Posts from June 2020

Posts from June 2020

What I Can See from My Window – Rosemary

When we moved into our new home, I could see a tree with glossy green leaves from the large windows that overlooked our courtyard garden. As it was wintertime, we had no idea what the tree was.   However, when summer came, and large cone-shaped buds formed on the tree we learnt that it was a ‘Little Gem’ Magnolia.  I was amazed when the first bud opened revealing a large white flower of breathtaking beauty.   But I soon realised the…

Minister’s Message

Our bearded dragon, Thor, has gone into brumation. This is hibernation for reptiles basically. She goes to sleep in her tank when it starts to get cold and stays asleep until it warms up again. It doesn’t matter if we keep the heat lamp on or if the central heating is going, she still goes to sleep as the summer ends and wakes up as spring arrives. She just seems to know. Thor is now 7½ years old and she…

Missional Community Development at MUC – living out our values, some great stories………

This contribution celebrates some very promising outcomes of MUC’s decision in 2015 to develop and implement a Missional Community Development Strategy (MCDS) that better connects with and serves our community. The MCDS responds to our MUC Strategic Plan ‘Our Journey Forward’ (OJF). Together with and supported by the broader MUC Ministry Team our Missional Community Development Worker (MCDW) Emma Hanna has really brought this to life over the last few years with a focus on being relational, Christ-centred, and risk-taking.…

The Woman in the Red Hat

She had seen the red hat in an ‘op shop’. As it was an expensive brand, looked new, and was being sold cheaply, she couldn’t resist buying it. It was a daring purchase for one who had become so conservative. But now she wore it with confidence, and it was a good companion for her greying hair. As well she had got to a stage in her life when she didn’t care what people thought. Maybe moving to a more…

Trust

At this time when we can’t see the COVID-19 virus, we have to trust our leaders and medical experts that it exists. Our faith requires we trust in an unseen God so perhaps this can help us. While our freedom of movement is curtailed our memories are free to roam unfettered. This allows us to double-dip into pleasurable moments we’ve experienced in the past. Recently my mind drifted back to something I’d seen last spring while walking along the footpath…

Narrative lectionary readings

Until 13 September, the Narrative Lectionary does not set readings for each Sunday allowing the preacher to return to some themes or books of the bible, or to spend some time in other books and stories we don’t usually read and study together. Later in the year, COVID-19 allowing, we will be running a Bible study on the book of Revelation. This is one that chills the hearts of some and excites others, but it isn’t one we tend to…

Recapping the Knitting day via Zoom

I would never have thought 5 years ago, when starting the MUC Knitters Group, that we would have had a World Knitting Day event on Zoom. But we did, and it was great! Our small group of knitters has met once a month (except December and January) for the past five years at the MUC Hub and with the help of others who couldn’t attend the meetings, have created hundreds of warm garments, blankets and soft toys, with the specific…

Acknowledging Refugee Week

This week is Refugee Week.  Usually we would be meeting in different ways to celebrate the cultures and stories of those seeking refuge or asylum in Australia, but we can’t at the moment.  However, there is still plenty we can do.   speak to members of our Connections group to find out what they need pray, pray and pray some more write to our politicians telling them we haven’t forgotten those people in detention centres despite trying to deal with this…

Why should we get involved in the climate change debate?

The Uniting Church’s Justice International Mission (JIM) is urging Synod to update its position on the urgency of addressing the causes of climate change and it is seeking support from all congregations.  Their report summarises the scientific evidence that shows that climate change is already causing severe harm to the lives of hundreds of millions of people across the globe and outlines what actions we as Australians should be taking as part of the global effort to respond to the…

Theological reflection on communion during COVID-19

The serving of communion during COVID-19 is a tricky one. Depending on your theology of communion, the way you understand communion, you will have formed your own views. What follows are my views as well as an explanation of the reflection I have undertaken whilst forming these views. After much discussion at worship portfolio, we have reached a decision to not celebrate communion whilst our services are online. I know some people are not going to agree with this decision…

‘Phosphorescence – On awe, wonder and the things that sustain you when the world goes dark.’ by Julia Baird

Having recently read this inspirational book I would like to share my thoughts about it with you. We are great fans of Julia Baird, host of the excellent ABC current affairs program ‘The Drum’ and also co-worker of ourdaughter-in-law Hayley Gleeson whom Julia acknowledges in her book as her ‘exceptional work-sister’. Julia writes columns for both The New York Times and The Sydney Morning Herald. Her biography of Queen Victoria was one of New York Times’ top ten books of 2016. Phosphorescence refers…

Leadership as we emerge from the Pandemic

On 17 June 1911, five days before the coronation of King George V, the British suffragettes organised the largest women’s suffrage march ever held in Britain. The date was strategic, as the coronation had centred world attention on London that week. Some 40,000 people marched from Westminster to the Albert Hall that day and at the very front of the march were contingents from New Zealand and Australia. It was a great endorsement of Australasian emancipation of women, for we…

The Church is People – God’s People

I was particularly reminded of this several weeks ago, when cleaning out the top shelf of my cupboard (as we do in this time of lock-down), I ‘found’ a box of get-well cards and letters. These had been sent to me in late 1985 and early 1986, when I had a long spell in the ICU at the Royal Melbourne Hospital, following a bowel resection operation that went wrong and I developed septicemia. For a while, it was not certain I would survive.

Reconciliation – it’s time

As I write this, it is National Reconciliation Week[i] which is a time for all Australians to learn about our shared histories, cultures, and achievements, and to explore how each of us can contribute to achieving reconciliation in Australia. Twenty years ago there was a massive display of support for reconciliation – remember in Sydney, The Bridge Walk for Reconciliation That was twenty years ago. Have we, as a nation moved forward since then? Just in the last decade there…

COVID update 2 June 2020

Dear Friends and Members of Manningham Uniting Church (MUC), The COVID-19 group continues to meet to look at the easing of restrictions by the Victorian government and how we, as a church, might respond.  The group is following the advice of the Victorian government and the VicTas synod of the Uniting Church.  From 1 June, the Victorian government is allowing gatherings of up to 20 people inside.  Along with the current easing of restrictions, all groups must adhere to the following guidelines: up…