A coat of many colours
Like all congregations, our members and leadership often have complex faith journeys and come from or adhere to a variety of faith traditions and personal theologies. Over time at ARCC this has melded into a rich culture. New members may find the mixture of traditional structures and rainbow theology a bit daunting at first. The best way to find out about us is to come along to a service. What is important is, that no matter where you are on your faith journey, and however you identify with your sexuality or gender, you are welcome. Feel free to sit back and observe or participate as you feel comfortable. And please do contact us if you have any particular questions or concerns.
Relationship to scripture
In general members of ARCC come from reasonably traditional Christian backgrounds and have a high regard for scripture. We don’t seek to evade scripture but rather to understand it. Particularly in the context in which it was written, who it was for and how it speaks to us today.
Style of service
Our services generally follow a conventional structure: Gathering, Scripture readings, Prayers, The peace, Communion & Dismissal. This is followed by a shared super. The monthly Cafe style service (on the second Sunday of every month) is less formal but follows the same general structure and includes time for short group sharing.
Services are led by an ordained minister from amongst a pool of volunteer ministers from affirming congregations of various denominations. We generally have three scriptural readings: Old testament, Epistles & Gospel. Sermons are often delivered by members of the community and generally reflect the concerns and challenges of our rainbow community. Also from time-to-time invited guests may deliver give an address or preach.
Auckland Rainbow Community Church (ARCC) is a non-denominational church. Each week we celebrate the last supper that Jesus shared with his disciples. Our table is open to all who wish to remember Christ’s death until he comes again. In celebrating the Communion /Eucharist, we join together in a circle in front of the altar, the table at which the bread and wine is consecrated. Those who do not wish to receive Communion / Eucharist, are welcome to remain with the others and receive a blessing.
Over the years we have adapted and developed a number of liturgies, our written orders of service. The current liturgies are entitled Faith, Peace, Love & Hope. These are generally based on conventional liturgies with adaptations for the concerns of our LGBTQI+ community.
We follow the Western Church calendar and observe the celebration of Easter, Pentecost, Advent, Christmas & Lent. This is interspersed with a number of special services such as our “Thank God for Pride” service at the end of the regular Pride celebrations, AIDS candlelight memorial, Transgender memorial service and the Feast of Saints Sergius and Bacchus. See our roster for more details.
Hymns & music
We have been worshiping since the 1970s in the magnificent Anglican church of St Matthew in the City with its wonderful pipe organ. This an iconic neo-gothic stone church over 100 years old, and located right in the middle of the CBD. As such, organ music and a mixture of traditional and contemporary hymns feature in most of our services. The exception is the cafe style service when we use a piano and contemporary worship songs.