Hi ,
We are anticipating that this coming Sunday we will be back at Covid level 1, and we can have a normal service. If we are at level 2, we will have a socially distanced service. Regardless, there will be a podcast online at 10am if Worship in-person doesn't work for you this week.

Today we hear the story of Nicodemus who visited Jesus by night. Living our faith can be difficult at times. And we see that through the stories of the most amazing disciples like Peter, through to those like Nicodemus who walked along the edge of faith. John's Gospel shows us though that regardless of our struggles, it is God who approaches us. Yes we might feel a long way away from God at times, it might feel like night, but Jesus continues to call us. And the story of Nicodemus gives us courage, that we too can approach Jesus no matter where we are in our faith journey, because we are simply responding to God's love for us.

This Sunday we start our Intergenerational Movie afternoon. And in two Sunday's we have our SGM for finances.

I hope to see you at worship this Sunday.


Again & Again

God Loves us First

Ephesians 2:1-10 | John 3:14-21
After inviting Nicodemus to be born anew, Jesus tells him in John 3 that God so loved the world that God sent his son to restore it. Therefore, when we read John 3:16, we remember that Jesus is speaking in metaphor and poetry. Ultimately, love is where God begins and ends. This love, like grace, is a gift we do nothing to deserve. Again and again, love is our refrain. Before we act, think, or believe, can love be first for us too?
- A Sanctified Art

Sunday 14th March

Theme: Again & Again - God loves us first

Ephesians 2:1-10
John 3:14-21


God of Light and Love, you come into the world not to condemn but to redeem; enter our lives, again, with your love, bringing new life, eternal and abundant, so that we, your servants, may show light and love to others. For you are alive and reign with the Father, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen

    Online YouTube Worship

    Sunday 10am, here: or click the button below

    Lent Prayer Wall

    Outside Art

    During lent we prepare to journey towards the cross and resurrection again. Our theme this year is "Again & Again." We look at how we can faithfully journey with Jesus to the cross. When we get to level 1, we can start to decorate our art display on the front lawn by the sharing shed. The plan is to this over lent. Each week it will change as we add prayers, and on Easter day we will transform it. Here you will see an ampersand that is added to each week as we weave our prayers into it.

      SGM for Finances - Sunday 28th March

      A Special General Meeting will be held on Sunday 28th March, 11:30am (after the 10am service) to receive the unaudited consolidated accounts for St Mary by the Sea. The accounts are audited later in the year as part of the Diocesan Group Audit. Accounts will be available Sunday 21st of March in hard copy, or via email from Debbie

      The purpose of this Special General Meeting (SGM) is to:
      1. RECEIVE - the Annual Accounts
      2. CONSIDER - the Annual Accounts
      3. ADOPT - the Annual Accounts

      Are you Interested in being Baptised?

      One of our traditions is that we hold a baptism service on Easter Sunday, as the sun comes up. If you would like to be baptised or learn more please contact Dion on 0211378624 or email at If you have already been baptised but would like to make further public commitment in your faith then have a chat with Dion about Confirmation or Reaffirmation of your Faith.
      Easter 2021 services - screen

      Daily Lent Engagement

      We have a daily reflection available.

      Would you like something in depth? Then pick up the Lent Devotion Booklet from the Welcome Desk.

      Would you like something brief? Pick up a series of 47 Devotion Cards.

      Would you prefer a digital offering? Then click the link below to go to our Website and sign up for a daily reflection on:
      • email
      • WhatsApp
      • TXT
      • Messenger
      Our reflection will also be on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, so follow us on one of these for a daily reflection.

      Lent Study Groups

      Visio Divina

      During Lent there will be an opportunity to delve into the scriptures deeper through a process called Visio Divina. During Covid 19 Level 3, there is one group are Wednesday 10:30am on zoom.

      Visio Divina, latin for “divine seeing,” is a method of meditation, reflection, and prayer through a process of intentional seeing. Visio Divina extends the 6th century Benedictine practice of Lectio Divina by the use of visual imagery. Traditionally, Visio Divina was accompanied by Benedictine iconography and illuminations, however, different faith traditions have adapted the process over time, utilizing both secular and nonsecular images. Use this lesson plan to blend visual meditation with group discussion and bible study.

      A Tribute to Doreen Murray

      It was with sadness, but with a feeling of real privilege that I led the funeral last week, of Doreen Murray. While it was a small event due to COVID restrictions at level 3, it was one in which those attending were able to share memories of the life well lived of a beloved wife, mother, grandmother and friend. As many friends were not able to attend the funeral, I offer this tribute, especially for those who would have loved to have been at the service, to reflect on and celebrate the life of Doreen.

      Doreen had been an active member of St Mary by the Sea for many years. While small in stature, her personality was large. One that endeared many people to her. She was the archetypical extrovert who warmed her way into the hearts of many.

      She travelled far in her life, both alone, with friends and, of course with family. She spoke French fluently after spending some years in France. She kept this skill going right throughout her life. Her gift in languages was part of what made her a good teacher to families in New Zealand who were learning English for the first time.

      She was a sacristan at the church and I remember the time she showed me how to set the holy table for communion…making sure I did it properly. I recall the day she said to me, “Jay, have you ever thought on being a priest”? Unbeknownst to anyone at St Mary by the Sea at the time, I was seriously considering a journey towards ordination. She was always very encouraging over those years of training.

      She gave a lot of time to the op shop. You would often see her on a Saturday morning with Kevin helping at her side…patiently doing what he was told.
      Whether at work or in a social setting, you would always hear the Irish lilt of Doreen’s voice among the crowd. She had a generous heart and a great sense of fun and it is this that we have missed over the years she has not been able to be able to worship with us.

      Doreen is now at peace. Well done, good and faithful servant. Enter into the joy of the Lord.

      Rev'd Jay Smith.
      Intergenerational Lent Sunday group - newsletter strip

      Intergenerational Study Group

      Sunday 3pm St Mary by the Sea Lounge

      If we are in Covid-Level 1, this Sunday, then our first Intergnerational study group will be on Sunday the 14th March in the Lounge of St Mary's 3pm.

      Please join us as we combine Scripture and movies and explore more about our transforming God. We'll have popcorn and conclude with pizza, Suitable for all ages and stages, 0 - 100.

      Mainly Music


      Mainly Music - Able bodied helpers required

      Mainly Music is back for 2021. It runs school term time only on Fridays starting at 9:30am. We need volunteers to move all the chairs to the side of the church so we have an activity space for the families. If you are able to help move chairs on a Thursday, to set up, or on a Friday at about 10:30am, after the session, please call Meg Norton 473 8444.

      Community Garden

      Are you interested in being part of the St Mary by the Sea community garden? For more information, see the information on the Welcome Desk, or talk to Clayton Christie at the 8am service, or Nannette Randall at the 10am service. There is an expression of interest form here, and a brochure here. and on our website here:
      bi-cultural ed

      Taha Māori - an online bicultural programme

      Nau mai haere mai koutou ki Taha Māori. Welcome to Taha Māori!

      The Auckland Anglican Dioceses are delighted to introduce this new online programme that will build your confidence in te reo Māori and your knowledge of our Church's bicultural journey in Aotearoa New Zealand.

      Taha Māori is a series of weekly discussions via Zoom that will explore the rich heritage of Te Hāhi Mihinare - The Māori Anglican Church - in this country and how we can strengthen the partnership between Tikanga Pākehā and Tikanga Māori.

      The A New Zealand Prayer Book/ He Karakia Mihinare o Aotearoa will be used as the primary resource to upskill participants in the confident use of te reo liturgies, hīmene (hymns) and pronunciation.

      Discussions will also be based on RNZ’s documentary series Land of the Long White Cloud which tells the stories of white New Zealanders who are confronting Aotearoa’s colonial past and present.

      The programme is open to all and we hope you will find it a safe and comfortable environment where questions and explanations can be both fun and serious at the same time! Sessions will be recorded for review afterwards on the diocesan YouTube channel.
      Taha Maōri will run from 10.00am -11.00am on Thursdays 11 March to 29 April (with a break in Holy Week).
      Click below to register and receive the Zoom link.
      For more information, please contact Megan Means at

      Resourcing Monday's Ministries

      April 9th - 11th April - Vaughn Park

      A weekend retreat at Vaughan Park for lay people of all churches to helping us become more intentional, resourced and effective disciples. Hosted by Bishop Bruce April 9th -11th. Friday 6pm - Sunday 1pm

      Bishop Bruce has a life-long interest and involvement in “Living by Faith on Monday”. He has a background in science and theology, and worked in parishes, education and industry as a priest, and as Anglican Bishop of Auckland 1985 – 1994.
      • The various contexts of our lives Monday to Saturday, in which we aim to be effective disciples of Jesus our Lord and brother
      • Focussing in whom and on what our lives are anchored
      • Locating resources for our task – so we are better equipped
      • Clues and hints on fruitfully engaging the various contexts we move in, especially the workplace
      • Consideration of case studies, and preparation for Sunday worship.
      • Commissioning and planning re-entry aims, and a review of the weekend.
      Each person will receive a work book, and the weekend will be punctuated with spaces, dialogue and prayer. More info: and 078648727.

      Cost: $310 (includes catering, two nights stay, seminar and work book).

      Registration through Vaughan Park

      Community Shop

      Thank you to everyone for your ongoing support of the Community Shop.
      The Community shop took $6,040 in February, expenses need to be deducted from this.


      Happy Birthday to Margaret Rocard and Trevor McCracken celebrate their birthdays on the 14th March. Ngaire Bailey celebrates her birthday on the 17th and Nanette Randall on the 19th. Wishing you all many happy returns on your special day.

      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

      Using the Church EFTPOS Machine.

      Donations made in church via the EFTPOS machine have increased and this has been a great help to our banking. The EFTPOS machine can be used for a variety of payment needs. If you are unsure how to work the EFTPOS please do not hesitate to ask for help.

      The EFTPOS machine prints 2 receipts, the first is your copy, the second is printed by selecting MERCHANTS COPY on the screen. This second copy should always be left on the appropriate clip on the notice board. With out the second receipt it is not possible to know what the money was intended for.

      For Church Giving, you can either keep the first receipt or place it in the DONATION BASKET to go up to the altar for the blessing.

      Please write your giving number or full name on the second receipt if you want the donation added to your tax receipt.

      Job Vacancy. Kings Way School Counselor.

      Permanent, part time (2 days / week), Y7-13. KingsWay has an exciting opportunity for a qualified and experienced counsellor to join our counselling team for two days per week during school term time, commencing at the start of Term 2, Monday 3rd May 2021. This is a non-teaching, support staff position.
      Applications close at 12noon on Monday, 29 March 2021.
      All applications must be made on the support staff application form and be submitted with a C.V. and a cover letter.
      An application pack is available on the school website: Completed applications and CV and cover letter should be emailed to, , Human Resources Manager, KingsWay School.

      Neighbours Day 20th March.

      Bring your family along to a Neighbour's Day Aotearoa event at Takapuna Methodist 38 Hurstmere Rd Takapuna. 11am-2pm.

      Poster Hurstmere Road final
      Poster A4_Concert 21 March 2021 (1)

      A Short Organ Concert.

      Performance by Rebecca-Soojung Lee at Holy Cross Church 222 Dairy Flat Rd Albany 21st March at 2pm. Entry by Koha.
      Easter Poster final

      Children's Easter Carnival.

      Takapuna Methodist Church. 427 Lake Rd Takapuna. 26th March 3:30pm-5:30pm
      A Free Community Event including simple Easter crafts, themed activities and a served afternoon tea. All welcome.

      Regular Information


      Wednesday - 10am - informal communion from NZ Prayer Book
      Sunday - 8am - formal communion from NZ Prayer Book
      Sunday - 10am - intergenerational worship with communion

      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


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      Debbie Rhodes, 09 4738180
      Office hours, Mon to Thr 10am-2pm


      Rev’d Dion Blundell, Office:09 4738183 Mb:021 1378624 Hm:09 4732270

      Priest Assistant

      Rev’d Jay Smith, 021 1045914


      Jean Coomer, 09 4780080
      Mark Van der ham, 021 2711207

      Synod Representatives

      Auriel Andrews
      Susan Haslam

      Vestry Secretary

      Susan Haslam, 09 4150073

      Vestry Members

      Bruce Rogers,
      Chris Waddingham,
      Jenny Cheer,
      Ryan Waddingham,

      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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