Crossroads Connection


Today’s Worship Leader

Neil Tolliday is first up on the roster of retired ministers providing supply at Crossroads; he has experienced this role since 2002, when he was re-admitted to Ministry of the Word in the Uniting Church.

At an earlier stage of his life, Neil was a Presbyterian minister, working in Macarthur, Western Victoria, Heathmont, Canada and England.  His work took another direction during the 70s and 80s when he taught humanities at Box Hill TAFE College.

Neil wrote stories for Uniting Church Synod publications during the 1990s, including Furrows, Narana Newsletter, Minutes for Mission and Crosslight.

Neil’s locum appointments since 2002 included the Surf Coast, Bellarine Peninsula, Geelong and Melbourne’s western suburbs.

Neil and Marg have now been members of Crossroads UC Werribee for five years.  Neil has been active in the Hobsons Bay Refugee Network, Werribee River Association, Altona Library English Conversation class and Crossroads Justice Task Group.

Marg tutors overseas health professionals on line, preparing them for the Occupational English Test.  (See her web site “Marg Tolliday OET Workshop”).

Neil and Marg worked as English teachers at two universities in China, in Fuzhou and Qingdao, 2004-5. For Neil this was a mind-blowing experience of many colourful cultures under an oppressive regime; for Marg it was a struggle to keep western food on the table!

They both like movies with a political edge - “West Wing”, “Death of Stalin” and “Vice” stand out.


Rosters for 2019

You are invited to contribute to our worship services as the leader of the prayer of intercession, assisting with the children’s ‘CRUNCH’ program (during the worship service), and in decorating the church by arranging flowers.  If you are prepared to join the roster for these activities, please let the volunteers in the office know.

Wear a name badge!

Now is the time for you to wear a name tag at church!

Consider how you can help (1) those people with a short memory, (2) visiting supply preachers, and (3) newcomers and visitors to our congregation.

It’s also good to get into the habit so our new minister will be helped by having name badges prominently displayed!

Request a personal Uniting Church name tag from Rose Geilen in the church office (open on Thursday mornings in January).  Leave your name with Rose, and pay her $12 in advance, and she will order a new tag for you.

Church Office and Connection

Church Office hours until week beginning Monday 29 January: the office will be open 9.30 am–12 noon on Thursdays only.  Phone 9741 1084.  Email

Connection will continue during January.  Please contact me by Tuesday.

Pastoral Care and Contacts in January

Please contact Robyn Tomkins for any general pastoral care matters after December 30.  Contact the Church Council Chairperson, Robert Renton, for other matters as required.

Join us in prayer for…

  • Wyndham Interfaith Network, Laurence Gray, Bhakta Dasa, and the members of the Committee who meet each month, seeking the opportunity to build bridges between Wyndham’s multi-faith communities, as well as working with other agencies to promote social justice issues.
  • The Christian churches of Wyndham as they seek to provide missional activities and share the gospel of Jesus Christ.
  • The Joint Nominating Committee, led by the Rev. Paul Stephens, as they commence the process of seeking a new minister for our Congregation.


As long as he could remember,
he was a stranger;
somehow different.
Flowers, rocks, birds,
spoke to him.

The shimmer of an electric blue dragon fly,
wings translucent in the sun:
orange and black of the butterfly’s
open shut wings against the sky.

Others did not hear,
voices of Aboriginal ancestors
in the trees
beside the White Pioneers’ graves.

Somehow he saw things
at an acute angle,
quite oblique.

One song spoke to his soul,
just one phrase,
the Stranger from Galilee.
He too was a stranger
from somewhere else.

Ian Higgins

Worship Plan for this week

Today’s worship

9.30 am Holy Communion (Rev. Neil Tolliday)

Activities this week

Most activities will resume at the beginning of February.

Next Sunday – 13 January: Baptism of Jesus

9.30 am Family Worship (Rev. Eileen Ray)

Rosters for Next Week

Duty Elder: Luciana Aragon
Greeting: Mary Dixon
Morning Tea: Julie Hamilton & Margaret Forrester
Flowers: Jennie Kirkham
Reader: Mary Dixon
AV Desk: Rob Bradley
Piano: Gina Lee

Bible Readings 13 January 2019

Isaiah 43:1–7; Psalm 29; Acts 8:14–17; Luke 3:15–17, 21–22.


World Faith Communities

Chairperson of Wyndham Inter Faith Network (WIFN), Bhakta Dasa, (pictured) anticipates a new year 2019 of inter-religious co-operation and understanding in this municipality. Bhakta gave leadership during the year alongside Laurence Gray, facilitator; he says events such as the Multi-Faith Dinner and Places of Worship tours reach many people.

(Fifteen people from the Uniting Church attended the Dinner, together with folk from Hindu, Buddhist, Sikh, Baha’i and Moslem communities.)

Social issues such as domestic violence and problem gambling are of concern to members of the WIFN. At its November meeting, the group endorsed the Faith Communities Council of Victoria’s protest against increased electronic gaming machines, and voted to make a submission through Wyndham City Council.

Parliament Of World’s Religions

Ms. Audrey E Kitagawa (pictured) has been elected the first chairwoman of the Parliament of World’s Religions, meeting recently in Toronto, Canada.

Audrey, Hawaian by birth, is a retired lawyer, and President of Light of Awareness International Spiritual Family.  She is a leader in transcultural co-operation, and serves on several United Nations organizations.

10,000 people from 80 nations attended at Toronto, on the organization’s 125th Anniversary.  His Holiness the Dalai Lama gave a keynote address.   Conference programs included: Indigenous peoples, Women’s dignity, Justice, Climate action, and Countering war, hate and violence.

The next meeting of the Parliament of World’s Religions is in 2021; bids are invited from global cities to be the venue, as yet undecided.

This writer asks: What role does the Uniting Church in Australia have in inter-faith dialogue?  What do you think? (NT)

Housekeeping & Help

If you or someone you know is in need of pastoral care, please don’t hesitate to contact either Robyn Tomkins or Robert Renton.  We’re keen to make sure that when people know that someone has gone into hospital or is otherwise ‘out of sorts’, that they are not forgotten.  If we don’t know that someone has suffered some misfortune we are not likely to be able to visit or offer support in some way; so please let us know in such a circumstance.


Telephone 03 9741 1084.  Postal address is PO Box 2156 Werribee 3030.   Email