About St Johns

About Us

We’re very much work in progress - flawed and ordinary people learning to become the servant-hearted community God wants us to be - full of his joy, humility, integrity and kindness. We’re an Anglican Evangelical church made up of four different congregations, all relaxed and friendly, all sharing the same convictions.

We love Jesus - by honouring his word

We are so thankful that God sent Jesus to take away our sins and his wrath - and we want to please him by obeying his living word and being transformed by it through His Spirit. We want as many as possible to be equipped to preach and teach God's word.

We love Jesus' people - by serving each other

We are so thankful that God has made us part of the family of Christ - and we want to reflect this by serving each other in love and humility, to develop relationships between us that are deep, real and encouraging. We want everyone's gifts to be used to the maximum in this.

We love Jesus' world - by speaking of Jesus

We are so thankful that God has given us the best news this world has ever known - and we want to serve the communities in which we live by telling the message of Jesus and flooding them with practical acts of kindness. We want to provide training in evangelism and opportunities to serve our local community.


As a staff team our main roles are to teach the Bible and pray for people. We love getting to know people better and knowing how we can encourage you in following Christ – you can find out more about us by clicking on who you would like to see. Please contact us through the contact us here.

James de Costobadie

James de Costobadie - Senior Minister

Costa came to know Christ aged 19 when he was prodded to think about Jesus by the only Christian he knew. He and his wife Teresa came to NZ from the UK in 2005 and are grateful to God for their 3 Kiwi children born since. He loves his family and Christ's family, and enjoys playing cricket and reading history books, but still gains most delight when people come to know Christ as their Lord and Saviour.

Tim Capill

Tim Capill - Assistant Minister

Tim was taught the wonderful news of Jesus from a young age and over the years has grown more thoroughly convinced of the hope Jesus alone offers. Tim oversees the 7pm and 4:15pm services, ministry training, and young adults ministry. He is married to Melody and they have four children (Caleb, Abigail, Asher and Mariah).

Jane Halliday

Jane Halliday - Welcoming & Integration

Jane became a Christian when she was 19 years old through a small Brethren church and has attended St. John's for the past 11 years. Jane is married to Jonathan with three children - Elfie, Eddie & Nate. This year she has the pleasure of organizing Women on Wednesday and some other events & activities for the women of St. John's. Her background is in teaching, but for the past two years she has been studying at the Tim Training Course. This year Jane is working for St John's, enjoying catching up with friends, reading and providing for the social lives of her kids.

Simon Johnson

Simon Johnson - Youth Ministry

Simon had the privilege of growing up in a home which loved and trusted in the Lord. By his grace, God has never let go of him since then. He has spent the last 15 or so years doing youth ministry both in New Zealand and London, sometimes alongside other work or study, sometimes full-time. He loves it and hopes to do it until .. well, you know. At the moment he is also working part-time as a Personal Trainer. And yes, he loves all things sport and fitness related.

Shelley Liken

Shelley Liken - Children's Ministry

Shelley is married to Craig and is chief chauffeur to their four children, Emily, Jonty, Samuel and Lottie. Shelley has worked as a primary teacher and now counts it a complete privilege to be singing, dancing, squishing, and sharing the bible with the children of St John's and the Mairehau community as she coordinates the WOW Creche, Movers and Groovers, and teaches Bible in Schools. Occasionally Shelley likes to dress up in strange costumes and sing opera at the top of her lungs with the NZO, but this is not advisable when looking after small children!

Esther Ward

Esther Ward - Operations Manager

Esther grew up on a small farm in North Canterbury. When she was 16 she was sent along to help as a leader at a children’s Christian camp in Woodend: this was the first time she really realised she needed a relationship with God herself! Esther looks after the day-to-day office administration and event organisation, as well as helping at senior Youth Group and Kid's Church at the 4:15pm service.

Braden Forrest

Braden Forrest - Evangelism & Men's Ministry

Braden works for St John's part time doing some evangelism training and men's ministry.

Tim Ellis

Tim Ellis - Ministry Trainee

Tim grew up in England and moved to New Zealand aged 12 with his parents. He was raised going to church but it was at aged 19 living back in the UK in a christian community house that he saw his need for the forgiveness of Christ. Tim used to be a barber and is now a ministry trainee where he is involved in youth and young adults work and is a part of the 8.30am and 7pm services on a Sunday whilst doing some theology study on the side. He enjoys making bread, riding a bicycle and talking to people.

Nicole Fogden

Nicole Fogden - Ministry Trainee

Nicole is a Ministry Trainee.


Vestry is the leadership team elected by the church at the AGM which has responsibility for all matters of governance.

James de Costobadie

Ronnie Ellis

Dave Hardy

Laurie Montie

Brad Mitchell


The stone-built Church of St John the Baptist, located on the south-east side of grassed and tree-lined Latimer Square, has been a city landmark since 1865. It was designed by the Canterbury Association to be one of four churches within the city belt: neighbouring St Michael's and St Luke's were established in the 1850s, but the fourth church, intended for Cranmer Square, was never built.


The foundation stone of the original building was laid on St. John the Baptist's Day (24 June) 1864 and the church was consecrated on St. John the Evangelist's Day (27 Dec.) 1865. The Order of Freemasons took a considerable part in the building and was well represented at the opening. The church was designed by Benjamin Woolfield Mountfort (1825-1898) and Maxwell Bury (1825-1912). Of the other three churches originally planned to be constructed within the city belt, St. Michael's was built in 1851, St. Luke's in 1859 and the fourth church, planned for Cranmer Square, was never built.