Christian??!

Needless to say, the article in the Aug. 29th Sunday Age entitled, “Christian lobby pushes for end to lockdowns, don’t fear death,” was anything but Christian.  It is certainly true that we should not be ‘led around by the nose’ by the fear of death, and Jesus would agree, I’m sure; however, the ready willingness to risk the lives of others, particularly those who are already physically impaired, is about as far from Christian as one can get.

I think the motivation of the Christian Lobby may not be the explicit fear of death, but actually it is fear: the fear of losing dollars, the fear of losing control and, at least unconsciously, the fear of losing masculinity… (Click here to read more)

An Unexpected Blessing

Ministry is a blessing to me in general, but occasionally,  albeit relatively rarely, I have felt especially blessed.  Last Sunday was one such occasion.  I received an email from the van der Poll family, members of the Leopold congregation who occasionally join our worship on Zoom, which was amazingly relevant to the worship service I was about to lead. With their permission I share it with you:

“Sometimes I just want it to stop. The talk of Covid, brutality, disasters…(click on this link to read more)

Refugee Sunday

This Sunday, June 20th, was Refugee Sunday and also the observance of the 44th anniversary of the birth of the Uniting Church.  To celebrate the occasion the Barwon Heads congregation met with the Ocean Grove congregation at 10:30am to hear Jim Molineux from the Synod’s Justice and International Mission cluster.

left to right: Tim Molineux from JIM, Fahim (imam and ex-refugee), Rev. Bob Thomas

Chaos, Creation and God

2020 had more than the usual degree of chaos for many people, but even in a relatively uneventful year, there is some degree of chaos in most people’s lives.  Though one might yearn for a life free of chaos, even a cursory study of this topic suggests that chaos is important, perhaps necessary, for life. (Read more)

Mask Etiquette

Now that masks are no longer required in church (nevertheless, wearing them is still advised), the question arises, “Should I wear  a mask?”  What is the new etiquette?

If it were only a question of protecting oneself, the answer would be easy: I would choose to take a small risk or not.  However, the role of a mask is also to protect others.  In fact, the mask is much more effective in protecting others from you than it is in protecting you from others.  Now the question is: “Should I be responsible for the protection of my neighbour?”  This question, at least for a follower of Jesus, is an easy one to answer, is it not?

If you are completely healthy and you are certain you have not been exposed to the coronavirus, then it is quite reasonable to not wear a mask in church.  If, however, there is any chance you may have been affected, and are asymptomatic, the responsible choice is to wear a mask in the presence of others.

Perhaps we have stumbled upon a new word: Masketiquette (when to wear one). This may be the beginnings of a new glossary for the times in which we live; e.g.
Maskercise, the extra exercise gained when, having entered the supermarket, you realise you left your mask in the car:

Maskicide: causing death using a mask made out of a plastic bag;
Maskette: a face covering for an infant.
And, of course, there will be a new use for Masking Tape

Contributions to this new glossary should be emailed to Rev. Bob at bobuc2@juno.com.

Justice and Compassion for Refugees

The Queenscliff branch of Rural Australians for Refugees is currently conducting a letter-writing campaign to our politicians, and would greatly appreciate our support.  Please find out more by clicking on the links below, and see how you can help get justice for genuine refugees.

Permanent protection for Refugees

Support Labor party’s policy for refugees here

https://www.ruralaustraliansforrefugees.org.au

Although not as effective as direct communication with our politicians, you may sign a petition online by clicking on this link.

 

 

An open, virtual door to the world