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Anglican Church looks outside Christchurch for financial help

Thursday 29 Nov 2012 5:44 p.m.

A piece of Christchurch's cardboard cathedral is on display outside four major Anglican churches around the country as part of a new fundraising drive.

With the scheduled opening of the transitional cathedral just four months away, the church is exhibiting four giant cardboard tubes as it looks outside Christchurch for financial help.

“They're huge and it gives us a real idea of what's going on, lots of excitement and people coming in and going,” says Auckland Anglican Dean Reverend Jo Kelly-Moore.

One in Dunedin is being used as a kind of giant donation box, as the Anglican Church fundraises for its new cardboard cathedral in Christchurch.

Ninety-eight tubes up to 20m long will be used in the construction of Christchurch's transitional cardboard cathedral, due to open in April.

It's an ambitious and expensive project.  

“[We are] short of funds, we've always been challenged, we started out seeking $1.3 million and we have secured some of that but there's an awful lot to go, and of course the build price has gone up,” says cathedral spokesman Craig Dixon.

The whole thing will cost round $5.3 million, and much of it was to be funded from insurance received for the damaged ChristChurch Cathedral.

That's now in doubt since a judge ordered a temporary halt to the church's deconstruction of the cathedral. Former cabinet minister Jim Anderton and member of the Great Christchurch Buildings Trust helped bring the action.

“He said to the property trustees that they could not use any of the funding made available in the insurance claim for anything other than restoring or rebuilding the cathedral,” says Mr Anderton.

That means the money's for the old cathedral site, not the cardboard one.

“At the moment $4 million has been directed to this build from that, so that could create an interesting challenge,” says Mr Dixon.

Nothing's simple in this divisive issue, the church says it's going back to court to seek further clarification on exactly how it can spend the cathedral insurance money.

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