Work Permit: Minister of Religion, Missionary or Member of Religious Orders

You may apply for a Work Visa/Permit if you are a minister of religion, missionary or member of a religious order belonging to a religious denomination or group specifically recognised under immigration policy, and coming to New Zealand for a short-term or a long-term engagement.

Short-term Engagements

Work Visas for short-term engagements for a stay in New Zealand of up to 12 months may be issued if:

  • To give instruction in religious studies;
  • To conduct lectures or seminars; or
  • To carry out speaking engagements.

To qualify for a short-term engagement in New Zealand applicants must have:

  • A salary or official income from the overseas religious organisation to cover their accommodation and expenses; or
  • Accommodation and maintenance from the host organisation in New Zealand.

Long-term Engagements

Long-term engagements in New Zealand may be issued for the duration of the assignment or appointment for a maximum stay of 3 years. The applicant must provide evidence the sponsoring body guarantees accommodation, maintenance and repatriation for the duration of the stay.

In some cases, an extension may be granted providing the applicant satisfies all criteria for a Work Permit as a minister of religion, missionary or member of a religious order.

Recognised Religions and Denominations
New Zealand Immigration recognises the folowing religions and denominations:
Ananda Marga
Asian Outreach
Assemblies of God
Associated Churches of Christ
Auckland Christian Mandarin Church
Calvary Chapel New Zealand
Campus Crusade for Christ
Chengzhen Temple
Children's Bible Ministries
Christian Community
Christian Fellowships
Christian Missionary Alliance
Christian Outreach Centre
Church of Nazarene
Church of Tonga
Congregational Christian Church of America Samoa
Family Federation for World Peace and Unification NZ
Free Church of Tonga
Gelugpa Buddhist Centre (NZ)
Grace Presbyterian Church of New Zealand
Hebrew Congregation - Jewish
Hosanna Christ Gospel Church
Institute of Basic Life Principles Church Inc
International Buddhist Meditation Temple
International Harvesters Ministries of New Zealand.
International Society for Krishna Consciousness
International Student Ministries
Jehovah's Witnesses
Jesus is Lord Church
Korean Evangelical Church of NZ
Latter-day Saints - Mormon
Maitreya Buddhist
MMM International (NZ)
New Covenant Ministries International (NZ)
New Life Churches of NZ
New Testament Church Inc
North Shore Church of Christ
Open Brethren
Orthodox (Greek and Rumanian)
Quaker Religious Society of Friends
Reformed Churches of New Zealand Community
Roman Catholic
Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia
Salvation Army
The Spirit of Jesus Christ Church
Sufi Lodge Aotearoa
Syrian Orthodox Church
Samoan Seventh Day Adventist Church
Tian Yue Temple Charitable Trust
Tokaikolo Christian Church
Traditional Roman Catholic Board (Society of St. Pius Xth)
True Jesus Christ
United Church of God
United Missionary Fellowship Trust
United Pentecostal Church International (New Zealand)
Voice of Christ Full Gospel
WEC International (World-wide Evangelisation for Christ)
Wesleyan Methodist Church of New Zealand
Word of Life Church
World Outreach International
Yogi Divine Society (NZ) Inc
Youth for Christ NZ

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