CONNECTION – 16 DECEMBER – ADVENT 3


Crossroads Connection

OUR COMMUNITY NEWS FOR TODAY AND THE COMING WEEK

Christmas Music at Crossroads

Advent is the time of preparing the Way of the Lord!  Crossroads Uniting congregation will celebrate the Saviour’s birth in songs of joy with an Australian flavour at the Christmas Carol Service at 7 pm tonight.

Wassailing around Werribee

In addition, you are invited to join Crossroads singers wassailing (street carol singing) at some nursing homes and aged care facilities in Werribee, on Saturday 22 December in the afternoon.  Led by Frances Geilen and Sharron Inglis, bring your voice, some percussion instruments, and we will make a cheery sound.  “The Virgin Mary had a baby boy…”

Plants for Sale

We still have some lovely plants available for sale.  They have been gift-wrapped and tagged - all the work has been done!   The plants would make wonderful "living" gifts for family or friends.  The plants will be available for sale on 16th December - after the Sunday service and also before the Christmas Carol service.

Rosters for 2019

You are invited to contribute to our worship services as the leader of the prayer of intercession, assisting with the children’s ‘CRUNCH’ program (during the worship service), and in decorating the church by arranging flowers.  If you are prepared to join the roster for these activities, please let the volunteers in the office know.

Christmas decorations sale

Crossroads Uniting Church Relay for Life team have been given baubles and Christmas decorations to sell 100% of profits are going to Relay for life through Crossroads Uniting Church team.  Baubles and decorations are available during morning tea or by contacting Samantha Gourley.

Donations

Donations to Mike and Caz Lewis’ farewell gift can be either left with the office volunteers or put in a marked envelope in the offering plate.  These will be gratefully received!

Join us in prayer for…

Today concludes Human Rights Week, and around the world millions of people live without many of the human rights that we in Australia take for granted.

EVENTS AND NOTICES

Christmas Bowl: 3rd Sunday in Advent

The Christmas Bowl Appeal is the major fund raising for Act For Peace, the international aid agency of the National Council of Churches in Australia.

In 1949 an Australian minister, Rev Frank Byatt, put an empty bowl on his Christmas table, inviting his family to share God's love with their brothers and sisters in urgent need around the world. Today tens of thousands of Australians follow Frank's example. Working with local  partners in the countries concerned, their gifts to the Christmas Bowl bring healing, wholeness and hope to the suffering. From teaching about preparation for disaster in Vanuatu to management of drought areas in Zimbabwe or supporting millions of refugees in Jordan, help comes via the Christmas Bowl.

Donations to the Christmas Bowl are tax deductible.  Envelopes  are available on the foyer table or you could use your own envelope with name inside if you would like a receipt. Donations may be placed in the offering plate up to the end of January.

Preachers in the New Year

Following Mike Lewis’ retirement after his last service on the 30th of December, visiting preachers have been arranged for the first two months of January and February.  These include both members of our congregation, the Rev. Neil Tolliday and the Rev. Angela Tampiyappa, and some members of our Presbytery, the Revs Eileen Ray, Bill Lidgett, David Walker and Dr D’Arcy Wood.  The Congregation’s profile has been completed and has been submitted to Presbytery.

Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity is to be celebrated world-wide from 18 to 25 January 2019.  The theme being prepared by members of different Indonesian churches is “Justice, and only justice, you shall pursue….” — inspired by  Deuteronomy 16:18–20.

Worship Plan for this week

Today’s worship

9.30 am   Worship Service (Rev. Angela Tampiyappa)

7 pm Carols at Crossroads (Wendy Barnes)

Activities this week

Monday: Playgroup, 9.30 am.

Friday: Advent Study, 10 am, at the manse.

Saturday: Wassailing around Werribee.

Next Sunday – 23 December: Advent 4

9.30 am Family Service (Rev. Mike Lewis)

Rosters for Next Week

Duty Elder: Mary Dixon

Greeting: Robyn Tomkins

Morning Tea: Sandra Savory & Stacey Williams

Flowers: Bev Cox

Reader: Elaine Belcher

AV Desk: Roland Geilen

Prayers: Sandra Savory

Piano: Jeremy Withers

Bible Readings 23 December: Micah 5:2–5a; Hebrews 10:5–10; Luke 1:39–45, 47–55

OUR CONGREGATION

Jackie Ceratti

Many people perceive “homelessness” as the person who sits on the pavement near Southern Cross Station, but the reality is quite different.

Uniting Wyndham’s social worker Jackie Ceratti explains that many persons in Wyndham municipality are ‘couch surfing’ with friends or family, or struggling to survive in unregistered, sub-standard rooming houses. Decent low-income families are unable to break in to the tight market of high rents and limited accommodation.

Crossroads Uniting congregation has over many years since Uniting Wyndham (formerly Werribee Support and Housing) was formed, maintained a close relationship with our next-door neighbour.  Jackie Ceratti values church members’ care and concern.

“Our staff appreciate the regular donations of non-perishable pantry items at Crossroads foyer as a practical expression of support,” says Jackie.

Social workers are aware that ‘homelessness” is but one aspect of the larger issues that families in crisis may be experiencing. Jackie says “We support and assist women fleeing domestic violence; some are surviving in a refuge, others are dealing with cultural and linguistic problems of their ethnic community.”

Youth programs for 16 to 26 year-olds are offered by Uniting Wyndham’s social and youth workers.  “We are helping young people from families where their older generation has experienced poverty and homelessness; there are those who have been kicked out of home for sexuality and gender issues, and young persons from fractured families,” says Jackie.

Jackie invites church members to support families in need by donating for specific items such as school uniforms vouchers at Rushfords, or gifts of birthday present vouchers for foster kids, all the year round. “Concerned people can also support government action, by writing or e-mailing your local member of Parliament, calling for a National Housing strategy to meet Australia’s identified shortfall of 500,000 affordable rental homes.”  (NT)

Housekeeping & Help

If you or someone you know is in need of pastoral care, please don’t hesitate to contact either our minister, Mike Lewis or Robyn Tomkins.  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.

CHURCH OFFICE AND NEWSLETTER

Telephone 03 9741 1084.  Postal address is PO Box 2156 Werribee 3030.   Email office@crossroadsunitingchurch.org.au