Crossroads Connection



The daughter of Abraham

With Love to the World points out that this is the only occasion when the term “daughter of Abraham” is used (in contrast with the number of times that “son(s) of Abraham” is used. It reminds us of the priority Jesus gave to women. An online commentary raises an important question for all religious communities….

… This is a story about the role and function of our religious traditions, our claims about what could and should be practiced on the “Sabbath” or who is allowed within the walls of our synagogues and religious communities. Special religious practices may become hindrances to inclusion. We must be diligent to recognize what theological ideas we hold dear that disallow full participation from others.

And, Luke’s Jesus could not be clearer or more consistent on this point. He’s no Sabbath breaker! He operates well within Jewish tradition of the day. But he is also not one to allow the tradition to exclude people from access to the community and the potential for their healing. Many in the crowd agree.

These are stories about community. What kind of community do we want to be? And, do religious traditions help us to become that kind of community or do they hinder our desires? Will our traditions hinder the “daughter of Abraham,” in our day, from joining us today?” (Emerson Powery: aspx?commentary id=1753 )

Worship Plan for this week

Today’s worship services

9.30 am Family Service (Rev. Valerie Johnson)

11.45 am Lisu Service

2 pm Sudanese Fellowship

Activities this week

Monday: 9.30 am Playgroup

Wednesday: 2.30 pm Seniors Afternoon Tea

Friday: 9.30 am Uniting Playgroup; 5 pm African Youth (church foyer)

Saturday: 10 am African Youth (church foyer);

6.30 pm Saturday Take Away Night at Geoff and Lauren Duckworth.

Bible Readings – 1 September 2019

Jeremiah 2:4–13; Hebrews 13:1–8, 15–16; Psalm 81:1, 10–16; Luke 14:1, 7–14.

Rosters for Next Week

Rosters for 1 September 2019

Minister: Rev. Ian Pearse

Duty Elder:
Greeting: Rose Geilen
Morning Tea: Jan Sillitoe & Vivien Bleakley
Flowers: Salote Tupou
Reader: Paul Cockran
AV Desk: Brendan Geilen
Prayers of the People: Robyn Tomkins
Piano: Gina Lee

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.


Getting ready for the church fête

Our annual Church fete will be held on Saturday 19th October between 9am and 2pm. Now is the time to start gathering items to donate to the book, trash and treasure, nearly new, jewellery and plant stalls.

If you can volunteer for set-up, pack-up or on a stall, please add your name to the sign-up sheet on the noticeboard. The first meeting of people interested in helping will be on Sunday September 1, after church. If you have items you would like collected, please leave your details at the office.

Interfaith Network Places of Worship Tour

“Insights from Asia”: Wednesday 28 August, from 9.00 am to 4 pm. Bus leaves Wyndham Community & Education Centre, 20 Synnot St, Werribee at 9 am. There are only 48 seats.

First stop: Shiva Vishnu Temple, Carrum Downs, 10.45 am–1 pm, including free vegetarian lunch.

Second stop: Buddhist Meditation Centre, Brunswick, 2–3.30 pm, includes introduction to mediation. (Note: special requirements are the removal of shoes at the entrance.)

Bus returns by 4.45 pm.

There is no cost for this tour, but you must book by 23 August to Laurence Gray (0401 337 696) or through


The Dixons and Crossroads (part 2)

[The story of the Dixons is really also a story of the Crossroads congregation as well. NT]

Blair takes up the story: “I grew up in a Presbyterian family, living in Sandringham, Brighton and Elsternwick. After completing my Ag. Sci. degree, including four years scholarship study in New Zealand, Mary and I were both working at the State Research Farm in Werribee. Mary specialised in pasture plants breeding, and I was in teaching, research and development of dairy foods and their processing at what became the Gilbert Chandler Institute. I did a lot of the early work on spreadable butter, now on supermarket shelves! The teaching was for dairy factory operatives.

In the two years leading up to church union, Werribee Presbyterians and Methodists (St Luke’s) worshipped together from 1975, led by Revs Bill Service and Ray Sholl.

During the early 1980s, discussions commenced about the formation of two separate UC congregations in Wyndham, the second being for Hoppers Crossing. Sale of one of the sites could fund the redevelopment of the other and seed the new congregation. So there was extensive discussion as to which of the church sites would be for Werribee. The choice became the Presbyterian site as it had much less commercial value because of heritage listing orchestrated by the now continuing Presbyterians. It was hard for the Methodists leaving their church (now Office Works site).

The sale of the St Luke’s site enabled construction of the foyer and kitchen joining the sanctuary and the hall buildings. Re-modelling was completed in the time of Rev. Norm Gray, about 1991, and worship attendances rose to 200.”
Blair continues: “The Hoppers Crossing congregation commenced with one of our Ministers (Rev. Horrie Duncan) temporarily using a local school. I was chair of Parish Council for five years from the late 1980s, with each congregation having its own independent Council of Elders.

We both remember the “Pilgrimage march” one day in 1989, from St Luke’s to Crossroads, when the Methodists gave up their building, a very sad event. Joan Humphrey had collected people’s memories of St Luke’s people in a booklet and this eased the pain a little.

Rev. Pam Kerr was minister at Crossroads from about 1993, until she was elected Moderator. Revs Alison McRae and Richard Arnold (Deacons) and Tony Duncan along with a core of church members, all helped the establishment of Werribee Support and Housing, which had begun as a small care centre in the bluestone manse.”

Mary continues:  “I was a Crossroads representative on the Maribyrnong Presbytery for 18 years, during which time I organised the loan of books to presbytery members relating to indigenous issues, available from Otira. Also I served on the Pastoral Relations Committee for 8 years.

During the 80s and 90s we built up an active social justice and covenanting groups at Crossroads, inspired by Rev Charles Harris, founding father of the Uniting Aboriginal & Islander Christian Congress (UAICC) and Vince Ross, founder of Narana Creations. The Justice Task Group continues.”

Blair says: “I became a Christian when I was a member of the Inter-Varsity Fellowship group in New Zealand.  I came back and got married, then started training for the Australian gymnastic team at the 1956 Olympic Games. Then commenced a sub-career in volunteering. Rev. John Wade asked me to look after the Werribee Methodist Boys Club, which I did for 3 years in the late 1950s. When the Werribee outdoor swimming pool was built, I volunteered to teach lifesaving there for 8 or 9 years.

At about that time, Mary and I took custody of two children when their mother died, and cared for them for over one year. I was also teaching computer know-how for 10 years in a Skillshare program, started by Jenny Hayes.

Rev. Deacon Alison McRae had identified many people in the new suburb of Wyndham Vale who were isolated; so she and Sister Frances from St Andrews sought four volunteers from their respective congregations to provide monthly lunches. Crossroads provided Lorna Hodge, John Kinrade, Mary and me. The eight of us used a Council facility in the area. At the end of the year, the Council, liking the idea so much, announced that the facility would no longer be available for us because they would take over and do it their way. Mary and I continued in their “Lunch with the bunch” program for 20 years.” (To be continued)


Church Office is open 9.30 am–12 noon, Monday–Friday

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