Sunday 23rd December 2018
Greetings and welcome to this week’s newsletter.
(Next newsletter will come out in late January for Sunday Feb 3rd.)
A Note from Linda
Last week we commissioned our Christmas angels and sent them out into the community as messengers of joy. Thank you to everyone who knitted and crocheted and to everyone who participated – 387 have been distributed!
As part of our Advent season, we’ve been encouraging everyone to share messages of joy, through distributing angels, or the quote shared last week or by taking a photo of yourself with angel wings and sharing that.
And.. don’t forget to keep bringing your feather back with you!
Our preacher this week is Meg Edwards. She will continue on our Advent series with the theme of ‘This Will Be a Sign: #morelove’.
“Nearby shepherds were living in the fields, guarding their sheep at night. The Lord’s angel stood before them, the Lord’s glory shone around them, and they were terrified. The angel said, “Don’t be afraid! Look! I bring good news to you—wonderful, joyous news for all people. Your savior is born today in David’s city. He is Christ the Lord. This is a sign for you: you will find a newborn baby wrapped snugly and lying in a manger.” Suddenly a great assembly of the heavenly forces was with the angel praising God. They said, “Glory to God in heaven, and on earth peace among those whom he favors.” Luke 2: 1-20
The sky was brighter than usual that night, making it easier to keep track of the sheep. And then it got really bright. You would have thought that all that “glory” shining would have been “the sign.” That’s what most of us look for – great big obvious clues about God’s presence. But instead, the angel says that a baby… a newborn helpless baby in a feeding trough was it – the sign. In a flash, the message was that #morelove is found where you least expect it and perhaps is already there residing in the ordinariness of your life.
Below you will see information about our Christmas services. For those who use social media, we have also created Facebook events for each service. This is a great opportunity to invite along a friend or a neighbor or a family member to celebrate the reason for the season.
New this year: arrive early for the 11.00pm Christmas Eve service and bring along your KeepCup if you have one. We will have a coffee machine and barista and be serving coffee from 10.30pm.
23 Dec: Prayer Walk – 6.00pm meet at The Rezz car park
30 Dec – 20 Jan: no evening services
27 Jan: Prayer Walk – 6.00pm meet at The Rezz car park
We had a great night of Christmas music last week at The Rezz with Gerald and Lenard Pederick providing a program of creative jazzy arrangements of music. We’ll be back with Spirited Sundays next year, beginning on February 17th.
Thank you Sharyn!
Recently Church Council arranged for Sharyn to have an appraisal. This was an opportunity for Sharyn to be able to talk about how she is going in the Administration Support Person role and to raise any issues we need to address. We learned a lot through doing this and have a number of things to follow up to be able to support Sharyn. Church Council wishes to thank Sharyn for the way she services us so faithfully. With her permission, here is an inspiring quote from Sharyn:
“I have just finished reading “All the places to go – How will you know?” by John Ortberg – he writes: “Ministry should be joy!” I believe God opened a door for me to work at AUC 3 years ago and I am meant to be here and do see my position as “ministry” and it is a “joy”.
Newsletters – Jan is on holidays and I am on leave so there will not be a newsletter over the holidays. Submissions for February 2nd edition should be in by 10.00am Wednesday 30th January.
Kitchen – Some ants are visiting us for their annual holidays – they love our kitchen pantry, please empty bins of any food scraps and put food in sealed containers. Extra binbags are in the pantry. Please take any food not consumed home with you and don’t leave it in the fridge.
Rosters for Jan/Feb/Mar – Were circulated electronically on Thursday 20th December, if you prefer – please pick up your hard copy in the church foyer. Thank you to Gus for once again doing this very important job.
Annual leave and summer office closure
Please note that both Linda and Sharyn will be taking annual leave:
Linda: 28 Dec – 21 Jan (returning 22 Jan) Sharyn: 21 Dec – 28 Jan (returning 29 Jan)
The Church Office will be closed from 21 Dec to 28 January; there will be not be a newsletter during this time.
For urgent pastoral concerns please contact Brenton Summers 0400 632 829.
Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year to you all. Sharyn
Annual Victor Harbor Holiday
Just letting our church community know that a group of families are going down to Victor Harbor for a week from the 5th January, 2019, and everyone is welcome to join us. We are staying at the Adare Caravan Park, Wattle Drive, Victor Harbor from the 5th -12th January. Please contact the Adare Caravan Park (08 8552-1657) if you would like to make a booking or contact Di & Trev Curtis (0419-862-606) for more information.
Thank you and Christmas is coming
With Christmas now approaching, it is a time to remember those members of our community who are less fortunate. To assist them at this time of the year, the Uniting Communities Eastern Services is seeking ongoing support of its annual Christmas Appeal. To prepare 150 Christmas Hampers, food items with a “Christmas theme” are being sought. These items for the hampers may include Christmas puddings, cakes, fruit mince pies, long life custard, canned ham etc. Monetary donations will also be greatly accepted and used to purchase such items.
For more information contact Brenton Summers
Fourth Sunday in Advent
Finding Joy amidst the drought
Today we invite you to share the joy of your Christmas with a brother or sister in urgent need around the world.
By supporting the Christmas Bowl by your gift today or at services on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day we are helping mothers in Zimbabwe to become conservation farmers, support their children and harvest joy during their toughest seasons.
Thank you for your generosity.
Tear Fund Useful Gifts
Don and Brian will be at the Tear Fund table today and right up to Christmas with catalogues and cards to enable you to identify with needy people and communities that could be transformative for them.
At the same time your loved one or friend to whom you send a card will be participating too as they enable a family to establish a veggie garden, receive a fuel- efficient stove or receive the gift of a goat .The options are many.
We hope you are all saving your used stamps. There is a box in the front foyer of church where you can leave them. Thanks!
STAY AND PLAY
STOCKTAKE and CLEANING DAY
22nd January 2019 – 10-00am onwards
COMMENCEMENT DATE 2019 5th February
Our last Stay and Play for 2018 was celebrated at Lovell’s Reserve, picnic style with 40 people in attendance. What a wonderful morning of play activities for the children and lots of socializing for the carers. Thanks to Jan Robin, 25 knitted angels were distributed to the children and team helpers, as well as books Linda organized from the Bible Society and a CD of photos to remember their year at Stay and Play. Please consider how you could help in 2019.
WE NEED YOU! email@example.com
Uniting Church Calendars – Please pick up your free 2019 UCA calendar from the foyer.
Triple C’s, Sorry Carols, Cash and Candy not taking part.
Electronic Giving – Forms are available or speak to Treasurer Glen Luestner for more information.
Pastoral care – Please contact a member of our Pastoral Care Oversight Team for assistance:
Rev Linda Driver 0458 500 656 Bob Stevenson 0400 641 242
Brenton Summers 0400 632 829 Ann Brown 0413 581 554
Prayer Requests – Can we support you in prayer? Here’s how:
Prayer Chain – send an email to, or call Brenton Summers, who will pass your prayer request on to a group of people who faithfully pray in response to Prayer Chain emails.
Confidential Prayers – if the issue is more personal you are invited to contact Linda for individual prayer or one the members of the Pastoral Care Oversight team (Brenton Summers, Ann Brown, Bob Stevenson and Linda). All prayer requests going to the team will be kept strictly confidential within this team.
Prayers for Others (Sunday Worship) – Linda provides our Worship Leaders with prayer points as appropriate. Prayer points are also sourced from the Prayer Chain. If you have something you would like to be included in Prayers for Others, please contact Linda. “We are all called to pray for one another, and so we are all encouraged to offer to pray for, or with others, especially if they share a concern with you.” (James 5:13-16
Wider Church News- Please use the link to UC e-news at http://sa.uca.org.au/uc-e-news/
Website – We encourage you to visit our website: www.athelstonechurch.org.au
Newsletter contributions – Please email firstname.lastname@example.org by 5pm Wed.
23rd December 2018 Micah 5.2-5a, Luke 1.47-55, Hebrews 10.5-10, Luke 1.39-45
Christmas Day 2018 – Isaiah 52.7-10, Psalm 98,
Sharyn’s hint for Lectionary readings in January – Check your UCA calendar
|23rd December||30th December|
|Preacher||Meg Edwards||Nola Pearce|
|Worship Leader||Di||Lynton N|
|Singers||Ann B/Nola/Yvonne/Ruth||Ann B, Allan, Friederike|
|Flowers||Jenny Riggall||Marie H|
|Door Stewards & Offering||Sheralyn & Pat||Jayne & Lynton|
|Scripture Reader||Ann Brown||David W|
|Offering Count||Glen & Don||Friederike & David W|
|Tea & Coffee||Jenny & David||Coralie & Brenton|
|Building Steward||Richard Read||Eric Hurrell|
Please check your rosters for roles over January.