I hope you and yours have been able to stay well as the COVID numbers continue to rise in South Australia. As we heard recently, we will be riding this wave of the pandemic for the next few weeks and we hope to ride it sensibly and safely.
As a result, we received a communication from the Synod regarding gathered worship and other activities at this time with some factors to help us determine whether or not to gather in person. The Leadership Council agreed not to gather for worship throughout January. We will resume gathered worship when numbers plateau.
Rev. Graham Sturdy prepared an order of service for this Sunday 9 January which is attached for you. He will prepare another at home resource for you for next week which I will email to you. Thank you, Graham, for preparing these for our community.
Please spread the word among your church friends, especially those who do not have email. A sign will be placed on the church door for any potential visitors.
The Advent reflections for this week are to help us hear again and explore more deeply the story of Elizabeth and Mary’s encounter and the joy that erupted in their meeting.
Thursday 16 December
Wednesday 15 December
Week 4 Devotional
Thursday 23 December
Wednesday 22 December
A poem from St. John of the Cross who knew suffering intimately. The poetic language of the mystics can sound unusual to our ears, but they speak out of a lived experience of God that may be welcome in our day.
Tuesday 21 December
Today is summer solstice in the southern hemisphere. In the week we celebrate the birth of Jesus, the Light of the World, we experience the longest day of the year. Priest and author Edward Hays says about this day:
Below is a prayer by Hays for this day…
Monday 20 December
Our final Tuesday night meal for 2021 was held on Tuesday 7 December. Several folk made donations so we could serve entrée boxes from Wild Truffle Catering followed by turkey and ham, roasted vegetables and pudding with custard and cream for dessert.
Anna Wilson from Ascot Community Uniting Church came as a guest to distribute gifts from Ascot for our volunteers. Someone at Ascot made a number of ceramic ornaments with “Thanks” engraved on the back. She also handmade each beautiful paper box. The volunteers who received them so far are deeply touched.
The generosity of the wider community to the ministry of St. Andrew’s speaks volumes to us. People are longing to be part of genuine (and diverse) community, to put their hands and hearts to sharing of themselves and seeing the love of Christ come to life in our world. The food is starting to fill our pantry again, we are receiving end-of-the-year financial donations from clubs and individuals, and new volunteers continue to arrive as late in the year as yesterday.
May these signs of love lead us to sing with Mary: My soul magnifies the Lord, and my Spirit rejoices in God my Saviour!
Devotional for the week
Friday 10 December
Tuesday 7 December
Sometimes we can overcomplicate things. Brother Roger’s words are reassuring in their simplicity.