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Toorak Uniting Church

Toorak Uniting Church – Update – Transiguration

15 February 2015

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Still Thinking – The Human Face
 Margaret Olley by Ben Quilty A couple of years ago Anne and I visited Tarrawarra Gallery in the Yarra Valley to see the finalists in the Archibald portrait competition. The painting that won was a portrait of Margaret Olley by Ben Quilty (to the left.) It is a remarkable representation of Margaret Olley’s face and from the little I know about her, her personality. It is amazing to me that an artist, with the simple tools of brush/knife, canvas and paint and with a large part of canvas unpainted can capture the essence of this notable woman.

We are designed to recognize faces. By the age of two months, face perception is developed in babies. Specific areas of the brain are activated by viewing faces. Evidence suggests that even from birth, babies have a mechanism which helps them process faces faster and better than adults. It’s why a baby can burst into tears just at the sight of an unfamiliar face. Just as recognition of spiders or snakes is innately hard-wired into our brains so as to generate an immediate fear response, similarly the same hard-wired response to faces may be an innate capacity in human beings because our survival depends of recognizing significant faces.

The human face is as unique as our finger prints and it communicates most of our feelings and intentions to the world around us. As a child I remember my mother saying to me, "There is no point lying, I can see it on your face!" which always seemed unfair that even my own face betrayed me. While the power of our emotions is expressed in our bodies, they are most acutely shown on our faces. We know when a person is frightened, sad, in love, hopeful, anxious and content just by the expression on their face.

Faces are also an important part of intimacy. We look into the eyes of the ones we love. We know the shape and contour of their faces. Notice how a small child can gaze without blinking or taking his or her eyes of your face. It is not accident that there are many references in the Bible to the "face of God." We know that God doesn’t have a face, neither does God have a body, but it is our human way of talking about intimacy and to give the nature of God the most valued of human qualities, personality and a face.

In Genesis after Jacob had wrestled with either God or a messenger from God, the text is ambiguous, it is said that, "Jacob called the name of the place Peniel [the face of God], saying, "For I have seen God face to face, and yet my life was spared. Genesis 32:30. Here we see an intimacy and yet also the distance between God and us. The Hebrew Scripture is clear that no one sees the face of God and survives. That would be too much intimacy for a human being.

Nevertheless, the Bible also suggests that there is coming a time when we will see as we are seen. We will see God face to face. The apostle Paul eludes to this is his letter to the church at Corinth when he writes, "For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face; now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known." 1 Corinthians 13:22.


Previous Item Page Top Next Item Diary Dates

Tuesday, 17 February at 10:00am: Coordinating Forum meeting Faichney Room.
At 12 noon: Management Team meeting. Wettenhall Room.
Wednesday, 18 February: Ash Wednesday
Wednesday, 18 February at 6:30pm: P Brown Handbell Choir. Wettenhall Room.
At 7:30pm: P Brown Handbell Quartet Wettenhall Room.
Thursday, 19 February at 10:00am: Morning Group. Faichney Room.
Sunday, 22 February at 10:15am: Whole Church Family Service NO 9am Service
Monday, 23 February at 12 noon: Time for Fellowship Lunch. Faichney Room.
Wednesday, 25 February at 6:30pm: P Brown Handbell Choir. Wettenhall Room.
At 7:30pm: P Brown Handbell Quartet Wettenhall Room.
Thursday, 26 February at 10:00am: Prayers for Christian Unity. St John’s Toorak.
At 7:30pm Church Council meeting Faichney Room.

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Notice Regarding Tram Track Renewal.
Pedestrian access will not be affected, but there will be some disruption to the #8 tram timetable.
Toorak Rd Will be closed between Grange Rd and Lansell Rd from Saturday 28 February until Monday 2 March.
Toorak Rd will remain closed from west of Orrong Rd to east of Grange Rd until Tuesday 3 March 2015 to allow for some final work to occur.
Some road closures along Toorak Rd will apply and on-street parking will be affected.
Traffic controllers on site will manage local access for residents and business operators.

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Lunch following WCFS next Sunday
All are welcome to a quiche, salad and cake lunch in the Faichney room following the Whole Church Family Service on Sunday, February 22nd. Enjoy fellowship and fresh food in air-conditioned comfort! If you can assist by contributing a cake, or helping with serving or cleaning up on the day, Barbara McKinnon would be very happy to hear from you. A donation of $5 per adult to cover costs would be appreciated. Please RSVP to the office or Barbara (tel: 0405987890, email: barbara.mckinnon@bigpond.com)

Previous Item Page Top Next Item The Progressive Christian Network of Victoria inc.

When: Sunday 22 February, 3.00-5.00pm
Topic: "Is it possible to be Christian in the 21st Century?"
Speakers: Rev Dr David Merritt, Rev Dr Christopher Page, Rev Dr Lorraine Parkinson
Where: Glen Iris Road Uniting Church, Glen Iris Rd near the corner of High St Rd.
Further details about the PCNV are available at the back of the church.

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Time for Fellowship Lunch
The first lunch for 2015 will be held on Monday 23rd February in the Faichney Room from 12 noon. The topic for discussion is "A Hot Day". Come and enjoy good food, lively discussion and meet new people. Everyone welcome.

Contact Lenore Newnham 9509 0496 or Jean Allison 9826 9926.

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Prayers of Christian Unity
will be held at St Johns Anglican Church on 26 February at 10.00am. This will be followed by morning tea – everyone most welcome.

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Lenten Studies led by Bishop Graeme Rutherford

Wednesday, March 4th at St John’s Anglican Church.
Tuesday, March 10th at Toorak Uniting Church.
Tuesday, March 17th at St Peters Catholic Church.
From 7pm – 9pm.

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Yoga classes are expanding!
Now classes are on: Mondays and Tuesdays 9:30 – 10:30am, also Tuesdays 6:30 – 7:30pm and Fridays 10:30 – 11:30am.
For bookings or enquiries call Ro Hancock on 0418 145 164 or email: rohancock1@gmail.com

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Denied and Deported – Responding to Australia’s treatment of asylum seekers.
 Denied and Deported Heard about law changes for asylum seekers? Wondering what to do? Come along and find out.
Friday, 20 February 2015 6-8pm Wesley Uniting Church, 148 Lonsdale St. Melbourne.

In December 2014, new laws were passed which brought significant changes for people seeking asylum in Australia. Though the passing of these laws initially meant the release of many from Australia's detention centres, they look set to open the way for many to be returned to places from which they have sought protection, without having had a fair hearing of their protection claims.

This night will seek to explore ways in which churches and individuals might engage with and advocate for asylum seekers, working for welcome in Australia’s current climate of unwelcome.
Speakers will include: Pamela Curr – (Asylum Seeker Resource Centre) and Jill Ruzbacky.

Endorsing Organisations include:
• Victorian Council of Churches.
• Churches of Christ Vic/Tas Asylum Seeker Network.
• Churches of Christ Community Care.
• Uniting Church Synod of Victoria and Tasmania.
• Urban Neighbours of Hope.
• Surrender.

Previous Item Page Top Next Item News from Kinross Arts & Spirituality Centre

Kinross House Gallery is normally open Tuesday to Friday 10:00am – 3pm.

5 February
8 March
 'The Bay' - Jane Oehr The Water's Rim – A solo exhibition of paintings by Jane Oehr

The Opening was on Thursday 5th February with Guest Speaker: Dr Vincent O'Donnell – Presenter of the Community Radio Network's national arts and culture current affairs program Arts Alive.

Exhibition Dates:
Thursday, 5 February – Sunday, 8th March 2015;
Open 8.30am - 3.30pm Monday to Friday. Weekends by appointment.

About the Exhibition:
Jane is joining with Kinross for her second solo exhibition at the Kinross Gallery. Jane is a visual artist and film maker. Her new work is inspired by the coasts of New South Wales and Victoria and Australia's famous beaches, rock pools and shoreline. The paintings evoke associations with water, moving currents, turbulence and calm and the mysteries beneath.

Manse Gallery Café
The café is filled with light, warmth, flowers on the table and good food. Please call in for great coffee, hot soup or delicious cake. It has a wonderful atmosphere with outstanding meals and coffee. Why not meet up with friends or conduct your next meeting there?
For enquiries and (group) bookings contact Raz Psonis on 9829 0341 email: meetatmanse@gmail.com
Raz and her team will make you very welcome. Hours: Mon-Fri 8:30am-3:30pm.

Gallery Contacts: For all exhibition enquiries and bookings please telephone Lyndel Wischer on: 9829 0340 or email: uat@toorak.unitingchurch.org.au or visit the Kinross House page on the TUC website. You are also welcome to call in to the Kinross House Office which is normally attended 10 am – 3 pm, Tuesday – Friday or by appointment.

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Lectionary Readings for 22 February 2015, Lent 1
Genesis 9: 8 – 17;     Psalm 25: 1 – 10;     1 Peter 3: 18 – 22;     Mark 9: 9 – 15.
The liturgical colour for Lent is purple.

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