This is a challenging season at Arise Church. There has been a lot raised about the church we love. As a Board, we are focused on guiding our church through a thorough review as we endeavour to build the best church we can for our congregations and for the glory of God. The feedback we have been hearing is that the ‘silence is deafening'. We apologise for this necessary, but painful part of this process.
For the Arise Board, people are our priority, and this has meant that during this time, uncomfortable silence has been necessary while we allow the space for all people to come forward and share their past and present experiences of Arise. We want you to know that we have committed to this process and it will bring correction where needed, and the necessary changes to restore the full health of our church, which many call their home.
The Board and its leaders are committed to keeping our congregation informed with as much information as we are able to, within the legal framework of Aotearoa. This is balanced with not being able to comment on specific allegations, personal stories, or individual employment circumstances because of legal obligations and to not hinder the independent processes. However, we are aware there are many errors and incorrect information currently in the public domain that we have a responsibility to correct and shed light on. Some of these are addressed below, for the purpose of correcting misinformation.
In the next few months Arise will continue to present the amazing message of Jesus Christ in its church services and through Arise Care, while entering a season of listening, deep reflection, learning and healing for our people. We thank and are praying for our leaders, campus pastors, members and all people of Arise during this season.
Nāku iti nei, nā
— Arise Board and Leadership
Where are John and Gillian Cameron?
John and Gillian Cameron are on a period of extended leave to allow for the independence of the reports to continue unfettered. They remain supportive of the Board and the Spiritual Oversight as they work through this difficult season and have no involvement in the current operations of the Church.
Is it true that John is controlling the Board?
Any statement that implies that John Cameron is in control of the independent processes underway, or the Board is incorrect. John has resigned from the Board and the independent processes have been commissioned by the Board.
The Arise Trust Deed has been updated. The requirement for any new board member to be appointed and/or approved by John Cameron has been removed. New Trustees or Board Members are appointed by a vote of a 75% majority of the Board only.
Is it true that the Board plans to have John and Gillian return, regardless of the review findings?
Any statement that implies the Board has predetermined the outcome of those independent processes is wrong. The Board remains committed to those independent processes and will reach decisions about next steps following their completion.
Who are the Board members?
The Board continues to oversee the governance of the church and is managing the review processes. Many have asked “who are they?” so we have posted onto the Arise website a profile of each person. You can check that out here.
“We are pleased to announce a new appointment to the Board, Mrs Alice Camaivuna (née Hunt) who is an experienced employment lawyer, and brings extensive experience in advising governance and strategic decision making across government, education and charitable entities. Alice has been a member of the Arise community for more than 16 years.
All current Board appointments are for a term of one year.”
It is expected that further changes will be made to the composition, appointment process, and role of the Board as a result of the reviews underway.
The Board wishes to thank the many members of the congregation who have offered their wisdom, counsel, experience and prayers. The Board is being well supported by a number of additional advisors both internal and external to Arise.
Who is currently leading Arise?
Arise’s Leadership Team is being led by Nathan Chambers and the Pastoral Team is being led by Ps Ben Kendrew. We want to acknowledge the huge load they and the Campus Pastors have been carrying during this season and thank them for their care of, and commitment to, the people of Arise.
Who is the Spiritual Oversight and is it true that John got rid of them, as outlined in the media?
This is false. The Spiritual Oversight continues to be engaged in providing wisdom and counsel to the Board and are supportive of the Board’s journey. They are also in regular communication with John and Gillian. The Spiritual Oversight consists of: Pastors Russell Evans and Paul de Jong. It is expected that there will be changes made to the role and composition of the Spiritual Oversight of the church as a result of the review process.
Has Arise ever signed a Non-Disclosure Agreement or provided hush money to staff or interns?
This is categorically untrue. The Board reiterates that it is not aware of Arise having ever entered into non-disclosure agreements with staff or interns. The Board is aware of two occasions in Arise’s 20-year history, where, in accordance with standard employment resolution processes, Arise has entered into ‘records of settlement’. Those agreements have been signed off by independent Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment mediators. The Board is unable to otherwise comment on individual cases under law and we await the findings of the review.
What are the latest developments with Pathfinding?
You can read Pathfinding's latest statement here. Pathfinding's contact details are: firstname.lastname@example.org | 0800 274 731 | www.pathfinding.co.nz
Where can I ask questions?
We encourage you to submit any questions you may have about the independent processes, this season, the Board, or Arise via this form.