COMMUNITY NEWS FOR TODAY & THE COMING WEEK
Our history: Little River Congregation
In the early days of white settlement in this district, Werribee and Little River people began small village congregations. The Primitive Methodist Church at Little River was built in 1869, fifteen years before Thomas Chirnside’s gift of the Presbyterian building in Werribee.
Time and suburban expansion has enabled our Crossroads UC faith community to grow with the City of Wyndham, and to include people who came from the small congregations nearby.
Julie Rees and Lois Stiglich bring colourful memories of Little River Uniting (former Methodist-Presbyterian) congregation.
John Rees, great-grandfather of Julie and Lois, was superintendent of the Sunday School for 36 years.
“Lois was six months old when we moved to our parents’ Little River farm. Dad’s Auntie May played the pedal organ for the hymns in the old Methodist bluestone building, which seated 40 people”, says Julie.
Later on, Lois and Julie played the organ for worship when Auntie May retired.
“Methodist preachers came from Werribee. The only Sunday School in Little River was the Methodist, because we had a hall and kitchen, unlike the other denominations. We combined for worship with the Presbyterians, month about in each church, and the Presbyterian minister came from Lara“, says Lois.
Julie Rees and Lois Stiglich tell the story
“Sunday School anniversaries were huge, with tiered seating in the Mechanics Institute Hall, and a big afternoon tea afterwards”.
“Our farm was on the south side of the highway, near today’s Avalon airport; we travelled by bus to Morongo Girls’ College in Geelong. When we were teenagers, we enjoyed the PFA at Lara,” they say.
Lois and Julie were Sunday School teachers, and their parents were active in the congregation’s leadership and fund-raising. “Dad was involved with the Fire Brigade and the Cemetery Trust”, they say.
“The small community changed at the time that blocks were subdivided into five acre lots, becoming hobby farms. Many people ran horses, the pony club met on Sundays; Sunday School and worship attendance fell away,” says Julie.
Before the formation of the Uniting Church in Australia, the Presbyterian church building became unused, and was sold to become a private residence.
When the Uniting Church was closed, items of furniture were distributed amongst the congregation. (See picture)
Let’s remember the generations of faithful Christians who pioneered Christ’s church today. (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.
Bible Readings – 26 July 2020
Genesis 29:15–28; Romans 8:26–39; Matthew 13:31–33, 44–52; Psalm 105:1–11, 45b.
Rosters for 26 July 2020
Greetings: Kur Mag
Prayers of the People: Annetia Goldsmith
Reader: Paul Cochran
Flowers: Bev Lambie
Piano: Wendy Barnes
Join us in prayer for
- the efforts of many people to push for a better world to come out of this Covid-19 crisis, for a focus on renewable energy developments, for a fairer distribution of the nation’s wealth, for the release of captives (those people we lock away because they are refugees and asylum seekers who came by boat instead of plane).
NEWS AND NOTES
Safe Church training
We are in the process of updating our Safe Church training and checking of Working With Children certificates. Last week’s brief video from the Rev. Deacon Jeanne Beale alerted those people watching the online service to this process. Everyone who holds any kind of leadership position or meets with or works with children needs to experience the training, and have an up-to-date WWC.
But Safe Church is not just about the safety of children; it is also about the safety of adults, especially older adults as well.
Jan Bradley and Sandra Savory play key roles in our congregation’s Safe Church support. Please feel free to speak to either Jan or Sandra if you have any concerns.
Thursday morning discussion group
The next Thursday morning discussion group will meet via Zoom on 30 July at 10.30 am, and the topic will be the parable of the dishonest steward, Luke 16:1–13, and its relevance for life in a post-Covid-19 world. If you are interested in joining the discussion, please contact Annetia Goldsmith or Robert Renton.
What to do until the apocalypse comes…
Perhaps like me you feel frustrated by the retarding impact of Covid-19 on humanity’s inaction about global warming. The Vic and Tas Uniting Synod’s e-news this week brought a hopeful and constructive item. My eyes lit on the Uniting Earth’s Climate Pastoral Care Conference, two-day online event July 30–August 1. The focus is on this planet’s environment, the church and people.
Keynote speaker is Dr Rebecca Huntley (Friday 12.45 pm) on “Why is it so hard to talk about climate change?” Other seminar leaders discuss how your local church can take action; topics such as climate anxiety, grief, mental health, and how we can provide best practice pastoral care for people who are struggling.
The whole conference cost is $30. To view the full program and register visit
You might like to join me, by (1) registering (2) praying for global climate leadership, Crossroads UC Justice Task Group and local environment groups. (Neil Tolliday)
3030 Beach Patrol
This would have been our fifth anniversary but we can’t meet because of Covid-19 restrictions. Take care and keep safe, and we look forward to meeting again once we can come out of lockdown.
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.