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June: Mission & Parish Council Update

Missions, News & Prayer

Scripture Union & Bible Society

In July, Mission of the Month giving is divided between Scripture Union and Bible Society.

Just now, inspired by a ‘billboards on buses’ campaign in London, we are running a series of #QuoteJesus signs on our changeable church sign. The first says, “Blessed are the peacemakers.” How timely are Jesus’ words.

This reminds us of the importance of taking in and passing on God’s truth in Scripture. Both these organisation see encouragement of that as central to their roles!

Scripture Union is an interdenominational movement, working with the churches to passionately, creatively, and prayerfully share the Good News of Jesus. Importantly to the Illawarra, their ministries include camps, student Christian groups (SUPA clubs in primary and ISCF groups in high schools), and their largest ministry, SUFM (Scripture Union Family Mission – also known as ‘Beach Mission’). For more see sunsw.org.au/.

I am thankful that students from St Michael’s can attend Christian lunchtime groups in their public schools because of the ‘covering’ of SU. Likewise I am thrilled that numbers of St Michael’s members volunteer serve each January on SU beach missions!

Bible Society Australia has pursued its goal for 200 years: to translate, publish, distribute and engage people with the Bible. E.g., the Bible Society provides thousands of Bibles are each year to chaplains for distribution in hospitals, prisons, correctional centres and within the Australian Defence Force, and via overseas projects. They also partner with Australian indigenous communities to translate and distribute the Bible in indigenous languages.

Parish Council Update
  • As always, we start with a member’s Bible reading (Deuteronomy 9) and prayer.
  • The Parish Council warmly received the request for prayer support for old friends of St Michael’s, Roger and Noriko Dethlefs, who are headed to Japan as self-funded, short term mission workers with CMS at the end of the year.
  • Noting the gradual loss of chairs to wear and tear, we organised for the purchase of an additional 60 Sebel chairs for the church hall.
  • Plate glass on western end of hall, upstairs and downstairs, has been replaced with safety glass, as recommended by diocesan risk management guidelines.
  • We began considering potential staffing and trainee needs and opportunities for 2018.
  • Evacuation drills for all Sunday congregations are scheduled for early Term 3.
  • One notable safety incident from the last month was discovery of a used syringe in a rubbish bin in a hall bathroom. We are issuing risk guidelines for staff and ministry leaders. In brief:
    (i) Never place your hands into areas where you cannot see as sharps may be concealed there e.g. overgrown garden beds, rubbish bins.
    (ii) Don’t manually compress rubbish in bins in case they contain syringes.
    (iii) If you see a syringe, please advise a staff member or ministry leader to organise safe disposal, and ensure children and others stay away in the interim.
    (iv) Small groups using the hall should consider locking the doors, if they are the only group onsite, once all members have arrived.
  • Parish Council supported expenditure of $350 in set up costs for a church women’s soccer team (consistent with support for existing men’s teams).
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Corner of Church St and Market St Wollongong