Hi ,
Welcome to St Mary by the Sea news for this week.

We are excited to announce that with the government allowing gatherings of 100 people, we can resume in-person worship this Sunday. As we are at Alert Level 2, with a gathering size of 100, there are some restrictions to what we can do (more information below). We hope to see you online or at St Mary by the Sea this Sunday.

We in the Season of Creation! We are having a bit of fun experimenting with a green screen so we can bring a bit of creation into our online worship. To prepare for our worship this week you might want to spend a bit of time bringing creation in.

A few ideas:- Pot plants or plants from your garden
- A photo or picture of nature
- A candle
- Print out the 3D pictures of birds at this link: and make them up (I used the Kereru and Tui)

Share a picture of your worship space in the Facebook post comments and we’ll look forward to ‘seeing’ you on Sunday. Let your creative juices flow!

This week our focus is The Wilderness. The wilderness is where we discover who we are, and often where we receive God's new call on our life. We look forward to joining in worship with you, Sunday 8am and 10am at St Mary by the Sea, and also 10am on YouTube.

Angela & Dion
Montage of wilderness and desert scenes with the scripture Isaiah 42:11 Let the wilderness lift up its voice

Daylight savings begins

Our clocks spring forward by 1 hour this week as daylight savings begins, when Sunday 27th September 2am becomes Sunday 3am.
Daylight savings concept

Welcome back video

Check out our welcome back video on YouTube
Welcome Video - first frame

In-person worship - St Mary by the Sea

We hold three in person worship services:
  • Sunday 8am communion
  • Sunday 10am communion
  • Wednesday 10am communion & Bible Study
For now, in level 2, none of these services are like they were before lock-down. While we can’t wait to get back to worship… we are being cautious. We have made changes that are in line with current best practice as described by the Covid-19 information produced by the NZ Government.

The key thing is that During Level 2 we’ll be maintaining social distancing and hygiene practices such as as:
  • Using hand sanitiser or washing hands when we enter and exit church, as well as when using the bathroom or serving food.
  • Signing-in via our contract tracing app (SimpleTrace) or the sign in sheet
  • Keeping distance between anyone who doesn’t live in our bubble. This means:
    • no hugging,
    • no kissing,
    • no shaking hands
  • Using sign language to pass the peace
  • Listening to music rather than singing. Singing has spread the virus overseas, so for now, no singing.
  • Sanitising furniture and high use areas between and after services.
We will be continuing to offer an online worship option for those who are not able or ready to be part of larger groups. We will review this once we see how many people are using this as their worship on a Sunday morning.

We ask that if you are sick or have any cold or flu symptoms including runny/blocked nose, cough, sneezing, temperature, sore throat, aches and pains, loss of smell that you stay at home until you are better. You can attend worship when you have been symptom free for three days. If you are concerned about your or your loved ones health, please contact your GP or Healthline 08003585453

We look forward to seeing you on-line or in-person.

Dion and Angela.

Online YouTube Worship

Sunday 10am, here: or click the button below

Sunday 27th September

Season of Creation 3- Wilderness

THEME: “Jesus in the wild of the wilderness”
When Jesus was baptized, the Spirit that fills all of Earth now fills Christ in a special way. In response, Jesus retires to the wilderness to connect with creation. In Mark’s version, the wild animals and the angels join him.

SCRIPTURE: Mark 1:9–13


In fact, all creation is eagerly waiting for God to show who his children are.
- Romans 8:19


God, our Creator, whose glory fills our planet, help us to discern your vibrant presence among us and our kin in creation, especially in the mysteries of the forest. Help us to empathize with your creatures who are suffering and to serve you as agents for healing your creation. In the name of Christ, who reconciles and restores all things in creation. Amen.

Sunday 4th October

Season of Creation 4 - River

Revelation 22:1–5 ‘God’s healing for Earth’

Covid-19 Alert Levels

We are currently at Level 2

Vestry have decided to make signing in via the government QR code or our record book a condition of entry to the church and hall. You must sign in.

Vestry have decided that the buildings limit during level 2 are:
  • St Mary by the Sea - max. 100 people
  • Hall - max. 25 people
At this stage during Level 2, worship will continue to be offered both in-person and online. This will be reviewed as the government release new guidelines. We expect to review this when Cabinet next review the settings of Alert Level 2 on Monday 5th October. We will let you know what impact their decisions have on us as soon aw we can.

Level 2 info -

Play it safe

These are the most important things that you can remember and do:
  • COVID-19 is still out there. Play it safe.
  • Keep your distance from other people in public.
  • If you’re sick, stay home. Don’t go to work or school. Don’t socialise.
  • If you have symptoms of cold or flu call your doctor or Healthline and get advice about being tested.
  • Wash your hands. Wash your hands. Wash your hands.
  • Sneeze and cough into your elbow, regularly disinfect surfaces.
  • If you have been told to self-isolate you must do so immediately.
  • Keep a track of where you’ve been and who you’ve seen.

Controls at Alert Level 2

Alert Level 2 is not life as normal, some restrictions and other measures remain in place to reduce the risk of transmission.
  • We need to maintain physical distancing.
  • Only small, controlled gatherings will be permitted.
  • Physical distancing, hygiene standards and contact registers (where required) will make businesses safe.


Clergy can officiate at a funeral. But it would be a small gathering of no more than 100 people in total. If asked to officiate at a funeral in level 2, we can also offer the option of a memorial service at a later stage for a larger gathering when that is safe and possible.


Mainly Music remains closed. We are looking at resuming in term 4.

St Mary by the Sea

St Mary by the Sea is open at level 2 for prayer. We are not an open-public space, at this level we need to control the safety of our environment, so things will be a bit different to what you are accustomed to.
  1. We will be removing the common points of contact, like prayer lists and pens. We will not be distributing anything from the church, and we specifically aren't allowed to distribute paper.
  2. Access is available to the foyer and toilets. To access other areas you need to liaise with Debbie and Dion.
  3. If you wish to meet with Debbie or Dion, this will happen in the foyer.
  4. Solid surfaces will be regularly sanitised.
  5. Doors will be left open so that they aren't a common point of touch
  6. You need to "Sign-in" in the entrance after having sanitised your hands. It is a condition of entry that you use either the government QR code, or our sign-in register,
  7. In level 2 you will need to call ahead, as the building is only open by appointment, please phone Dion or Debbie (numbers below)
  8. This will be reviewed as the government release new guidelines.

Sign Language Week

This week is NZ Sign language week. Check out our sign language video here on how to sign the peace. Special thanks to Revd Jay Smith for teaching us, Kai Fester-Newman for videoing and Daniel Blundell for editing.

Community Shop donates to local schools.

The Community Shop, sent vouchers to all the schools in the local area to be used to assist students who come without lunches etc. These have been gratefully received by the school and will be put to good use.

They also have a number of $50 vouchers for New World and Countdown available for anyone in the community in need. If any parishioner is in need or knows of anyone in the community in need or who a voucher may assist would they please contact Susan Haslam, Jenny Cheer or Auriel Andrews. All requests will be dealt with COMPLETELY CONFIDENTIALLY. Many thanks Susan
Seasons for Growth Logo

Seasons for Growth

Seasons for Growth is a grief and loss programme that aims to strengthen the wellbeing of children and young people who are dealing with significant life changes. Seasons programmes are facilitated by volunteer Companions. Companions are trained and accredited adult facilitators who accompany participants on their learning journey. It is an inspiring and encouraging journey to be a part of. Seasons are currently seeking volunteer Companions for North Shore school-based programmes. All training and support is provided. If you would like to join us as a volunteer Companion or for more information please contact: Cushla Pierce - Seasons North Shore Coordinator 02108892018
Stroll Rect 2020

Stroll for your Soul

St Mary by the Sea has paid for a group subscription to Stroll for Your Soul and we'd love you to join us. You can join now for FREE.
Stroll for Your Soul began on Saturday 5 September but you can join at any time during its run.
You'll receive daily emails until the 26th September with inspirational thoughts and reflections. Go out for a stroll and notice the signs of spring, sit by a window and look outdoors, wander around your home or garden, go for a drive ... there's no set rules to how you use Stroll.
To sign up to Stroll for Your Soul click on this link and follow these steps.
1. Fill in your name and email address
2. Select 'Group' under subscription
3. Type 'St Mary by the Sea' for 'Group Subscription Name'
4. Under Payment Options, Select 'I'm signing up as part of a group (no payment required)'
5. Check 'Stroll for Your Soul' under marketing permissions
6. Click Subscribe
You'll receive a welcome email confirming your subscription. If you don't receive the welcome email, please contact for assistance with subscribing.

On-line giving and Covid restrictions.

During this and the previous lock-down we had a number of people switch from giving via envelope or cash donation in church to using a form of on-line payment, (EFTPOS, Automatic Payments or Internet Transfer). Thank you for your ongoing support of this parish.

If you have made this change please, if possible, continue to make your giving electronically once we are able to get back to in-person worship. Electronic giving is useful as it eliminates the risks associated with handling cash or envelopes and enables donations to continue when we are not able to come in person into church.

If you would like information or assistance to change to electronic giving please get in touch with the office or Dion and we will be happy to answer any questions you might have. All forms of giving can be attributed to your giving number. Our bank account details are below in the contact fields.

Thank you for your continued support of this parish.

Community Shop

Open Monday to Saturday, 9:30am to 4pm. Go along and show your support.
Word for the Day and Our Daily Bread Sept- Nov in store.

SUCAMPS registrations open Friday 6PM!

Keep your eyes peeled and make sure you don't miss your spot on one of our youth camps this summer. Visit on Friday and when the clock hits 6 book your spot on a summer adventure! Check back for updates during the week as we upload more camp info and details.

Zoom Bible Study

See at 10am for our Zoom Bible study - Meeting ID: 919-265-616

Rest Home Services

are on hold due to Covid restrictions.


Happy Birthday

Happy Birthday to Anne Stout for the 3rd October. Many happy returns to you.

If there is a celebration you would like added to our list or a one off event that you would like celebrated please let the office know. Email

Word for Today and Our Daily Bread

Available from the Community Shop. New copies are out. Due to the closed church building, copies of these have been made available to collect from the community shop, or access them online below.

The online versions are here:
and the youth version here:
Our Daily Bread:

Faith 5

Faith 5 is 5 simple steps to help us nurture our faith. It is simple enough to be done multiple times a week.
1: SHARE your highs and lows
2: READ a Bible story
3: TALK about how the Bible reading might relate to your highs and lows
4: PRAY for one another’s highs and lows
5: BLESS one another
More info here:

Regular Information

Praying for Others

Please send names for the Sunday Prayer-List by Sunday evening to Tony Nettleton, 027 278 1450 or Names can be sent at other times as required.


Vestry would like to encourage you to give to support our ministry. Giving and donations can be made to:
St Mary by the Sea
BNZ Browns Bay 02-0120-0047903-003
Please reference your donation with your surname or giving number.


Have some feedback? Feel free to email


Want to subscribe or unsubscribe to this newsletter? To subscribe go here or email with. You have an unsubscribe link at the very bottom of this email.



Debbie Rhodes, 094738180
Office hours, Mon to Thr 10am-2pm


Rev’d Dion Blundell, Office:094738183 Mobile:0211378624 Home:094732270

Priest Assistant

Rev’d Jay Smith, 0211045914


Jean Coomer, 094780080
Susan Haslam, 094150073

St Mary by the Sea

PO Box 89-082, Torbay, Auckland, 0742
168 Deep Creek Rd, Torbay, Auckland, 0630
Thanks for reading. See you soon!

The St Mary by the Sea Team
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