06 The Moralist Movement and the New Life Churches • E-Theses

06 The Moralist Movement and the New Life Churches

Brett Knowles, , University of Otago, Dunedin

B. Knowles, History of the New Life Churches in New Zealand, Otago PhD.

Chapter 6. © 2003 - Brett Knowles,

An e-theses.webjournals.org article.


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6. The Moralist Movement and the New Life Churches

6.1. The shifting focus of conservative Christianity

      The 1972 Jesus marches represented a conservative Christian "grass-roots" reaction to the increasing liberalization of moral standards in the 1960s. Although the marches were intended as "once-only" events, they provided a catalyst (and sometimes also the model) for further moralist activism throughout the 1970s. This conservative Christian response to the permissive society formed part of a world-wide phenomenon, and laid the foundations for what came to be known as "the New Christian Right." Liebman and Wuthnow observe that
the fact that the evangelicals had refrained from politics for so long meant that [the New Christian Right's] appearance was something truly exceptional.... When [political] abstinence yielded to political action, at least for a substantial segment of evangelicals,...[socio-political] theories...required reexamination.[1]
      Although the title "New Christian Right" refers specifically to the American context, it is also applicable to the development of similar moral activist movements elsewhere.[2] The emergence of these movements was the product of several shifts of focus in the early 1970s, when, as Liebman puts it, "the sharp line between the kingdom of God and the kingdom of Caesar began to blur. Unwilling to turn their backs on what appeared to be a deepening moral crisis..., evangelicals shifted their attention to the sphere of public life."[3]
      The first of these shifts was an eschatological one. Many conservative Evangelicals held pre-millennial views,[4] believing that the world order was doomed to become progressively
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more degenerate, with the climax of evil coming just before the second coming of Christ.[5] In the light of this pessimistic world-view, there was little point in trying to change the world, since it was, by its very nature, irredeemable. While various forms of pre-millennial belief remained prominent in the 1970s, and were reinforced by the success of Hal Lindsey's book The Late Great Planet Earth, the rise of the new moral activist movements implied a move away from this world-view.
      In New Zealand, as elsewhere, this shift was largely an unconscious one. Evangelical participants in the moralist movements do not appear to have been aware that their activism (which carried with it the assumption that it was possible to change the world for the better, or at least to halt the process of decay) was in fact at variance with their pre-millennial theology. Nevertheless, this conceptual shift both reflected and helped to bring about the end of an era of conservative Christian protest as exemplified by the Jesus Marches, and the beginnings of an era of political pressure as represented by the proliferation of lobbying groups such as the Concerned Parents Association.
      The second shift of focus involved the conservative Christian response to the process of secularization. Lloyd Geering has succinctly defined "secularization" as "the process marked by an increase in `this‑worldliness' ‑ a process in which, in his beliefs and practices, man [sic] puts increasing emphasis on, and takes increasing interest in, this world with corresponding decreasing emphasis on, and interest in, the other, eternal world."[6] To be "secular," in Geering's view, is to be "`this‑worldly.' [The term] implies a particular kind of
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world‑view and a particular focus of concern. It fastens attention on this visible, tangible, physical, temporal world."[7]
      Secularization, as a phenomenon, has been much discussed in New Zealand and elsewhere. However, despite the succinctness of Geering's definition, the concept itself "is by no means unambiguous," and sociologists are engaged in "contemporary debate" over the nature of the process.[8] Although no consensus has been reached, there do appear to be some areas of theoretical agreement. The components of secularization are generally described as firstly, "an increasing differentiation of religious institutions from other social institutions, and...pluralism among religious organizations"; secondly, a loss of religion's "`public' role as a social legitimator" and consequently an increasing privatisation of religion; and thirdly, a "growth in irreligion."[9]
      The effect of secularization is to internalise religious authority in general. Geering notes that in the secular society "the religious person is autonomous and not heteronomous.... [This person] is no longer willing, as in the pre-secular age, to submit to an external religious authority."[10] And, since secularization is usually accompanied by increasing pluralism, and because "metaphysical or religious conceptions of the nature and destiny of humanity can be no more than private options or ideals in a pluralist society,"[11] religion becomes individualised and privatised, and thus effectively nullified as a source of authority in the secular society. This abrogation of public religious authority consequently leads to morality, both public and private, becoming a matter of individual determination and choice. Secularization can therefore be seen as one of the catalysts for the liberalisation of moral standards in the 1960s.

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      It was primarily the devaluation of religion implicit in this process which provoked the Christian moralist reaction. Indeed secularization, rather than issues of morality per se, had been Malcolm Muggeridge's main concern in the Festival of Light in Britain in 1971. In the eyes of the moral activists, society had departed from "Christian principles," and it was therefore necessary to return to traditional standards of morality. Since the activists' perception of morality was rooted in their Christian faith, this necessarily implied a return to traditional Christian belief.[12] They therefore opposed secularization as much as the liberalization of moral standards which resulted from it - indeed, for some sections of the movement, "secular humanism" was the enemy par excellence.[13]
      The conservative Christian opponents of secularization sought to reinstate Christianity as a legitimator of public morality.[14] However, although their motivation was a religious one, their moralist activism represented a shift in attitude towards secular society. By


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focusing on the moral tone of the society around them, they were themselves "[fastening] attention on this visible, tangible, physical temporal world,"[15] and, in so doing, becoming more "secular" in their emphasis. Richard Russell describes this reorientation as a "growing crisis of the Evangelical world-view." He comments that, in the context of British Evangelicalism, "there has been a considerable shift over the past ten years [i.e. from 1963 to 1973] from setting up a choice between `individual redemption' to `social amelioration' to seeing their relation as conjunctive."[16] This, he argues, represents a shift from a "Christ OR culture" to a "Christ AND culture" paradigm and parallels the movement towards a "social gospel" and the "secularization of the Christian faith" in the early 1900s.[17]
      Russell's comments were made in 1973, two years after the Festival of Light. His claim that history appeared to be repeating itself was not borne out by later developments, however, since the moralist movement of the 1970s and 1980s had different emphases from the "social gospel" movement of the early 1900s. Nevertheless, he may be correct in his insistence that the moralist movement represented a change in the Evangelical world-view. In New Zealand, the new concern with moralist issues rather than with an individualistic faith marked a departure from the mode of Evangelicalism which had prevailed in this country since the 1959 Billy Graham Crusade.
      The third, and most important, shift of focus produced by the Jesus marches was a "consolidation of identity" among conservative Christians. The marches had the three-fold effect of focusing the attention of the participants on "moral issues" in the wider society, stimulating an awareness of the power of collective action, and producing an informal ecumenism. In so doing, they helped to promote a clearer sense of conservative Christian self-identity (especially within the Pentecostal and Charismatic movements, members of which were involved in the marches), and stimulated the beginnings of concerted moral and political activism. Both of these consequences were reinforced by subsequent events, and
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greatly influenced the way in which the Pentecostal and Charismatic movements developed in New Zealand during the 1970s and 1980s.
      The growing sense of self-identity in the Charismatic movement was intensified by the Christian Advance Ministries "Summer School" held at Massey University in January 1973, which effectively marked the "coming of age" of the movement. In the case of the Pentecostal movement, changes in perception and mood were directly related to the concerns which underlay the Jesus marches. As will be seen, the formation of the Associated Pentecostal Churches of New Zealand in 1975 owed much to Pentecostal anxiety about "moral issues." In responding to the sweeping changes in the society around them, however, the Pentecostal churches themselves began to change. As the 1970s progressed, the movement became much more "acceptable" and "respectable."[18] These changes were reflected in an increasing Pentecostal self-awareness, which was manifest in moves towards organizational consolidation both between and within the various Pentecostal groups, and in involvement in various political lobbying groups. Their apprehension about what they perceived to be a catastrophic decline in the moral values of society, together with the growing organizational consolidation of the movement, form the twin motifs of Pentecostal development in the 1970s. The changes in the New Life Churches strongly reflect this double motif.
 

6.2. What moralist issues were important to the New Life Churches?

      The moralist movement of the 1970s was neither monolithic nor well-defined.[19] While conservative Christians focused on a number of specific "moral issues" throughout the
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decade, not all of these excited the same degree of concern. Different groups had different emphases, which in most cases tended to be questions of individual morality rather than of social praxis, and centred on the preservation of the nuclear family.[20]
      What were the major concerns of conservative Christians in the 1970s? Responses to this question have been varied. David Arrowsmith, for example, summarises the issues of 1975 into four "debates," i.e. those on church schools, homosexual law reform, the role of women, and the "Clergy for Rowling" controversy.[21] Fraser Paterson, on the other hand, recapitulates the "issues" in the Presbyterian Church of New Zealand from 1945 to 1985 under the rubrics of prohibition, gambling, sabbath observance, homosexuality, racism and the debate over rugby tours to South Africa.[22] This diversity of concern was a factor in the proliferation of moral activist groups in the 1970s.
      Pentecostal groups, however, tended to emphasise issues of gender and sexuality, rather than social and economic issues.[23] For example, Bob Horton, a member of the North Shore
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New Life Fellowship, and president of the Auckland chapter of the Full Gospel Businessmen's Fellowship International which had organized the "Jesus 75" crusade, had "no doubt that homosexuality..., abortion and drugs [headed] the list of evils that threaten God's blessing on New Zealand."[24] Horton's views were typical of those held within the Pentecostal movement. This focus on individual, rather than social, morality reflected the Pentecostal emphasis on individual experience, as well as the fundamentalist approach to the Bible which formed the basis of the movement's teachings.
      What specific issues concerned the New Life Churches? Oral and documentary sources made available to the author[25] show that the moralism of the New Life Churches appeared to have several specific foci. Letters in the Majestic House Correspondence Files for 1974 and 1975 refer to "the introduction of sex education into our public schools,"[26] "teaching in schools that is contrary to Christian principles,"[27] and "concern on moral issues and the
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state of education in New Zealand."[28] The issue of abortion appears briefly in the 1977 and 1983 files,[29] while correspondence in 1980 protested against the bringing of indecent films and stage shows into New Zealand.[30] Oral interviews with pastors of the New Life Churches contain references to the need to "work towards preserving the nuclear family."[31] This concern for the family was stimulated in part by the publication of Larry Christenson's book The Christian Family,[32] which, according to Rasik Ranchord, "was very, very well received....It come out at the right time [and struck] a chord in the hearts of the people. The people felt [that] we must work towards preserving the nuclear family."[33] The "Save Our Homes" campaign, started in 1977 by Anne Morrow, was a specific response to the radical feminist movement.[34] Surprisingly, although (as David Arrowsmith points out) homosexual law reform was an issue in 1975, there is no reference in the Majestic House Correspondence Files throughout the 1970s to homosexuality, although the New Life Churches, along with other conservative groups, were heavily involved in the campaign against the Homosexual Law Reform Bill in 1985.
      These primary materials show that, while there were a number of areas of moralist concern, the major issues for the New Life Churches in the 1970s were those of sex education in schools, which expanded into anxiety about "the state of
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education in New Zealand"; the preservation of the nuclear family; and the mobilization of a response to what was seen as destructive radical feminism. Expressions of concern about abortion and pornography appeared to be more muted, and made in response to specific local situations. Homosexuality did not become a major issue for the New Life Churches until the mid-1980s, and references to other social issues in the 1970s, such as racism and sporting tours to South Africa, are conspicuous by their absence.[35] The core of the New Life Churches' concern was the family, and in particular, the traditional Pentecostal patriarchal model of the nuclear family as "a unit of love, security and training for children" in which "the husband is the head of the home. The husband is to be the provider and protector."[36] Consequently, the preservation of marriage (and by inference, of Biblical standards of human sexuality) was of paramount importance, as also was the perceived need to maintain the traditional gender roles of society.[37]
 

6.2.1. The Sex education in schools issue

6.2.1.1. The Ross Report and the Concerned Parents' Association

      The catalyst for much of the moralist activism of the mid-1970s was the controversy over sex education in schools.[38] This issue was seen as constituting a tacit challenge to the authority of the nuclear family, and thus as a threat to the foundations of the social order. For conservative Christians, issues such as abortion and homosexuality were problems of the wider society, and as such, did not directly impinge upon their own horizons. Sex education, however, was a threat of a different kind, an "invasion" of the Christian family by
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the "permissive society." Children of conservative Christian parents could not avoid exposure to the new regime if it was introduced into the schools. Consequently, this issue threatened the world-view of the Christian family in a way that other issues did not, and therefore provoked a vigorous response.
      The sex education issue emerged following the deliberations of the Ross Committee, which had been set up by the Director-General of Education in 1973, and charged with the task of exploring the issues involved in developing programmes in human development and relationships in schools. The report of this committee (published as the Department of Education working paper Human Development and Relationships in the School Curriculum, although more commonly known as the Ross Report) was intended to provide a basis for discussion of "the role of the school in the broad fields of human development and family and personal relationships, including sex education."[39] In so doing, it placed the issue of sex education in the wider context of human relationships and moral responsibilities.
      However, the question of sex education was seized upon by opponents of the proposals, who felt that the moral dimensions were being ignored in the introduction of courses such as these into the schools. Despite an acknowledgement in the Ross Report that the committee's basic assumption was that "parents are the main influence in determining social and personal attitudes and values,"[40] and that "the teacher's role is one which supplements and complements the role of the parents,"[41] some sections of the community felt that the rights of parents were being eroded, that "the state was taking over educating children about sex, and that any programmes would be based on a non-traditional morality rather than around the married monogamous heterosexual family."[42]

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      Opposition to the proposals contained in the Ross Report was orchestrated by the Concerned Parents Association [hereafter cited as CPA].[43] This group had been set up in Christchurch in 1974 by Dr. Martin Viney and others and quickly became the most prominent of the groups opposing the introduction of sex education.[44] The stated purpose of the CPA was to "enable parents to become more informed and effective on educational issues."[45] By so doing, it sought to mobilise conservative Christian concern in a concerted expression of opposition, and advocated the use of political lobbying methods, such as letters to Members of Parliament, in order to make this opposition known. To this end, the CPA published a bi-monthly newsletter in which it reported on developments both within New Zealand and overseas, made numerous submissions on its own account to various commissions and committees,[46] and encouraged individual submissions from members of the public.[47]

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      While the CPA was sometimes criticised for inaccuracy[48] and tended at times to demagoguery, it nevertheless reflected the concern of those sections of the community who, rightly or wrongly, saw the proposals of the Ross Report as opening the door for the take-over of society by the forces of "permissiveness." According to the CPA, these forces comprised a number of groups

with liberal, permissive views on sex who want these course[s] [i.e. the Human Development and Relationships courses] introduced. These [groups] include:
1. THE FAMILY PLANNING ASSOCIATION (whose Youth Education Officer was editor of the sex magazine "Forum"), who are persuading girls under 16 to use contraceptives instead of promoting chastity:
2. THE RADICAL FEMINIST MOVEMENT who [sic] see sex education as a means to alter the whole concept and nature of male and female roles:
3. HOMOSEXUAL GROUPS e.g. the Campaign for Homosexual Equality (CHE) who are invited by sympathetic teachers to address pupils about their particular perversion:
4. THE ABORTION LAW REFORM ASSOCIATION who see sex education as a means of obtaining community acceptance of the idea of abortion-on-demand:
5. PROMOTERS of indecent publications.[49]

      The CPA's perception of the take-over of society by a vocal minority was echoed by others. For example, the Hon. R.D. Muldoon wrote in 1974 that
the term `silent majority' is one of the saddest of the many catchwords of our time. If the talkers really are the minority, and on many issues they are, then the majority are losing by default, and that is the worst kind of loss of all....If only there could be

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a crusade by the normal people which would match the crusading spirit of the subversive element.[50]
As will be seen, Muldoon courted the conservative churches during the 1975 election campaign. It could be claimed that he saw the activity of groups such as the CPA as part of this "crusade by the normal people." However, a more cynical argument is that he recognised the political value of conservative Christian moral concern, and forged links with these groups for political advantage. The extent to which these links conditioned the development of the Pentecostal churches will be discussed in Chapter 7.
      The debate over sex education in schools peaked in 1977 with the publication of the Report of the Committee on Health and Social Education (more commonly known as the Johnson Report).[51] This Report built upon, and extended, the earlier work of the Ross Committee and also of the Royal Commission on Contraception, Sterilisation and Abortion.[52] However, the CPA mounted a major campaign, in which it was joined by other conservative groups, against the Johnson Report.[53] This opposition at first sight appears ironic, since the Johnson Report had gone further than had the Ross Report and called for "spiritual values to be included" in the teaching of human relationships.[54] In so doing, it
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appeared to meet at least some of the objections of those who had opposed the Ross Report.
      Attitudes, however, had hardened since the beginning of the sex education debate some four years previously. The CPA continued to oppose the whole idea of contraceptive information being available in schools, seeing this as an infringement of the sole rights of the parents to give their children moral education. However, this objection was somewhat unrealistic, for as John Salmon points out,
the whole emphasis today is on the imparting of values, both religious and moral, rather than on the specifics of Biblical content or a list of character traits....Everyone involved in the education process needs to be aware that many aspects of schooling and school activities are morally educating....A great deal of the morality which has been instilled in young people over the years has been through activities which are not consciously regarded as morally educating. Teachers have corrected pupils' behaviour and made comments on materials in the history lesson without realising it as moral education. Effective moral educating requires that the processes involved be recognised....Educators need to be aware of what values are being expressed through the structures and relationships of the school and whether they support or contradict the values which are being taught intentionally. Only then can moral education be consistent and truly intentional.[55]
      Salmon's argument is that moral education does take place in the school, whether intentionally or unintentionally, and that the teacher-pupil relationship is the channel by which this is imparted. For some of the opponents of sex education in schools, this was the core of the issue. As they saw it, the question was not so much the content of the curriculum but the character of the teacher. Some of the proponents of private Christian schools appeared to object to the non-Christian teacher, as much as to the non-Christian curriculum, fearing the adverse effects of exposing their children to the influence of a teacher who was, for example, an homosexual or a spiritualist. While this was probably the most extreme of the objections to secular moral education, and as such, not maintained by all the moralist objectors, many of the objections made by the CPA appear to be based on these perceptions. The Johnson Committee itself acknowledged that there was some validity in these objections:

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      We endorse the view of the Royal Commission on Contraception, Sterilisation and Abortion which states: `The Commission believes that the teacher is the key person in the success or failure of any programme....Those teachers who have the responsibility for carrying out the human relationships programme must have a philosophy of living allowing them to deal with it with complete conviction. Their personal standards and their integrity are all-important.'
      We are in sympathy with the submissions which we received from groups such as Concerned Parents Association and the Society for the Promotion of Community Standards concerning the suitability of some teachers for educating children in this area.
      There will be some teachers who feel inadequate and some few teachers who may in fact be incapable of teaching the topic with the necessary sensitivity. And there will always be those few teachers whose personalities render them unsuitable for this type of education. We would expect principals at all times to be aware of teacher strengths and children's needs as in other subject areas. [However] the fact that parents have already been consulted with regard to the programme content, that it is based on the principles outlined by the Royal Commission quoted above, and that parents have at all times ready access to the principal, should ensure that the concerns expressed by these groups are adequately met.[56]
It is therefore evident that, although the opposition of the CPA to the issue of sex education in schools was unrelenting, the Johnson Committee was prepared to seriously consider some of the objections which they raised and to attempt to alleviate the matters of concern.
      The moralist movement in the 1970s gained support from a variety of conservative Christian groups. Pentecostal churches formed a part, but only a part, of this constituency. In general, this Pentecostal support came from individual congregational members, rather than from corporate initiatives by the Pentecostal churches. In the case of members of the New Life Churches, opposition to sex education in schools was expressed by involvement with groups such as the CPA. At a corporate level, the New Life Churches also took part in the activities of the Associated Pentecostal Churches of New Zealand [APCNZ], including the submissions made by the APCNZ to the various Committees and Commissions set up to examine the question. There was, however, one distinctive response which was initiated by the New Life Churches to the issue of sex education in schools. This was the introduction of the Accelerated Christian Education (ACE) system into New Zealand in 1976.
 

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6.2.1.2. Accelerated Christian Education: A response to sex education in schools

      In nineteenth-century New Zealand it was "generally accepted that the Church should play a leading role in education. The acquisition of knowledge and inculcation of [Christian] morality were believed to be inseparable."[57] This understanding of the Church's role helped to lay the foundation for, and to mould the early shape of, education in this country. However, the authority of church schools was undermined by sectarian rivalry and their privileged position was eventually abolished by the 1877 Education Act.
      Despite the provisions of this Act, which made education in New Zealand "free, secular and compulsory," there remained several exceptions to the secularity of the state school system. Church colleges (usually Anglican) which had been established before the passing of the 1877 Act continued to expand and to multiply; Catholic schools remained outside the state education system as a parallel private school system; and failure to establish a viable national "Bible in Schools" programme led to the founding of a number of Presbyterian colleges in the five-year period from 1914 to 1919.[58]
      These church schools were something of an anomaly, and the problems of their relationship to the state system, and of public funding for their operation, proved intractable. The inequities implicit in a parallel education system eventually "led in 1975 to the passing of the Conditional Integration Act, which provided for the integration of private schools into the State system while still retaining the right to preserve their `special character.'"[59] In this way, all of the Roman Catholic schools, along with many of the other
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church schools, were absorbed into the secular system. The result of this integration was that "the remaining private [i.e. non-integrated] schools...form[ed] a very small group, representing perhaps only 2% of the school population."[60]
      Many of the schools which did not integrate had their origins in a new "Independent Christian School" movement which developed in the 1960s and 1970s.[61] In part, this movement was a product of the influx of Dutch immigrant families in the 1950s, who brought the Dutch tradition of parent-controlled Christian schools with them to New Zealand.[62] It also emerged out of the "growing concern of some groups of evangelical Christians about conditions in society and in the schools."[63] The rise of this movement in New Zealand was reinforced during the later 1970s by awareness of the rapid growth of similar movements in the United States.
      The first such independent Christian school was Middleton Grange School, which opened in Christchurch in 1964,[64] and which came to be regarded as the "flagship" of the movement. Although this school was started by a group of Evangelical Christians from various main-stream denominations, "the loyal support of the [Dutch] Reformed Church was to be a vital factor in the early success of the school, one third of the first day pupils
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coming from that source."[65] From an opening roll of forty-three in 1964, the school had grown to a roll of more than 900 pupils by 1988.[66] However, although a number of other Christian School Associations had been organised by 1978 with the aim of establishing similar parent-controlled Christian schools, only one such school had been actually set up by that time.[67] The major period of growth for the movement appears to have been the early 1980s, when a number of other private schools were established.
      The arrival of the Accelerated Christian Education [ACE] system in 1977 marked the advent of a new type of education in New Zealand. This American system of individualised instruction was strongly church-based. It stipulated that ACE-system schools must be linked with a local church,[68] and vested full responsibility for the school in that local church under the oversight of its pastor. The school was held in the church buildings; the pastor was ex officio the "headmaster" of the school; teaching was usually, although not always, carried out by a Christian teacher, assisted by members of the congregation; and the Bible formed the basis of all subjects in the curriculum. Even secular subjects such as English and Mathematics had Biblical character objectives incorporated into the lessons, which appeared to place as great an emphasis on Bible memorization and character development as on the process of education. In method, the system was a "teach-yourself" one, and designed to stimulate self-reliance and self-discipline. Pupils worked on their own through lesson books called "Paces," marked their own work and set their own goals, with minimal supervision from the teacher and corrective input only in cases of difficulty.
      The ACE programme was regarded by its advocates as being not only a system of education, but also a means of evangelism and of bringing revival to the church.[69] The goal
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was not education per se, but education in order to mould a revivalist orientation and an evangelical Christian lifestyle. ACE officials have admitted that their methodology is almost entirely based on Burrows F. Skinner's psychological theories of behaviour modification.[70] Because of this, and the narrow fundamentalist focus of the ACE system, its opponents have branded it as "brainwashing." Dr. Howard, the founder of the system, admitted that the charge had some validity, but defended it by asserting that the "secular humanist-oriented education system [also] uses the same idea to engrain evolutionary teaching."[71]
      Proponents of the ACE system made glowing claims for it: "Government education experts in the United States have described the system as being ten years ahead of anything they now have, but unsuitable for the public education system because it has a one hundred per cent Christian-integrated syllabus."[72] However, other observers were frequently less enthusiastic. Harro Van Brummelen, for example, was severely critical of the ACE system in America, which he described as
a return to an idealized version of nineteenth century America, or [to] a view that society is so corrupt that the focus of most of life is to proselytize and await the return of Christ. Such groups...object to students studying much modern literature, including science fiction.[73]
      This narrow focus reflected the strongly isolationist philosophy which underlay the ACE programme. This was the product of a dualistic sectarian world-view, which saw the world and the church as mutually exclusive, and the Christian family as a microcosm of the church. Since the world was encroaching upon the Christian family in the form of the permissive society, and especially by means of sex education in schools, it was therefore necessary to defend the family by withdrawal into an isolationist Christian environment. Private Christian schools formed a component part of this controlled environment, and the
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fundamentalist use of the Bible as the medium of instruction in the ACE system reinforced, as was intended, the sense of difference from the world.
      However, while some sections of the Christian community sought a certain degree of sectarian isolation in order to preserve Christian beliefs and group identity in an increasingly secular society,[74] others were not convinced. Ken Wright, for example, observed that "there was a...fifty-fifty division [within the Palmerston North Christian Fellowship] over whether we should isolate our children into Christian schools, or whether we should be `salt' and `light' in the State schools."[75] Rasik Ranchord, for his part, commented that
people use the argument that Christian boys and girls should be attending secular schools so that they can be a testimony. I'm not convinced of that. I feel, especially for the primary school ages, that they should be protected and first built up in the faith, so that what is taught at home is followed through at school, and [thus] there is no dichotomy.[76]
      It is evident that although Accelerated Christian Education was adopted by some sections of the Christian community, its acceptance was by no means universal.
      Apprehension over what was seen to be happening in the State school system appears to have been an important factor in the introduction of ACE schools. Pastor John Tiplady of the North Shore New Life Centre, for example, noted "an awareness of the failure of the State system...and the desire of Christians to have godly input to their children."[77] This anxiety was exploited to the full by the moral activists. Challenge Weekly, for example, reported that

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reference was made at the ACE meeting to the latest Concerned Parents' Association Newsletter which reports that a `Gay' teachers' union has been formed for homosexual teachers. Listeners were confronted with the prospect of such teachers guiding pupils in the evaluation of human development and morals.[78]
The continuing debate over sex education in schools was a powerful factor in motivating conservative Christians towards the formation of private Christian schools and towards the implementation of the ACE system.
      The foundations of Accelerated Christian Education in New Zealand were laid by the 1976 visit of Dr. Howard, the founder of the ACE system, at the invitation of Rob Wheeler. While in New Zealand, Dr. Howard conducted a number of seminars on the "potential establishment and administration of church-based Christian schools." Some seventy to eighty people attended the first of these seminars in Auckland, many coming from as far away as Dargaville, Cambridge, Nelson and Invercargill.[79] Dr. Howard returned to New Zealand for further seminars throughout 1976 and 1977, speaking in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin, and interest in the ACE system continued to increase. The first week-long "Pastors' Orientation Seminar" was held during the August 1976 school holidays,[80] and the first two ACE schools were opened in February 1977. These were the Nelson Christian Academy and the Auckland Christian Fellowship School, which were linked to the Nelson New Life Centre and the Auckland Christian Fellowship, respectively.[81] These two schools were soon followed by others. The CPA Newsletter reported in 1980 that there were now thirteen schools using the ACE materials, and that five of these had already been registered by the Department of Education.[82]

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      Although much of the initiative for the introduction of the ACE system appears to have come from the New Life Churches,[83] interest was no by no means confined to these churches. Tiplady recalls attending a meeting, addressed by Dr. Howard,
at the Auckland Baptist Tabernacle at the top of Queen Street....A number of people from a number of churches right throughout the country...heard him, and from that there sprung up a number of Christian schools....All sorts of churches wanted to come in [and] find out about it.[84]
Nevertheless, despite the interest from "all sorts of churches," it would appear that in the early stages, support for Accelerated Christian Education was largely, although not exclusively, confined to Pentecostal churches, and especially to the New Life Churches. It also appears that this strong Pentecostal involvement with the ACE programme was unique to New Zealand, and was a source of embarrassment to Dr. Howard, since his own background was Fundamentalist and hence anti-Pentecostal.[85] The Fundamentalist emphasis and isolationist ethos of the ACE system would, however, have had a certain attraction for the Pentecostal churches, but have been less palatable to non-Pentecostal groups.
      In the 1980s, this wing of the Independent Christian School movement continued to expand, with both primary and secondary schools being established. However, the ACE programme was by now being modified. Many of these schools changed or abandoned the ACE materials, which were found to be too American-oriented in content and too restricted in scope, and supplemented these with other materials, including some adopted from the State school system. There was, however, little change in the methodology. The individualistic, Bible-centred method of education which characterised the ACE system continued to be the norm in this type of school, although some of the churches which adopted the programme, such as the Rangiora New Life Centre, have now matured beyond this, seeing the need for a broader-based education system. There were also a number of practical difficulties. A number of churches found ACE schools burdensome, both in terms of financial support, and also in terms of the administrative demands on the local pastor.
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Some churches, for example the Dunedin Assemblies of God, have now closed down their schools, while other ACE schools, such as the Hokitika Christian Academy, run by the Hokitika New Life Centre, continue to struggle for survival.
      To summarise: Accelerated Christian Education formed part of a conservative, isolationist response to the changing moral values of society. For many ACE supporters, the principal issue was the introduction of sex education in schools, which was seen as threatening the moral authority of the family. In response to this implied threat, ACE schools sought to create a controlled environment in which the Christian beliefs of the child were reinforced, rather than challenged, by what was taught at school. Character development was seen to be as important as rote learning, and the Fundamentalist orientation of the ACE programme was reflected in the use of the Bible as the medium of instruction.
      Pentecostal churches, and in particular the New Life Churches, were strong advocates of the ACE programme, although this support was not always unequivocal. Some New Life Churches examined the programme and, for various reasons, found it wanting, while others found the cost of setting up an ACE school to be prohibitive. Nevertheless, a number of New Life churches led the way in the introduction of the programme to New Zealand. Their support provides evidence that the conservative, isolationist, sectarian world-view reflected by the ACE programme was shared by many of the New Life Churches.
      It is unclear to what extent this type of Independent Christian School will remain a viable proposition in the 1990s. Churches which had a strong sense of sectarian identity and a solid financial and organizational base appear to be in a good position to continue with ACE schools. On the other hand, the increasing financial stress brought about by the general economic downturn may mean that many of the schools linked to smaller churches may be forced to close. The ACE school system, in its original form, may come to be remembered as a short-lived phenomenon, which was brought into this country in the 1970s as part of a conservative Christian reaction to the issue of sex education in schools.
 

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6.2.2. The rise of the feminist movement[86]

      The second issue which evoked a specific response from members of the New Life Churches in the 1970s was that of feminism. The rise of this movement was, in part, a product of rapidly-changing social conditions of the 1960s and 1970s. These, together with the activities of various "progressive" movements in the late 1960s, helped to create a climate which favoured the emergence of groups seeking societal changes on the issues of gender.[87] Although New Zealand lagged several years behind other parts of the world in this respect, feminist activism emerged in this country with the formation of several Women's Liberation groups in 1970.[88] These groups represented "a new, and distinctive, form of feminism,"[89] and all had connections with existing left-wing or progressive political organisations.
      From this small and radical beginning, the movement began to expand rapidly. Women's Liberation groups multiplied, and the creation of several non-"Women's Liberation" feminist organisations in 1972 broadened the scope of the movement. These less radical groups "provided an outlet for women who were interested in feminism but who had reservations about the ideas and/or methods of the women's liberation movement."[90] Other significant events that year included the visit of Australian feminist Germaine Greer, which received considerable media coverage, and raised the public profile of feminism. The effects of her visit were reinforced by the first National Women's Liberation Convention, held in April 1972, and by the launching of the magazine Broadsheet, which, although not the first
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feminist publication in New Zealand, proved to be the most successful, becoming the mouthpiece of the movement.
      The first United Women's Convention, held in Auckland in September 1973, set the structural and organisational patterns for future biennial gatherings. However, although this Convention was largely successful, the Convention Report charged that "the New Zealand media had reacted to the new women's movement by focusing on trivial, personal or sensational aspects, and had left the real issues untouched."[91] As will be seen, this media emphasis on peripheral issues was also a feature of later United Women's Conventions.
      The 1975 Convention, held in Wellington in June, was both larger, and wider in scope, than its 1973 counterpart. Christine Dann comments that "the diversity of female, and feminist, politics was somewhat clearer at this convention than it had been at the 1973 convention. There was still a sense of sisterhood, but it was not as euphoric as it had been."[92] Part of the reason for this diversity was that the feminist movement in New Zealand had expanded considerably in scope by 1975. The wide variety of perspectives represented at the 1975 Convention[93] reflected the broadening constituency of the feminist movement and its transition from feminist militancy to a more moderate temper. This inevitably led to tensions between the original Women's Liberation wing of the movement and the later moderate feminists.[94] These tensions were reflected in debates over abortion and the role of radical and lesbian activists in the movement.

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      Abortion was a key feminist issue. The major demand of the Women's Liberation Movement was the "right to choose," i.e. whether or not to terminate a pregnancy. Inevitably, however, there was conflict with women with more conservative views, especially those from Catholic backgrounds, who upheld the "right to life" of the unborn child. Both sides in the abortion debate identified the issues in religious terms. Radical feminists often blamed the Catholic Church for the opposition which they encountered.[95] Conversely, David Arrowsmith alludes to the "undisguised anti-Christian stance of the Women's Liberation Movement," citing Sandra Coney's Broadsheet article "Virgin Mary or Fallen Woman" to prove his case.[96] There was a wide spectrum of views between these two extremes, however. While attitudes of some Women's Liberationists could justifiably be termed "anti-Christian" (i.e. a rejection of traditional Christian perspectives and beliefs), this epithet is by no means applicable to all sections of the movement. However, feminism as a whole tended to be viewed in terms of its radical, "anti-Christian" elements, and this public perception was assiduously cultivated by some sections of the media.[97]
      The radical/lesbian wing of the movement was also a source of tension. Although radical and lesbian feminists had contributed much of the energy with which the Women's Liberation Movement was launched, lesbian groups became more organised and increasingly outspoken as time went on. Lesbian women were "highly visible"[98] at the 1975 Convention, with more than two hundred attending the two "Lesbian Women and Lesbian Mothers" workshops, and a large "Lesbian Nation" banner being hung over one section of
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the Convention seating. Since the news media seldom missed an opportunity to play up the more sensational aspects of the Women's Liberation Movement, this heightened lesbian visibility represented good press copy, and reinforced the public perception of the feminists as highly radical.
      However, the stridency of the lesbian activists was somewhat "out of step" with the increasingly pluralist and moderate temper of the feminist movement as a whole. This trend towards conservatism had been apparent as early as 1974, and was the corollary of an expanding feminist constituency. Nevertheless, it was viewed with dismay by the radical founders of the movement. Christine Dann complained in 1977 that the feminist movement had become more conservative, and that it was now a "Women's Movement," rather than a "Women's Liberation Movement." She observed that "the Women's Liberation Movement and the Women's Movement are quite different. The difference is the difference between radicals and liberals, reformists and revolutionaries."[99]
      The growing tensions between the radical/lesbian "Women's Liberation Movement" and the reformist "Women's Movement" came out into the open at the June 1977 United Women's Convention in Christchurch. Dann describes this Convention as
a lively occasion, with fierce debates between different political lines. Firstly, there were efforts by right wing women (and men) to undermine and infiltrate the Convention. Then there were sharp clashes between women's liberationists and liberal or reformist feminists within the convention, which were symbolised by conflict over the presence of male reporters. The 1977 convention still had its highlights, but divisions within the women's movement were becoming more marked.[100]
      Considerable media coverage was given to the disruptions which occurred at the Conference as a result of the ejection of a male reporter from the opening session,[101] and to the decision to exclude the media from the remainder of the Conference.[102] Disagreement
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over this decision escalated into open conflict between the "Women's Liberation" wing of the movement and the more conservative majority, and overshadowed the more positive aspects of the Convention, a full and largely sympathetic account of which appeared in the Christchurch Press on 6 June.[103]
      Public recrimination quickly followed. Conservative feminists, backed up by some sections of the media, accused the lesbian extremists of turning the Convention into a propaganda exercise.[104] For their part, lesbian writers hotly denied the charge of deliberate attempts to sabotage the Convention,[105] and other writers claimed that the conservatives themselves, and in particular, Mrs. Clark, had been responsible for the dissension.[106] Still
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other writers blamed the media,[107] as did the official Convention Report, which devoted eight pages to an explanation of the Coordinating Committee's decision to exclude the media.[108] The majority of the members of the Committee saw the media issue "as symptomatic of the attempted appropriation of the Women's Liberation Movement by the Establishment during the last four years."[109]
      Perhaps the most objective summation of the Convention is that of Pauline O'Regan, who recalls that
the women's convention that year [1977] was a watershed for many of those who attended it. For some it was too extreme, for others it did not go nearly far enough. There was confusion and conflict. Many could not understand why male reporters were not accepted; many thought the refusal of the services of male technicians was sheer foolishness; and many, quite understandably, mistook a decision made on principle as mere anti-male pettiness. I did not know what to think of it at the time, but I see it in retrospect as the inevitable radicalism of any revolution. One thing is clear from history, no radical change can take place in the social order without extreme stands being taken at the beginning.
      That kind of convention will not be repeated. The range of expectation was too wide to be met by a single national gathering. But it did have one important quality: it included women of all kinds.[110]
      However, despite the Convention's inclusiveness, the increasing diversity of viewpoints made feminist unity difficult to achieve. The 1977 United Women's Convention reinforced the growing polarisation of the movement into radical and reformist camps. As well as this, the media tended to emphasise the radical, and therefore more newsworthy, wing of the
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feminist movement, with the result that the false public image of the whole persisted. This perception of the movement as vehemently radical appears to have been the factor which led to the specific response, initiated by members of the New Life Churches, of the "Save Our Homes" Campaign in May 1977.[111]
 

6.2.2.1. Fundamentalism and Feminism: Pentecostal attitudes to women

      Pentecostal attitudes to women were conditioned by the movement's fundamentalist approach to the Bible and by its patriarchal model of pastoral ministry.[112] Ian Breward comments that Pentecostal churches in general "have a certain notoriety for the firmness with which they keep their women in a Patriarchal framework."[113] Given this patriarchal stance, and the media portrayal of feminists as "radical" and "anti-Christian," it is not surprising that these churches should have reacted so strongly to the feminist movement.
      However, Pentecostal attitudes to the role of women were often ambiguous, since the charismatic authority of the Spirit at times transcended limitations of gender. Breward notes, in the context of Australian Pentecostalism, that "the first Pentecostal church in Australia was founded by Mother Lancaster, and evangelists like Aimee Semple McPherson played a very important role in propagating Pentecostal Christianity in the 1920s and 30s. Does an ordinary Pentecostal know that today?"[114] Since women played an important part
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in the development of the movement in this country, this ambiguity was also a feature of New Zealand Pentecostalism. Twenty-eight of the fifty-nine delegates from outside Wellington present at the inaugural Conference of the Pentecostal Church of New Zealand in December 1924 were women,[115] although none of these were elected to leadership positions. It was not until the Annual Conference the following year that women began to feature in an "official" capacity, and then only in roles such as editor of the New Zealand Evangel, the monthly publication of the Pentecostal Church of New Zealand, and as missionaries.[116]
      In the case of the Assemblies of God, the gender imbalance was even more striking. The eight original members of the first Assembly of God church in New Zealand, founded in Palmerston North in February 1927, included only two men, one of whom was the pastor.[117] However, the predominance of females did not necessarily bring about an emancipation from female subordination. The official policy of the Assemblies of God on the "Rights and Office of Women" was set out in the "Statement of Fundamental Truths," adopted two months later as part of the Constitution of the Assemblies of God in New Zealand. This Statement acknowledged that "the hand of God is mightily upon many women to proclaim and publish the `Good tidings of great joy' in a wonderful way." Nevertheless, it recommended "that we recognise their God-given rights to be ordained, not as Elders, but as Evangelists, after being duly approved, according to the Scriptures; and that they serve as assistant Pastors, Missionaries, or as Evangelists."[118]
      However, such restrictions on women's ministry roles were not peculiar to the Pentecostal movement. Rather, they reflected the general societal perception of the place of women. Other examples include the reluctance of the Presbyterian Church to ordain women elders until the 1950s.[119] Nevertheless, as Breward observes, there were some
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exceptions to the general subordination of women in the Pentecostal movement. One of the first pastors in the early New Life Churches was Mrs. Edna Robb, a convert of the "Revival Fire Mission" campaigns of A.H. Dallimore in Auckland in the early 1930s. Mrs. Robb had "shared with some people about the Lord" during the course of a visit to Tauranga with her husband at the end of 1939, and, as a result of her witness, Pastor Alf Gracie of the Devonport "Revival Fire Mission" was invited to Tauranga to begin meetings at the Otumoetai school. After shifting permanently to Tauranga in early 1940, Mrs. Robb took over the pastorship of these meetings "as the only Spirit-filled person here at the time." She continued to lead this house-church until 1949, when it amalgamated with Ray Jackson's "Bethel Temple" group, forming the nucleus of the church that later, under the pastorship of Rob Wheeler and others from 1954 on, evolved into the Tauranga Christian Fellowship. This church recently celebrated its fiftieth anniversary, which makes it the oldest of the New Life Churches of New Zealand.[120]
      Other examples of women who were significant for the development of the early New Life Churches may be cited. Ruth Jackson, wife of Ray Jackson Snr., the founder of the movement, exercised a strong influence on the development of the movement's characteristic style of worship known as "singing in the Spirit."[121] Ada Pollock (neé Saunders) was instrumental in bringing A.S.Worley to Timaru in 1960, and his highly successful campaign there in June and July that year marked the "lift-off" of the New Life Churches in the South Island.[122] Despite examples such as these, women's roles in the early movement were almost entirely subordinated to those of men, and any female leadership functions in the movement were, with the sole exception of Pastor Edna Robb, held by wives of pastors. While there were some "ministry" opportunities for women at congregational level, particularly in "Body ministry" around the communion table, when all members of the congregation, i.e. the "Body of Christ," had the opportunity to "share a
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word" from the Bible, or to function in a charismatic gift of the Spirit, there were very few women recognised as leadership qua leadership in the movement.[123]
      In the late 1960s and early 1970s, two women pastors from the United States of America, Charlotte Baker and Violet Kiteley, had a marked impact on the growing New Life Churches. Anne Morrow believes that these two women "had a very vital part" in the growth of the movement. She recalls that
Violet Kiteley was very much accepted, as a woman, because of the anointing that she carried in the ministry and the prophetic [gift]; and Charlotte [Baker], because of the dimensions she brought in the areas of worship. [Baker] was really one of the ones who laid a lot of the foundation for the worship in our own particular church [i.e. Christchurch New Life Centre].[124]
These two women frequently visited New Zealand as convention speakers for the New Life Churches in the 1970s, and Charlotte Baker appears to have been the first woman ever invited to be a keynote conference speaker by the Associated Pentecostal Churches of New Zealand.[125] Anne Morrow believes that "God wonderfully used those two women" and quotes her husband, Peter Morrow, as saying that "if a woman is `anointed,' who are we to say she should not function [i.e. in ministry]?"[126]
      The New Life Churches "recognised," at least in theory, an obviously gifted ministry wherever it appeared, whether in men or in women. In practice, however, women's participation in ministry was, with only a few exceptions, encouraged at a congregational, rather than leadership level. The general "rule of thumb" was that God would, and sometimes did, equip a woman to exercise leadership roles of ministry, but only if there was no man available to fulfil the task. Moreover, since women were commanded in the Bible to be in "subjection," and forbidden to teach or to "usurp authority over the man,"[127] any ministry role exercised by a woman must be under the "covering" (i.e. advice and
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jurisdiction) of a male minister. While this "covering" appeared to legitimate, at least in theory, the role of women ministers, in practice it did so only in a derivative and subordinate sense, and very few women in the New Life Churches exercised any form of public ministry in their own right. Women's ministry in these churches was seen essentially as a ministry to women, rather than as a ministry of women.[128]
      However, the restricted nature of women's ministry roles in the New Life Churches represented only the tip of the iceberg. The Pentecostal belief system of these churches and the social reality that it reflected both underscored and reinforced the subordinate status of women. Ivanica Vodanovich points out the "inconsistencies and contradictions" in the position of women within the Pentecostal movement in New Zealand (including the New Life Churches), and observes that
within the [contemporary Christian] revival woman's primary social role is located within the family as legal wife and mother. The belief system of the movement describes a pattern of divinely ordained order in which individuals are organised into families; they, in turn, are the building blocks of the nation. God's blueprint for the establishment of universal social order posits a world divided into nations. Families are the crucial intermediary between the individual and the nation - and because of their primary responsibility in the family women are key figures in the realization of His design. Yet the centrality of their role is contradicted by their subordinate status both within the system of beliefs and the social reality it sanctions.[129]
      While the New Life Churches' attitudes to women to some extent reflected conservative opinions in the wider society, there can be little doubt that they viewed the rise of the feminist movement as a threat to their perspectives and belief systems. For example, Julie Steele, wife of Pastor John Steele of the North Shore Faith Centre, warned that although
women are becoming more and more aware of who they are in God, I do think...we need to watch very carefully that feminism doesn't enter into the Church, and that we keep in mind (even though we have a lot more freedom in the churches as women)...who we are in God, and what our call is in God, and that we stay very

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much in the balance of Scripture, and not in the philosophy of the world in how we should act and what we should do. I think that may be the danger creeping into the Pentecostal churches.[130]
      The issue of "Women in Ministry" was the subject of vigorous debate among the New Life Churches in 1990 and 1991. The controversy was sparked by a paper, produced for the eldership of the Christchurch New Life Centre by Anne Morrow, on the question of "how far can a woman go in ministry?"[131] Her paper was later distributed widely among pastors of the New Life Churches, and provoked extensive discussion and some opposition. Initial responses ranged from the reactionary[132] to the apathetic,[133] while the paper was seen by others as a catalyst for change in the movement's attitude to women's ministry. Although it is too early to predict what will be the outcome of these discussions, some changes have already taken place. Pastor's wives are now seen as "accredited ministers" in their own right, receiving annual New Life Churches of New Zealand pastoral accreditation cards in their own name, rather than sharing the accreditation of their husbands. It is evident that some liberalisation has taken place in the movement on the issue of women's ministry, although much progress still remains to be made.
      To some extent, the model for woman's ministry in the New Life Churches was Anne Morrow herself. She has gained international recognition for her ministry, both in her own right and together with her husband, Peter Morrow. As such, she has provided the role model for many younger women in the New Life Churches, and been at the forefront of women's ministry within the movement. However, the specific issue with which her name is associated is that of the Save Our Homes campaign, which she organised and led in 1977.
 

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6.2.2.2. The "Save Our Homes" campaign: a response to the feminist movement

      The "Save Our Homes" campaigners sought to preserve the nuclear family, and to mobilise a response to what they saw as destructive radical feminism. As such, they were typical of "fundamentalist moral crusaders [who] very often share the common world-view of a threatened lifestyle,"[134] and their perceptions reflected the standard Pentecostal views of the role of women.[135] The motivation for "Save Our Homes" came indirectly from preparations for the 1977 United Women's Convention in Christchurch. Anne Morrow, the organiser of the campaign, commented that although she and her colleagues had originally planned to take part in this Convention, they soon came to the conclusion that it was dominated by "very few, very dogmatic, feminists,..[who] were really using the United Women's Conference [sic] as a platform to press their beliefs."[136] Consequently, Mrs. Morrow felt that it was necessary
to make an alternative stand, a positive stand for women....You couldn't really go into [the Convention] and make a stand. We had to raise an alternative voice. That was how the "Save Our Homes" [campaign] started. I felt...that we [should] actually set up...the positives for what women should be into.[137]
      Anne Morrow and her colleagues[138] therefore planned the Save Our Homes campaign as a Christian alternative to the United Women's Convention. The emphasis of the campaign was intended to be positive, rather than negative, and

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to offset...a Christian belief [against the views of the feminists]. For example, as they sought to undermine the [role] of a mother, we...took a firm and a positive stand on the role of a mother. When it came to the family issues, we would raise a standard...in those kind of areas. I think we...addressed every issue they addressed.[139]
The campaign took place in the same venues as, and imitated the format of, the United Women's Convention which was scheduled to take place three weeks later. It included an overseas speaker, and thirty-four seminars which addressed "an extremely wide range of aspects on the role of women in the home and in the community."[140] While the topics for these seminars generally mirrored those of the United Women's Convention workshops, there were also some distinctively Christian topics such as "The importance of the home," "Knowing God" and "Moral Issues."[141] This imitation by the Save Our Homes campaigners was viewed as an attempt to sabotage the United Women's Convention, and was greeted with outrage by feminists. Sandra Coney, for example, complained bitterly that
the most blatant tactic being used to attempt to counteract feminist influence is the organisation of a convention three weeks before the UWC, the `Save Our Homes' convention, which carefully copies many of the features of the UWC. Knowledge of how the Convention Committee intended to organise the UWC was being fed to the organisers of the church conference by a woman who got herself onto the UWC Committee. And while one of the main organisers of the church conference, Mrs. Anne Morrow has stated that the "Save Our Homes" campaign has not been timed to "upstage" the United Women's Convention it is abundantly clear that, in fact, it has.[142]
Consequently, when the Save Our Homes campaign opened in the Town Hall on the evening of Friday 13 May 1977, an angry group of about fifty feminists occupied several
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rows at the rear of the audience, and created some disturbance until finally leaving the auditorium.
      The Save Our Homes campaign attracted some two thousand registrants, with the final public meeting in the Christchurch Town Hall drawing an audience of nearly 2,500 people.[143] These meetings were addressed by a number of speakers, including Mr. Bert Walker, the Minister of Social Welfare; Dr. Gerald Wall, M.P. for Porirua; Mr. (later Sir) Hamish Hay, the mayor of Christchurch; Superintendent John Jamieson, deputy head of the Police Force in Christchurch; as well as by the overseas speaker Ray Mossholder, and by Anne Morrow herself.[144] A range of speakers such as this would indicate that the campaign was both socially and politically conservative, and that its statements could be caricatured as "`the usual reactionary comments expected from middle-aged, lower middle class, religiously-affiliated women' (which is how the campaign has been described!)."[145]
      The conservatism of the campaign was demonstrated in statements made by the various speakers. John Jamieson, for example, told the Convention that "where the family unit is strong, it will hold its young people through adverse situations, even poverty."[146] Bert Walker spoke about "family life and the need for strengthening the family unit and its place in society" and observed that "statistics from San Quentin Prison in the United States showed that only one per cent of inmates had ever been disciplined in their homes." Hamish Hay, for his part, stressed "the tremendous need for Christian principles to be brought back into the home and the community."[147]
      However, the message of the Save Our Homes campaign on the role of women was not entirely unequivocal. On the one hand, the conservative Christian emphasis on the individual, rather than on the collective, was characteristic of the whole Conference,[148] and
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the various speakers strongly affirmed the role of the individual woman. Ray Mossholder, for example, claimed that "the Bible holds no stereotypes for women who want to do anything physically possible....A woman can do all things in Christ....God has a way of shattering stereotypes."[149] True "women's liberation" was to be found only in Christ, and was defined as "a state of mind in which [the Christian woman] comes to view herself as Christ sees her, created in the image of God - one whom he wants to make free and whole - able to grow and learning how to fully utilise the talents and gifts God has given her as an individual."[150] The Save Our Homes campaign was viewed as a means to this liberation. As Anne Morrow put it,
Save Our Homes is not a reactionary back-to-the-home movement. It is a ringing affirmation of the roles of the female woman [sic] home-maker, child-raiser, wife, career woman, but above all a joyous and confident statement that a woman can be a totally fulfilled person in her own right when she finds herself `in Christ' and discovers [that] the Bible can be her daily handbook.[151]
      Despite these affirmative statements, however, the submissive role of the wife was also strongly emphasised during the campaign. An example of this was Ray Mossholder's address on the opening night, which was reported by the Christchurch Star under the heading "Message for wives: don't nag hubby." The report said, in part, that "women need to pray, not bray. That was the message of Ray Mossholder....As soon as the wife tries to rule, the husband rebels, so she must learn that God can do it [i.e. change her husband's behaviour]."[152]

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      However, Mossholder's address, if accurately reported, forms a strange contrast with two earlier newspaper interviews which quoted him as saying that "I have no doubts or anxiety over women's liberation. It has been deeply valuable in that it has forced the Church to re-evaluate God's Word in relation to women and their role." Mossholder appeared to maintain a "middle of the road," rather than conservative, stance on feminism, and saw some dangers in the feminist movement. In his view, "the struggle for equality has involved the degrading of men. Men who were often fighting to maintain their position felt very insecure." Mossholder insisted that "we don't want to stereotype men, or women, into a role,"[153] but believed that "the Scriptures provided a perfect model for male and female relationships."[154]
      For the Save Our Homes campaigners, the issue was not so much the equality and individuality of women as the way in which the feminist movement was seen to be pursuing this equality. Anne Morrow, for example, asked the rhetorical question
could I be a feminist? I would have to define what a feminist was to be able to say that, because if you use the general use of the word `feminist,' [then] I could not say that, because it involves a very radical and anti-Biblical and `fighting for rights of women' [attitude], which I think is an imbalance. But I think I could be viewed as a feminist in view of wanting to see women extended, their potential realised, opportunities made for the giftings they have. If that is what you call a feminist, then I could well be one![155]
      The opposition of the Save Our Homes campaigners was therefore to the "radical," "anti-Biblical," "fighting for rights of women" attitude of the feminists, as much as to feminism per se. The crux of their concern was the family, as is indicated by the title "Save Our Homes," and they took issue with what they perceived to be the tendency of the
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feminist movement to downgrade the traditional roles of wife and mother. A later article observes that
      There is much emphasis on the theory that a woman can only be truly fulfilled and an individual when she throws off the `shackles' of the home, relinquishes the God-given role of wife, homemaker and mother, burns her bra, and joins the work force shouting `liberation.'
      Save Our Homes is not against women who find it necessary to go out of their homes to work, but does not believe that every woman must do this in order to be fulfilled....Many women, content to be full-time homemakers and mothers have been pressured into feeling that they are the cinderellas of society, second class citizens, and often termed `cabbages.'
      Save Our Homes wants to encourage women to realise their full potential in the home, and in the community.[156]
      What did the Save Our Homes campaign achieve? While, as Sandra Coney charged, the immediate result of the campaign was to "divert attention and support away from the United Women's Convention,"[157] Anne Morrow saw it as having "national significance," saying that "the convention raised a banner for the family....[It] restored the faith of a lot of women in what minority groups have made look mundane - wifehood, motherhood, and childraising."[158] The activism of the initial Save Our Homes campaign in Christchurch stimulated eight further campaigns in other parts of New Zealand over the next two years. These followed a similar format to that of the original campaign, including, in some cases, the practice of conducting parallel conventions to those of the feminist movement.[159] Other legacies of the Save Our Homes campaigns included the launching of the women's magazine Above Rubies, which was "designed to encourage women in their calling as wives and mothers, in the true image in which God has created them," and which was a
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product of Nancy Campbell's seminar on "the role of a Mother" at the Christchurch Save Our Homes conference.[160]
      Important consequences of the Save Our Homes campaign were the creation of links with women's organizations such as the Christchurch branch of the National Council of Women, and the setting up of programmes which were geared to enabling churches to meet the social needs of their local areas. These programmes, known as "Family Survival Courses," were designed to develop skills in areas such as financial and time budgeting, coping with stress, dealing with teenagers, anger management, and other areas of social need.[161] Of greater importance, however, was the way in which the Save Our Homes campaign helped to reinforce the growing political "clout" of the New Life Churches. This reflected the expansion of the movement, and in particular, of the Christchurch New Life Centre. The campaign succeeded in enlisting not only the services of civic and political figures as conference speakers, but also some support from a number of mainstream churches, representatives of which were members of the campaign's steering committee.[162] The financial resources of the campaign were considerable, and Sandra Coney ruefully comments that
if [Christchurch Pentecostal church] power in numbers may be a carefully constructed fallacy, their money is not.[163] The Christchurch UWC started its

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organising with $100 in the kitty. I've heard figures ranging up to $10,000 quoted to me in connection with "Save Our Homes." You need that sort of money to pay for lavish newspaper advertisements, bring three speakers from the States and get Xeroxed hundreds of copies of newspaper articles to use as propaganda. Where does the money come from? Not from a simple group of home-loving mothers, as Mrs. Morrow, who just happens to be the wife of the "New Life Centre" pastor, would have us believe they were.[164]
      The Christchurch New Life Centre was one of the largest and fastest growing of the New Life Churches in the 1970s. Its expansion, although differing in scale, was characteristic of other New Life Churches and of the Pentecostal movement in general throughout the decade. This was matched by increasing social influence, which was reinforced by that of charismatic Christians in the mainstream churches. The Save Our Homes campaign was an example of this growing Pentecostal power. As will be seen in Chapter 7, it was not an isolated one.
 

6.3. Conclusion

      The numerical growth of the New Life Churches, as well as of other Pentecostal groups, in the 1970s was paralleled by a growing sense of self-identity and political "clout." The gradual focal shift of conservative Christianity towards social and political activism channelled some of the dynamism of the New Life Churches towards certain specific moralist issues. These centred on the preservation of the nuclear family, which was perceived to be under threat from the inroads of the permissive society. Although members of the New Life Churches were often involved in the campaigns of moralist groups such as the Society for the Promotion of Community Standards and the Society for the Protection of the Unborn Child, two particular issues in the 1970s provoked a more specific response.
      The first of these issues was the debate over sex education in schools. Propaganda groups such as the Concerned Parents' Association did much to stimulate a conservative
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Christian response to the issue, which focused on the quality of moral education in the State School system. One response to the perceived adverse effects of secular education was the introduction of an alternative private school system known as Accelerated Christian Education. Although this American-styled system of education did not achieve great popularity, Pastor Rob Wheeler was instrumental in establishing the programme in New Zealand, and two New Life Church schools were among the first ACE schools be set up.
      A second issue was that of the growing feminist movement. Conservative Christian response to this appears to have owed as much to media misrepresentation, which usually emphasised the radical element, as to the antagonism of radical feminists to Christianity, which they perceived as an oppressive, patriarchal, religion. The Save Our Homes campaign, initiated by Anne Morrow, was a specific response to this perception of the feminist movement, and attempted to counter feminism with a conservative Christian emphasis on the role of the wife and mother. The success of the Save Our Homes campaign may have owed much to the polarisation of the feminist movement.
      These two responses were largely the result of individual initiative. Rob Wheeler was instrumental in the introduction of ACE schools to New Zealand, while Anne Morrow was the dominant figure behind the Save Our Homes campaign. However, other, more broadly-based responses were also beginning to emerge within the Pentecostal movement, and these had marked effects on the future shape of the New Life Churches. These new developments and their effects will be explored in the next chapter.



Notes:

  1. Robert Liebman and Robert Wuthnow, "Introduction," in Liebman and Wuthnow, The New Christian Right, p.4.
  2. John Evans, for example, uses the title to describe the New Zealand phenomenon (John Evans, "The New Christian Right in New Zealand," in Gilling, "Be Ye Separate", pp.69-106).
  3. Robert Liebman, "The Making of the New Christian Right," in Liebman and Wuthnow, The New Christian Right, p.227.
  4. Pre-millennialism is the eschatological expectation, based on Revelation 20, that the parousia or "Second Coming" of Christ will precede the millennium, i.e. "a thousand-year period in which the Kingdom of God is to flourish and prosper." The core of pre-millennialist belief is that "shortly before the second coming the world will be marked by extraordinary tribulation and evil and the appearance of the ANTI-CHRIST. At his coming, Christ will destroy this Anti-Christ and believers will be raised from the dead. There will be a millennium of peace and order over which Christ will reign with his saints. At the close of this time, SATAN will be loosed and the forces of evil will once again be rampant. The wicked will then be raised, and a FINAL JUDGEMENT will take place in which Satan and all evil ones will be consigned to eternal punishment" (Van A. Harvey, A Handbook of Theological Terms (New York: Collier Books, 1964), s.v. "Millennialism." Capitalization as cited). Other varieties of millennialism include post-millennialism, i.e. the belief that "there will be a golden age of the reign of the CHURCH on earth [i.e. the millennium] that will be followed by a conflict between good and evil and the second coming of Christ" (Ibid. Capitalization as cited). A third class of millennialism, not cited by Harvey, is a-millennialism, the adherents of which usually hold that the millennium is a symbolic reference to the whole church era, rather than a future age. Of these categories, that of pre-millennialism was most common among Evangelicals; the New Life Churches espoused a distinctive form of pre-millennial dispensationalism (Vide supra, chapter 3, pp.78-79).
  5. The best known, although not altogether typical, exposition of this view is Hal Lindsey and C.C. Carlson, The Late Great Planet Earth (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan, 1976). This book achieved best-seller status among the Jesus People in the 1970s.
  6. Lloyd Geering, "What is Secularization?" in "Secularization of Religion in New Zealand" (Wellington: University Extension, Victoria University, 1976), p.2. (Mimeographed.) Emphasis as cited.
  7. Idem, "New Zealand enters the Secular Age," in Religion in New Zealand, ed. Christopher Nichol and James Veitch (Wellington: Tertiary Christian Studies Programme of the Combined Chaplaincies and the Religious Studies Department, Victoria University, 1980), p.240.
  8. Hill, "Religion," in New Zealand: Sociological Perspectives, pp.177-178. For a detailed account of current sociological approaches to the process of secularization, see Idem, Sociology of Religion, pp.228-251.
  9. Idem, "The Social Context of New Zealand Religion: `Straight' or `Narrow'?" in Religion and New Zealand's Future, p.24.
  10. Geering, "New Zealand enters the Secular Age," in Religion in New Zealand, p.255.
  11. Peter Donovan, "Distinctions without Difference: the Illusion of Diversity in New Zealand Beliefs," in Ibid., p.200.
  12. Conservative Christians generally "held apart the sacred and the secular, supported a fixed set of personal moral standards applicable to all situations, and endorsed a private enterprise ideology" (David Arrowsmith, "Christian Attitudes towards Public Questions in New Zealand in 1975" (M.A. Thesis in Political Studies, Auckland University, 1978), p.ii). Arrowsmith's thesis gives a good summation of the general character of conservative Christianity. He observes that "the core of the Conservative Christian's beliefs is the necessity for individual salvation. From this core spring his [sic] attitudes to religion, society and the economy. He believes in a religion whose precepts are universally valid, but which demand individual commitment; he believes in a code of ethics whose rules apply equally to all men, but which demand individual moral responsibility; he extols a social and economic system which forces the individual to make his own way. The conservative Christian's ideology leads him to distrust the liberalizing and secularizing trends of contemporary culture; his moral absolutism leads him to oppose the permissive society; his economic individualism leads him to fear communism - and to preach the virtues of the free enterprise economy and the capitalist ethos" (Ibid., p.116). A 1987 magazine article on Pastor Rob Wheeler (Brian Rudman, "For God and National," New Zealand Listener, 28 March 1987, pp.28-29) demonstrates the accuracy of Arrowsmith's analysis.
  13. Vide supra, chapter 5, p.152. In New Zealand, the Christchurch Integrity Centre was established in direct response to what were perceived as the inroads of "Secular Humanism" (Ryan, "Remoralising Politics," in Jesson et al., Revival of the Right, p.59).
  14. In the 1970s, this reinstatement was seen as a matter of the adoption by society of "Christian principles." By the late 1980s, however, the strategy had changed to the placing of conservative Christians into positions of power. Nevertheless, the "enemy" (i.e. secular humanism) remained the same. Rob Wheeler's candidacy for the Mount Albert seat in the 1987 General Election was motivated by precisely this perception: "a Satanic revival has touched New Zealand! Our nation has been converted to secular humanism, which is anti-Bible and anti-Christian! Satan has been at work at all levels, right up to the Government....When we can send Christians into Parliament...we can effect a change in our nation that will touch the heart of every man and every woman. We need to be in every level of society" (Stephen Stratford, "Christians Awake! Join the National Party, Save New Zealand," Metro, November 1986, p.125).
  15. Geering, "New Zealand enters the Secular Age," in Religion in New Zealand, p.240.
  16. Richard Russell, "The growing crisis of the Evangelical world-view and its resolutions" (M.A. Thesis in Theology and Religious Studies, Bristol University, 1973), p.98. I am indebted to Chris Gousmett for this reference.
  17. Ibid., p.100. Capitalization as cited.
  18. Colin Brown has drawn attention to the increasing "respectability" and acceptability of the Pentecostal movement in the mid-1970s (Brown, "How Significant is the Charismatic Movement?" [1985], pp.104-105). He sees this as the result of deliberate efforts by some of the leaders of the movement in order to achieve enhanced growth, and cites the erosion of hard-line Pentecostal ethical standards as a further contributing factor. However, the author would argue that these standards were redirected, rather than "eroded." One of the major factors which contributed to this change was the movement's perceived need to influence society towards Biblical standards of "righteousness." As will be seen, the need for a legitimate political voice was one of the prime motivating factors in the acquisition of Pentecostal "respectability."
  19. Allanah Ryan observes that "the establishment of the Society for the Promotion of Community Standards (SPCS) and the Society for the Protection of the Unborn Child (SPUC) in 1970 mark the beginning of a moralist movement in New Zealand. While in the early seventies these two groups hardly represented a movement (in the sense that we have one in the eighties), they were definitely a new kind of conservatism" (Ryan, "Remoralising Politics," in Jesson, et al., Revival of the Right, p.57. Emphasis as cited). Ryan elsewhere describes this moralist movement as "clearly part of the `new right.' It is a neo-conservative movement that is concerned with maintaining the authority of the family and traditional ideas about gender and sexual relations" (idem, "`For God, Country and Family': Populist Moralism and the New Zealand Moral Right," New Zealand Sociology 1 (1986): 104).
  20. "The overall defining factor of the moral right is concern with the family. This institution is constantly being invoked as being in a precarious position and therefore in desperate need of preservation and protection from the destabilising influences of `permissive' society" (idem, "`For God, Country and Family': Populist Moralism and the New Zealand Moral Right" (M.A. Thesis in Education, Massey University, 1986), p.6.
  21. Arrowsmith, "Christian Attitudes," passim. However, his summary is incomplete, since he does not include the debate on sex education in schools, which, as will be seen, was a vigorous one in 1975.
  22. Fraser Paterson, "An historical analysis of issues within the Presbyterian Church of New Zealand, 1945-1985" (M.Th. Thesis in Church History, University of Otago, 1985). However, Paterson's analysis appears, in part, to impose earlier categories on his material, since the first three headings relate to Presbyterian concerns which were prominent in the early 1900s, but less so after the Second World War.
  23. "While Pentecostal respondents were more likely to emphasise the importance of moral issues, the Plymouth Brethren tended to be more concerned with other social and economic issues....In particular, Plymouth Brethren respondents were more likely to express concern about such matters as `the growing threat to the freedom of the individual posed by the Labour Party's socialistic tendencies' or `the dangers of militant unionism'" (S.M. Wallace, "An investigation of the political attitudes of members of Plymouth Brethren and Pentecostal churches in Christchurch" (M.A. Research Paper in Political Science, University of Canterbury, 1977), p.38).
  24. Bluck, "Jesus 75 - a mixed blessing," p.5. Bluck, as editor of the New Citizen, makes an intriguing contrast to his article on the "Jesus 75" campaign with the juxtaposition of a "testimony from a campaign newsletter" on the same page. This "testimony" reads: "One committee member reported how he had been halted by a traffic officer after excessively speeding. Parking behind the car and obviously viewing the Jesus 75 (sticker), [the traffic officer] approached the sorrowful member reminding him of the limit. The driver admitted his guilt and after tapping his book, (the officer) proceeded to remind him again and then proceeded back to his bike. Praise the Lord for the freedom in Christ!" This somewhat cavalier attitude to the speed limit provides a strange contrast to the concern of the "Jesus 75" campaigners about the moral standards of society (New Citizen, 12 June 1975, p.5).
  25. These primary materials include tape-recorded interviews with a number of pastors in the movement; newsletters, pamphlets and circulars put out by various New Life churches; and, most importantly, the Majestic House Correspondence files, which contained the inwards and outwards correspondence of the Christchurch New Life Centre from 1971 onwards. I am grateful to Pastors Max Palmer and Alex Webster and to the staff of Majestic House for making this invaluable archival material available to me.
  26. Peter Morrow to Dr. Michael Harry, 10 April 1974, MHCF. Morrow's letter provides evidence of a nascent moralist movement in Christchurch at least six months before the formation of the Concerned Parents Association [CPA]. The letter refers to the strong feeling generated by the sex education issue, and states that a campaign had begun in Christchurch "to collect signatures for a petition to the Government [on the issue]." It also refers to a "meeting for Concerned Christian Ministers and Lay People" convened to discuss the issue, and notes that there was a "reasonable response," especially from Roman Catholic priests involved in teaching. Two further meetings were to be arranged for late April "to discuss and implement action against sex education in schools." It is evident that there was already a strong undercurrent of concern about sex education in some sections of the Christchurch community (including the Christchurch New Life Centre) before the advent of the CPA in October 1974. The CPA represented a consolidation, rather than an initiation of this concern.
  27. Rasik Ranchord to Dr. Martin Viney, 2 September 1975, MHCF.
  28. Rasik Ranchord to Graham Truscott, 9 September 1975, MHCF.
  29. The 1977 correspondence related to the impending passage of the Contraception, Sterilisation and Abortion Bill. That of 1983 related to opposition to the proposed Abortion clinic at Coronation Hospital, and also contains letters in support of Doug Kidd's Status of the Unborn Child Bill, then before Parliament.
  30. Max Palmer to G.Twentyman, Commissioner of Police, 19 March 1980, MHCF. This correspondence related to the stage show "Further Confessions of a Window Cleaner." Palmer, together with Christchurch City Councillor Newton Dodge, later took part in a televised debate with Father Felix Donnelly on Rodney Bryant's programme "Mainland Touch." Palmer later received a number of letters from viewers, commending him for his stand on the issue. According to these letters, Bryant was lacking in impartiality and quite offensive towards Palmer and Dodge, who were arguing for stricter controls over such stage shows.
  31. Ranchord, Interview.
  32. Larry Christenson, The Christian Family (London: Fountain Trust, 1971).
  33. Ranchord, Interview.
  34. Peter Morrow, open letter, 27 May 1977, MHCF, describes the "Save Our Homes" campaign as a "showdown with some of the feminists."
  35. There was, however, some reference to these issues in the New Zealand Times, published quarterly throughout 1976 by the newly formed Associated Pentecostal Churches of New Zealand.
  36. "Save Our Homes" campaign material, cited in M. Reid, "Capitalism and the Family," New Zealand Monthly Review 198 (1978): 14, and thence in Ryan, "Remoralising Politics," in Jesson et al., Revival of the Right, p.59.
  37. For a discussion of Pentecostal/Charismatic views on the position of women and the pivotal role of the family, see Ivanica Vodanovich, "Woman's place in God's World," New Zealand Women's Studies Journal 2 (August 1985): 68-79. I am indebted to Dr. Jane Simpson for directing my attention to this article.
  38. Allanah Ryan gives a good summary of the development of this and other moralist issues in the 1970s (Ryan, "Remoralising Politics," in Jesson et al., Revival of the Right, pp.58-60).
  39. New Zealand Department of Education, Human Development and Relationships in the School Curriculum (Wellington: Government Printer, 1973), p.5.
  40. Ibid., p.8.
  41. Ibid., p.14.
  42. Ryan, "Remoralising Politics," in Jesson et al., Revival of the Right, p.58.
  43. As well as specific activist groups such as the CPA, conservative Christian media networks were also important in the orchestration of moralist concern. The role of Radio Rhema and Challenge Weekly, for example, in the formation of the conservative Christian moralist movement has not yet been sufficiently explored.
  44. Paul Spoonley includes the CPA in his summary of "New Zealand Groups that have Associations with or are Part of the Extreme Right, 1960-1983" (Paul Spoonley, The Politics of Nostalgia: Racism and the Extreme Right in New Zealand (Palmerston North: Dunmore Press, 1987), p.302). Spoonley appears to be mistaken in his analysis, since he claims that the CPA is principally an anti-tax and anti-liberal organization, and completely overlooks the concern with moral issues which formed this group's raison d'être.
  45. Concerned Parents Association, Home and School: Co-operation or Conflict? Human Development and Moral Values (Christchurch: Concerned Parents Association, 1976), back cover.
  46. The December 1975 issue of the Concerned Parents Association Newsletter [hereafter cited as CPA Newsletter], reporting on the first twelve months of the CPA's activities, stated that it had founded a headquarters in Christchurch and branches in Auckland, Rotorua and Dunedin; issued six newsletters; and "prepared four submissions on Education to the Secondary Education Review Committee, School Certificate Examination Board, The Royal Commission on Contraception, Sterilization and Abortion, and the Ombudsman Bill" (CPA Newsletter, December 1975, p.1).
  47. W.R. Atkin comments, in the context of a discussion on the developments leading up to the Family Proceedings Act 1980, that "out of over a thousand submissions to the Statutes Revision Committee on the first version of the legislation (the Family Proceedings Bill, 1978), twelve were made by church related groups [these included the Associated Pentecostal Churches of New Zealand]....In addition, a very substantial number of submissions on the 1978 Bill, over seven hundred, were made by individual members of the Exclusive Brethren sect, of whom 350 were heard orally by the Statutes Revision Committee. Their main argument was that the only justifiable ground for divorce was adultery, basing this on the so-called Matthaean exception (Matthew 5:32 and 19:9) to the otherwise strict Gospel injunction that there should be no divorce at all" (W.R. Atkin, "The Family in Society - A New Zealand Christian perspective," in Christians in Public Planning, ed. Christopher Nichol and James Veitch (Wellington: Tertiary Christian Studies Programme of the Combined Chaplaincies and the Religious Studies Department, Victoria University, 1981), pp.31-32). Although the CPA does not appear to have been involved in this particular issue, it is evident that its methods of orchestrated moralist action had provided a model for other groups.
  48. As for example, by the Hon. Les Gandar, Minister of Education (reported in "Parliament betrays parents," CPA Newsletter, February 1978, p.1).
  49. "Why are New Zealand parents concerned?" CPA Newsletter, April 1977, p.2. Emphasis and capitalization as cited. This highly polemic article demonstrates the view of the CPA and its supporters that they were fighting against an orchestrated conspiracy of permissiveness, and gives a typical example of the CPA's combative style.
  50. R.D. Muldoon, The Rise and Fall of a Young Turk (Wellington: A.H. and A.W. Reed, 1974), pp.30-31.
  51. New Zealand Department of Education, Growing, Sharing, Learning: The Report of the Committee on Health and Social Education (Wellington: Government Printer, 1977). Hereafter cited as Growing, Sharing, Learning.
  52. Report of the Royal Commission of Inquiry: Contraception, Sterilisation and Abortion in New Zealand (Wellington: Government Printer, 1977).
  53. The Johnson Report commented that, in the case of education about Human Development and Relationships, "this committee received a number of submissions from various groups which referred to this particular area of health and social education. These ranged from enthusiastic support (from groups such as the Association of Anglican Women), through support with certain qualifications (from groups such as the Catholic Diocesan Pastoral Council of Auckland, supported by their Bishop, who asked for sensitivity and delicacy in the use of language and for parental consultation), to outright opposition (from groups such as the Concerned Parents Association. By far the greatest number of submissions fall into the first two of these groups" (Growing, Sharing, Learning, p.39.
  54. "We recommend that a. the fostering of a non-sectarian spiritual dimension in New Zealand state education be accepted; b. the necessary in-service courses for teachers, and the compilation of resource materials, be undertaken" (Ibid., p.37). This "spiritual dimension" was, however, visualised in terms of "ultimate concerns," rather than of "Judaeo-Christian tradition" or "doctrinal preference" (Ibid., pp.35-36).
  55. John B. Salmon, "Moral and Religious Education in New Zealand: Some history and some possibilities," in Under the Southern Cross, Ocean Monograph no.4, ed. John Hinchcliff and Norman Simms (Auckland: Outrigger Publishers, 1980), pp.46-47. Emphasis as cited.
  56. Growing, Sharing, Learning, p.41.
  57. Ian Breward, Godless Schools? A study in Protestant reactions to the Education Act of 1877 (Christchurch: Presbyterian Bookroom, 1967), p.1. Breward's study is an overview (up to 1967) of the changing roles of church and state in New Zealand education. He also includes an appendix summarising the development of Protestant church schools. Another brief, but useful, historical survey of the development of "Christian Schools" in New Zealand up to 1978 is an unpublished paper by Eric Dunlop, then Rector of Middleton Grange School, Christchurch (E.A. Dunlop, "Christian Schools in New Zealand," Christchurch, 1978. (Mimeographed.))
  58. Laurie Barber, "1901-1930: The Expanding Frontier," in McEldowney, Presbyterians in Aotearoa, p.87. See also Breward, Godless Schools? pp.130-143.
  59. Dunlop, "Christian Schools," p.2. There was some concern that the special (i.e. religious) character of many private schools would be lost in the integration process. Although, as Colin McGeorge points out, "Section 3 of the Integration Act guarantees an integrated school's special character" (Colin McGeorge, "Religion in State Schools," in Colin McGeorge and Ivan Snook, Church, State and New Zealand Education (Wellington: Price Milburn, 1981), p.29), this apprehension appears to be a factor in the expansion of the Independent Christian School movement in the late 1970s.
  60. Dunlop, "Christian Schools," p.2.
  61. The philosophy of education which underlay the approach of these independent Christian schools is set out in Duncan Roper, "Christian Education: What is it?" and idem, "The school in society," in Association for the Promotion of Christian Schools, "The school and the world: A one day seminar examining the task of making a Christian contribution to Education in New Zealand," Dunedin, n.d. (Mimeographed.) I am indebted to Chris Gousmett for a copy of this material.
  62. These schools tended to be Calvinist in ethos, and stressed the need to "confess Christ in education." Liberton Christian School in Dunedin is a typical example of this type of school. See Harro W. Van Brummelen, Telling the next generation: Educational development in North American Calvinist Christian Schools (Lanham, Maryland: University Press of America, 1986) for an account of the historical development of these Dutch Calvinist schools in the United States and Canada. Despite the American context of Van Brummelen's book, his comments are also applicable to the Dutch Calvinist wing of the Christian School movement in New Zealand. I am grateful to Dr. Bill Lee, chairman of the Dunedin Christian Schools Association, for directing my attention to this material.
  63. Dunlop, "Christian Schools," p.2.
  64. The history of this school is set out in Eric Dunlop, The Middleton Grange Story (Christchurch: 25th Celebration Committee, Middleton Grange School, 1989).
  65. Ibid., p.21.
  66. Ibid., p.101.
  67. This was established at Silverstream, near Wellington, in 1974 (Dunlop, "Christian Schools," p.3).
  68. Challenge Weekly, 11 September 1976, p.16.
  69. At an ACE seminar conducted in 1978, the founder of the programme, Dr. Donald Howard, claimed that "Christian education is a key to spiritual awakening"; indeed, the "depth and duration of revivals [in history were] directly linked to [the] depth and duration of current Christian education." Paul Harkness, co-speaker at the seminar, agreed, and argued that the "integrated Christian curriculum...should be a tool for evangelism" ("Education: A key to Revival," Challenge Weekly, 26 May 1978, p.7).
  70. Chris Gousmett, Comment to author, Dunedin, 3 July 1991. This admission was made during the course of Gousmett's interviews with officials in the ACE school system.
  71. "Enthusiastic Response to Christian Schools," Challenge Weekly, 7 February 1976, p.1.
  72. Ibid. Conversely, the existing Christian school network was seen by the ACE promoters as "Christian" in name only. Rob Wheeler and Alister Lowe (the pastors of the Auckland Christian Fellowship and the Nelson New Life Centre, respectively, and, as such, principals ex officio of ACE schools run by these churches) were quite negative about the schools at Middleton Grange and Silverstream, claiming that these were not really "Christian," since they used materials from the State school system (Gousmett, Comment).
  73. Van Brummelen, Telling the next generation, p.281.
  74. The tendency towards isolationism was taken even further with the formation of Christian communes in an attempt to set a distance between the world and the church for the sake of Christian belief and group identity. The "Cooperites" at Rangiora, and the "Full Gospel Mission" at Waipara are two examples of these. Neville Cooper, the founder of the Rangiora community, had at one time been an associate of Peter Morrow, but had severed connections in the mid-1960s (Lineham, "Tongues must cease," p.16). The "Full Gospel Mission" gained public notoriety in 1977, when newspaper headlines highlighted the membership of the Mission by RNZAF personnel and the fact that the community kept a collection of firearms on the property (Michael Hill, "To define true heresy: deviance, conformity and religion," in Hill et al., Shades of Deviance, pp.140-159). Although Pentecostal in origin, neither of these groups had links with other Pentecostal churches.
  75. Wright, Interview. The reference to "salt" and "light" is taken from Matt.5:13-16.
  76. Rasik Ranchord to John Parr, late 1976, MHCF.
  77. John Tiplady, Interview, Auckland, 2 March 1990.
  78. Challenge Weekly, 22 May 1976, p.2. This union does not, however, appear to have eventuated.
  79. "Enthusiastic Response," Challenge Weekly, 7 February 1976, p.1.
  80. Challenge Weekly, 11 September 1976, p.16. This was a compulsory training seminar for pastors, conducted preparatory to the establishment of an ACE school system in a local church.
  81. CPA Newsletter, June 1977, p.4.
  82. Idem, August 1980, p.8.
  83. Dr. Howard had been invited to New Zealand by Rob Wheeler, pastor of the Auckland Christian Fellowship, and the first two ACE schools were established by local New Life churches.
  84. Tiplady, Interview.
  85. Gousmett, Comment.
  86. This section is simply a brief summary of the events leading up to the "Save Our Homes" campaign in 1977. It is not intended to be a history of the feminist movement in New Zealand.
  87. Allan K. Davidson, Christianity in Aotearoa: A History of Church and Society in New Zealand (Wellington: Education for Ministry, 1991), p.151.
  88. This activism is sometimes referred to as the "second wave" of the feminist movement. The "first wave" was the suffrage movement in the late nineteenth century.
  89. Christine Dann, Up from under: Women and Liberation in New Zealand 1970-1985 (Wellington: Allen and Unwin and Port Nicholson Press, 1985), p.4. Dann's account, although somewhat sketchy, is the only systematic account to date of the feminist movement in New Zealand in the 1970s. A brief summary of the four United Women's Conventions held up to 1979 is given in tabular form in United Women's Convention, United Women's Convention, Easter 1979 (Hamilton: University of Waikato, [1979]) [hereafter cited as UWC 1979 Report], between pp.11-12. Stella Casey, Research Officer for the National Council of Women of New Zealand, comments that "we are not aware of any history of the feminist movement dealing specifically with the 70s....The whole movement is as yet very inadequately documented" (Stella Casey, Correspondence with the author, Wellington, 3 July 1991).
  90. Dann, Up from under, p.9.
  91. Cited in Ibid., p.16. Dann gives examples of this coverage, and of the feminist anger it provoked, in Ibid., pp.106ff.
  92. Ibid., p.19.
  93. The Convention steering committee included representatives from over fifty women's groups, and embraced many different points of view. These groups are listed in United Women's Convention, United Women's Convention 1975 (Wellington: United Women's Convention, 1976), p.133.
  94. Feminist journalist Sandra Coney, for example, took strong exception to the inclusion of so many groups in the organisation of the Convention. She wrote that "the 1975 United Women's Convention committee fell into the trap of thinking every female group had a right to express their views. Thus the Society for the Protection of the Unborn Child (SPUC) has been allowed to take workshops alongside the pro-abortion groups. The philosophy behind decisions like this is that everybody is entitled to hold an opinion and to express it, even when it oppresses women. Why should they? The United Women's Conventions should be about freeing women, not enslaving us further as the philosophy of many of these anti-women groups would like us to be....Why, then, should we be obliged to give these women so much room to move? Let them come by all means, but let them come to listen and to learn" (Sandra Coney, "Editorial," Broadsheet, May 1977, p.11).
  95. An example of this may be seen in the cartoon accompanying Coney's editorial, which depicts a group of female puppets, representing the Save Our Homes campaign, being manipulated from behind the scenes by two men in episcopal regalia, i.e. the Catholic church (Ibid., p.10).
  96. Arrowsmith, "Christian Attitudes," p.87. The article to which he refers is Sandra Coney, "Virgin Mary or fallen woman," Broadsheet, December 1974, pp.14-17. However, Coney's aggressive stance represents only one viewpoint within the feminist movement. Other articles in this issue of Broadsheet, which addressed the overall theme of "Women and Religion," are much more moderate in tone.
  97. However, an article in the Christchurch Press a week before the 1977 United Women's Convention attempted to correct this public perception. "The label `way out' with which the United Women's Convention is being tagged in advance by some women should not deter participants: many so-called `radical feminists' [are] attending, but also many others" ("Convention for understanding," Christchurch Press, 27 May 1977, p.5).
  98. Dann, Up from under, p.32.
  99. Idem, "Editorial: will the real Women's Liberation Movement please stand up?" Broadsheet, October 1977, pp.14-17.
  100. Idem, Up from under, p.21.
  101. "A male Radio New Zealand reporter left the United Women's Convention in the Christchurch Town Hall today after he was hit and abused by three Lesbian activists" ("Male Reporter leaves after convention row," Christchurch Star, 4 June 1977, p.1).
  102. "Women toss out media; convention united no longer," Christchurch Press, 6 June 1977, p.1.
  103. Christchurch Press, 6 June 1977, p.8. The placing of this full page report on page eight, while the more sensational issue of the media ban occupied much of the front page, is indicative of the way in which the positive results of the convention were largely eclipsed by the media controversy.
  104. Much publicity was given to the views of Mollie Clark, a Christchurch city councillor and a member of the Convention co-ordinating committee, who claimed that "the incident with the male journalist at the opening session - which I had at first thought was spontaneous - was organised" ("Lesbians `intended to disrupt' convention if men let in," Christchurch Press, 8 June 1977, p.16), and that "many women left the conference halfway through - sickened by events....They saw the platform [of the Convention] being used to promote an extremist element and they went home disgusted" ("Group's propaganda sickening - Mrs. Clark," Christchurch Star, 7 June 1977, pp.1 and 3). Mrs. Clark's accusations were echoed by the media. The Christchurch Star commented that "the ferocity and determination of the radical section of the convention, who wear their militancy on their sleeves, must have been an eye-opener for the delegates....[It is a] pity that these objections to the presence of a male reporter were not recognised by the convention as a means of getting the publicity they crave - and that the women's movement is only incidental to their aims and aspirations" ("Editorial: Butch spoils it for the majority," Christchurch Star, 7 June 1977, p.8).
  105. Several lesbian writers disavowed the existence of a lesbian "plot" (Debbie Jones and Linda Evans, "Straight Reformists conspire to disrupt Convention," Lesbian-Feminist Circle, Autumn/Winter 1977, pp.8-11), and the three activists who were involved in the incident with the male reporter gave an account of what actually took place, and stress that their action was in no way a premeditated one ("Male returned to Sender: or how it really happened," Ibid., pp.12-13).
  106. Sally Casswell claimed that "the media have eagerly publicised the reactions of a few of the women attending who said that the Convention was dominated by a radical elite against the wishes of the majority....I was woken on the Tuesday morning after the Convention by Morning Report expounding the view of two women that the Convention was a harrowing experience dominated by a small minority of women. Funny, but that's what I kept thinking too. We just have different ideas about who belongs to the disruptive minority" (Sally Casswell, "Behind the News," Broadsheet, July 1977, p.21). See also Dann, "Will the real Women's Liberation Movement please stand up?" Broadsheet, October 1977, pp.16-17.
  107. The UWC 1979 Report noted that the "areas of dissent or discomfort" at the 1977 Convention included "Media, Lesbians [and] Weather" (UWC 1979 Report, p.14. Emphasis as cited), and several articles in the July 1977 issue of Broadsheet also place the blame for the controversy on the media (Jill Ranstead, "Prayers, `stolen cardigans' and fiery speeches," Broadsheet, July 1977, p.18-21; and Diane Roberts, "The UWC committee on the Media," Ibid., p.22).
  108. Joy Browne et al., ed., Changes, Chances, Choices: A report on the United Women's Convention, 3-6 June 1977 [hereafter cited as UWC 1977 Report] (Christchurch: United Women's Convention, 1978), pp.64-71.
  109. Helen Chambers et al., "The 1977 UWC and the Media: Statement from the Coordinating Committee," in Ibid, p.68.
  110. Pauline O'Regan, A Changing Order (Wellington: Allen and Unwin and Port Nicholson Press, 1986), p.16. O'Regan gives a graphic example of the wide diversity of women attending the Convention with her description of the interchanges which took place over morning tea between participants in the Country Women's workshop, the Rape Crisis workshop, and the Solo Mothers' workshop (Ibid., pp.16-17). I am grateful to Dr. Dorothy Page, History Department, University of Otago, for directing my attention to this material.
  111. The Save Our Homes Campaign was held three weeks prior to the 1977 United Women's Convention, apparently in order to pre-empt the Convention itself. Letters in the Majestic House Correspondence Files describe the Campaign as "a showdown with some of the feminists" (Peter Morrow, open letter, 27 May 1977, MHCF), and refer to the "total confusion that existed in [the] United Women's Convention" (Peter Morrow to Paul Collins, 27 June 1977, MHCF). The dissension at the United Women's Convention reinforced, rather than created, the anti-feminist attitudes of the Save Our Homes campaigners.
  112. These attitudes were "proof-texted" by Biblical references such as Ephesians 5:22-23 ("Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife") and 1 Cor.14:34 ("Let your women keep silence in the churches") (KJV), et cetera.
  113. Ian Breward, "Selecting Documents for Australian Religious History," in Australian and New Zealand Religious History 1788-1988: A Collection of Papers and Addresses delivered at the 11th Joint Conference of the Australian and New Zealand Association of Theological Schools and Society for Theological Studies held at Burgmann College, Australian National University, 5-8 September 1988, ed. Robert Withycombe (Jamison Centre, A.C.T.: Australian and New Zealand Association of Theological Schools and Society for Theological Studies, 1988), p.22.
  114. Ibid.
  115. These delegates are listed in Worsfold, History, p.167.
  116. Ibid., p.172.
  117. Ibid., p.197.
  118. Ibid., p.202.
  119. Allan Davidson, "Depression, War, New Life: 1931-1960," in McEldowney, Presbyterians in Aotearoa, pp.129-131.
  120. "Tauranga Christian Fellowship: Jubilee Reunion 1939-1989," pp.2-3.
  121. Rob Wheeler recalls that "singing in the Spirit all over Australia and New Zealand came in through Brother Jackson....Ruth Jackson was an exceptionally good pianist. So she...helped the singers [get] under way" (Wheeler, Interview).
  122. Mrs. Pollock's role is documented in Henderson, From Glory to Glory, pp.2-4.
  123. One such was Nancy Dykes, who was a deaconess in the Tauranga Christian Fellowship, and who had some prominence as a woman preacher and Bible teacher in the mid-1960s.
  124. Anne Morrow, Interview, Christchurch, 21 November 1989.
  125. Peter Morrow, 3 December 1979, MHCF. This conference was held at Waikanae in 1980. The fact that this was the first such invitation of its kind illustrates the subordinate place given to women's ministries in New Zealand Pentecostal churches up until this time.
  126. Anne Morrow, Interview.
  127. The reference is to 1 Timothy 2:11-15 (KJV).
  128. The format of women's ministry in the New Life Churches tended to follow the model of the Christchurch New Life Centre, which, according to Max Palmer, had "a strong ministry to women, both in the church and in the city," with "Touch of Life" women's gatherings, neighbourhood study groups and other activities in Christchurch (Max Palmer to Vernon Bickley, 2 November 1979, MHCF).
  129. Vodanovich, "Woman's place," pp.68-69.
  130. Julie Steele, Interview, Dunedin, 14 February 1989.
  131. Anne Morrow, "Women in Ministry," Christchurch, August 1990. (Mimeographed.)
  132. An example of this reaction was a paper prepared by Pastor David Collins of Auckland (David S.T. Collins, "Women in Ministry," Auckland, 1990. (Mimeographed.), which was intended to be "studied in conjunction" with Anne Morrow's paper. However, his paper was poorly argued and betrayed a tendency to make sweeping claims, and consequently failed to gain much support. While New Life pastors were not wholly receptive to Anne Morrow's paper, they were even less so to that of Collins, which was severely criticised by a number of pastors, and at various regional gatherings.
  133. A number of pastors claimed that "there is no problem" with women's ministry, and failed to understand what Anne Morrow was trying to say.
  134. Hill, "Religion and Society: Cement or Ferment?" p.224.
  135. For a discussion of Pentecostal views on women's roles, see Vodanovich, "Woman's place."
  136. Anne Morrow, Interview. Mrs. Morrow had obtained various documents, particularly the report of the 1974 Select Committee on Women's Rights, and as a result, "saw what their aims were, and realised that they were behind this same Conference." Consequently, she decided to "expose what feminism was in terms of their own [documents] that they had drawn up. So I used their material and people were staggered when they realised what was going on" (Ibid.).
  137. Ibid.
  138. Although other women were also involved in "Save Our Homes," this was Anne Morrow's brainchild, and she exercised a dominant role throughout the course of the campaign. Challenge Weekly, for example, refers to her as "Christchurch `Save Our Homes' Campaigner Mrs. Anne Morrow" ("Women act now to save homes," Challenge Weekly, 9 April 1977, p.1), and a later report "thank[s] God for the tremendous vision which he gave to Anne Morrow to bring before the Christian women of our nation the need to preserve our home" (Pat Blaikie, "Out of the Innermost: Save our homes!" Challenge Weekly, 29 May 1977, p.4). Apart from newspaper interviews with Ray Mossholder, the overseas keynote speaker for the campaign ("Men and women created equal," Christchurch Press, 12 May 1977, p.12; "Life Style: What Bible really says about women," Christchurch Star, 13 May 1977, p.7), and reports of the various speakers at the campaign Conference ("Message for wives: don't nag hubby," Christchurch Star, 16 May 1977, p.4; "Family life upheld," Christchurch Press, 17 May 1977, p.10), Mrs. Morrow was usually the person quoted by the media. This reflected her central role as organiser and convenor for the campaign.
  139. Anne Morrow, Interview.
  140. "Women act now to save homes," Challenge Weekly, 9 April 1977, p.1.
  141. Coney, "Editorial," Broadsheet, May 1977, p.10.
  142. Ibid.
  143. "2,000 women meet to save homes," Challenge Weekly, 21 May 1977, p.1.
  144. Ibid.
  145. Liz Andersen, "Rocking the cradle - ruling the world?" Challenge Weekly, 29 May 1977, p.6. Emphasis as cited.
  146. Cited in Ibid.
  147. "2,000 women meet to save homes," Challenge Weekly, 21 May 1977, p.1.
  148. As for example, Dr. Anna Holmes' statement in the Abortion seminar that "Abortion is seen as a logical solution to social problems when mankind is viewed collectively not individually," and the reporter's comment in the same article that "time and again, in the seminar after seminar came the message: `if you can't love yourself you'll never be able to love anyone else'" (Andersen, "Rocking the cradle - ruling the world," Challenge Weekly, 29 May 1977, p.5). Dr. Holmes was also one of the speakers at the "I'm pregnant - Help!" workshop at the United Women's Convention (UWC 1977 Report, p.27).
  149. Ray Mossholder, cited in Andersen, "Rocking the cradle - ruling the world," Challenge Weekly, 29 May 1977, p.7.
  150. This statement was made during the "Building a sense of self-worth" seminar (Ibid., p.5).
  151. Anne Morrow, cited in Ibid., p.7.
  152. "Message for wives: don't nag hubby," Christchurch Star, 16 May 1977, p.4. The submissive role of the wife was strongly emphasised in the Pentecostal movement. A classic example of this emphasis was given by Mrs. Minta Baker (keynote speaker at the "First National Conference of Ministers' Wives and Women in Leadership," held at Christchurch in June 1983 under the auspices of the Associated Pentecostal Churches of New Zealand), who was quoted as saying that "Jesus wants the husband to be the head, to lead and not to rule....We [women] need to take responsibility for our attitudes and to repent if necessary. Our spirit needs to minister to our husband, so that we become one flesh, glued together" (First National Conference of Ministers' Wives and Women in Leadership, "Precis of the Conference," Christchurch, 1983, MHCF). The submission principle (based on texts such as Ephesians 5:22-24 and 1 Peter 3:1-6) was held by some Pentecostalists to apply even in the case of wives who were physically abused by their non-Christian husbands.
  153. "Men and Women created equal," Christchurch Press, 12 May 1977, p.12.
  154. "Life Style: What Bible really says about women," Christchurch Star, 13 May 1977, p.7.
  155. Anne Morrow, Interview.
  156. "Save Our Homes Supplement: Aiming to bring families together," Challenge Weekly, 30 March 1979, p.9.
  157. Coney, "Editorial," Broadsheet, May 1977, p.11.
  158. "Convention's benefits of `national significance,'" Christchurch Press, 17 May 1977, p.12.
  159. Both the United Women's Convention and the Save Our Homes campaign were held in Hamilton; the UWC at Easter 1979, and the SOH campaign shortly after (UWC 1979 Report; "Enthusiasm as hundreds gather to SAVE OUR HOMES," Challenge Weekly, 8 May 1979, pp.10-11).
  160. Challenge Weekly, 12 October 1979, pp.10-11. From a first printing of 1,500 copies in September 1977 (Nancy Campbell, "Above Rubies: Bringing the trend in the nation back to God's way!" Broadbeach, Queensland, Australia, 1991. (Mimeographed.)), the circulation of the magazine had climbed to 60,000 by 1979 (Challenge Weekly, 12 October 1979, pp.10-11). The Australian director of Above Rubies advises that current circulation varies between 150,000 and 180,000 copies for each half-yearly issue (Val Stares, Correspondence with the author, Broadbeach, Queensland, Australia, 1 March 1993).
  161. Anne Morrow, Interview.
  162. Max Palmer to W.D.H. Smith, Buildings Registrar, Canterbury University, 1977, MHCF, gives the membership of the steering committee as "Rev. A. Hight and wife, Rev. R. James and wife, Rev. G. Tisch and wife, Pastor P. Morrow and wife." Anne Morrow recalls that the first two of these ministers were Methodist, and Rev. Tisch Anglican or Baptist. She also refers to Presbyterian and Catholic members of the committee (Anne Morrow, Interview). However, this support from a variety of churches contrasts oddly with the lament of a participant that "I could not help wishing that more delegates from the `mainline' churches were present to support and benefit by such an occasion" (Blaikie, "Out of the Innermost: Save our homes!" Challenge Weekly, 29 May 1977, p.4).
  163. Coney's claim that this "power in numbers" is fallacious was based on the somewhat flimsy argument that the "Pentecostal Church behind `Save Our Homes' is unfamiliar to those of us living in the North Island; if there's a Pentecostal church in Auckland it must be very quiet" (Coney, "Editorial," Broadsheet, May 1977, p.11). However, the various local New Life Churches identified themselves by an assortment of titles. In the North Island, these churches were often called "Christian Fellowships"; in the South Island, "New Life Centres." Although Coney is correct in her assessment of the strength of Pentecostal conservatism in Christchurch, it is thus not surprising that she has failed to see the connection between the North and South Island wings of the New Life Churches.
  164. Ibid. Emphasis as cited.

 





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