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Who We Are

Ashburton Presbyterian Church began in 1952.

We belong to the Presbyterian Church of Australia (PCA), founded at federation in 1901.

The name ‘Presbyterian’ comes from the New Testament Greek word for ‘elder’. At the most basic level, a Presbyterian church is a church governed by elders (who are elected by the congregation). The elders have a particular responsibility for the spiritual health and the welfare of the people God entrusts to their care.

As a PCA congregation we are both biblical and confessional. We hold to the Bible as being the inspired, inerrant, infallible, and living Word of God.  In it God reveals Himself to us, He tells us what we need to understand and believe, and how to find salvation and to live to please Him. We also hold to the Westminster Confession of Faith (in its essential elements) as the sense in which we understand the teaching of the Bible.

Our heritage is also Reformed and Evangelical. This basically means that we take the Bible seriously as God’s word and we want to learn from it, live by it, and tell others the good news that Jesus is God, Saviour and King.

Our denomination has its foundation historically in the Protestant Reformation, from which God’s word (the Bible) was made available to people in their own language, to read for themselves. The Reformation, through men such as Martin Luther, John Calvin and John Knox, was also instrumental in renewing the understanding that a right relationship with God can only come by faith in Jesus, and that this is good news to be shared.

From the teaching of the Reformers five slogans emerged:

Scripture alone the Bible alone is the word of God, to be believed and obeyed.
Faith alone we are made right with God by faith alone.
Christ alone it is only through what Jesus Christ has done in his life, death and resurrection, that we may be saved.
Grace alone our salvation depends entirely on God’s grace.
To the glory of God alone   so that all the glory belongs to God alone.