Friday, September 22, 2017
  • 22nd July

    I had an email from Greg and Joy after they have arrived in Turkey and joined the tour of these ancient Bible lands. Hi there. We've made here to Istanbul and are really enjoying ourselves. Oh so long a haul to get here. Eight hour layover in Singapore made the trip 33 or 34 hours from the time we left our house to the time walked into our hotel . Can't tell you if the bed is any good or not. I could have slept on a bed of nails. Had a great day around all the old city area and have taken in so much history. Being here and seeing it all makes it a lot clearer. Nice people on tour with us, 22 in all but half of them are leaving us half way through. Off to Gallipoli tomorrow. 100 kilometers just to clear the city boundary. 17 million just here in this one city, glad to be lead around by someone who knows what they are doing. Buying bottles of water by the dozen as it is 37 degrees today.
    Love to you all
    Greg and Joy

        A week ago I might have been envious of the temperature but not lately, 37 degrees is very warm and in Turkey very low humidity. Pray that they keep good health and are kept safe. Gallipoli  Peninsula is very significant to Kiwi's and Aussies, although it was a military disaster it was when both countries became nations in themselves and no longer saw themselves as an extension of Great Britain. After Gallipoli both of our armies operated under the command of our own officers instead of the old upper class duffers the British Army couldn't find a command for.
    Greg was deeply impacted as a child, by his grandfather who landed there as a young man in 1915, I am sure when he sees what the men endured it will be a special time for him. 
        I remember in 1980 when Miriam and I visited the Dutch Island of Texel, which was where her 21 year old Uncle, Alan Bird, who piloted a Wellington bomber, was buried after being shot down in 1941. It was a terrible grief to her Grandmother and mother which she was well aware of as she grew up. As I write this I can still feel the emotion of that day long ago as we stood in the rain before his war grave on that beautiful Island just off the Dutch coast.  The grief of his mother and sister welled up in Miriam as she expressed their loss for a young man she never knew.
    Families have such a connection in the Spirit, sometimes we need to go to places and to do things which release the living. Without realizing it, as a sensitive young woman, Miriam had taken on the pain of her Grandmother and Mother, she was the first immediate family member to visit his grave and I know she was released that day and I suspect her mother who was still living then.  
        When God says His ways are not our ways I know we don't know the half of it. If we are willing and obedient then He will fight for us.
        Tonight I will continue on speaking on the anointing and hopefully we will be having a workshop where you get top do some stuff.
        This coming Wednesday I am have a large Kidney stone removed, it's like a male caesarian with a stone at the end of it. I will be out of action for a few days, James will be preaching in my stead but I should be back in church. Hopefully the stone will be gone in the pre- op exray.
        Have a great week
        Pastor Maurice

  • 01 July 2012

    You may have noticed Miriam and I were absent from the service on Sunday yet we were in church. We were invited to Ignite mid winter Christmas dinner. So while you were feasting on the word we were feasting on chicken.

    The timers on the church heaters have been properly set now, so hopefully cold mornings in church are over for the winter. I remember the days when we had fan heaters all round and would regularly take out the pole fuse. That made for freezing mornings with no overhead projector. Things have progressed beyond recognition from the early days. Not many of you would remember the old pot belly wood stove which graced the side of the church. With no insulation you either froze at the back or was roasted near the stove. One of the major drawbacks was the starlings who would scratch up and down inside the chimney in the Summer. This winter seems to be colder than some of the recent ones so stay warm.

    The evening services have begun well, James Smith spoke and there was a good response to his word we all appreciated what he said and we look forward to hearing him in the future. The evening service is a great opportunity to bring visitors along to church. It has a shorter worship service and the word is punchy and aimed more to evangelism. We have actually seen two commitments for the two weeks the services have been running.

    This week Miriam and I have had a little visitor in 3 year old Grace our granddaughter. All I can say is we are both very fit people.

    She was given a doctors outfit for her birthday and we both have had about 10 checkups including various bandages applied. It felt like every time you sat down you found a diminutive doctor, complete with white coat, glasses, stethoscope and medical bag at ready by your side, inquiring if you were feeling well. All I can say is I am glad we never got her a carpenters kit. We are now back to normal hours and having to pay for our medical bills again, never a dull moment.

    Miriam is preaching today, she only speaks when she knows God has laid a word on her heart so we look forward to hearing her.

    Have a great week and stay warm

    Blessings Pastor Maurice

  • 31 July 2011

    Well at last this week the weather has turned and we have been able to dry out the hall carpets after their much needed clean.  The difference in the carpets and chairs is just huge, unsightly marks have gone from the chairs and the floor, giving it all a new lease of life.    It is good to be able to take a seat without thinking a seagull beat you to it.

    Last week was full on what with Journey Church and then Hosanna Baptist Youth.  Hosanna with their friendly and enthusiastic young people made quite an impact on our youth.  I was very proud of our music group on Sunday night, they blended in so well with Hosanna and the whole service combined as a real blessing.  The Holy Spirit teaching on Saturday was very hands on, God touched most of the youth in a very real way which was a first time experience for some of them.  We also saw some of them bringing words for the first time and praying for others.  When the snow started to fall there was great excitement as for many of the Island kids it was the first time they had seen this stuff. Strangely, I think Wellington was getting more snow than Oxford at the time.

    We heard very challenging messages from Gary and his daughter Johanna at the morning and evening meetings. Gary's burgundy coloured trousers and bright green shirt made quite an impression.  I still think blacks, greys and whites are the more spiritual colours, God is into conservative dress, so don't hold your breath as far as I am concerned.

    We are still preparing for the Alpha Course which is coming up on the evening of Wednesday 3rd of August in the church lounge. The course starts with an evening meal and is just brilliant to introduce people to the Christian faith without being too threatening.   If you have a friend you would like to introduce then talk to the Morris's, Thacker's, or Price's and they will fill you in on what happens.

    Miriam and I had a let down on Tuesday, we were supposed to fly to Blenheim with John and Sandra Alpe to arrange the Baptist Leaders Retreat for next year.  We spent from 7.30am to 1pm at the airport being told they were waiting for the runway to improve before they then cancelled our flight.  I now know how travellers feel when weather conditions close in.  We bumped into Jeremy Slough, the Oxford YWAM Director, in one of the lines, he said he had been trying to get to Israel since Monday and was still arranging flights.

    Have a great morning and enjoy the service.


    Pastor Maurice

  • 24 July 2011

    This week we have been enjoying visits by Journey Church from Auckland and Hosanna Baptist Porirua Wellington.   Journey church are associated with Bethel Church in Redding California and had an emphasis on evangelism and healing.

    Hosanna are well known for their evangelism in the community through drama and dance.   Johanna Vannathy who is the Wellington District Youth Leader is leading a team of 26, mainly young people, to spend a day helping with the Christchurch Earthquake relief.  We ran a Holy Spirit workshop last night and they have kindly taught two workshops on drama and dance for the Youth Group. This morning we will see them perform and the speaker will be Gary Colville the Pastor of Hosanna Baptist and Johanna's father. Gary with his wife Pauline has build the Hosanna movement of church planting and has moved under an Apostolic calling mentoring a whole movement within the Baptist movement.  Johanna will be speaking tonight at a special evening service in which our Youth Group will participate.

    This has been a special time for us as a church, Gary and Pauline are personal friends who have worked with us on the Pastor's retreats at Hanmer.  They have something to impart to our church of the anointing they and their church movement carry.  I am looking forward to this mornings service and to this evening which is open to all.  Hosanna have been sleeping in the church hall since Friday so I hope they have had a comfortable stay.

    We are seeing the blessing of God pouring out on the Children and Young people at the moment with good numbers attending the groups and a real desire in the Young people to seek God.  Easter Camp saw some come to faith and be baptized so we are hoping this continues on in the future.  A real team work is building between the leaders of both groups which is bound to make an even greater impact.

    Greg and I are coming to the end of the Gospel of John after starting to preach through it in February 2009.  The whole exercise has taken two and a half years.  We hope you have enjoyed it because we certainly have.  Expository preaching is a great way to familiarize yourself with a book of the Bible and also to tackle subjects you possibly would avoid.

    Over the last 30 months we have seen enormous change to the church buildings and grounds and a growing sense of anticipation for future growth.

    We held an Elders retreat last Saturday, it was very encouraging, we are so blessed with the commitment from the team and the desire to support us in prayer and lift the profile of the church in the Community.

    I was noticing the new lawn has been growing through the winter which is a real bonus.  When we laid it we thought it was a long shot as we left it rather late, but it looks like in the spring the mud will be covered with grass which will give us a great outdoor living area for picnics etc.

    Well, enjoy the service and we will see you along tonight to see the two youth groups in action. I am looking forward to seeing

    Hosanna in our services.

    Have a great week.


    Pastor Maurice

  • 17 July 2012

    Last week (Tuesday) we held our midyear church meeting.  There were no decisions to be made but we spent most of the night looking over the financial reports for the church and the building program.  The church is in good heart financially, we are blessed with generous people who believe in the ministry of the church in Oxford.  There are detailed reports on the notice board at the rear of the sound desk if you are interested.  Stage one of the building program now completed has cost overall round $300,000, that includes the cost of the car park, the planning surveying, carpets, kitchen and replacing our old roof.   We have come in over $100,000 under the estimated cost of the Quantity Survey.

    We have a few minor things to finish including the stage, sound desk and tiling the foyer, we still have $18,160 in the building account.   Well done church but all the glory to God who has provided in many and various ways. The program has been comparatively seamless, with no major problems or accidents.

    We also heard a report on the Early Learning Centre, which was so encouraging.  The ministry is flourishing mainly due to the innovative approach of the Trust and the competence of the Manager Juddy Taylor and his Supervisor Pauline.  The Centre was able to make a large contribution towards the sealing of the Carpark which has been a great blessing to young mothers hauling prams through the shingle.

    We are seeing significant moves of the Spirit in peoples lives which is encouraging for the Pastoral Staff.  Last week I finished off the "Moving On" series, 11 members completed the course.  I found it so encouraging to see numbers of them being touched by God and ready to play their part in God's plan for this region.

    This coming week is going to be a hive of activity.  Wednesday night there is to be an open Healing meeting, 7.30pm at the church run by Journey Church Auckland, they are on a South Island Tour to encourage churches.

    On Friday Hosanna Baptist from Wellington arrive with their Youth Group.  Miriam and I did the Camp for Hosanna earlier in the year.  They will start with a meal at the church and a games night with our youth. They have elected to sleep in the Youth Hall and use the shower in the Office.

    Saturday afternoon from 1pm to 5pm their dance and drama teaching is holding a workshop at the church, (contact Kim Moore).  Saturday night at 7pm we are having a seminar on the Holy Spirit which is an open meeting with practical applications.  Sunday 10am Hosanna will do dance and drama and preach.  Sunday 7pm a youth service with dance and drama (all invited)

    We have a busy time ahead so join into the fun and I am sure there will be a blessing from God from these two great fellowships.

    Have a great week


    Pastor Maurice

  • 10 July 2011

    Welcome everyone.

    This Tuesday night is of course our Mid Year AGM.  Albert has been busying himself this last week completing financial reports to present for both General funds and the Building fund.  If you haven't been to a midyear AGM or annual AGM before, I'd encourage you to come along.  It's a great opportunity to hear firsthand how things are ticking along on the inside of your home church.  In past meetings we have often split up into groups to pray for direction.  Especially so when we have pressing matters or hefty decisions to make such as building extensions etc.  Dave McPherson has again agreed to be our able Chairman, or he likes to put it, Referee.

    It is with great pleasure (and a good dollop of pride) that I get to announce that the baby of our family, Becky (Boo), has successfully completed her 3 years of training as an Early Childhood Teacher.  Graduation ceremonies are held over till February 2012 though, so Joy and I have to wait for our proud moment of officially enjoying her success.  It's very satisfying to have been involved with the OELC for such a long time and seeing the next generation share in the blessing God has brought about through the establishment of this ministry.  Becky was there in the centre as a pre-schooler. Joy worked there part time for a few years and I have been on the Trust etc for a number of years. To see Becky gain a qualification in teaching is the icing on the cake for us.

    There has been some delay in getting the Theophostic ministry running at full speed this year.  We apologise for any inconvenience, but we are now underway. Theophostic (Greek for God's Light) is a world renowned style of Holy Spirit led prayer ministry. Many people in our church can, and have testified to this methods effectiveness of facilitating a safe and decisive way to allow God to go deep into the core of our inner being.  Often times when we pray, we merely want the pain to stop.  Therefore the best we can hope for may be "peace for a time".  Alternatively, using the Theophostic method the facilitator helps a person give God the permission to go deeper and heal the problem at the root cause, this way the healing is more likely to be complete.  In that area of our lives at least.  Joy has agreed to lead this ministry, starting this month, so we are really grateful to her for this.  Her main role will be  co-ordination with facilitators.  If you are interested in learning more, or receiving this ministry, please feel free to give Joy a call at our home, or leave a message at the office, and we will be only too happy to serve.

    I hope you all have a great week.  Don't forget the Midyear AGM.

    God Bless

    Greg Morris (Pastor)

  • 3 July 2011

    Welcome all

    And may we say a special welcome to the Y.W.A.M. students of this year's annual Snow Boarders School.  Perhaps this year's first showing of snow on the mountains that came through this week was due to prayers from the base.  At the time of writing this I'm not able to see the tops because of the cloud, but hopefully what snow did come will help.  But regardless of snow conditions, we do as a church hope and pray you will have a great time during your stay here in Oxford, and that The Lord will move mightily in your lives.

    You will have noticed, I hope, that Alpha is being held again this year.  I love being hands on in this ministry.  I can honestly say that as a pastor it is one of life's greatest privileges to see someone have their first personal encounter of The Lord Jesus Christ, and to be touched in the most profound and healing ways by The Holy Spirit.   A couple years ago a young mother of 3 was healed of secondary breast cancer, to name just one.  Hopefully as we promote Alpha over this next few weeks we will be able to have some share their testimony.

    Whether Alpha attracts large numbers is due largely to congregational support.  Something like 90% of Alpha attendees say they  wanted  to come  to a  course like  this to  find out more  about faith  in God,  but only decided  to  come when they were personally invited by someone they knew.  Please feel free to invite as many people as you like.  We don't have a cut off point. We'll just make it work.

    Good reports of growth are coming through from Early Learning Centre.  It seems lots of young families are moving into the district and town.  It is only a year or so ago we opened the second Centre, and already we are needing to look again how we will manage the growth and serve the community.  Many have predicted as people are being paid out for their homes in Christchurch's "red zones" they will look to the Waimakariri District as a safer place to live.  An old real estate colleague just this week told me of a house in Rangiora which had sat on the market a while, all of a sudden had seven offers put in on it in the one day. That kind of pressure was unheard of even during the boom.  So we could yet experience much more growth as a town.

    We've by heard by email that the Shaskey's Cambodian Mission team is going well.  I know they will appreciate you holding them up in prayer

    The Elders are all set for a Retreat coming up on Saturday 16th July.  Last year it was held in Hororata, and God spoke really clearly for vision around ministries corporate and personal, and mapping the way ahead with buildings and growth etc. Every leadership team needs unity and support.  To get together like this as a team is vital to growth in each other, in Him and the Kingdom. Please pray for this time.

    God Bless and have a great week

    Greg Morris (Pastor)

Pastors Comment