from Rev. Matthew Bond – Sunday 28th April


“Who was I to think that I could stand in God’s way?” – Peter (Acts 11:17)

This is a simple question but it carries so much meaning. As we serve our mighty God who created all that we see, God calls us to engage in the on-going work of creation. We begin by coming to God in prayer.

Peter was raised under the Law as a Jew and was taught that Jews and Gentiles did not mix. Jesus had shown Peter how to live by the Spirit. As these two ideas clashed Peter was open to God and in a dream God showed the plan.

The response from the church in Jerusalem was; “They had no further objections and praised God”. We are each invited to join God to engage in the on-going work of creation. We do this by listening to God, talking with each other and taking action.

from Rev. Matthew Bond – Sunday 21st April

“My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me” – Jesus
We hear so many voices around us these days; there is the voice of the media telling us of political struggles and conflicts, there is the busy voice telling us to do more, there is the voice of reason telling us we’ve done enough and there are the familiar voices of our friends. Conversations with friends can be uplifting and encouraging, the voice of reason can keep us from exhaustion, the busy voice can make us feel guilty and the media voice can cause us to be fearful. Listen to the voice of Jesus above all others. The voice of Jesus is familiar, uplifting and encouraging. The voice of Jesus drives out guilt and fear. Help us dear God to always be a church that listens to the voice of Jesus. Amen.

from Rev. Douglas Monaghan – Sunday 14th April


The theme this week is “Restoration” as Peter meets Jesus on the shores of Lake Galilee. Just as Peter had denied Jesus three times standing over a charcoal fire, around another charcoal fire he gets to state three times he will love and follow Jesus. This beautifully touching scene shows us what Jesus thinks forgiveness means. As we saw with the prodigal son, it means, like the dictionary definition of restoration, “a return of something to its former, original, unimpaired condition”. We need to understand this. Jesus wipes the slate completely clean as frees Peter for effective mission. Peter will not be burdened by his sense of past failure nor seeking to overcompensate by zealous and unforgiving attitudes to others. Peter will be freed for effective, grace filled, missional service. It is the same for us. Despite what has happened Jesus frees us from our past and encourages us to follow Him in the future. We are assured of being restored in God’s eyes to our unimpaired, original condition. What a freedom, what a relief!

Easter Thank You


Thank you to everyone at Burnside City Uniting Church for all that was done over the Easter Season. We had so many wonderful opportunities to share our faith and celebrate Jesus with the people in our wider community. There were a good number of new people at each of our services and there were many enquiries about getting involved. We all enjoyed the strong singing on Good Friday morning. Family Fun @ 5 was full of excitement as around 100 people played games, enjoyed craft and ate together. Our Easter performance had us all laughing and crying. Douglas and his actors did a wonderful job. The rain held off for our 7.28am Sunrise Service and 45 of us enjoyed fresh hot fish and communion with damper. All three of our regular services on Easter Sunday morning gave us opportunity to proclaim our faith in vibrant ways. “Jesus is risen indeed!”

from Rev. Douglas Monaghan – Easter Sunday 31st March


“The resurrection is perplexing. The women are perplexed that Jesus is no longer in the tomb. The angels are perplexed that the women are seeking the living amongst the dead. The disciples are perplexed at the women’s “idle tale”, Peter stands looking at the empty clothing and wonders what is happening. Why is Easter so perplexing? Because Easter is the happy ending turning up in the middle of the story. It is the final scene showing us that everything is going to be alright coming out of sequence. It is our hope, given to us ahead of time, that all will be well. It is not just hope for the future though. Easter means living with the resurrected Lord, and that’s every single day. It gives us Hope for the present too. May you always hold this hope nearest your hearts not only throughout Easter but throughout your lives.”