For the week of 9 December

KCO is ComingKids Camp Out (KCO) is on the way. On 23rd and 24th March 2019 hundreds of campers, junior leaders and leaders will gather at Adare Caravan and Camping at Victor Harbor for a fun filled 24 hours of stories, games, crafts, Bible studies, food, fellowship and some sleeping. Make a note in your diary and let your friends know so they can join us for a fabulous time. In 2019 there will be no cost for campers and helpers so let’s bring as many children as possible. More information will be available soon.  This year we are looking for a coordinator, so if you would like to be part of the KCO leadership team speak to Gaynor Strapp. BCUC Christmas PostcardsWe would like to encourage you to take home some additional BCUC Christmas postcards to distribute to family, friends,  and mailboxes in your neighbourhood. Extra cards are available in the foyer.  Take as many as you can distribute. Christmas Bowl 2018Giving envelopes for the Christmas Bowl appeal are inserted in this newsletter. Extras are available in the foyer.   You may place completed envelopes in the bowl at the back of the sanctuary between now and December 30. Dr Jon’s PantryCan you help? We are running out of small/medium size Jars. 230 – 300 gr. Think: Beerenberg, Master Foods or Bonne Maman. Thank you! Wear Green Next SundayThe Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul!  Psalm 23:1-3.  Help celebrate the peace of Christ next Sunday by wearing green to church. Tuesday Morning House GroupWe meet at 10am on the 2nd & 4th Tuesday of the month, upstairs in the church. In February we will begin “The Blessings Course”, based on the books that came out of the Ffald y Brenin retreat centre in Wales, scriptural and inspiring. If you are looking for a daytime study group, we’d love to see you. See Colette Williams for more information. BCUC CaresUniting Communities thanks BCUC for their continued generosity in providing food & toiletry items each month.  Along with the usual items, there is a current need for shampoo, conditioner, toothbrushes and coffee.  Donations can be brought to service on any Sunday. … Continue reading

A Message from Rev Rob Williams – December 9

Heard any good news lately?   Once upon a time, before every home had telephones – yes, ‘telephones’ not mobile phones – a young, pregnant woman awaited the birth of her first child. Their neighbours, an elderly couple, insisted that when the time came, their telephone was to be used to call the hospital, no matter what the hour of the day or the night. And so the time came for her to be delivered (sound familiar?). Stuck to the wall above the neighbour’s telephone, in very large numerals, was the hospital’s telephone number. Thus the process began, culminating in the birth of the couple’s first-born son. Over the next 48 hours, the new father visited many, many friends and relatives, each conversation beginning with the words “I’ve got some really good news for you!” Luke 2:15-20 records the appearance of an angel of the Lord to a most unlikely group of men – shepherds, among the outcasts of their society – looking after their sheep on the hills above Bethlehem. “Don’t be afraid – have I got some really good news for you!” could be a paraphrase of his greeting. Not only did they hear his greeting but also the good news that Messiah – the long awaited, anointed One from God – had been born. He was to be found in a stock feeder wrapped up nice and tight in the little town below them. Being curious by nature, the shepherds hurried down to Bethlehem to discover things were just as they had been told. But the shepherds didn’t stop there. They had heard some good news, they had seen for themselves it was true and they spread the word to amazed townsfolk and anyone who would listen to them – good news from most unlikely sources. Now is a great a time for Christians to ask, “Have you heard the Good News lately?” … Continue reading

A Message from Rev Trevor Klar – December 2

Advent – How do we measure it?    Scientists and governments love to measure things. This week there was a new shock and horror campaign about ICE and its effects. The government agencies said it wasn’t evidence based and the organisers cleverly asked back about the evidence base for the “Grim Reaper” ads about AIDS. This got me thinking about people measuring Christmas. Do we measure it by the size of presents we are given? You know how it goes – an expensive present means he/she loves me more. Or perhaps it’s the quality of the food – NO-ONE makes better mince pies than I do, or my turkey stuffing is the best, or the lights/decorations (our roof leaked one year after our daughters took down the many lights they put up in such a way that one of the tiles was half off) are the very best in the street. There of course many others we could add. We could take a step in the right direction and measure how much we love others. Back in the eighties I remember getting a call about 3pm on Christmas Eve from a young man I had married in the spring. He was a courier driver and he and his fellow workers were sitting around celebrating and decided they needed to do something for others, so they passed the hat around and raised over $500 – which was a lot for a bunch of courier drivers. He was the only one with any contact with someone who might be able to do something – so we did. We could measure our own response and decide to do even more; maybe volunteer to serve Christmas lunch at a homeless shelter, or pack Christmas Hampers at Uniting Care Wesley Bowden or another agency, or invite a lonely person to share our family Christmas in a non-patronizing way. But perhaps the best way is to think about the measure of God’s love, who put at risk his only Son, who sent him to a situation where he would be misunderstood even by those close to him, face constant harassment from those opposed and then to see him betrayed and crucified, and the Father choosing not to intervene and save him. That is the best measure of Christmas and I encourage you this Advent to use this as your measure!! … Continue reading

A Message from Rev Trevor Klar – November 25

Fully Alive in Christ   Next week is the beginning of Advent. Advent is a time of preparation for the birth of Christ. A time of realising that the world was remarkably changed when God entered it, and a chance for us to think about how our lives have been completely changed when Christ entered them. As Christians we believe our life is made complete in Jesus and therefore our potential is only fully released through a life lived intimately with him. Therefore we have chosen our theme for Advent to be “FULLY ALIVE IN JESUS”. We will have many different ways of expressing this in worship. We will use the four traditional themes of Hope, Joy, Peace and Love for each Sunday exploring how our lives become fully alive through each of these. We will have liturgy and will build colours over the four weeks to remind us of all the ways that Jesus brings us fully alive. Of course we will have the junior church Christmas service and the lessons and carols service on the 9th of December. We will also have puppet plays for the contemporary service and we hope the puppets will make guest appearances at the other services. We will also be asking you to “buy in” each week. One way we will be asking this of you is that we will be asking you to wear a colour each week. The first week is BLUE (2nd December). If you don’t have suitable clothes in one of the colours we will ask you to pin a scrap of cloth or even paper to your clothes. This can be very helpful as the best way to have a full Christian life is to commit and be a participator with Christ. I hope to see some outrageous clothes in the various colours. I encourage you to prepare for Christmas by doing at least the following : 1. Read the stories for yourself. 2. Pray for Jesus to come into your life in a new way or into a new area of your life. 3. Find a way to show love to a stranger as often as possible. 4. Reflect on the theme each week and look for the ways hope/joy/peace/love enrich your life. In the midst of busyness we can lose sight of the important things, they don’t cry out over the urgent – we have to make space for them. Please find a way to encourage at least one other in the church by telling them how you see the life/fullness of Jesus in their lives; for that was the purpose of Jesus coming, that we might see the fullness of God. … Continue reading

for the week of 18 November

  AGMPlease join us for our AGM on Sunday November 25 at 2pm. Reports are available in the foyer. Christmas CardsChristmas cards in aid of U.C. missions are available on Sundays after each service in the foyer. Monday Day FellowshipWe are celebrating Christmas with a HIGH TEA on Monday December 3 at 1.30pm.  Members of the congregation are invited to join us for a pleasant afternoon. Norwood Christmas PageantThere are many ways to participate in this year’s pageant on November 24 – distributing balloons to children, carrying signs, or joining the carol singers’ truck. An information sheet is available at the front desk in the foyer if you would like to help or participate. BCUC Cares – Christmas HamperUniting Communities at Clayton Wesley Church appreciates all hamper items donated for families in need.  Hamper donations may be placed in the usual marked boxes in the church foyer, now through  December 16. Thank you for sharing the many blessings God has so generously given us. Suggested Christmas Hamper items can be found on a list available at the front desk. … Continue reading

A Message from Rev Rob Williams – November 18

Encourage one another!   A congregation made the decision to do a major renovation on its thirty-five-year-old sanctuary. The first step was to put together a crew of people to do the internal demolition. Around forty people showed up to take care of this task. Dust was everywhere as they ripped up carpet, knocked out walls, tore down ceilings, and dismantled the platform. There were people of all shapes, sizes, and ages. It was a wonderful project for everyone because absolutely no skill was needed. It doesn’t take much training to destroy something. When this phase was completed, the remodelling began. This was the part that required skilled and trained people—those who knew how to construct, build, and refurbish. Their task was much more difficult and it took much longer than the demolition. Anybody can tear down, but not everyone can build up. As we make our way through the Letter of Hebrews with its glittering and sometimes confusing images, the following verses come to us with a remarkable clarity and freshness: ‘Let us consider how to provoke/stir up one another to love and good works/service, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another.’  (Hebrews 10:24-25) How might this consideration of stirring one another to love and service operate in practical terms? Discerning people’s strengths and opportunities, rather than fixing on their weaknesses and needs? Praying that people might be encouraged to give something of themselves which God might enable them to share for the mutual benefit of their faith and this community of faith? A wise person once said: “Flatter me, and I may not believe you. Criticize me, and I may not like you. Ignore me, and I may not forgive you. Encourage me, and I will not forget you.” … Continue reading

for the week of November 11

Norwood Christmas PageantThere are many ways to participate in this year’s pageant on November 24 – distributing balloons to children, carrying signs, or joining the carol singers’ truck.  Please view this information sheet if you would like to help or participate:  2018 Norwood Christmas Pageant BCUC Cares – Christmas HamperHamper donations for families in need may be placed in the usual marked boxes in the church foyer, now through  December 16. Suggested Christmas Hamper items can be found on a list available at the front desk. AGMPlease join us for our AGM on Sunday November 25 at 2pm Reports are available in the foyer. Presbytery and Synod MeetingThe Annual Meeting of the Presbytery and Synod of South Australia  is being held this week from Thursday through Saturday. Please pray for our representatives  to this meeting : Rob, Trevor, Valerie Aloa, and Peter Shackleford. Christmas CardsChristmas cards in aid of U.C. missions are available on Sundays after each service in the foyer.     … Continue reading

A Message from Trevor Klar – November 11

The journey to maturity As Christians one of our goals is grow in faith and love. This journey is the journey of discipleship. To grow more like Christ in our attitudes and behaviours, to have interactions with our neighbours in which we reflect Christ to them, in which, we in effect become the gospel. This entails a journey of change, in which we read are influenced by the scriptures, in which our prayer life deepens and we learn to listen for the voice of God. As we mature it involves putting off childish aspects of faith and growing in many ways. We are people who unknowingly carry many attitudes and values from our families without reflecting whether they are Godly or not. In my family I learnt many good things from my extended family but there were also attitudes and values that were not of God. My journey in life is one where I have reflected on these from time to time. I have affirmed many of the values I learnt from my parents but there are others I have left behind and replaced with others. My parents were wary of strangers and particularly Japanese as my father fought in New Guinea in WW2. In later years he grew beyond this, but I was influenced by this as a child. Values from our family of origin should not be excluded from scrutiny as we grow as disciples, and part of our journey is to leave values behind that will not fit in the coming Kingdom of God, and that do not fit within the church today. I would encourage you to also reflect on the way that hurts from the past can diminish us for much of our lives. We can easily see how someone who was abused as a child can be affected by that abuse for decades or a lifetime, but it is also true that when we have experienced small hurts as a child they can shape the way we interact with others for decades. Many children have their hopes dashed and withdraw. Not all of us can be like Shane Warne who, rejected by the St Kilda football club, became determined and focussed on cricket. So this week I encourage you to consider how unexamined values and behaviours may be stunting your growth in discipleship. I encourage you to bring these matters before God, to do some soul-searching and leave behind values and behaviours that hamper our growth into Christian maturity. We are called to become the very best version of ourselves, for Christ’s sake. … Continue reading

for the week of November 4

AGMPlease join us for our AGM on Sunday November 25 at 2pm. Reports will be available next Sunday November 11. Monday Day FellowshipOur next meeting is Monday November 5 at 1.30pm.  Heather Maynard who works untiringly for Lifeline will speak about the history and development of this life saving service.  We encourage all members to attend and invite a friend. Ruth Daws, Coordinator. Christmas CardsChristmas cards in aid of U.C. missions will not be sold today, but will be available again next Sunday and on following Sundays. Barnabas Fund Event @ BCUCCome and hear Patrick Sookhdeo speak on current trends in Christian Persecution.  You will get insights to guide your prayers for our suffering brothers and sisters. Saturday November 10, 9:30am. A flyer is available at the front desk. BCUC Saturday Friendship ClubOur Christmas dinner will be held on Saturday November 17, 6:15pm. There will be a three course meal and entertainment. The theme is “a traditional Christmas”. Cost is $35.00 to Peter Foord. BYO Drinks. Booking deadline November 11. Seniors Second Sunday LunchSunday November 11, 12noon until 2.30pm. Come and join us for friendship, fun and food. Chicken & Salad plus a fruit platter. Please see Anita Wheaton for more information. Sizzling Sausages – A Church for OodnadattaThe children of BCUC invite you to their sausage sizzle to help raise funds to build a Church for Oodnadatta.  Sunday November 11 at 10:00am between services in the foyer. BCUC Cares – Christmas HamperHamper donations for families in need may be placed in the usual marked boxes in the church foyer, now through  December 16. Suggested Christmas Hamper items can be found on a list available at the front desk. Rob on LeaveRob will be on leave from Thursday  November 8 through Tuesday November  13 inclusive. … Continue reading

Christmas Plays in local Primary Schools

In the 2016 National Census, in the City of Burnside, 35.5% of people responded that they had “No religion”.  An additional 7.9% of people did not state any religion.  Add to that the impact of the decline in church attendance of those who did state a religion. As a consequence, how many children grow up with the idea that the public holiday on December 25th is all about Father Christmas!! We have the opportunity to present a Christmas play to a large number of primary children in a few weeks time.  The children – and staff – will hear at least a part of the true message of Christmas.  A high percentage of the children in the designated year levels attend the plays and they show interest in them. Yet we probably won’t be able to do it.  Why?  Because we haven’t got enough volunteers willing to help.  Ally Russell, the Director, has assembled some volunteers from her church – St. George’s Anglican Church, Magill.  She still needs people to play very simple roles: Joseph, Mary, Shepherds, Angel, Wise men, Gabriel, Innkeepers.  They are not taxing – the script was written for older children to play.  She also needs someone to make a big star. And some simple painted cardboard ‘Inn’ outlines.   Dates are yet to be confirmed with the schools, but the performances will be early December. There will be 3 or 4 rehearsals leading up to the performances with times and venue depending on volunteer availability.  A leaflet containing more details was included in last Sunday’s Newsletter and is also available at the front desk.  Please pray very seriously about this situation.  If you are willing to help, contact the church office ASAP for more information or to sign up! … Continue reading