The Anglican Parish of

Mt Pleasant

(a Community of Faithsince 1860)

Parish Mission

Trust in God First

(Whakawhirinaki ki te Atua Tuatahi)

Mission Aims

Worship – Caring – Mission

The Church of St Mary, Heathcote
The Church of St Mary, Heathcote
The Church of the Ascension, Mt Pleasant
The Church of the Ascension, Mt Pleasant

Number 311

Edition 2021


From the Vicar

Warm Greetings.

On Sunday morning, I had an approach from a parishioner to say that they had heard my sermon of the day, before. I wasn’t sure whether to be happy or sad about that. I was happy (gratified) that my preaching had been remembered, clearly better than me!

I have preached about Val on several occasions, probably because of the extremely positive effect that she has had on my ministry. On the way home, Sue and Hamish told me that Val would have been embarrassed that I had preached about her in such a way as she was a woman of great humility. No doubt, they are correct.

The point that I was trying to make was that even in the presence of the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Primate and a couple of other Bishops, Val’s contribution to my ministry was far greater. Don’t get me wrong, Rowan Williams is a truly impressive man of God and a person of great presence. As the highest ranking non-royal in the Commonwealth (at that time), he was an extremely significant person. I was very much his junior at his table and I’m not really sure how I came to be there, probably by virtue of some monumental seating glitch for which some poor assistant is still paying the price.

My sermon (I was hoping) might exemplify not only the reading for the day, but the total of Jesus’ ministry. Jesus came just as much for you and me as he came for the kings and rulers. Last week I preached about Chione, that woman for the 4th century of Asia Minor who only remains as an epitaph, “She prayed much”. How amazing that all that remains of her after 16 centuries was that she loved God.

Attitude comes from God but energy for ministry comes through the likes of you and me, whom Gregory Dix might call the “Plebs, Sanctus Dei”, the Holy Common People of God. In a parish, the Vicar (I believe) is the visitor. Most of our parochial membership were here before me and will be here, Deo volente (God willing) well after me. My job is to lead, to enable, to empower, to challenge, to be your priest, your pastor and your Prophet. As such, your dreams are very much my dreams. In reality, since my arrival here, the only decisions I have made have been ones surrounding liturgy and the use of the Church. Everything else has been yours, as is well recorded in the minutes of the Vestry, the AGM, the Liturgy Committee and by the Wardens at our regular meetings.
Every time I preside over any of the 7 sacraments of the Church, I carry the experience and memories of the many thousands of people who have shared their love of God with me in some way, either large or small. When I face you from behind the Altar on a Sunday morning, I look upon countenance of Jesus reflected through you. And from each of our parishioner’s, I see something that is truly unique and also something that is truly familiar. As a Gospel People, it is what we have in difference that will make our faith in God burn brightly.

The privilege of ministry in your presence is a gift that you have offered me. Each Sunday when you pray for me and my family, my silent response is that we may prove worthy of such a generous invitation amongst you.

I never got to tell Val of the huge impact she made upon my priestly ministry. Probably because that it wasn’t until she died that I realised the huge gap she left in my life. Again, I suspect, the Apostles felt the same when we read about Jesus’ ascension in Matthews Gospel, “Have you given us enough?” The answer to that (for me the lowly Vicar of Heathcote and Mt Pleasant) is yes, because each Sunday I see revelations of Christ’s ministry in each of you. And that is what life in Christ is all about!

See you this Sunday at the Church of the Ascension.

Have a great week.





Worship this week, 10am
Church of St Mary, see you there.


Swim Group Mon, Wed Fri mornings 8:00am

We meet Monday, Wednesday and Friday we meet at Aquagym in Cashel St. Everyone is welcome to join in. Please contact the team Captain Viki Brinkman for more information (0210698084). Please note the revised time, the swimming numbers drop just before 8am


Café Crawl, 10:30am on Tuesdays

A special thanks to Gill Straker who has agreed to look after this special and busy ministry. Please contact Jill for any information or queries (02102928231).
16 Nov Shroom 48 London St, Lyttelton
23 Nov Scarborough Fare 147 Esplanade, Sumner
30 Nov Dot Com 48 Marriner St, Sumner
7 Dec Just Desserts 33 Wordsworth St, Sydenham


Bible Study Thursdays at 4pm in St Mary’s supper room.

Due to the short week, the Bible Study has been postponed. All will resume on 18 November.


Evensong Thursdays at 5pm

Due to the short week, Evensong has been postponed. All will resume on 18 November


Pub Dinner Thursdays @5:30pm

We meet at the Valley Inn for dinner from 6pm. We hope to see you there.


Community Lunch 24 November

This will be held at the Woolston Club from 12:00 lunchtime. Due to COVID restrictions this may be changed so please keep an eye on this newsletter closer to the time. Any questions, please contact Judy Breach (03) 384 1379.


Smiling Cyclists, Thursday 25 November
Please keep this date free. We normally meet at 9:30 and are home by lunchtime. Keep an eye on the newsletter for further details as time approaches. Please call mark for any information. (027 475 9946)


Services for your diary

Tuesday 16 November AAW Eucharist 5pm CoA
Sunday 19 December Carol Service 7pm St Mary’s
Friday 24 December Christmas Eve 10:30pm CoA
Saturday 25 December Christmas Day 9am St Mary’s
Sunday 26 December Feast of St Stephen 10am CoA

It is my intention to hold the kids service the Sunday before Christmas in lieu of the 4pm service on Christmas Eve. Please let me know how you feel about this change. Thanks for the several who have already discussed and emailed this proposal with me.


Regular giving
To make your tithes and offerings by automatic payments, the parish bank account details are as follows:

Heathcote-Mt Pleasant Anglican Parish
Westpac Bank 03-1599-0014277-00 (Please use the reference “202”.)
Automatic Payment forms are available from Pat Owen


Older people’s assistance.

This week I met with a local woman, Ena McGinn. Ena is a Registered Nurse who lives in the local community. Responding to a need for older people’s care, she is starting up a service organisation to support the elderly in the local area. It may be that some of our activities might provide some relief for those who are alone and missing contact with others. Ena is taking an holistic approach to community care and acknowledges that our Parish Community might provide something of a resource. Please call Ena directly if you are in a position to provide care for those who are in need. You may know of someone who might need more specialised care. (021 161 4210) Ena’s pamphlet will be available in the service sheet on Sunday.



Physiotherapist amongst us.
Elaine and Terry Hughes have made their home amongst us at Heathcote. Elaine is a Physiotherapist working in the area, so if you need assistance of any kind, Elaine is available to assist you. Her details are as follows.

 logo heathcotehillsphysio

Experienced Physiotherapist and ACC Registered
Convenient Heathcote Valley location
Elaine Hughes BPhty, PGdip (Musc Mgmt)
Email: Phone: 0211246137


The Irish band, Malarkey, is available to play at private events and social occasions. The band consists of 4 members all with Christian affiliations and interests.


Mah Jong

The parish Mah Jong group normally meets on Wednesday in the Mt Pleasant Parish Centre. from 1:30pm. Please contact Judy Laidlaw if you are interested in joining a team.

(Please see the Vicar if you wish to advertise anything in the newsletter.)