COMMUNITY NEWS FOR TODAY & THE COMING WEEK
Do not touch me
Noli me tangere (Fra Angelico)
There are passages in the bible (John 20:14–18) that have interpreters stumped—or at least quite divergent in their thinking about the meaning. There’s a good summary of the range of views as to what this passage in John’s gospel might mean in Wikipedia—see the following: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_20:17).
What do you feel John might have intended his readers to understand about what he had written? We know that John wrote his gospel as an expression of theology rather than history, and this episode is not recorded in any of the other three gospels. So John had a reason for including this story.
For me, the explanation that I like most is this: John has Mary first of all not recognising the risen Jesus, then when he calls her by name, she says “Teacher” (‘Rabboni’), to which Jesus responds, “Don’t cling onto me [as teacher]… go and tell the others about my God and your God….”
For me, John is pointing to a greater reality, to not get fixed on one’s own limited understanding (‘teacher’, in Mary’s case) and instead to look beyond to that which Jesus witnessed throughout the three years of his ministry as the kingdom of God.
It is terribly easy to fall into the trap of attempting to confine the mystery of Jesus and the resurrection into our own understanding and mental ‘walls’. When we inevitably fail to do that, we can too easily reject the witness of Jesus and the kingdom of God. (RR)
Our congregation: Margaret Forrester
Margaret’s father, the Rev. Ewen McLean, was school chaplain at Geelong College, so Margaret’s childhood was located close to the College in Newtown. Her family home high on Newtown hill looked down the Barwon River valley.
Margaret attended St David’s (former Presbyterian, now Uniting) Church, Newtown, where she belonged to the PFA and Tennis Club. She went to Morongo Presbyterian Girls College, then Geelong Teachers’ College and fourth year special education at University of Melbourne.
Her first teaching appointment was at Warrnambool East Special Education School, where she met John, also teaching there. They married, and moved to Werribee in 1981; three children came along. Now they have four much loved grandchildren.
Margaret returned to part-time teaching in 1992; she began at Manorvale PS in 1995 and has continued there ever since, now as a Leading Teacher.
After her dad died, Moira, her mother, came to live in Heathglen Village Werribee, and she is now in Manor Court, aged 98. After so many years in Geelong, it was a difficult transition for Moira, and Margaret says “We both appreciated the support we found at Crossroads congregation. It’s a great way to feel we belong here.”
As Covid19 brings the closure of schools and transition to online learning, Margaret is concerned for those children whose home life is not stable or whose families may not have the ability to support their learning.
“Church has been important all my life—I love the hymns and I find the order of things is helpful,” says Margaret. (NT)
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 –19 April 2020
Acts 2:14a, 22–32; I Peter 1:3–9; John 20:19–31; Psalm 16
Rosters for Next Week (Online)
Rosters for 19 April 2020
Prayers of the People: Vivien Bleakley
Reader: Rose Geilen
Greeting: Luciana Aragon
For your prayers this week…
Our prayers this week come from Julie Perrin, who is a Melbourne writer, oral storyteller, and associate teacher at Pilgrim Theological College, University of Divinity.
Fierce Lover of life,
give strength to our arms and our resolve.
Critical is this time for cleaning, swabbing, scrubbing
and washing our hands again.
And again, and again.
Let us join ourselves to the task
with readiness, steadiness, clarity.
Because we too love life,
our own and our neighbour’s.
FOR YOUR INFORMATION
Boxes for Holy Week
We have been very much helped in this difficult time by the initiative taken by our minister, Annetia Goldsmith, in the creation of these Holy Week boxes, and we are very grateful to Annetia, Julie, Rose, Jan, Asanka, Elizabeth, Paul, Sandra Frances and Danielle for their delivery of these boxes to our front doors (all in accord with safety procedures, of course!).
People on the edge of our Crossroads community, and I think of Rengata Taboru, seasonal worker picking vegies in Werribee South, experiencing isolation from her family in Kiribati, west Pacific, have expressed appreciation for delivery of the Holy Week box. (NT)
Thank you also for everyone involved in the distribution of Connection to those people who don’t have email addresses. If we don’t have your email address, could you please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can add you to the list.
World Vision sponsorship
Crossroads sponsors children through World Vision, and the following has come from World Vision regarding the current emphasis in supporting the communities where the children live.
“During this time of unprecedented global uncertainty and the far-reaching consequences of COVID-19, we want to keep you updated on what World Vision is doing to help your sponsored children.
Right now, because of your sponsorship we can focus on helping to prepare sponsored children and their caregivers to deal with COVID-19.
In many of the 54 countries where our sponsored children live, World Vision is scaling a focused response on prevention and helping to lessen the virus' catastrophic effect in your sponsored children's community.
Education campaigns on handwashing and respiratory hygiene and the promotion of healthy family and community water, sanitation and hygiene practices, are among the work currently underway to help protect your sponsored children and their community.”
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.