The Liturgical Year starts with Advent – and here’s your calendar for the coming year!
New Synod Meeting Planning Committee
|Expressions of interest are now open for people interested in helping shape future Synod meetings. Synod 2022 adopted a proposal to create a new committee appointed by the Standing Committee, with its membership to include up to eight people incorporating a diversity of Church members and minority voices. Its purpose is to plan and arrange the theme, venue, community life and timetable for future meetings of the Synod, giving priority to broad engagement with the membership of the Church, through the implementation of interactive, engaging and creative strategies and processes.
This year’s Tributes Service will be held at Wesley Church (Lonsdale St Melbourne) on Saturday, July 23 from 2.30pm. Traditionally held during Synod meetings, the service honours ministers who, since the previous Synod meeting, have been ordained, retired or received from other denominations, or celebrated 50, 60, 65 and 70 years since ordination or commissioning. The service will also be livestreamed.
Synod 2022 wrap
UC members gathered in Melbourne recently for three days of discussion, deep engagement and discernment as part of Synod 2022. All three days and the Opening Worship service, which featured the installation of Moderator David Fotheringham, can be found on the Synod 2022 YouTube channel, while daily updates were posted to the Crosslight website.
Applications for 2022 Share Grants are now open. Since 1980, the Share Grants program has provided financial assistance to enhance the quality and scope of UnitingCare and Uniting Church services to the community in Victoria and Tasmania. With the program now part of Uniting Vic.Tas, this year’s grants are once again available for parish missions, congregations and others in the community.
St Luke’s has some great activities which could qualify for these grants
|The role of the Gospel of Matthew in engaging with community-led issues, such as violence, land and food security, and unemployment in South Africa will be the focus of an August 4 lecture by Professor Gerald West. The lecture will be held in person at the Centre for Theology and Ministry and also streamed live.
Faith and diversity
|Recent Census data has provided a snapshot of modern Australia, including the fact that for the first time, first and second generation migrants make up more than half of our population, at 51.5 per cent. National Assembly Consultant Rev Dr Apwee Ting explores what this means in terms of faith and diversity.
First Peoples webinar
The role of history and truth-telling in working towards a more just and self-determined future for First Peoples is the subject of a webinar on July 21 organised by the Uniting Church National History Society. First Nations leaders and historians will be part of the Zoom event exploring the Uluru Statement from the Heart.
From Rev Alex Sangster, a telling of the nativity story (great to share with your children and grandchildren):
Lockdown has been hard! After nearly two years of unrest, and a constant shifting of the goal posts, many of us will have unresolved grief and loss issues that have been ‘on-hold’ during the lockdown, and others may be somewhat ambivalent about the security of the roadmap ahead and the continuing presence of Covid cases.
The Presbytery of Port Phillip West is offering two on-line seminars that seek to offer an opportunity to name the grief and loss impact that Covid-19 (and the lockdowns) have had on each of us, as well as provide a pathway for dealing with our unresolved concerns.
Each session will be 2 ½ hours in length and will be offered for either a morning or an evening session Wed evenings or Friday mornings.
Grief and Loss Seminar 1 – Understanding the Stages of Grief
17 Nov – Wed evening, 7-9:30pm, or
19 Nov – Friday morning, 10am -12:30pm
Grief and Loss Seminar 2 – Understanding the Different Types of Grief and Loss
1 Dec – Wed evening, 7-9:30pm, or
3 Dec – Friday morning, 10am -12:30pm
To register for any of these sessions, please go to Trybooking site: https://www.trybooking.com/BVCAP
Looking for Advent ideas? Keen to be a bit more creative this Advent season?
If so, this FREE 3-session Preparing for Advent series is for you!
Suitable for anyone – including, but not limited to, ministers, pastors and lay preachers – multiple sessions of one hour in duration will be offered each day (Nov 10, 17, 24). To register your interest and indicate your preferred timeslots, go to 2021 Preparing for Advent.
For more information e-mail email@example.com.
Advent: Something is Coming!
NEW Resource Something is Coming! is a fresh way to engage households, small groups and whole communities throughout Advent.
This new, FREE resource encourages us to pray, reflect, grieve and rejoice as we draw nearer to Christmas. Available as a downloadable resource, Something is Coming! includes beautiful printable characters to use in making your own Nativity scene and ideas for fostering engagement amongst those
you gather with.
May Something is Coming! be a special part of your Advent 2021 experience!
Check out and download Advent: Something is Coming! for FREE here: Advent: Something is Coming!
Pastoral Care as we ride the waves of a Pandemic
The Presbytery of Port Phillip West is pleased to offer training in how to deal pastorally with our current “Covid/Semi Post-Covid/Back into Lockdown” on-going experiences. How and why do people drop out of church and activities?
What practical things can we do to help people as they consider returning to church?
We are running two three-hour seminars:
Pastoral Care as we ride the waves of a Pandemic – Part 1 and Part 2 –
These seminars will contain the following material and is based on the study and training developed by Rev Dr John Savage, a United Methodist Minister from the USA.
Part 1 Seminar:
- Identifying inclusion and exclusion experiences
- Understanding the track that leads to on-going attendance or no further attendance (relevant to church and any other group life)
- Identifying the implications for our own setting
- Coming back after Covid
- How to care for people who have stopped attending
Part 2 Seminar:
- Enabling tracks to return to church/group life.
- Entry/Re-entry process and the readiness grid
- Visiting inactive members and closure in a visit
- What keeps active members active?
- “Why are you still a Christian?” a module from Makes you Wonder.
There will be two time slots for each seminar to cater for as many people as possible.
Pastoral Care as we ride the waves of a Pandemic – Part 1.
Aug 12, Thursday 6.00 pm – 9.00 pm Zoom only
Aug 20, Friday 9.30 am – 12.30 pm Zoom or in person at Hoppers Crossing UC.
Pastoral Care as we ride the waves of a Pandemic – Part 2.
Aug 26, Thursday 6.00 pm – 9.00 pm Zoom only
Sept 3, Friday 9.30 am – 12.30 pm Zoom or in person at Hoppers Crossing UC.
This training is offered free as a gift from the Presbytery of Port Phillip West.
It is open and would be of benefit to ministers, pastors, chaplains, people involved in pastoral care, welcomers and church councillors.
You need to register through the following link https://www.trybooking.com/BSEGF
Pastoral Care Seminars
We have had over 200 people attend our previous pastoral care seminars with very positive feedback. The interactive nature and the ability to become more aware of how and why we listen have been common threads from the participants.
We are repeating our initial Pastoral Care Seminar 1 on the following dates and you can register here for this seminar https://www.trybooking.com/BRJHY
- July 16 Friday 9.30 – 12.30pm Zoom and in person at Hoppers Crossing
- July 21 Wednesday 6.00pm – 9.00pm Zoom only
- Sept 14 Tuesday 6.00pm – 9.00pm Zoom only
This seminar teaches you about active listening, communication, and the specific listening skills of paraphrase and perception checks. This session is a pre-requisite for other sessions of the Pastoral Care Seminars being run later in the year.
Seminar 7 “Dealing with Criticism, fogging and listening conversation”
September 16 or Sept 24
Seminar 8 “Neuro Linguistic Programming and listening conversations”
Oct 7 or Oct 22
You can register for these seminars here https://www.trybooking.com/BSFZS
Jeanne and Narelle
Presbytery of Port Phillip West
So many wonderful events in Melbourne are now available to us through the option to attend via Zoom! Pilgrim Theological College is where our ordained and lay people undertake their training for ministry and ongoing professional development and formation in the Uniting Church in Victoria.
“The first Northey Lecture for 2021 will offer the theological viewpoint of an Australian First Nations theologian who has spent the past two decades decolonising biblical narratives and constructing a theology that draws on Australia First Nations creation stories (Ancestral Narratives) and our understanding of the Creator’s actions and interactions through our Spirit Ancestors in the creation of our world, humanity, customs, laws, ceremonies, songs, rituals, connection to land, water and sea; language, cosmology, worldview and philosophy – this being the basis to the formation of First Nations identity, faith and Spirituality.”
Dr. Anne Pattel-Gray is an Aboriginal woman who is a descendant of the Bidjara/ Kari Kari people in Queensland and she is a recognised Aboriginal leader within Australia – nationally and internationally. She has dedicated her life to the struggle of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and she is a strong campaigner and lobbyist and deeply committed to seeking justice, equity and equal representation for Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander people. She is very proud of her Aboriginal culture and heritage and is a strong advocate for Aboriginal women, children, families and community regarding our Cultural and basic Human Rights. She has developed a leadership quality that promotes and builds a deeper sense of community and participation that brings a greater Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander heritage and cultural identity and cohesion with the broader community that leads to beneficial partnerships, engagement and reconciliation.
You can read more and register here:
For those of you who like to keep track of the lectionary readings, you can download a PDF copy here:
In all of the change that happens around us, one of the constant aspects of our faith journey at St Luke’s is the annual cycle of the liturgical calendar, marking the seasons of Jesus’ journey on earth.
Tomorrow we commence the period of Lent – 40 days of reflection and sacrifice as we imagine the time spent by Jesus in the desert, grappling with fears and temptations.
If you are looking for some resources to use as part of your devotional time during Lent, here are some suggestions:
Every year at Easter, Common Grace brings a Lent series based on the central teachings of Jesus. In 2021 they’ve put together a compilation series from Christian teachers, who show us what it looks like when justice overflows from following Jesus.
To sign up to their weekly Lenten emails, click here.
Uniting World’s Lent Event
UnitingWorld is the part of the Uniting Church with the privilege of nurturing relationships with our global church family, and we love the season of Lent! Through Lent Event, we provide a Bible Study series to help you think through what it means to be a global neighbour, and encourage you to take action with a 40-day challenge to give or take up something that helps make the world a better place. With stories that show how your prayers and gifts are building hope and ending poverty around the world, we aim to cultivate generosity, compassion and awareness of others.
If you’re ready to take a new look at Lent, go for a deep dive online to find resources, and check out www.lentevent.com.au for simple ways to get involved.