Pohutukawa Coast Presbyterian Church ( PCPC ) has its roots in two independent presbyterian churches, one in Beachlands, St Andrews By The Sea, and one in Maraetai, St. David's By The Sea.
Beachlands Presbyterian Church, which met in the Beachlands public hall, was established in 1950 within the Parish of Clevedon. In 1950 the church transferred from the Parish of Clevedon to the Parish of Howick. Fundraising for a church building began with a fair in 1951 raising 66 pounds, there was 150 pounds in a post office account, and further money was raised to a total of 658 pounds, allowing a loan for 500 pounds at 3%, and an interest free loan for another 500 pounds to initiate building on land in 2nd View Avenue, brought by New Life, a Presbyterian financing organisation.
By September 1954, the walls had interior lining, and parishioners sat on boxes until forms were purchased from the Salvation Army for a sum of 12 pounds! Sunday School flourished under a variety of leadership. In 1959 the church was officially dedicated and opened by the Rev AML McFarland, with pulpit, Communion Table and Chairs the gift of the hardworking fundraisers in the Women's Guild. All loans were fully repaid in 1971, a great effort by a small community. Extra buildings were moved from Buckland Beach in 1977 and dedicated early 1979, allowing the original building to be used primarily as a church with other functions well suited for community and social activities.
From 1969 Rev Samuel McCay came to Howick and was a much loved and respected part of the leadership of Beachlands Presbyterian Church for 19 years, with Rev Glen Barclay assisting.
MARAETAI - St David's by the Sea was opened in November 1964 in Maraetai, ministered to by Rev Reg Pullman. In the early days there was an average attendance of 57 at 9am on Sunday. Rev Mark Chapman became the minister in 1975. Extra buildings were added in 1976. By 1980 discussions were being held about the need for a 2nd minister for the Clevedon and Maraetai ends of the parish. In 1982 the removal of a dividing wall enlarged the church and a crèche was added. In July 1985, Rev Graham Jones was inducted and a piece of land obtained for a church and manse in process of being built. Subsequently Rev Frank McKean was appointed in 1987 resigning due to ill health in 1989.
In 1988 Maraetai and Beachlands broke ties with Clevedon and Howick respectively and amalgamated as a new independent congregation. Rev Robert Smith served from 1991. In 2002 Rev Barry Ayers was called to minister until his resignation in 2014. The amalgamated church was renamed Pohutukawa Coast Presbyterian Church from May 2006.
In 2008 a suitable piece of land was generously gifted from the bequest of Audrey Dickey to establish a church centre at Te Puru. In preparation for the building project the Maraetai church and Manse were sold and a property and new house purchased on a section on the boundary of the gifted property. The Beachlands church and sections were sold in 2012 to free up captital for the new building and the church worshipped instead in the church halls of St Hilda's Anglican Church and St Mark's Anglican Church in Beachlands and Maraetai respectively on alternate Sundays.
Plans for the new building were drawn up in 2009 and application made for resource consent. The project encountered difficulties and delays, due in part to the global financial crisis in 2009 - 2010. Resource consent was granted in 2012. Worshipping in rented halls at two different locations on alternate Sundays for an extended period of time was a hardship, the congregation shrank in size and the building project languished.
In 2013 Rev Barry Ayers initiated a process that eventuated in a memorandum of understanding between PCPC and St Columba Presbyterian Church in Botany. As a result, there was a new injection of energy and resources into the life of PCPC and into the building project. Following the resignation of Barry Ayers in mid 2014, Rev Reuben Hardie of St Kentigens College become the interim moderator and began rebuilding the life and ministry of the church. Rt Rev Garry Marquand of St Columba took over as interim moderator of PCPC at the start of 2015 and together with Rev Matt Chapman of St Columba continued to build up the life and ministry of the church. Under Garry's wise leadership, PCPC moved to Beachlands Bowling Club lounge every Sunday as its regular place of worship and the congregation took on new life. The building plans were re-drawn by architect Jane Waugh, the building consent process was completed, tenders were called, consents obtained from Northern Presbytery and the Church Property Trustees and the building contract was awarded to Pukekoe Builders.
In 2017 Rt Rev Garry Marquand was succeeded as interim moderator by Rev Matt Chapman and then later in that same year, Matt was succeeded as interim moderator by his father, Rev Mark Chapman, semi-retired after forty years of ministry in the Clevedon Parish. Under Mark's steady leadership the life and ministry of the church has been blessed. Mark had the honour of bringing to completion stage one of the building project and presiding over the first service in the new building on Sunday 16 December 2018. The official opening of the new building took place on 10 March 2019, presided over by the Rt Rev Garry Marquand.
Church Service with contemporary Music style
Kid’s Club (Sunday School)
The service is followed by complimentary coffee and tea.
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