Blessing of the Animals – Oct 4 St Francis Day

The blessing of the Animals – St Francis Day 4 October 2015 Matt 11: 25-30  Marg Holt TSSF
One day I was visiting with a friend who is terrified of spiders when she noticed a huntsman spider and was about to flatten it when I screamed ‘don’t kill it! I’ll take it outside’…and Di is not au fait really with saints of the church but she groaned ‘ok, ok, St Francis of Assisi!…’ It is not by coincidence that World Animal Day is Oct 4th – the feast day of St Francis of Assisi.

You can read the rest of Marg’s Sermon here.

Blessing of the Animals – Franciscan intercessions

THE PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE

With confidence and trust let us pray to our Father God:

We thank you, Father, for all animals and creatures on the Earth who teach us how to rely on you with simplicity and humility. Thank you for how they teach us how to worship and praise you every day for all that we receive from you. Bless their habitats and environment, their health and well-being, that they may continue to teach us of Your wisdom, goodness and grace:

Father, our Creator, hear us.

We thank you, Father, for veterinarians and all those working in the world to protect endangered and suffering animals and creatures. We thank you for those who support and care for bird and animal sanctuaries. As we hold before you all people who are suffering in violent and war torn areas of the world we pray that we may honour all life and work to protect and rescue our animal brethren from the suffering of poaching, hunting and blood sports.

Father, our Creator, hear us.

Father, you gave us responsibility to care for and nurture all that you have made with humility and respect. We grieve for all the damage we have done to the homes and habitats of both people and our animal friends on the earth, in the oceans, forests and mountains. Help us to restore the environment for all of us to live together in joy, love and peace.

Father, our Creator, hear us.

We thank you, Father, for all the good things we receive from our animal friends – clothing, protection, transport and food. We thank you for our special companions who enrich our lives every day – for their love, friendship and devotion. May we see reflected in them the goodness and love of God.
Forgive us, Lord, when animals die or suffer needlessly at our hands. Forgive us, Father that we often see their lives as so very cheap compared to ours. Thank you for the example of Brother Francis of Assisi who showed us what living in community in God’s Kingdom of Love should be.

Father, our Creator, hear us.

Father, we hold before you all those who are in need in our families, among our friends and in our community. We ask for your blessing, provision and healing for our human and animal friends whom we bring before you now…

Father, our Creator, hear us.

Operation Christmas Child

OPCristmasChThe Ladies Guild have  filled 45 shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child.

The Guild have also raised over $400 to pay for delivery costs to needy children throughout the world, each one personally delivered.

Thanks to the Ladies Guild for this magnificent effort and for  the joy that these boxes will give to many children.
Thank you.
Rev. David L Smith

Animal Blessing Service: Pictures

On Sunday 4 October we celebrated St Francis’ Day and World Animal Day with an outdoor Eucharist at Christ Church, Strathalbyn at which special prayers were offered for our fellow creatures. The celebrant was Fr Adrian Stephens and the preacher was Marg Holt who is a member of the Third Order of the Society of St Francis.

Most of the extra members of the congregation were dogs of various kinds but there was also a bird and a snake together with an avian chorus in the trees around us.

 

Pastoral Support Workers (School Chaplains)

This year’s AGM of the Chaplaincy Support Committee was held on 16th September in the Church of Christ Hall, and a goodly gathering from Strathalbyn Churches was in attendance with yours truly representing our Anglican Church..

Our Chaplains do a fantastic job throughout the year, and are supported through the ICC (Inter Church Council). Their individual Reports were presented to the AGM of the Chaplaincy Support Committee under the Chairmanship of retired Church of Christ Minister, Grahame Daniel. The Reports gave a detailed account of the work they do with the schoolchildren and staff at Callington School, Strathalbyn Yr 7-12 Campus, Strathalbyn R-6 Campus, Milang and Ashbourne Campuses.

There is a certain amount of Federal funding which is annually reviewed, and has in fact been reduced in recent years, and the Fundraising of all our Churches is vital to continue to finance this work, and is very much appreciated.

I have full copies of each Chaplains Report for anyone interested, and I have to say I was very impressed with the scope of work undertaken, and the obvious commitment that our Chaplains have on our behalf. I am more convinced than ever that although our PSWs are now not allowed to evangelise as such, our Lord is certainly working through them to reach our ‘Future Church’ with love.

I have to say that the contacts that all of the PSWs have made at all the schools are appreciated and without exception are well received from the feedback from the School Staff and others. Individual Pastoral support where appropriate, helping in some classroom activities, and many examples of Breakfast Clubs and Lunchtime help, as well as some extra-curricular all figure in their weekly workload.

Please continue to pray for Andrew, Jacqui, Kaye, Arthur and Kerry, and on behalf of Chairman Grahame, the Chaplains and the whole Support Committee, I pass on thanks to all in our Church Community who continue to give financial support.

I hope and pray that not only will this vital work continue, but perhaps we can, with God’s help, think of expanding and increasing the hours for our Chaplains.

Rev. David Smith

Christian Care and Share

Eileen and Jeanne getting ready to deliver food to Care and Share.
Eileen and Jeanne getting ready to deliver food to Care and Share.

Eileen and Jeanne recently delivered several cartons of tinned and packet food to Christian Care and Share in Mt Barker. This wonderful collection had been gathered together by the Mothers’ Union members with the help of the wider congregation.

Christian Care and Share at their Centre in Hutchinson Street, Mt Barker supply food and financial assistance to people in need and are always grateful for help in support of their work and acknowledge that without such support “we would not be able to continue providing this help to those in our community who need it most”.

We have already started building up the pantry again and welcome your support in continuing to assist this important programme.

Alex

Mothers’ Union Celebration

MUProvincialCelebrationOn Friday 7th August, about 100 Mothers Union Members from all over South Australia gathered at St Saviour’s Church Glen Osmond to celebrate Mary Sumner Day.

After a welcome coffee in the hall, we went into the church where Fr. Simon Bailey led the service. Reverend Dr Lesley McLean, MU Chaplain for Adelaide Diocese, preached the sermon, referring to the gospel reading from Luke 6, where Jesus came down and stood among the crowd, and healed many people and taught about God’s kingdom. She spoke about the healing, forgiveness, and hope that Jesus gives to all who trust Him.

Over lunch, we had the opportunity to chat with friends old and new.

State President, Mrs. Eileen Smith, welcomed and introduced our guest speaker, Mrs. Elizabeth Appleby. Elizabeth is a Life Vice President of MU Australia, a former MU Australia President and a former member of the Trustee Board at Mary Sumner House, which is the governing and decision making body for Mothers Union.

She spoke about Mothers Union Worldwide – who we are, our vision, aim & purpose, mission, and how we work. She spoke about our founder, Mary Sumner, her faith and vision of a group of mothers working to support marriage and train their children and families to follow Christ. Elizabeth wondered what Mary Sumner would think about us in MU Australia today, as we reach out to share Christ’s love with people who may have different views on issues such as divorce, abortion, ordination of women, human sexuality, gender equality.

Elizabeth encouraged us to remember our vision – to share Christ’s love through supporting marriage and family life, and to use Families Worldwide to pray for Mothers Union around the world, and to be enthusiastic.

After a short question time, Eileen thanked Elizabeth for her interesting talk, and announced that the offering in church raised $421.30, half of which will be given to our overseas project, Church and Community Mobilisation Process in Tanzania, and half towards the fund for the training of Indigenous Women.

Elizabeth also cut the birthday cake, which was to celebrate 120 years of Mothers Union in South Australia.

We thank Glen Osmond Parish and Mothers Union for hosting the day, and the leaders of MU in South Australia for organizing another gathering for the encouragement of all MU members.

Caroline Earl

Wedding Anniversary

Bishop John and Joyce Lewis with friends.
Bishop John and Joyce Lewis with friends.

Members of the congregation from the Wednesday morning Eucharist and Study Group at Christ Church, Strathalbyn were delighted to be able to share with two of their number who were celebrating their seventh wedding anniversary on Saturday 8 August.

After sharing in the Eucharist with Bishop John and Joyce Lewis and their friends at the Strathalbyn Aged Care Facility they shared in a light lunch which Joyce had arranged for the occasion.

Alex

Thursday night prayer group

A small group of folk have been meeting regularly on a Thursday night every fortnight to pray for the Parish, the local communities, the Diocese and those who minister to us especially praying for our Bishop John and those in authority viagra au naturel. We also pray for the whole Church community in Strathalbyn and the Inter Church Council, that all of the churches together might witness to God’s love, peace and unity in the wider community and make Christ known and loved in our towns.  Thanks to Karl and Jenny Bouwman who have opened up their home for us to gather together and pray and provided such wonderful hospitality. It has been a great joy and blessing and strength for each of us as we gather together and seek to be guided by the Holy Spirit as we pray and support each other.

All are welcome to join us. The meetings are fortnightly on a Thursday night, the next one being due on the 13 August but always good to check with Karl or Margaret (0466 539 749).

 

Franciscan daily prayer day 2

In the example of his own sacrifice, Jesus reveals the secret of bearing fruit. In surrendering himself to death, he becomes the source of new life. Lifted from the earth on the cross, he draws all people to himself. Clinging to life causes life to decay: the life that is freely given is eternal. (Day 2 Franciscan daily prayers)