CONNECTION – 5 DECEMBER


ADVENT 2

We acknowledge the original custodians, the Wadawurrung people of the Kulin alliance, of the land on which our buildings of worship stand and on which we gather.

COMMUNITY NEWS

FOR TODAY

& THE COMING WEEK

Return to Worship – COVID Restrictions

There will be some important and essential Covid restrictions that have to be met.

  1. There is no need to book.
  2. Only double vaccinated people (with the exception of children under 12) can attend at this stage.
  3. You will need to sign in using the QR Code and provide proof of vaccination to our volunteers every time you come to the Church.

Christmas Bowl

This Advent, Crossroads is again participating in The Christmas Bowl Appeal. We join with more than 1,000 churches across Australia to fulfil the commission Jesus gave us, to care for our neighbours. The Christmas Bowl focuses on those in need who have been uprooted due to war, unrest, COVID19 and disasters, helping to give them a safe place to belong.
Last Sunday we dedicated our own ‘Christmas Bowl’ and it will be in the chapel each week of the appeal. The appeal officially starts this Sunday, the first Sunday in Advent and will continue until 10 January.


HOW TO GIVE:
There are several ways you can donate:

  • Put cash in our special Christmas bowl located in the chapel
  • Use a Christmas Bowl envelope (cash, cheque, or credit card) and either place in our Christmas bowl or post. (Please write Werribee Crossroads Uniting Church as your church.)
  • Donate online at https://christmasbowl.actforpeace.org.au/ (Please write Werribee Crossroads Uniting Church as your church.)
  • Go straight to our church’s online donation page with this link: mycb.link/45154
  • Scan the QR code on the blue Christmas Bowl poster in the foyer to go to our church’s online donation page.

Each week in church during Advent we will be learning about projects that your money will support.

Gaza and the Christmas Bowl

During the Six-Day War of 1967 the Israeli army occupied the Gaza Strip, bordered on the Mediterranean Sea, 45 kms long and about 6-8 kms wide, with a refugee population of 1.6 million Palestinians.
Gaza Strip people experience all the severe vulnerability of a zone controlled by a foreign power. Widespread absolute poverty, an economy in collapse, ruling parties in conflict, movement of goods, people and basic utilities controlled by the government of Israel.
The Near Eastern Council of Churches (NECC) Department of Service to Palestinian Refugees (DSPR) is supported by the World Council of Churches Act Alliance. Australia’s Act for Peace Christmas Bowl is a partner along with many church aid agencies.
The DSPR offers access to quality health care, livelihood and trade vocational courses of study, emergency relief and an advocacy program.
On this Second Sunday of Advent, Australia’s Christmas Bowl supports Dr Lubna, who brings clinical healthcare to children, women and young people traumatized by recent bombings. Israel’s blockade makes it difficult to access food and medicine, and now Covid-19 adds more hardship.
Your gift to Christmas Bowl will help the NECC continue its life-changing care for refugee people. (NT)
How to donate: You can place money directly into the special Christmas Bowl in the church, or enclose it in one of the Christmas Bowl envelopes.

Pastoral care at Christmas

Celebrating the birth of the Prince of Peace thousands of years after the event can be a bittersweet experience. Whilst people experience loneliness, heartache, discord amid togetherness, celebration, and harmony, they often feel pressured not to express ‘bad’ or ‘sad’ feelings, only those of happiness and joy. So how can we care for each other pastorally at Christmas?
Wishing people the blessings of Christmas, rather than a Happy or Merry Christmas, and open questions like, “what are your plans for Christmas…?”, provides space for people to more easily experience any negative emotions triggered at Christmas. LISTEN for what is not said, as well as what is said.
Asking someone what their memories of Christmas are gives people the painful experiences of Christmas, experiences that may be colouring their expectations of this Christmas Season. People’s support networks can shrink at this time as family, friend and others are on holidays. Help them think about alternatives they might turn to.
If Christmas is or has been hard for you personally, it may be helpful to share that fact, enabling others to be honest with the feelings they experience around Christmas.
Rather than focusing on the romantic picture of the Holy family in the picturesque stable, it may be helpful to focus on other aspects of the Christmas story. Through Jesus’s story we are aware that He knows only too well the feelings of fear, isolation and sorrow. Jesus came to bring light and life to a dark world. For Christians, the wonder of Christmas is the message of hope, grace and peace that reassures people that they are loved, and held in the arms of God. We pray that this may help to bring strength and support to those suffering at Christmas.
Audrey Kateena, Pastoral Care Worker

Advent studies

Our minister will be leading some online Advent studies at 7.30pm on Thursday 2 and continuing on 9 & 16 December, Log in at https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87547414698 or use the meeting ID directly: 875 4741 4698 on Zoom.
If you would prefer a daytime in-person meeting at the church on the same dates at 11 am, please contact Annetia Goldsmith via the office any morning on 9741 1084.
Special communion service outdoors this Sunday
A communion service will be held at 1 pm this Sunday 5 December in the children’s playground area behind the church for anyone, vaccinated or not vaccinated. Masks will be optional.
Double vaccination note
It is still compulsory for everyone to QR Code into Church each week and that Vaccination Certificates must be presented every week even if they were presented previously as different people are volunteering and are unaware of what has been shown previously.

What’s On This Week

  • Monday: 9.30 am Playgroup
  • Wednesday: 7 for 7.30 pm Church Council at 16 Baden Drive Hoppers Crossing
  • Thursday: 7.30 pm Online Advent Study (see notice)

Worship Plan for this coming week

5 December 2021

Bible Readings

Malachi 3:1–4; Philippians 1:3–11; Luke 1:68–79 and 3:1–6

Rosters for 5 Dec (& 12 Dec)

  • Greetings:  Helen G (Liz B)
  • Cleaning:  Jan B, Liesl & Abi (Luciana A, Lyn O’M, Judy O’K)
  • AV:  Rob B (Paul C)
  • QR & Vaccination Deb & Paul C (Luciana A, Marg & Neil T)
  • Morning Tea: Mary D & Julie R (Elaine B & Asanka P)
  • Flowers: Luciana A (Salote T)
  • Music: Wendy B (Gina L)
  • Prayers: Ken S (Liz B)
  • Reader: Margaret F (Mary D)

Housekeeping & Help

Pastoral care will be maintained during these difficult days but it is subject to the rules regarding access to hospitals and aged care homes.

Please contact:

Audrey will be the primary contact on Mondays and Thursdays and Annetia at other times.

CHURCH OFFICE INFORMATION

The office is open weekdays from 9:30am to 12pm.

Telephone 03 9741 1084.  Postal address is PO Box 2156 Werribee 3030.
Email office@crossroadsunitingchurch.org.au