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Pioneer Methodism in the Coalfields of Southland

Pioneer Methodism in the Coalfields of Southland

NIGHTCAPS: The Mother Church 
APARIMA: Pioneer Rural Church  
WINTON: A chapter of discouragement and present challenge  
OHAI: The big daughter, and mining town  
WEST ARM: Lake Manapouri: Industry challenges the Church 

The Ohai Pastorate of this vast scattered Western Southland Methodist Circuit, with its three churches and four other preaching places is one of the youngest rural Methodist causes in Southland, 75 years ago saw the establishment of our first Church services, and 65 years ago the appointment of the first Minister to the North Western Southland district. Methodism through this appointment had been true to her heritage of taking the Gospel to an industrial situation. Our pioneer task is not yet complete, the task of the Church of Jesus Christ should always be to break new ground in the art of communicating the Gospel and seeking out areas uncared for by her ministry. With rapid rural development, continuing industry in Ohai, and the great undertaking of Comaico in Manapouri our Church is once more on the brink of opportunity.

This is a tribute to the pioneers of the past and the Home Missionaries. To a certain degree our Church in Western Southland has been living on the past but no Church can do this and survive. May this challenge us to meet the demands and the opportunity of today, that we too may be worthy of our Methodist Heritage.

The Parsonage,
1st August, 1961.