Frequently Asked Questions
The FAQs below will be updated regularly. When major changes are made we will publish updates through our Facebook Page and mailing list.
Can Tangihanga / Funerals still go ahead?
Up to 10 people can gather, including a minister, from within the same region to be part of a tangihanga or funeral service.
A minister must only take a funeral in-person with the express permission of the local bishop. They must also be able to guarantee that they can maintain social distancing, contact tracing, and proper hygiene procedures according to Government Guidelines.
Only the funeral gathering may be permitted. A hākari or reception is not allowed.
Can Karakia Iriiri / Baptisms still go ahead?
No. There will be no iriiri/baptisms or gatherings until advised safe to do so. Emergency baptisms can take place at a hospital or in a household, within a whānau bubble, by a minister or baptised Christian.
Can Mārena / Weddings still go ahead?
Weddings can only be taken with the express permission of the local bishop. Those attending, including the minister, must guarantee maintaining social distancing, contact tracing, and hygiene procedures according to Government Guidelines.
Up to 10 people can gather, including a minister, from within the same region to part of a Mārena or Wedding Ceremony.
You may only gather for the ceremony – receptions, hākari, or any other associated gathering is not allowed.
Can we use church buildings?
Church buildings should only be made available for acceptable gatherings, Tangihanga or Funerals and Mārena or Wedding Ceremonies, with the express permission of the local bishop and a guarantee of social distancing, contact tracing, and venue sanitisation.
Can we live stream services?
Live streaming of services is more important than ever and is permissible from homes.
We encourage us all to consider how we can be as creative as possible with streaming services and other resources. There are many great examples of churches and minita/ministers using technology to reach and engage communities.
For a selection of live streamed services and online resources see Live Stream and Online Karakia.
Live streaming should be operated by the person presenting or a member of their household. External people should not move between households to facilitate.
How will Minita / Ministers and Churches keep in contact, especially with the vulnerable?
We are encouraging churches to find creative ways of staying in touch with those who are isolated and vulnerable and to give them spiritual support and also practical support as far as possible.
What advice is available for anyone feeling anxious, stressed, or emotionally or mentally unwell?
Emotional and mental wellbeing is important. It is normal to feel anxious or stressed about COVID-19, or to feel lonely when self-isolating.
See also the links for helplines and resources under He Puna Aroha.
What advice is available if domestic abuse is suspected?
Domestic abuse may affect anyone at any time, but the isolation resulting from COVID-19 is particularly affecting victims/survivors of domestic abuse.
It is okay to ask for help if you or someone else is in danger. If you think someone could be harmed or may harm themselves, call the Police on 111, even if you’re not sure.
How can we help people give financially to the church during this time?
Churches rely on the aroha of their congregations and communities to support mission and ministry. Many people give regularly to their church by direct debit. Others give in cash when the offering is taken in a karakia service or when visiting the church. People will not be able to give in this way if church buildings are restricted or closed and services are suspended.
Many people are going through financial uncertainty as a result of lost or changed employment during the restrictions, and that may affect their giving too.
This means that it is even more important that those who can give are able to do so. You could consider including an update in a newsletter or online notice to let people know how to go about giving online or by direct debit.
TUIA General Synod Office
200 St John’s Rd