Uniting WODONGA

Monday to Friday 9.30am to 12.30pm
Volunteers play an important role in the provision of various programs:
*Emergency Relief
*Social Inclusion Groups
CONTACT: 026048 6900

NILS (No Interest Loan Scheme)

Tuesdays by Appointment

FOCUS (Friends of Christ Uniting St Stephen’s)

When: 1st Sunday of the month
Where: Advertised in Newsheet
Time: 3pm Winter, 5pm Daylight Savings

RECYCLE BICYCLES

Tuesday & Thursday Mornings or by Appointment

UNITING FRIENDS

Information:
Uniting Friend’s meets 2nd Sunday of the month for lunch/outings.
Day: – Sunday
Time: – 12 noon
Duration: – Varies
Location: – Varies

SCRABBLE GROUP

Day: – Thursdays
Time: – 2:15 pm
Duration: – 1hr 30m
Location: – St Stephen’s – Green Room

CUPPA AND CHAT

Day: – Thursday
Time: – 9:30am
Duration: – 1hr 30m
Location: – St Stephen’s – Green Room

mainly music

Information:
Facebook Page
For Children aged 0 – School Aged.
Enrollment at 9:45am.
Day: – Thursday (During Victorian school term)
Time: – 10:00am
Duration: – 1hr 45m
Location: – St Stephen’s – Fellowship Room
Cost – $5 per Family
FULL – Please add your name to the Waiting List

SENIORS GROUP MEET

Day: – Wednesday (Second Wednesday of each month)
Time: – 2:15pm
Duration: – Fellowship Room
Location: – St Stephen’s Church

DAD’S ARMY MEET-UP

Day: – Tuesday
Time: – 8:30am
Duration: – 3hr
Location: – St Stephen’s Shed with morning tea in the Fellowship Room

AGED CARE – WORSHIP SERVICES

Every Thursday at any the following times/locations.
ESTIA – 9:30am
WESTMONT – 11:00am
BUPA – 2:30pm

SOCIAL JUSTICE GROUP

Information:
Social Justice Group meets when required.  Keep an eye on the weekly pew sheet. Open to anyone interested in promoting a Christian model of social justice. Issues range from international to local and participants are encouraged to become well informed and take action in some way. Actions may include writing to a politician, signing a petition or sending a JIM postcard. Material from the Justice and International Mission unit of Synod is a valuable resource.
Day: – Keep an eye on News Sheet for when we meet
Location: – St Stephen’s – Fellowship Room

STUDY/DISCUSSION GROUPS

  • Morning Study Group
    Day: – Wednesday
    Time: – 9:30am
    Duration: – 2hr
    Location: – St Stephen’s – Fellowship Room

 

  • Afternoon Discussion Group
    Day: – Wednesday (When Advertised in Pew Notices)
    Time: – 3:00pm
    Duration: – 1hr 30m
    Location: – St Stephen’s – Fellowship Room

 

  • Night Study Group
    Information:
    Thu Evening Study – Location changed each week (held at someone’s house). Begins with shared meal.
    Day: – Thursday
    Time: – 6:30
    Duration: – 2 – 3hr
    Location: – Private Home

PRAYER IN GREEN ROOM

Day: – Friday (During Victorian school terms)
Time: – 8:00am
Duration: – 1hr
Location: – St Stephen’s – Green Room

THEOLOGICAL BOOK GROUP

Day: – Meeting once per Term (see News Sheets for dates)
Time: – 7:30pm
Duration: – Varies
Location: – N/A (different house each meeting)

CHOIR

Information:
Choir meets each Thursday evening from 4:30pm to 5:45pm. New members are always welcome.
Talk to Alison Prenter or any member of the choir if you are interested and would like to know more.
Day: – Thursday
Time: – 4:30pm
Duration: – 1hr 15m
Location: – St Stephen’s – Around the Organ/Piano

EASTER 6 – 17th May 2020 WORSHIP AT HOME – Graham Bridges

EASTER 6
17th May 2020
Worship at home
Graham Bridges

The Story “IN” the Bible

The Story “IN” the Bible
You’ll know about the Bible Stories such as Adam and Eve, Noah and the Ark, Moses and the Red Sea, Ruth and Naomi, David and Goliath, Jonah and the Fish, the Birth of Jesus, the Death of Jesus, and Paul on the Damascus Road.
Perhaps you’ll even know just a little about the Story of the Bible such as how the Greek speaking Jewish scholars in Egypt translated the Hebrew Bible (our Old Testament) into the Greek which the early Christians read, how the early Councils of the Church
made decisions about what early Christian writings would be included in the New Testament writings, and how it was much later translated into English so we could read today.
But do you know the Story IN the Bible from Creation to New Creation, from the first Chapters of Genesis to the last Chapters of Revelation? Often the Bible is treated like a collection of rules for living, or a collection of promises from God to encourage us in faith and life – of course it is that, but this all comes in a Story about a People and their journey through the centuries with their God, a
journey with many more downs than ups, but a journey where these People are continually called to share God’s “message” to “all nations”. How is that Story told, what was the point of this “journey”, what is the message these Called People needed to share with the watching world, and what relevance does all this have for us today?
The current social distancing requirements might stop us meeting face to face for worship, might stop us participating in faith discussion groups, and may inhibit us in expressing our own faith journey in personal relationships with others in coffee shops etc. But it does not stop us meeting online via resources such as Zoom, to not only engage in continuing discussions of these sorts,
but to also record them so that others might be encouraged by them when they have opportunity. The take up of this sort of technology at this time provides us with a different sort of opportunity to share together in nurturing our faith and growing in our call to engage with others as God’s people.
You are therefore invited to consider joining in a weekly Zoom discussion of no more than ONE Hour to start at Genesis 1:1 until we
finish at Revelation 22:21 whenever that might be (possibly this could be even a year later?).
The approach would be informal as we work our way through the Story IN the Bible bouncing off the key parts that help trace the Story of God’s interaction with his Called People, and how God repeatedly has to “change plans” because of the way this Called
People variously respond and pull back on the role they have been called to by God, but to which God remains committed nonetheless.
Ian Bedford will facilitate this discussion, bouncing off his more than 60 years of reading the Bible and the study guides bible scholars have written, the questions you as participants are willing to ask, and the comments you are keen to share given your reading and thinking over your lifetime and life experiences. Ian is not a professional biblical scholar but a lay person who has sensed a need to
take the bible seriously and to grapple with understanding its relevance through understanding its cultural context, the subtleties of its original language, its clear underlying themes, and its potential application to God’s Call to us and the journey we are having today as we respond to that Call.
Are you fascinated enough to come and share this exploration of the Bible as the basis of our faith?
Do you have the time to spend one hour each week as we explore in this way together?
Do you have access to Zoom technology?
Are you willing to make a commitment to participate for this one hour via Zoom from where-ever you happen to be at the time agreed to for these sessions?
Are you willing to participate in video recording these Zoom discussions so that others can share this journey in faith?
Do you wish to support others who cannot Zoom in nurturing their faith and ministry under God through these videos?
Of course this is a bit of a challenge – but maybe it’s also an opportunity to get a grasp of the “Back Story” of Christianity within which God calls us to be God’s people in God’s world today.i
If this challenge appeals to you, please contact Ian Bedford either via mobile phone 0412 544 770 or email ianjudybedford@iinet.net.au to discuss which evening and what time would work for you to participate. A small group of 5 or 6 interested people up to, maybe 8 or 9, is all we would need to get started. And as we progress these videoed discussions could then be shared online with others who express their interest in being able to access these videos through an UNLISTED Youtube site, not open publicly, as the St Stephen’s Worship@Home videos are already being shared.
This invitation is a first step in the efforts of St Stephen’s Uniting Church Wodonga to respond to the current social isolation
challenge with developing resources that can be used by God to build people’s sense of being disciples of the God who Calls and to
continue to participate in that God’s mission at times such as these. Other resource options are being explored.
Ian Bedford

THOUGHTS ABOUT A GOD WHO HEALS

THOUGHTS ABOUT A GOD WHO HEALS

PRAYER

Loving and caring God, Thank you for being with me in the ordinariness of my day. A day that began as it always does with toast and coffee. A day that might be very ordinary or filled with surprises depending on how much I am listening to you. Christ thank you for reminding me that no matter what the day might hold you are right here with me always waiting and longing to direct my way.

A THOUGHT

In the activity and challenges of my day is God really here? Does he really care?

The psalmist in psalm 73 is struggling with his faith in a way that most could identify with. He commences with,

‘Surely God is good to his people, to those who are pure in heart.

But as for me, my feet had almost slipped, I had almost lost my foothold.

For I envied the arrogant when I saw the prosperity of the wicked,

They have no struggles their bodies are healthy and strong

They are free from burdens common to man ‘

and he goes on as I often go on.……..

Then in verse 13…….

‘Surely I have kept my heart pure, in vain I have washed my hands in innocence’….

But then! But then!

‘When I tried to understand all this it was oppressive to me

Till I entered the sanctuary of God, then I understood…..’

Then I looked and listened and in listening I heard the voice of God. In hearing I understood my situation and what God required of me. A word I had heard before, a word that gave me strength and encouragement to move forward as an instrument of the creator God  to do his will in the space he has given me.

As the psalmist concludes v26-28

‘My flesh and my heart may fail but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

Those who are far from you will perish……….   but as for me it is good to be near God.’

No matter how my day may start or play out, toast and coffee or not for me it is good to be near God and to tell of all his deeds.

PRAYER

Loving and ever present God.

I am so thankful that no matter how many times I slip up you are always there to hold me and redirect my path.

No matter how many times forget the lessons I have learned and

the commitments I have made you are always ready to give me another chance.

God even though I am a blunt tool you still have a place for me and you will continue to sharpen me if I am willing to let you.

Thank you Father.

For the lessons of each day I thank you God.

For your willingness to continue to keep and guide me I thank you.

Amen

A Pleasant Sunday Evening – By Bill Pugh

A Pleasant Sunday Evening – By Bill Pugh
Years ago, on a Sunday evening there was a programme on the ABC called Great Hymns of Faith. Wonderful choirs introduced by the long-time organist at St Paul’s Cathedral, A. E. Floyd. I can still hear his rather quaint but lovely voice. I used to listen till just before I was to walk into our church next door to the Manse to take the Evening Service. One Hymn, often repeated, resonated with me – The day you gave us, Lord, is ended. Yet when Sunday worship is over and night falls, the Church is still unsleeping. All around the world as the new day dawns worship continues. Prayer is never silent. Fresh voices are praising God and telling of wondrous things happening in his Name.
Sometimes we feel our witness in the world is tiny. But together, with men, women and children around the world, we are building the Kingdom. Whatever the hour, day or night, Kingdom people are praising God.
Reflection:
Read Tis 458, The Day tHou Gavest, and may the last verse of Tillerton’s wonderful hymn inspire and encourage each of us.
So be it, Lord; your throne shall never,
Like earth’s proud empires, pass away;
Your kingdom stands, and grows forever,
Till all your creatures own your sway.
victas.uca.org.au/resources/

ACTIVITIES

  • Choir
  • Prayer in Green Room
  • Op Shop
  • Study/Discussion Groups
    • Morning Study Group
    • Night Study Group
  • Social Justice Group
  • Aged Care Worship Services
  • Dad’s Army Meet-up
  • Seniors Group
  • mainly music
  • Cuppa and Chat
  • Scrabble Group
  • Uniting Friends
  • Op Shop
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