COMMUNITY NEWS FOR TODAY & THE COMING WEEK
The Justice Task Group
The Uniting Church at its inauguration affirmed the Gospel’s demand on Christians to confront injustice: “the Church of God is committed to serve the world for whom Christ died” (Basis of Union). Crossroads UC’s Justice Task Group aims to demonstrate a discipleship which fights against systemic injustices.
I asked members of the group about their thoughts.
Valerie Martin says: “We want to help people who are less fortunate than we are. The Justice group connects us with all our neighbours around the world.”
Carol Nancarrow comments: “Participating in this group brings to me the care that we offer to everything that Godhas created. Also, I'm enabled to offer support for the stolen generations of Australia’s indigenous people, through Narana Creations.”
Rob Bradley: “My faith is expressed in care for nature, ever since I was a young person. Justice Task Group connects my faith with passion for God’s environment. I’m proud the Uniting Church in Australia engages with the big issues of climate change. And it’s good to share with others who join in Beach Patrol 3030.”
“Social justice is integral to Christian discipleship,” says Blair Dixon. See Matthew’s Gospel chapter 25; ‘Whenever you did this for any of my people, you did it for me.’ Our group focuses our limited energies, on global warming, asylum seekers and indigenous relationships. Our involvement in JTG makes us more aware of what’s going on in the world.”
Mary Dixon says: “Justice Task Group offers practical ways to respond to the call of the Gospel to love others. Christian belief must be expressed in practical action, otherwise faith becomes theoretical.”
Luciana Manrique: “The support from Justice Group has been a blessing in my life; I belong because I am compelled to use my hands, mind and voice to speak on behalf of goodness, peace, justice and compassion. Having seen extreme poverty in Ecuador in 2004, God’s words give me a purpose in life: Hebrews 1:9 “You have loved justice…. and so I, your God, have chosen you… by anointing you with the oil of joy.”
Armando Aragon: “I belong to the Justice Group because it focuses on fighting injustice of every kind …the aim of every Christian. Raymond Williams has said ‘To be truly radical is to make hope possible rather than despair’. The JTG is making hope possible for many people, including us.”
Neil Tolliday is also a member of the JTG and other social justice groups outside of the congregation and he asks: Would you like to join our Justice group?
Will we act?
When Queen Esther (see the OT book of Esther) learned of Haman's genocidal plot against God’s people, she hesitated. To approach the King uninvited was illegal, and the penalty was death.
Surely she must simply obey the law and hope that God would send deliverance from elsewhere. Yet Mordecai presses her to speak to the King. Nobody else is coming to save them. “Perhaps you have come to royalty dignity for just such a time as this.” Are Christians—raised to royal dignity as children of God—called to the same risky obedience? Climate change harms people and God's creation. Political indifference and greed fuels an eco-cidal plot. Will we act?
Take action by supporting School Strike for Climate events on May 15, as students from around the world confront government inaction on climate disruption.
Join Common Grace and Australian Christians as we pray for creation and climate justice here: https://www.facebook.com/events/1507767699408392/
Join the National School Strike for Climate
There will be a multi-faith service at 10 am on May 15: you can join the service using Zoom or by watching on YouTube or Facebook. Here are the details:
https://zoom.us/j/93368937522 or call 03 7018 2005. The meeting ID is: 933 6893 7522
Worship Plan for this week
Online worship services
Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, all services of public worship are being held online until further notice. See the Facebook address below.
Bible Readings – 17 May 2020
Acts 17:5422–31; I Peter 3:13–22; John 14:15–21; Psalm 66:8–20.
Rosters for 17 May 2020
Greetings: Simon Raza
Prayers of the People: Sandra Savory
Reader: Blair Dixon
Flowers: Elaine Belcher
NEWS AND NOTES
With Love to the World
WITH LOVE TO THE WORLD is a daily Bible reading guide which links week day prayer and Bible study with what happens in church on Sunday. They are published every quarter and cost $5.
There are two spare copies of the May-Aug issue at the church. If anyone would like one, or to be added to the order for the next issue, please contact the office.
It is almost time to compile new rosters for Bible Readers and Prayers of the People. We would love to have more people involved. If you would like to be added to the rosters, or would like to find out what is involved, please contact the church office.
Although we don’t know yet when we can worship together in our church building, we can continue to record our contributions for inclusion in the on-line service. Help is available if needed.
From the editor
I have always liked producing something to be printed, whether it be a newsletter, an academic paper, or a book. I’ve come full circle—when Judy and I were married in 1967 we belonged to the Woodville (S.A.) Presbyterian Church, and one of the things I did then was to produce the weekly newsletter on a couple of wax stencils and an old Gestetner machine. As a Home Missionary in Sunbury and then in my first placement at North Essendon, again I produced a newsletter, but this time using the Fordigraph spirit duplicator. I progressed later to using one of those IBM electric typewriters with the exchangeable ball cartridge while still at Essendon. That was exciting!
Then came journals: I became the editor of the Uniting Church Historical Society’s twice yearly Proceedings of the Society in 1993 and 27 years later, I’m still editing the journal. I produce the national UC Historical Society’s newsletters and have produced the proceedings of the two national conferences held so far.
So, producing the weekly copy of Connection for Crossroads congregation is something I actually enjoy, and now having retired after 40 years of teaching and educational administration and 10 years of presbytery ministering, I find it a pleasure to be able to make this small contribution to our congregation’s life.
Like our erstwhile roving reporter, Neil Tolliday, I would welcome contributions to the newsletter—poetry, photographs, short articles. Why not give it a go?
CHURCH OFFICE AND NEWSLETTER
The Church Office is open 9.30 am–12 noon, Monday–Friday
Telephone 03 9741 1084. Postal address is PO Box 2156 Werribee 3030.