A good crowd gathered for the first event for the local Uniting Churches in the Albany region to be held in the new Beryl Grant Community Centre in Lockyer for the Induction of Rev Corina van Oostende into the congregations of Lockyer, Albany, Mount Barker and Denmark. This centre is the first stage of aged care services to be run by Juniper, an agency of the Uniting Church WA.
After several years without a minister in placement, the atmosphere of the service reflected joy and our gratitude to Corina for responding to the needs of the local congregations. We were delighted that the Uniting Church WA Moderator, Rev Steve Francis and his wife, Kim, were able to attend and support this momentous day.
The chair of the Presbytery of WA, Rev Lorraine Stokes, herself a former minister in the region, led the service and Rev Dr Geof Lilburne preached a challenging sermon that was for both Corina and the people for the times ahead.
Rev Gordon Scantlebury, who had chaired the Joint Nominating Committee, outlined the progression of steps leading to Corina accepting the call. The multi-congregational aspect of the placement was shown by participants from each congregation taking part in the service.
Several visitors from other denominations brought greetings to Corina, demonstrating the ecumenical aspects of ministry in Albany and our other congregations.
Following the service a typical country afternoon tea was enjoyed where friendships were renewed and new ones made, and the feeling of optimism for the future of our congregations was evident.
We look forward to exciting, challenging times ahead as we work together with Corina as the people of God in the Uniting Church WA Albany Regional Congregations.