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Melanesian Messenger Online distributed by the
Church of the Province of Melanesia
Archbishop Vunagi appoints his overseas commisaries
September 1, 2009

[Melanesian Messenger - Melanesia] Archbishop of Melanesia The Most Rev. David Vunagi has appointed his new Commissaries for United Kingdom and Australia.

The Rev. Canon John Pinder was appointed the English Commissary and The Rev. James Oulds for Australia.

The Rev. Pinder and the Rev. Oulds were appointed in June and July respectively.
The Archbishop is however yet to appoint one for New Zealand.

The Archbishops Commissary plays an important role as the Archbishop of Melanesiaís official representative in their counties.

The Rev. Canon John Pinder
The Rev. John Canon Pinder grew up in London, UK and studied history and theology at Cambridge University. He trained for ordination at Cuddesdon Theological College, where the Principal was Robert Runcie, later Archbishop of Canterbury.

He wanted to see more of the world before being ordained and an Australian friend encouraged him to join the Melanesian Mission. In November 1967 he arrived at Pawa School on Ugi Island in Makira. Within weeks of arriving he was appointed acting headmaster while Canon Probets was on leave. John spent two very happy years on Ugi, an experience which was to have a profound effect on him for the rest of his life.

One of his fellow teachers was Fr. Jim Nolan. He would have been very happy to stay there indefinitely but in December 1969 Bishop Chisholm asked him to take the Form 1 students to Najilagu on Guadalcanal, to help build the new school. He was at Selwyn College for the first three years of its existence and there he met his future wife Jennifer Maffey. They were married in New Zealand in November 1971.

John and Jenny went to England in 1971 and John was ordained to a curacy in Watford. Three years later he was asked to be the English Secretary of the Melanesian Mission and spent the next fourteen years touring England spreading the word about Melanesia twice during that time and enjoyed meeting old students and touring round the islands.

In 1989 John moved to Portsmouth to be a full time parish priest and was made a canon of Portsmouth Cathedral for his work as area Dean of Portsmouth. He was asked to stay on the Melanesian Mission English Committee and continued to support Melanesia in any way he could.

His last visit to the Pacific was in 2000 when he stayed mostly in Honiara and experienced at first hand some of the suffering that people were experiencing at that time.
Since Easter 2009, John has been parish priest of Stapleford, near Cambridge.
ďI feel very honoured to have been invited to be the English Commissary for Archbishop David Vunagi and hope to be able to make a return visit to Melanesia before too long.Ē

The Rev. James Oulds
The Rev. James Oulds was born in New Zealand in 1949; the eldest son and third child of Fr. Frank and Mrs. Anne Oulds. His early childhood was spent in Poverty Bay in the North Island and in 1955 his father was appointed as the Director of Missions in the Diocese of Natal in South Africa. His next twenty two years were spent living there completing his schooling and working; firstly as a textile technician then as a production supervisor in the manufacture of timber varnish, floor polish and shoe polish.

All the while God was nudging him closer to Him and calling him into ministry. In 1973 he went to St Paulís Theological College in Grahamstown South Africa. He married Marilyn in January of 1975, graduated and was ordained in December of that same year.

His curacy was spent at St. Paulís Parish in Durban. In 1977 we returned to New Zealand where I did some locum work and served in the Diocese of Wellington. During his time there, he was Rector of two parishes and served also as the Chaplain to the Royal New Zealand Police College and the Royal NZ Defence Force.

Since late 1987 he has served in the Anglican Church of Australia in the Dioceses of Bathurst, North Queensland, Rockhampton and Brisbane. He served in various capacities which include being Rector of three Parishes - Warren, North Mackay and Nundah, chaplain to the Queensland Police Service and Chaplain to the Mission to Seafarers. He served on Diocesan Council and as an Area Dean. Fr. Oulds also served on a number of boards including orphanages, aged care, schools, and Anglicare as well as volunteering to assist on the roster of celebrants at St Johnís Cathedral, Brisbane.

He has been a member of Mothersí Union for 15 years. His wife Marilyn is currently the Zone 3 General Trust for Mothersí Union Worldwide.