OUR COMMUNITY NEWS FOR TODAY AND THE COMING WEEK
COMMUNITY NEWS FOR TODAY & THE COMING WEEK
The second week of Advent focusses on peace. But the peace of Advent should not be confused with the absence of conflict. The peace of Advent is a peace that demands justice, and a peace that subverts our notions of power. John the Baptist echoes the longing of the prophet Isaiah when he remembers ‘the voice of one crying in the wilderness’ – and he takes on the persona of Elijah as he seeks to ‘prepare the way of the Lord, and make his paths straight’. For it was well known that the prophet Elijah (2 Kings 1:8) would return to herald the arrival of the long-awaited Messiah. Of course, both Isaiah and Elijah had reputations of being forthright in the way they told truth to power, and it is with this in mind that John calls the people of Israel to repentance. Now, at first glance, we might think phrases such a ‘brood of vipers’ and ‘now the axe is lying at the root of the trees’ - might seem a little out of place when talking about ‘peace’, and yet true peace, much like hope, can only come at a cost. How are we willing to speak truth to power in order to make a way for peace? What does repentance look like in our lives, that we might demonstrate the way of peace for others?
(Christmas Bowl envelopes and Gifts for Peace catalogues are available on the table at the foyer door.)
Activism against gender-based violence
The Rev. Charissa Suli (UCA Assembly) calls us to face the painful truth that domestic and family violence happens in all corners of society, including our own communities. “All people are created in the image of God. Our commitment as a Church is to the equality of men and women and respect for all humans,” said Charissa. “Join me as we speak strongly against all forms of domestic and family violence and let us be the hope-bearers of Christ to the world.”
Uniting people: Deize Lima
Deize is one of those people. She comes from Sao Paulo, Brazil. She graduated from university in that city majoring in psychology.
She says “Coming to Australia, I had to learn Australian language, and new cultures—many things are different. We now live nearby, which is very convenient to my work. I find my work (managing foster care placements) is rewarding, as I know I’m helping someone achieve better outcomes in life”.
Referrals come to Uniting Western Foster Care from the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Child Protection Unit. Applications from those wishing to be foster carers are carefully processed, and these folk go through comprehensive interviews to assess their suitability.
“After the assessment process, our accreditation panel will have meetings to discuss the suitability of potential foster carers. There are options for emergency, short term, respite or long term caring for a child or young person”, says Deize.
“Uniting Western Foster Care endeavours to match a child or young person with a stable placement, and we want to support the building of positive relationships in their lives. I’m in a role of ongoing support of each placement; assisting the child or young person with educational, social, cultural and health needs, transport, school and sporting uniforms, IT equipment and psychological needs, ” she says.
A comment: Victorian legislation provides that State care ends when a young person reaches 18 years. Evidence shows that the next three years are critical for study, starting work and acquiring independent living skills. Find out more! (NT)
A great celebration
Thank you everyone for your support of the PCG and Church Council at our Dedication service last Sunday. It was a well-deserved celebration for the completion of restoration and painting work done by all concerned.
Special thanks to Margaret Gook, Ken Storey, Rev Ian Pierce, Rose, Roland and Frances Geilen, and Robert Renton for organising, setting up and cleaning up, and to Geoff Gook, Eric and Rowie Griffiths, Kevin Edgar, Mary Dixon and Alan Thompson for freshening up the gardens. It was a huge effort by all and very much appreciated.
It was great to have some of the key contractors, Synod representative Rina Neustroski, Living Heritage representative Joanne Lyngcoln, and Wyndham Councillor Heather Marcus join us for the celebration.
The PCG (Property Control Group, pictured above) meets every Wednesday morning to oversee and often carry out personally the maintenance of our property. Their contribution is absolutely critical to the life of this congregation, and we are very grateful indeed.
Crossroads Carol Service next Sunday, 7 pm, in the Church.
Bring a friend!
Worship Plan for this week
9.30 am Advent 2 Service (Rev. David Walker)
12 pm Lisu Service
2.30 pm Dinka Service
7 pm Choir practice
Activities this week
Monday: 9.30 am Playgroup (Foyer)
Wednesday: 6 pm Church Council (at the Gooks)
Thursday: 8 pm Home Group
Friday: 9.30 am Uniting Playgroup (Foyer);
5 pm African Youth (Foyer); Twilight Market (Hall)
Saturday: 10 am African Youth (Foyer);
5.30 pm Carols at the Mansion
Sunday: 9.30 am (Rev. Ian Pearse);
4.30 pm Young People’s Group;
7 pm Carol Service
Bible Readings – 15 December 2019
Isaiah 38:1–10; James 5:7–10; Matthew 11:2–11; Psalm 146:5–10.
Rosters for Next Week
Rosters for 15 December 2019
Minister: Rev. Ian Pearse
Duty Elder: Margaret Gook
Greeting: Rose Geilen
Morning Tea: Margaret Dent & Mary Dixon
Flowers: Margaret Forrester
Reader: Ian Gainey
AV Desk: Rob Bradley
Prayers of the People: Jan Bradley
Piano: Wendy Barnes
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.