Register 2021

VIRTUES From the Chaplain

Half way through 2021, after much prayer and reflection, I announced my intention to retire after 24 years serving as Chaplain at Christ’s College. 2021 also marked my having been ordained a priest for 30 years. My wife, Helen, also announced that she would retire from her role after teaching for 23 years at Kidsfirst Kindergartens Beckenham. I leave confident that Christ’s College is in excellent spirits, that our Christian foundation lies soundly at the heart of our community life, and that I leave a fruitful tradition for the next Chaplain to take up. It is also good timing for the next Chaplain, The Rev. Cameron Pickering, to bring fresh, innovative approaches to College’s life. I wish him all the best in taking up this wonderful position. During my time here, it has been a great privilege to serve under the leadership of three Bishops, and two Headmasters and an Executive Principal. My thanks to them all, especially of course, for this current Register, to the current Warden, Bishop Peter Carrell, and the present Executive Principal, Garth Wynne. I will miss the amazing opportunities of being Chaplain here, the students and their whaˉnau, and the camaraderie of the staff. So much has happened, both joyful and tragic, in my own life, the school’s, and the lives of the individuals that have been part of this community throughout those years. Celebrations have included the remarkable sesquicentenary of the school, the winning of many events and prizes, the opening of new buildings, and extraordinary changes in the way students learn. Tragedies have included the quakes, the terrorist attack, and the pandemic. Inclusiveness has become an

important thread in the life of the school. I arrived at a school where there were complaints when I used any te reo Maˉori in Chapel. Now, we chant the Lord’s Prayer in te reo Maˉori, sing waiata, and we had a student-led Assembly (outdoors for Covid-19 Level 2) for Te Wiki o te Reo Maˉori in which te reo is taken for granted, and The Tino Rangatiratanga flag was one of the flags flying for Te Wiki. I offer heartfelt thanks for the remarkable tributes, thoughtful, generous gifts, and moving farewell events in recognition of my retirement, and also the affirmation of Helen’s significant partnership in the spiritual dimension of College life. The year began with a Mihi Whakatau for new students and staff, with Pihopa Richard Wallace, the Bishop of Te Waipounamu, leading this welcome. I was honoured and encouraged by the Pihopa when he referred to me as the pou of Christ’s College. Sadly, we had the funeral of recent Old Boy George Kral who died in his sleep. Although we did manage to have a good number of our regular events, Covid-19 soon began to change the dynamics both of teaching and of Chapel services. On the Day of Pentecost, the Warden, Bishop Peter Carrell, preached and dedicated new boards in Chapel. One board has the list of Wardens, the other the list of the Chaplains. My thanks to Freddie Sudell (Julius, Year 13), our school’s lay synod representative, for his service in the extraordinary circumstances of Covid-19 limitations. Congratulations to Christian Higgins (Year 12) who takes on this role for 2022.

Freddie was also a Chapel Prefect. Thanks to him and to the other Chapel Prefect, Kosei Oikawa. Their initiative, flexibility, and reliability has been exemplary. I’m grateful also for Tom Hodges’ service to Chapel. And I was delighted with the appointment of Yusef Elnahas and Harry Vincent as Chapel Prefects for 2022. Garth has been encouraging the choice of a passage from the Bible as a Christ’s College Bible Lesson which can be used on special occasions – just as we have a College Prayer. We decided on the story of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37). It is represented by one of our most- recently installed Chapel windows. Had it not been for Covid, this Lesson would have been “launched” in Chapel. Instead, I prepared a small pamphlet to mull over this parable. And, as this Chapel series is not possible, I produced a video about this that staff, students, and whaˉnau can reflect on in their own time. Robert Aburn, in consultation with Nick Sutcliffe and I, commissioned Marnie Barrell to produce a wonderful school hymn. Robert also organised David Hamilton to compose a choral piece to mark my retirement, basing this on one of my favourite scripture verses (Micah 6:8). Even with the Covid-19 restrictions, we managed to have some memorable Centre for Ethics and Spirituality evenings including exploring Fullness of life (Hauora, positive psychology, and healthy Christian spirituality), and Dr Mazharuddin Syed Ahmed, Deputy Chair of the Canterbury Muslim Community Trust, presenting on ‘Using aroha to dismantle hate in Aotearoa’.


Christ’s College Canterbury

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