The decision to deconstruct Christ Church Cathedral is supported by Canterbury church leaders.
An open letter of support from 70 churches and Christian organisations was presented to Bishop Victoria Matthews at St Peter's Church in Upper Riccarton yesterday.
The letter affirms that the Anglican Church has the right to decide the fate of its cathedral.
"God's real Church is the people, and people matter more to God than any building," the letter reads. "We pray for the bishop and other leaders as they face the challenges this brings."
Group spokesman Steve Graham said the letter was in response to criticism of Bishop Victoria after the decision to deconstruct the cathedral was announced.
"Statements that she has failed because she's not rebuilding the cathedral are unfair," he said.
"We know that she's thinking about a far bigger range of issues and not just about one treasured building. A church leader's primary responsibility is the care of people, not the preservation of monuments."
The aim of the letter, signed by a range of denominations including Ethiopian evangelicals and Cambodian Baptists, was to present a unified perspective of those "who actually lead churches and oversee church buildings", he said.
Bishop Victoria said the letter was "highly encouraging", especially in the wake of "very loud voices of criticism".
She has coped through the recent public backlash with "prayer and the prayers of other people".
"I love the cathedral very, very much and it is with enormous sadness that the building must come down.
"There has been loud criticism, but as I move around the city, people are saying to me, quietly and consistently, that they believe we have made the right decision."
The cathedral is one of 26 churches in Canterbury that cannot be entered because of severe earthquake damage.
Archbishop David Moxon's last sermon in Taranaki coincides with a poignant ceremony involving...
Ever tried herding cats? Spanky Moore has – and he reports considerable success. Here's his ac...
The office of Archbishop of Canterbury is conferred on the Most Rev Justin Welby under the dom...
The Gospels are not obsessed with sexual relations, says Bishop Victoria Matthews in a pa...
Bishop Brian Carrell explores the inside story of the globally acclaimed A New Zealand...
In an exclusive interview, the retiring Archbishop of Canterbury tells how he weathered the st...
ANGLICAN TAONGA is the communications arm of the Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia / Te Haahi Mihanare ki Niu Tireni, ki Nga Moutere o Te Moana Nui a Kiwa. TAONGA magazine is published three times a year and distributed to all Anglican ministry units and agencies. TAONGA also publishes occasional booklets on church, ministry and sacraments. The General Editor of TAONGA is accountable to the Communications Commission of General Synod / te Hinota Whanui, 200 St Johns Road, Meadowbank, Auckland 1742.