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This Sunday is Defence Sunday, a day which is important for us as we pray for the members of our defence force and for their chaplains.
The group, ‘Defence Anglicans’ remind us of the importance of Defence Sunday:
Whilst Remembrance Day recalls the tragedy of World War 1 and the hope for peace which came with the Armistice on 11 November 1918, the experiences of the 20ths and now the 21st Century reveal that this hope remains unfulfilled.
Tragically, Australian service personnel continue to die in combat in the Middle East and the numbers of physical, psychological and spiritual causalities continue to increase.
Our church has a responsibility to provide ongoing pastoral and spiritual care to serving military personnel.
The greatest support that the church can provide to its chaplains engaged in this mission is prayer and understanding.
Please remember to pray for the safety of those who serve in the defence force and for their chaplains.
Well if the growing sightings of tinsel in shopping centre decorations is any indication, Christmas is only just around the corner.
This year our church continues our tradition of meeting for Community Christmas Carols to be held the Sunday night before Christmas, on the 22nd December at 5pm.
It’s a great night for both members and guests to join together to sing some modern and traditional carols, to hear the kids perform some songs, and to enjoy a free sausage sizzle.
We’re planning a special Christmas Green Day on Sunday the 8th of December, when we’ll hand out flyers to our suburb to invite them to join us for our community festivities.
Let’s pray that this Christmas is filled with real hope in the real Jesus!
This week in Nairobi, over 1300 Anglican ministers from around the world joined together at GAFCON, the ‘Global Anglican Futures Conference’ to encourage each other to persevere with the historical faith that is grounded on the real Jesus, whom we know in his word, the Bible.
One of our Sydney Anglican ministers at GAFCON, Nigel Fortescue, wrote about the persecution experienced by our brothers and sisters around the world:
“There are forces within the Anglican Church that are making it hard for some of our brothers and sisters to remain Anglican. There are forces outside the Anglican Church that are making it hard for some of our brothers and sisters to remain Christian…
“It is too much to go into all the stories here. It was almost too much to hear it all except for the fact that those persecuted had a vigorous and real hope in The Lord Jesus that encouraged me no end. Nothing else keeps them going…
“When we in Sydney talk of persecution we often mention graffiti on the church or the fact someone kicked down our sign. Perhaps we might mean a family member mocked us for trusting Jesus. Perhaps we may have even been the butt of jokes at work.
“But at the end of the day, we have no idea, much to learn and many prayers to pray.”
Let’s keep praying for our brothers and sisters at GAFCON and beyond.
It is hard to imagine just what it is like to lose everything in a natural disaster.
Yet, sadly this is the experience that many people share after this week’s extreme fires that have caused such loss to so many people.
We pray for those who have been affected by injuries and deaths, and we pray that God would comfort people as they come to terms with the pain of loss and the upcoming struggle to rebuild their homes and their lives.
Disasters like these remind us that all of us should hunger for the life that is to come, when those who trust in Jesus will see no more tears and mourning.
May these tragic events lead us in our church to show genuine comfort and love for those affected, and may it remind all of us for the need to find refuge in Jesus.
UPDATE: To give to the Archbishop of Sydney’s appeal for the victims of the bushfires, click here.
Well, friends, it’s hard to believe it, but it’s now a full year since my family joined the church family at Oak Flats Anglican.
On behalf of Mandy, Liana, Jemimah, Oscar and Hugo, I can certainly say that we give great thanks to God for all that he has done over these wonderful twelve months together.
During this year we have all enjoyed the fruit of knowing Jesus better as his Spirit has taught us through his word, and we bring glory to God the Father for the way we have been grown by him in so many ways.
It is our prayer that the years ahead see more people come to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ so that they might repent and believe in him, and be saved from God’s wrath and be joyfully established in his heavenly church.
And we pray that as he grows us, that God will keep us loving one another as we wait in hope for the returning of Jesus, our blessed saviour.
Grace and peace,