Editorial: A simple act

As we go to print with this edition of Revive, my family and I are right in the middle of moving house. We’re currently responsible for two houses – the old one and the new one – and  they are both in complete chaos.

I don’t know much about my new neighbourhood yet, I haven’t really had time to explore. But I know it must be a nice place to live, as on our first day of moving boxes over, we  were greeted with a delicious plate of brownies by one of my partner’s colleagues, Rev Narelle Collas. The plate was adorned with a gorgeous card, which read ‘welcome to the neighbourhood’. You can actually see some of her handiwork, as this card was used in a picture of a chocolate slice recipe, which we’ve included here. Continue Reading

Moderator’s column: God’s desire for peace, freedom and equality

The Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem.

The Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem.

It is good to be home after our long overseas trip followed by a brief visit to a very successful Yurora NCYC 2014 in Parramatta. Viv and I hope you had a happy Christmas and wish  you every blessing for 2014.

Our time in the Holy Land was a particular blessing to us both. We spent ten wonderful days as pilgrims travelling with twelve other pilgrims in what must be the place of pilgrimage for Christians. Even the worst snowfall in Jerusalem for 100 years, freezing temperatures at night and the heating breaking down in the college didn’t prevent us from soaking in the  pure wonder of just being there. Continue Reading

Getting to know your neighbours

How well do you know your neighbours? Are they a family similar to yours or are they different? Are they a couple or someone living on their own? Are they from another country?  Are they right next door in an apartment building, or kilometres away on a neighbouring farm?

While some people are best friends with their neighbours, often these days we don’t know them at all. This can mean that the community might not be as strong as it could, as when  people need each other they don’t know who is nearby that they can count on. 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

Wall of destruction

As I was about to complete high school, I remember watching footage and seeing photos of jubilant people clambering over what was once the Berlin Wall and taking chunks of cement as souvenirs. At the time I did not understand what this really meant for the people of Germany or what they had been through in the previous four decades. My recollection is only the smiles of joy and the moments of reconciliation. Little did I know that, in my life time, I would see another wall, twice as high and four times longer, constructed for similar reasons in another part of the world. In my travels to Israel and Palestine Territories last August I saw the monstrous wall of separation and heard stories of its impact upon the people.Continue Reading

On the road to Jericho

Who is my neighbour? This is the question asked of Jesus by an expert in the law, and it provides the setting for Jesus’ telling of the Parable of the Good Samaritan. The story is played out on the Jericho Road. It had a nickname in the time of Jesus – the ‘Way of Blood’. A remote road that for centuries had been a place of robberies, the Jericho Road is a symbol. It is the strip of  suffering.For Jesus, and still today, it is a symbol of the suffering in the world. Continue Reading

Neighbours on the street

Within a period of eight months, UnitingCare West, a community service provider of the Uniting Church, has come into contact with over 180 families who are at risk of  homelessness in Perth. That is over five families a week in crisis situations. Responding to this need, UnitingCare West opened the Family Foundations Service to support families  who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless in Perth and the surrounding suburbs. Continue Reading

More than a guest

Following a visit to Scarborough in 2012 from UnitingWorld representative Lee-Anne Burnett, the Scarborough and Waterman’s Bay Congregations agreed to sponsor a student  from the Indonesian province of Papua to be a part of a group of students undertaking a three-month intensive English language course in Perth early in 2013. A good grasp of English enhances the employment prospects for Papuans.Continue Reading