Messages from the aether: Who is my neighbour?

What people are blogging

To love your neighbour, you must know your neighbour
http://thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/tgc/2011/03/29/to-love-your-neighboryou-must-know-your-neighbor/

This is a progressive look at restoring a sense of community and getting to know our neighbours as a deliberate exercise. It is a shocking revelation that once engaged, most are quite  amenable to getting to know the people around them. Continue Reading

Living life at the top: 100 reflections on abundant life, by Paul Clark

Living Life at the Top (Paul Clark)

Abundant life … is it possible in 21st century Australia? Have you ever asked yourself, ‘Is this all there is to living? Could we get more out of life?’ These questions form the basis for this little book that has grown out of 60 second radio spots originally broadcast live on 96.5FM, a Christian radio station in Queensland.

The book retains the 60 second script format so each page contains a different topic. On first glance this is frustrating because you want to go deeper to find what the author thinks of the topics included; topics such as pain, anger, science and religion, self-esteem, family life, criticism, parents and love but none of the topics is unpacked for us. It is designed for deeper unpacking elsewhere, either alone or with a friend, or in a group over a coffee. It is designed for us to reflect on our own context through personal reflection or conversation with others. As such, this little book may seem light-on but the short messages stick with you so that you reflect on them through each day.Continue Reading

Community is Messy: The perils and promise of small group ministry, by Heather Zempel

Community is Messy  (Heather Zempel)The potential for small groups to facilitate spiritual growth has long been recognised. We find references to the early church meeting in the homes of believers and small groups known as ‘class meetings’ were a key in the Methodist movement promoted by John Wesley. In many congregations small groups supplement the work and witness of the gathered church.

For Heather Zempel, small groups are essential for promoting Christian community. Readers should not expect, however, to find guidance in this book on how to do it. Rather, the writer uses her experience to draw attention to the challenges and problems of small groups.Continue Reading

Challenging the language of fear

When we think about what we are scared of, what comes to mind? Debt? Crime? Death?

Dr Keith Suter, managing director of Global Directions and Uniting Church member, is a leader in global thought and a member of arguably  the most prestigious global think tank in the world, the Club of Rome. While you may not realise it, he believes that many Australians are  fearful of invasion. Continue Reading

Cipto: The love of Christ through peaceful action

 

The Indonesian Christian Church (GKI) Perth, a Uniting Church congregation in Mosmon Park, has much to celebrate at the moment with the commissioning, in December last year, of their new minister, Rev Ciptamartalu Sapangi.

Rev Ciptamartalu Sapangi comes to Perth from Bardung, Indonesia, with many years experience, including building interfaith relationships in Indonesia’s multi-faith society. Continue Reading

Pirate Church: Calling all mischief makers

You know you’re doing ministry right when it involves trips to a comedy festival and the consumption of copious quantities of rum. That, at least, is the lesson Paul ‘Werzel’  Montague and Rev Chris Bedding have learnt from the last year.

The cult sensation, Pirate Church, had a sell-out season at Perth’s Fringe World Festival. Then the boys embarked on a national tour, taking in the Melbourne International Comedy Festival and appearances in Sydney and Melbourne. Later in 2013, they launched an innovative addition to the Pirate Church brand – the deliciously naughty A Week at St  Bastard’s. Continue Reading