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Toorak Uniting Church - Update

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Toorak Uniting Church

Toorak Uniting Church – Update – Pentecost 14

30 August 2015

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Peter Beale’s still thinking
In October last year, as my time with the Armadale Congregation was coming to a close, I wrote an article for their "Mustard Seed" publication. I wrote in my article about the concept of pilgrimage and how I yearned to make a pilgrimage back to the place of my birth, and to many places that I hold as sacred to me. Having returned from my Long Service Leave, I am reflecting on my journey, and whether it had been a pilgrimage for me. Last year, in writing about what "pilgrimage" means for me, I wrote"

"I don’t think of a pilgrimage as something restricted to journeys to religious sites, such as Jerusalem and the Holy Land. I think of a pilgrimage as something that, more broadly speaking, connects with our roots as individuals, and also to the roots of whatever group or community (or nation) we belong to, whether religious or not. Those roots hold something "sacred" for us, and so become our sacred places."

So how was my journey? Was it a pilgrimage—did I go to all the places I wanted to, and take the time to let them change me? Or was it little more than a holiday?

One of the realities of taking a trip of seven weeks on your own is that you are left to your own resources, and you have to make all the decisions about when and where you go. This could have been quite a burden, but for me it was amazingly freeing. In my first three days in England I saw the memorial plaque to John Wesley’s "heart-warming" moment at the entrance to the London Museum in Aldersgate Street, I spent hours at St Paul’s Cathedral and stayed for Evensong, I visited the Westminster Cathedral (Roman Catholic) and stayed for Vespers led by the joint Abbey and Cathedral choirs, and I sat an contemplated the ancient history of Old Sarum, near Salisbury. These experiences set the tone for the rest of my journey. Over the following weeks I would visit cathedrals and churches in Glasgow, Edinburgh, St Andrews (ruins), Fort George (near Inverness), Dunblane, Durham, York, Coventry (ruins), Oxford, and finally Salisbury, before spending two weeks on the continent. In the middle of all that I spent a week on Iona, visiting the Abbey usually twice a day for worship. I also made the time to visit most of my uncles, aunts and cousins, and those places where I grew up, and to take a few days here and there to just rest, reflect, do washing, and prepare for what was still to come. In my final two weeks I visited Rome, Florence, Munich, Berlin and Paris, and in each of those cities I visited the main sacred sites, as well as places of art and history. Being self-directed, there were so many places I missed seeing because I would rather see a place in detail, sit and absorb its age and beauty, and contemplate the sacrifice of scores of generations of people who built and worshipped in those opulent medieval cathedrals, and still do today.

As I consider what I wrote last year, I can say that I did indeed achieve an inspiring pilgrimage to almost all the places I mentioned, and many others besides. I also documented my journey with thousands of photographs! Did the journey change me? Certainly. This time of long service leave was much more than a pleasure trip: it was a voyage of self-discovery; it was an exploration of the deep roots of Christianity in the UK and the major cities of Europe; it was a time of experiencing a long age of history around every corner, and in almost every building I entered; it was a pilgrimage to the sacred, and this sacredness was found in places of worship, of violence, of beauty, of ruin, of family origin and rest, and in experiences with my long separated family members, reunited after 31 years since my last journey to the UK. With all of this I could not help but be affected by it, and I will doubtless be reflecting on just how it has changed me for years to come.


Previous Item Page Top Next Item Welcome to Toorak Uniting Church

Wherever you are on your faith’s journey,
wherever you have come from and wherever you are going to,
whatever you believe, whatever you do not believe, you are welcome here.
Please come and join us after the service for fellowship and a cup of tea or coffee.

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Diary Dates

Monday, 31 August at noon Time for Fellowship Lunch Faichney Room.
2 September – 25 October Wolfgang Stahlberg on Roach Exchange at TUC.
Wednesday, 2 September at 6:30pm: PB Handbells rehearsal. Wettenhall Room.
Sunday, 6 September at 11:30am: Welcome morning tea. Faichney Room.
Thursday, 10 September at 11:15am: Ladies Coffee and light lunch. Faichney Room.
Saturday, 12 September 10:00 – noon: PB Handbells rehearsal. Wettenhall Room.
Sunday, 13 September at 2:00pm: SoO Organ Students’ Concert Church.
Monday, 14 September 10:30am: Drop In Card Day. Faichney Room.
Tuesday, 15 September TBA: Management Team. Wettenhall Room.
Wednesday, 16 September at 6:30pm: PB Handbells rehearsal. Wettenhall Room.
Thursday, 17 September at 10:00am: Morning Group. Faichney Room.
Saturday, 19 September 10:00 – noon: PB Handbells rehearsal. Wettenhall Room.
Sunday, 29 November at 10:15am Grandparents’ service and lunch.

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Time for Fellowship Lunch
Monday 31 August 12-2pm. Topic is "A souvenir I bought." All welcome.

Previous Item Page Top Next Item New Pastor for The Swedish Church
Pastor Gunnar Olofsgaard and his wife Deaconess Katarina Olofsgaard are expected to arrive in early Sepember.

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Refurbishment of Toilets
Renovation work has begun! Refurbishment should be completed within 8 weeks. While construction is in progress, men are encouraged to use the Kinross loos and women the disabled loos off the Faichney Room. (Entry to the Faichney Room during the week is available using the concrete ramp at the Eastern entrance.)

Previous Item Page Top Next Item The Congregation Directory
is now available at the rear of the church. For privacy reasons, only those whose names appear in the Directory will receive a copy. Please tick your name off when you take yours.

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Can Christianity and Islam Co-Exist? A National Dialogue
Join us to hear two eminent Christian and Muslim public scholars discuss key issues for a multi-cultural, multi-faith Australia. This important and timely dialogue will address Christian-Muslim relations in the Australian-Indonesian context and seek to build fresh understanding of how people of different faiths and cultures can grow together in understanding and appreciation of one another.
The Rev. Professor James Haire AC – Christian scholar and Companion of the Order of Australia for his leadership in ecumenical and interfaith relations.
Professor Azyumardi Azra CBE – Prominent Indonesian Muslim scholar and public intellectual.

FREE Admission, bookings essential. Register via email: nceis-office@unimelb.edu.au
Monday 7 September 6.30pm – 8.30pm. Yasuko Hiraoka Myer Room, Level 1, Room 106, Sidney Myer Asia Centre, University of Melbourne.
Facilitated by distinguished journalist Jim Middleton

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Strength and Vitality Foundation

Supporting women newly diagnosed with breast cancer
Why do we need emotional Healing?  Strength and Vitality Foundation
Help us build our resource centre in St Kilda supporting emotional healing
Fundraising event
Where: Manse Gallery Café
Address: 603 Toorak Rd, Toorak
Time: 2:30 – 4:30pm
Date: Sunday 13th September
Cost: $35.00
Limited numbers: booking essential
Bookings contact: Michelle Sorensen
Mobile: 0405 040 217
RSVP: 8th September
Web: www.strengthandvitalityfoundation.org.au

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Daydreams and Torments of Love
A romantic literature and musical event dedicated to Frédéric Chopin’s 205th anniversary.
Program features Sergei Suetin, pianist.
TUC, September 20th at 3.00pm. Tickets at the door: $25 / $20 (conc).
Call Sergei on 0402 831 304 for details.

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Missing from TUC archives
Videotape of a Service recorded 3 Sep, 1978, telecast on ABC TV, 11 Feb, 1979. Unfortunately, the ABC no longer has a copy in its archives either. I am hoping someone might have a videotape of this Service and allow me to borrow it to convert to DVD. This recording is significant. Not only was it David Hodge’s last televised Service before his retirement in 1983 (including his excellent sermon ‘Man and Society’), but it is also an historic document. This video will show images of the interior of the Church before refurbishment in 1979, with the old pipe organ and choir stalls in the east transept! If anyone can help, please contact me on 9809 0550 or 0429 907 908. Thank you. David Ross-Smith.

Previous Item Page Top Next Item Roach Ministerial Exchange
Sunday, 6 September: We welcome our Ministerial exchange minister Rev Dr Wolfgang Stahlberg and his wife Rev Lilianna Stahlberg together with their granddaughter, Rebecca who is 12 years old. Wolfgang is the Pastor of the Messiah Community Church, a Lutheran church, in Denver, Colorado USA. Wolfgang is German by background while Lilianna comes from Romania. This interesting international couple met when ministering to youth in Sweden.

During the period Wolfgang, Liliana and Rebecca are at TUC, Christopher will be involved in the congregational life of Wolfgang’s church. Chris and Anne will be introduced to the Messiah Community Church after the morning service on Sunday August 30 at a "pot-luck supper." Wolfgang, Lilliana and Rebecca will then fly to Melbourne and will commence ministry at TUC on Sunday, September 6, for eight Sundays until October 25, 2015.

Please Record In Your Diary – Our Welcoming Services will be held on Sunday, September 6 at 9am and 10.15am, followed at 11.30 by a special morning tea. Come and join us in providing a warm greeting to Wolfgang, Liliana and Rebecca. We have a grand reputation for hospitality here at TUC – let’s continue that tradition!

The Roach Exchange provides a wonderful opportunity for our congregation to experience a minister from a different country and tradition. The Messiah Community Church in Denver is well established and well attended with similar worship and activities to TUC. It is a church in the Lutheran tradition and affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) - a progressive denomination in a traditional environment.

Sunday, 6 September
9am and 10.15 Services – Welcome to Rev Dr Wolfgang Stahlberg, his wife, Rev Liliana Stahlberg, and granddaughter, Rebecca Nagel.
11.30am Official Welcome Morning Tea by Dr Robin Stewardson, Chair of TUC Congregation
Thursday, 10 September
11.15am Morning Coffee Welcome and meeting with Rev Liliana Stahlberg by the ladies of TUC Congregation, with light lunch to follow.
Sunday, 13 September
9am Service – Rev Wal Baker
10.15am Service – Rev Dr Wolfgang Stahlberg
11.30 am – Coffee with Discussion with Rev Stahlberg, light lunch.
Tuesday, 15 September
7.30pm Management Team Meeting
Thursday, 17 September
10.00am Congregation Morning Group meeting – Welcome to Revs Wolfgang and Liliana Stahlberg with discussion on what led them to the ministry and how their congregation in Denver functions.
Wednesday, 7 October
8am Breakfast In Kinross with Rev Wolfgang Stahlberg speaking on aspects of American life.

Previous Item Page Top Next Item 2015 Christian Singles Network Conference

‘Enjoy: the Joy of the Lord is my Strength’
A weekend conference for singles of all ages to grow in faith, friendship and fullness of life in Christ as single people. The Conference aims to empower single adults to fulfil their desires & know the value of living out a single life. There will be time for fellowship, a choice of workshops, prayerful reflection, live music, praise & worship, small group interaction and a dinner dance on the Saturday night.
17-18 October at the Clifton Centre, St Clement of Rome Parish, Bulleen.
Cost: $100 (early bird before August 31 $90). www.trybooking.com/IADB
For more information see csn.coglife.org or email Johanna csnmelbourne@gmail.com

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

Kinross House Gallery is normally open Tuesday to Friday 10:00am – 3pm.
9 August
11 September
Snowball Effect – Anne Cuming
 Deja Vu by Anne Cuming Snowball Effect is a solo exhibition by established artist, Anne Cuming. The exhibition is a collection of evocative paintings from 2008 to 2015. Through the use of colour, composition and subject matter Anne's work portrays sentiments about happiness, loneliness, reflection and contentment and the momentum of life.
Artist statement

Metaphorically speaking a 'snowball effect' starts from an initial state of small significance and builds upon itself, becoming larger and more momentous. A common example of this is a ball of snow rolling down a snow-covered mountain. As it rolls the ball picks up more snow and momentum it grows in mass to arrive at the bottom of the mountain in a different, more noteworthy form.

This exhibition explores the notion that the snowball effect applies to our lives. Every life comprises of a diverse range of complex emotions and experiences which contribute to our individual perceptions and reactions. As the snowball rolls down the hill, its path may be altered by inclines and obstructions, and so our lives change from what we may have first anticipated. No matter which path we choose our experiences will continue to contribute to our lives and affect the momentum at which we travel toward our individual destinies.

I believe that these thoughts are relevant to the event that I am thrilled to be part of during my exhibition at Kinross Arts Centre - the naming of 'Hodges Gallery'. It all began with an idea the Uniting Church Minister, Reverend David Hodges, had many years ago about the arts at Toorak Uniting Church, which 'snowballed' into the wonderful reality of Kinross which supports a wide array of artists and affords them the opportunity to exhibit in such a beautiful and historic place.

This exhibition is a collection of emotive paintings from 2008 to 2015. Through use of colour, composition and subject matter my artwork seeks to connect with the viewer through the portrayal of sentiments including happiness, loneliness, reflection and contentment.
For more information about Anne Cumming please visit www.annecumingart.com.au
Morning Coffee with the artist will be on Sunday 9th August 2015 at 11.30am.

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? The Café now has EFTPOS – no need to remember to have cash.
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 6 September 2015, Pentecost 15
Proverbs 22: 1 – 2, 8 – 9, 22 – 23;     Psalm 125;     James 2: 1 – 10, (11 – 13) 14 – 17;     Mark 7: 24 – 37.
The liturgical colour for Pentecost is green.

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