed would be required anyway, so the extra cost to get to above 66% is relatively not substantial.

What if, due to unforeseen circumstances, the work does not reach 66% of code? That is very unlikely to happen with the structural strengthening because of the nature of the work. What is much more likely is that we’ll find rot or other similar problems that will require extra work and therefore extra cost. If we find these, we do have the option of doing a remedial fix and leaving more substantial fixes for a later date.

What will be the visual impact? Everything is hidden behind the wall lining or under the floor. There will be an extra bracing beam in the Marshall Room but will remain largely unseen. As a heritage building, it is part of the requirement that the strengthening work leaves the building visibly unchanged.

Are we dreaming big enough? Can we use the building more? The strengthening will give us the opportunity to use the building more, as use is now limited by the earthquake rating.  Our challenge is to use what we have effectively for ministry and mission.

6) Decision on the motion

  • The motion (all four of the points taken as one motion) was voted with verbal response by the 79 people present.
  • The motion was carried.
  • Those against, and abstentions, were counted with a subsequent show of hands, with 3 (three) votes against and 6 (six) abstentions. There were 70 votes in favour.

The meeting was concluded by Rev. Allister Lane with thanks to all for their commitment.

Food Fundraiser

for visiting Minister from HKBP Indonesia and 2nd Cross Cultural Encounter Trip to Indonesia on Sunday 29 July 2018 after the morning service at the St John’s Centre.

Film Fundraiser For Visiting Indonesian Student Minister

Film:       Mamma Mia – here we go again
Where:    Lighthouse Cuba – Wigan Street, Wellington
When:     Monday 30 July 2018   Film starts 6pm
Extras:    Nibbles from 5:15pm, spot prizes, toe tapping tunes
Cost:       $30 per ticket
Tickets are available after church. Save a place for you & your friends by contacting Judi Ferguson

A Presbytery Central Gathering with Kidstream

on Saturday 4th August 2018 from 10am at St Alban’s Presbyterian Church, 339 Albert Street, Palmerston North with our keynote speaker Dr Deborah Bower. Haerenga whakamua, titiro whakamuri. ‘Walking into the future with our eyes wide open to the past’.

This event is for the whole church, and so you are invited to come with others from St John’s to join in the day as we learn and grow together.

There will be two workshop sessions.

1)  ‘Developing Emotional Perceptive Leadership’ led by Dr Deborah Bower
2)  ‘How to fill your church with young people and keep them there’ led by Matt Chamberlin
3)  ‘Key tools for church leaders to encourage your church’s missional life and culture’ led by Rev Susan Blaikie
4)  ‘Awed and Earthed’ led by Rev Clare Lind
5)  ‘Messy Church’ led by Richard & Diane Stevens
6)  ‘Addressing conflicts in our churches’ led by Rev Steve Jourdain

Kidstream will take place on that day and they will take a maximum of 30 children, families will need to register their children at $12 per child (up to a total of $30 for the children of any one family).

To register:

For more information or to print a copy of the registration form:  A Presbytery Central Gathering with Kidstream 4 August 2018

Winter Lecture Series

Scripture tells us that faith without works is dead, that praise without justice is sacrilege, and that love of God without love of neighbour is a lie.  Yet, we often are unsure about which works to do, about what justice amounts to, and about how to love our neighbour. With this in mind, we invite you to join us for “Living Faith: Everyday Ethics for Ordinary Christians.”

“Living Faith” is an informal short course that will run for six weeks from 16 August to 20 September.  Derek Woodard-Lehman, Lecturer in Theology and Public Issues (University of Otago), will initiate and facilitate conversation about these matters and more.  But the heart of “Living Faith” is you, and those who join you.  Sessions will run for 75 minutes, and will be built around small-group conversation and personal reflection.  Together, we will examine the nature of the moral life and the state of several ethical issues, as well as the call to practical action that our faith entails.

So, if you want to have a think and a chat about how to engage things like euthanasia, sexuality and marriage, war and peace, or global climate crisis, then “Living Faith” is for you.

Church Camp – 21 to 23 September 2018 at Forest Lakes, Otaki

Church camp is always a lot of fun and it’s a great way to strengthen our Church community.  Add the date to your diaries.  Register using the online form or by contacting the Church Office.  Any questions? Email

Souper Sundays Are Back Again

During the winter months we invite you to share in a Souper Sunday after the morning service. These were very popular last winter and provided a wonderful atmosphere of friendship and fun… and the soup was just like Mum used to cook!

We provide the soup and bread and we ask you to bring something we can share with our tea and coffee after the soup.  It’s as simple as that! We have divided the congregation into alphabetical listings as we wouldn’t be able to cope with everyone at once!  However, if you can’t make it on your designated Sunday, please come another day.

20 May (S – Z) 3 June (M – R),  1 July (Hay – L),  19 August (Daw – Has),  16 September (A – Dav)

Look forward to seeing youMarg Gilkison

Health & Safety at St John’s in the City – Congregation Members on Site

Please let the Church Office know when you are on site.  The purpose of this is for us to know who is on site, in the event of any natural disaster, emergency or security callout.  Furthermore, if you intend being on site at night or on weekends that are not booked events, please try and let the Church Office know during business hours.  Thank you.

St John’s Library

The library committee is very enthusiastic about the collection of books in the foyer, put together for use by the congregation.  We encourage you to browse and borrow the books at your leisure.  We are open to suggestions for the purchase of new books (within our budget), which may enhance the collection. Donations are also welcome.

The children’s book trolley is in the conference centre and overseen by Monika, who also likes to receive comments and suggestions.

Inside the front doors we mount a display, with relevant books which may be borrowed.  This display usually relates to some current topical issue and is changed regularly.

Sunday Evening Service 5:45 pm in the Chapel

Our evening service vision is that, within the wider mission and goals of St John’s in the City, we seek to engage young adults, from St John’s and the wider community, encouraging and equipping them to grow in, and live out, their relationship with God. For details each week check out the St John’s Facebook page.

Tax Donation Receipts 1 April 2017-31 March 2018

Receipts for donations over the tax year have been emailed on Tuesday 10 April. If we don’t have your email or postal address, you can pick up your tax receipt from the church office on Monday 16 April 2018 onwards. Any query please contact Karin.

Envelope Subscribers

Receipts from contributions received during the year ended 31 March 2018 have been prepared and with a replacement supply of envelopes are now available from the church foyer. If anyone else wishes to formalise their church giving and join the envelope system they should contact the envelope secretary Linda van Milligan  Thank you.

How you can support the work of Christians against Poverty in Wellington central?

We all want to help those who are face poverty in New Zealand, and one practical way is to support Christians Against Poverty (CAP) which provides practical help through local church communities. In the central Wellington region, The Street church is running the CAP programme, and St Johns’ Outreach Committee has agreed that we will support their work.

So, how can you be involved? The support they need is:

  • Prayer for this work and for the people they work with – so please add this ministry to your prayer list.
  • Be a volunteer visitor. As you could imagine this requires people who can relate well to others and who can commit to this work. The Street suggests starting as the support person accompanying a fully trained person on home visits. This means you experience the work before committing to any training. They are particularly short of men who are available for visits   during the day.
  • Help as a support person on a course. They run regular life skills, money and release courses during the day (usually Wednesday) and need people to provide welcoming friendship. Each course lasts about 8 weeks and you would need to be able to attend most if not all of the course you commit to. The next course will be early next year.
  • Donations – further to the financial support organised by the St John’s

Outreach Committee, individuals can donate through the St John’s bank account details in the bulletin, identifying CAP as the ministry you are supporting. Your donations will be passed on to The Street who will use them with the people they are working with. If you want to help, or want more information before you decide, contact Margaret Galt. If you want to know more about CAP then look up their website

St J’s Kids

15 & 22 July, at St J’s Kids, we have our holiday programme running. All children are invited to relax and unwind with creative activities, table tennis or a film. We meet at 10 am in the church and go over to the centre after the Blessing Song.

We wish you all a relaxing Winter break! For those who are travelling, travel safe. St J’s Kids will be back for Term 3 on the 29 July! We look forward to seeing you.

To contact either Monika or Enrino (Ino)

Find out more about St J’s Kids.

Youth Group

Abstract and Thrive

It’s holiday time which means we won’t be having any youth group until term 3 starts back up. This means unless specified otherwise by Laura or Richard, we will be staying in for the whole service. Hope you all have a great holiday and see you back on the 27th of July.

To contact Richard Hpa (Abstract)

To contact Laura Putt (Thrive)
Find out more about Thrive and Abstract.


Our groups are always open to new members. We’d love to see you at one in 2017!

Monday Home Group - We meet at 7:30pm on Monday with Chinese takeaways from 7 pm for those who want it – $5 Anyone is welcome to join us or just try us out. Contact Margaret or David Galt

No Longer Tuesday Home Group – You are always welcome at this group which now meets every second Monday at various homes around the city.  Contact Paul or Louise Ramsay for more info.

Stitchers’ Group – Meets on alternate Monday, 9:45 – 11:45 am, in the Fellowship Room. We knit, embroider, quilt, applique, crochet and any number of things done with needles. Or you can bring along your family mending and get it done in a friendly environment. Sewing machines are welcome. Come along for a stitch and chat. Tea and coffee are served.  Contact Lesley Shaw for more information.

Fellowship Group – We meet at 11.00am, on the fourth Tuesday of the month. Open to anybody from the congregation who wants to join. Contact Mary Gibbs for more information.

It’s July so it must be AGM time for us.  If you haven’t marked your calendar yet for Tuesday 24 July 11am do it now, for it is this coming Tuesday, the second to last Tuesday of the month!!! Rev Stuart Simpson will preside during the election of officers.  He and Rev Allister Lane are still in a neck-to-neck race as to who will be the one to update us on the news of St John’s and our wider Church.  It is best to assume that both will be there to share and our lunch!  Convenors, please have your reports ready not just for Mary Gibbs, but also for the St John’s Annual Report.

English as a Second Language Bible Study – Meets fortnightly on Thursday evenings, 6.15pm – 7:30 pm, in the church office lounge. For this coming meeting only, we will be meet on Friday 19 May 2017 (6.15pm – 7.30pm) instead of our usual Thursday. Please contact Ino Pasullean for more information.

Men’s Breakfast – We usually meet Thursday (fortnightly) from 7:30 – 8:0 am in the St John’s Centre. Great food, great fellowship and great discussions. Please contact Ted Cizadlo for more information.

Wine and Theology – This discussion group gathers the first Friday of every month in the St John’s Office lounge, starting at 7:30pm. We meet for an informal wine-tasting and then discussion about a stimulating theological topic, finishing by 9:15pm. All are welcome. If you have questions please contact Malcolm Shaw.

Monthly Monday Night Football (18+)[Starts back 7-8pm 12 February 2018] You are invited to join in a social game of football on the second Monday of the month at 7pm in the Church Gym. For more information contact Gordon

Indoor Hockey Group, 7-8pm, (13+) – [Starts back 7-8pm 28 February 2018] Adults and teenagers are welcome to join in a social game of hockey on the fourth Wednesday of the month in the Church Gym.  For more information contact Gordon

Preschool Music and Movement - Fun and friendship for pre-schoolers and their caregivers. We meet every Thursday during school terms at 10.00am. Please contact the church office for more information.

Choir - If you like singing, come and sing with St John’s church choir.  It is for all ages and abilities.  We have rehearsals on a Sunday morning after church and once a month on a Thursday evening.  Join in on Thursday February 8th at 7:30pm in the Marshall Room or next Sunday morning at 9:30am. For more information please contact Eleanor Carter.

Music Group - an open group of musicians and singers who present worship music at Sunday services and on other occasions to support the ministerial team.  Participants play a wide variety of instruments ranging from keyboards, guitar, bass, cello, flute, violin and drums and more.  A sound system is available and a roster of available persons is drawn up for each Sunday. Anyone who plays an instrument or is able to sing is welcome to join us. Contact the Church Office for more information.

Indonesian Group Church Service - We meet on second Sunday of the month at 12.30pm. Please join us if you are interested in a church service in our first language. For more information please contact Ino.

Badminton & Table Tennis – Badminton and Table Tennie are finished for this year and will restart next year after Easter. Please contact the Church office for more information.

Find out about all the different groups we offer at St John’s and get contact details.

Food offering

As part of our Offering in Worship, we pray for the food items we gift to the DCM Foodbank.  DCM thanks you for any donations given. DCM would appreciate more spaghetti, biscuits/crackers, tinned fish and washing powder. If you are able to contribute to this please place non-perishable food items in the large basket in the foyer.  Thank you.

Car parking during the week at St John’s in the City

During the week, our very limited car parking is allocated on a daily basis, through the Church Office, by issue of a parking permit only. Priority is first to on-site meeting organisers, people with disabilities and contractors working on site. Thursday mornings during term time the carparks are dedicated wholly to the St John’s Preschool Music and Movement Programme. Everybody wishing to park on the site is asked to call or visit the office first. If available, a carpark number will be allocated and a parking permit available at the office for display on your dashboard.

Church Life Survey Report

The results of the Church Life Survey are available in a report prepared by Margaret Galt. This is the collated findings from the responses to the survey conducted on Sunday 26th June 2016. Session and other leaders will use this as a strategic resource as we journey ahead together. Please talk to an elder or Minister if you want to know more.


We are looking for people willing to be involved with:

  • Pastoral Care: Caring and praying for each other, Compassion, Accepting each other, Listening to each other, Encouragement and practical support.  We are now looking for people who feel this call and would like to get involved in extending the pastoral cohesion in our parish.  Please contact Monika  for more information.
  • Running Notices on PowerPoint: before the morning service we want to screen notices of interest to the congregation. If you can come early on Sundays and operate PowerPoint on the laptop, please contact Rev Allister Lane

This just highlights immediate needs. If you would get involved with something else, then just ask the people doing it how or ask the ministers. We also welcome new ideas.

Prayer Chain

Our Prayer Chain is confidential and exists to pray for the needs of our world and the concerns of our church family.  If you would like prayer or would like to join those who pray for others please contact the Ministers, the Church Office or email Gail.  (Gail is taking a break from coordinating the Prayer Chain for a month, so please pass prayer requests to the Ministers or the Church Office.)


As Christian’s prayer should be like breathing.  It is the way we communicate with God and God with us.  It is the language of honest conversation with our Creator.  It is the ability to listen to our Lord.  It is the act of joyfully and respectfully bringing others needs to the Sustainer of the Universe, the Healer of our souls and Saviour of our sins.  One of the ways St John’s offers the time and space for prayer is after the morning and evening services.
When: Straight after the service
Who: For anybody
Where: Sunday morning – the front right hand side of the church (facing the front), Sunday night – in the St John’s Hall

St John’s in the City Mission Statement

We are pleased to present our new St John’s Mission Statement (below). The St John’s Session has developed a Mission Statement over several months and it was discussed and tweaked at a congregational forum in June. You are invited to read it carefully, as we begin to use it as part of our expression of faith and life together moving forward on our faith journey. You will be hearing more soon about this Mission Statement and what it means for us. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please contact one of the Ministers. 

St John’s in the City Mission Statement:

Worship • Grow • Live • Share

God gathers us to worship and grow our faith so we can live and share Christ’s hope for our world.

We grow faith

  • We worship God with hearts, heads and hands.
  • We learn from God and each other.
  • We lead people to God to forgive and restore.
  • We encourage thoughtful, reflective and active faith.


  • We challenge ourselves and ask questions.
  • We pay close attention to the Bible, expecting God to speak through it.
  • We recognise the power of the Holy Spirit to breathe life and to shape, change and grow our faith.
  • We foster multi-age and multi-ethnic community, with our unity in Christ.
  • We share our faith stories.
  • We worship in meaningful and engaging ways for all ages.
  • We prioritise faith formation for young people.

We live and share

  • We participate in God’s mission.
  • We serve others and share our faith by living and proclaiming hope.
  • We help people to live fully as Christ shows us.


  • We practically and spiritually care for those in need.
  • We are hospitable; we share homes and meals with others.
  • We proclaim our faith with word and action.
  • We pray with and for others.
  • We allow our whole lives to be shaped by our faith.
  • We speak truth in love (Ephesians 4:15) on issues of social and global justice.
  • We trust in the Holy Spirit, discerning together the will of God.