Anglican General Synod

Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia

Te Hahi Mihinare ki Aotearoa ki Niu Tireni, ki Nga Moutere o Te Moana Nui a Kiwa

Archbishops Easter Message 2012

Tena Koutou, Malo Elelei, Namaste, Talofa Lava, Ni Sa Bula Vinaka.

Warm Greetings to you all. Grace and peace to you from God.

The message of Easter is a story of the victory of God in Christ over the power of sin and death.

The arrest, trial, torture, and crucifixion of Jesus occupy the largest single incident in any one of the four Gospels. This incident has been the most widely depicted of all in Jesus’ life. Every detail of this grisly process seems to have been carefully recorded by the evangelists.

The heart-rending details of the final suffering of the Jesus of Nazareth reveal how deep God’s empathy is for the pain and sin of the world, and how far the divine love will go to redeem them. Evil in so many forms – political, religious, psychological, and spiritual – poured itself out completely in this event.

Yet all these forces exhausted themselves without finally exhausting the faith, hope, and love of God in what happened. In a way, the forces of evil, as powerful as they are, were finally put in their place, exposed as ultimately unreal and finally overcome in resurrection.

The resurrection is the place in human history where evil, injustice, and prejudice are transfigured into goodness, justice and enlightenment. Christians receive this truth in a way that transforms the way we think and the way we live. This is what saves us.

How do we speak with the Risen Christ? Through the power of the Holy Spirit within us, through sharing in his banquet where he is present in a communion of bread and wine; by breathing in his Spirit in contemplative prayer; by reading and hearing his thoughts, parables, and visions in the Gospels. Christ becomes living bread, life-giving breath and living word in these ways.

When the General Synod/Te Hinota Whanui of this church was asked to think about what this means for our church, it unanimously decided on these words which are used in the Great Thanksgiving of the first Eucharist in our Prayer Book He Karakia Mihinare o Aotearoa:

You are the source of all life and goodness;

through your eternal Word

you have created all things from the beginning

and formed us in your own image;

make and female you created us.

When we sinned and turned away

you called us back to yourself

and gave your Son to share our human nature.

By his death on the cross,

he made the one perfect sacrifice for the sin of the world

and freed us from the bondage of sin.

You raised him to life triumphant over death;

you exalted him in glory.

In him you have made us a holy people

by sending upon us your holy and lifegiving Spirit.

May we all celebrate the victory of divine love over death that Easter represents, may we know its transforming grace in our lives and may we share this risen life with everyone we know. Wishing you the joy and hope of Easter.

++ Brown Turei

Pihopa o Aotearoa

++David Moxon

Senior Bishop of the NZ dioceses

++Winston Halapua

Bishop of Polynesia

© Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia

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It is our hope that the information contained here will enable Anglicans and others to be informed of the ministry of this Church. The Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia, is a constitutionally autonomous member of the worldwide Anglican Communion. The Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia encompasses the area described by its title. The 1992 Constitution of this Church provides for three partners to order their affairs within their own cultural context. Within Aotearoa New Zealand, Tikanga Pakeha comprises seven Dioceses, Tikanga Maori comprises five Amorangi, the boundaries of which differ from those of the dioceses. Tikanga Pasefika encompasses Fiji, Tonga, Samoa and the Cook Islands, and is known as the Diocese of Polynesia. Publication: 'Anglican Taonga' (Treasure) is a publication affirming the unity and diversity of the Anglican community in these islands. .

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