I was thinking about this last night. The church in New Zealand seems to rely a lot on resources from overseas, in particular America and Britain. Examples of this would be the Christian books that we read- the Kiwi Bible is the only example which I can think of which came for New Zealand, the music we listen to, although we do better here, the teachers we listen to- someone seems to have a lot more authority if they are from overseas, and the programs we run, such as alpha, Christianity explored etc.
Now don't get me wrong, New Zealand s a relatively small country with only four million people, so it's inevitable that we will have a lot of influence from other counties, and these people have many gifts and experiences which can help us in New Zealand. I for one am very thankful for the number of excellent TSCF stuff workers form outside New Zealand But my worry is that we often just apply oversea resources, without thinking about how the context in America or the United Kingdom is different to that in New Zealand. Furthermore, it means that the many people whom God had gifted in New Zealand don't get a chance to to use them.
If the Church in New Zealand is going to reach the people of this nation for Christ, we need to be serious about connecting with our own culture. This means we need to take the time to understand kiwi culture as it is today, and to develop the girts which New Zealand Christian have, not just rely on overseas ideas. I would be good to See a New Zealand equivalent to Alpha, which address the questions New Zelanders have, and to see some good Christian books written form a New Zealand prospective and to help New Zealand Christian understand what it means to be a follower of Jesus in New Zealand.