19 December 2021

You do a great thing every time you attend church. In so doing, you acknowledge that our Maker and Redeemer is worthy of our praise and glory.  I hope you have a strong sense each time you join us of God speaking to you through his word, the Bible, and that he hears the prayers and praises we bring to him.

With the further lifting of COVID restrictions as of 15th December, masks in churches are no longer compulsory. However, in light of increasing case numbers, I would still encourage you to wear a mask while inside the church building if you are happy to do so.  This will reduce the risk of any COVID spread and will help many to feel more comfortable. All of our other COVID safe measures are unchanged.

Last Sunday’s Carols at St Jude’s with picnic and family fun were a great success.  Praise God for the great weather! Around 450 people came along and had a great time listening to carols, singing together, hearing the Christmas story retold along with fun from the puppet, nativity craft, petting zoo and jumping castle.  The Botany Bay Band was fantastic, as usual. Our wonderful BBQ helpers were busy all afternoon.

While the event and all the attractions were free, we invited donations for Anglican Aid’s Christmas appeal.  This raised $1079. Another encouragement was the fellowship of other local churches to help us put on this event.  We couldn’t have done without the musicians, sound equipment experts and stall helpers from St Luke’s Clovelly and from the AFES mission team which was at Holy Trinity Kingsford for the week.

I am sure that everyone is in shock at the terrible tragedy at Hillcrest Primary School in Devonport, Tasmania.  This is one of the worst things I have heard of in a long time, particularly since our own family was right in the middle of all the fun associated with the end of the school year.  We could imagine how horrible it would be to have such fun and festivity turned to tragedy.  While there is nothing that we can do or say to make the pain and tragedy of this situation go away, I want to encourage you that we can pray for everyone involved (including ourselves as we struggle to come to grips with it).  At this time, it may be of some comfort to remember that God is “able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine” (Ephesians 3:20).

In brief:

  • Christmas services are next weekend!  Family Christmas Celebration at 6 pm on Christmas Eve. Communion Services 11 pm, 8 am and 9.30 am (note the two services on Christmas morning).  Looking forward to seeing you there.
  • There are still a few letterbox postcards looking for a deliverer!