• Service times

    Services times are:

    Saturday night 7:30 pm for our Chinese/English service [except for the second Saturday of every month when the service starts at 6:30 pm and is followed by a shared meal]. (Pastor Daniel Choi.)

    Sunday 10 am for our English language service (Pastor Jeff Whittaker).

    Sunday 11:30 am for our Chinese (Mandarin) language service. (Pastor Daniel Choi.)

  • Contact details…

    Physical and postal address:
    4 Inverary Avenue,
    Epsom,
    Auckland 1023,
    NEW ZEALAND.

    Email:
    epsombaptist@clear.net.nz

    Telephone:
    (0064 9) 6306010

    Contacts:
    Rev. Jeff Whittaker
    Pastor Daniel Choi

  • Church Officers…

    Church Treasurer: Ann Guan

    Church Secretary: Margaret Whittaker

    Church Deacons: Anne Bartley, Ian de Stigter, Kristy Choi, Helen Evans, Willa Hui, and Alfred Zhou.

Then, and now…

When I was much younger than I am now, I had a paper-round. My older brother was a paper-boy; so was my younger brother. Our paper-rounds covered different parts of the small New Zealand town in which we grew up. Given that we had to collect the money for the papers from the householders at home, and not just deliver them, we got to know our parts of the town quite well. My memory of the time is that many properties had both chicken runs and big vegetable gardens. (Lots of properties also had old cars quietly rusting away.) There were, of course, some dogs. They weren’t many in number; we got to know which ones were unpredictable and kept rolled-up papers handy for whacking snouts from the safety of our bicycles.

Small town New Zealand (not the one being blogged about)…

Recently, my younger brother and I went for a walk in our old home-town. We traversed some of the streets that had been in our respective paper-rounds. I was struck by some strong impressions. First, chooks have seemingly disappeared from the town. Maybe this is not surprising; factory-farmed chicken is cheap in the supermarkets. Second, there seemed to be few gardens in evidence, even though the sections are still pretty much the same size. Third, there were many more dogs. The dogs were of the more ferocious kinds, Pit-bulls and Staffies. I’ve long thought that these sorts of dogs and gardens are mutually exclusive.

Our wanderings left me with some questions. Are we Kiwis losing our ability to be self-reliant, to grow some of our own food, as our forebears had to be? Why all the big dogs? Are we becoming so suspicious of one-another that we need to guard our own place with dangerous animals? (Keep in mind that these dogs seriously injure a number of children each year, children that belong to or are related to the family that owns the dog in question.) How are these issues affected by the high unemployment that bedevils much of small town New Zealand? Is the growing inequality in New Zealand society implicated? (Read ‘The Spirit Level’ for an analysis of how growing inequality correlates with a number of adverse societal factors.) How might the hope of the Christian gospel impact this setting?

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