Sydney Presbytery AGM Recap.
The meeting started with dinner and for a while there, you couldn’t tell it was a Presbytery Meeting. The vibe was something closer to a (rather large) social gathering among friends.
Following dinner, the Presbytery gathered for devotion. Vini led the liturgy – along with Rads and Tash who shared their musical gifts. This last meeting for the year was held in Glebe Hall at Sydney Presbytery Offices, which has wonderful acoustics. The singing could be heard out onto St Johns Rd!
As part of the devotion, Susan Cann was commissioned as a Pastor of the Uniting Church and it was real privilege to hear some of Susan’s discipleship story.
Annual Report 2018/19
Vini reflected on her second year as Chair and thanked the committed members of Sydney Presbytery “…who faithfully and continuously attempt to lead an authentic way of life that is God-shaped, Christ-centered, and Spirit-empowered.”
Vini presented the Annual Report to the Presbytery, remarking that the pages are full of images and stories of “…faithful people participating in mutual submission to the Gospel, which we hold so dear. Amongst our diversity of expressions, there is a unity to which we bear witness when we work together to fulfil our purpose in ‘Leading the Church to Life’ (which is our mission as a Presbytery) and ‘Thriving, well-resourced, missional churches’ (which is our passion).”
Vini also thanked the Committee members as well as the Presbytery Staff – highlighting that we are being called beyond our borders more and more to provide insight and assistance.
Anne Empson, the Presbytery Treasurer, spoke and lifted up the value that Ian Goff as Business Manager has provided to our Presbytery. Ian noted that there is a strong Balance Sheet, with a normalised loss of 11K. Ian was pleased to report excellent participation in Seeds of Growth and Presbytery Contributions.
Opening worship set the scene for the day. Rev Viniana Ravetali led the Presbytery through the Acknowledgment of Country and the Call to Worship.
Brodie Teoh from Church in the Market Place led the musical components with Rev Radhika Sukumar-White from Leichhardt Uniting.
The Presbytery’s Pastoral Relations Minister, Rev Jenny Ducker, read a moving and thought provoking story titled Two Seas written by Bruce Barton, which is really worth a look.
As a bridge into the rest of the meeting, a clip from United Theological College Principal, Rev Peter Walker’s first Living Church – Synod 2019 Bible study was shown. To view the full Bible study series click 'HERE'.
Life & Mission of Church in the Market Place.
Paul Mulroney from Church in the Market Place (CMP) gave the Presbytery an insightful overview of the congregation’s history, which started as a Methodist Church in the 1860s. Paul also noted the demographics of the area, which means CMP enjoy an extremely diverse and vibrant membership based.
To highlight the CMP’s areas of ministry, a fantastic video was shown featuring a set of outreach activities. These included; Friday Nights for Youth, Playgroups, community outreach via the Connect Team and much more.
The Congregation also participates in No Interest Loans (NILS) and has assisted 158 people. They run a Men’s Shed, which is a popular activity and a great community builder. Alongside of these activities, CMP run opportunities for English language learning with international students.
For more info on Church in the Market Place, please visit their site here: http://cmponline.net
The next section of the meeting focused on the recently resolved Synod debt, the Presbytery’s Mission + Resource Strategy, the Strategic Plan for 2019-22 and the accompanying budget.Read more
Opening worship was led by Rev. Radhika Sukumar-White, with a reflection led by Rev. Ken Day. Worship was moving, vibrant and full of soul. In fact, it was quite a soulful meeting (more on this later).
UNITING INTRODUCTIONS & 'HATS FOR THE HOMELESS' PROJECT
As is custom, our hosts took a moment to say hello and walk the Presbytery through a snap shot of their life and mission. Susan Cann facilitated the presentation, introducing her colleagues from Uniting's Sydney Central Regional Team -including Jean Shannon, Brian Woodhouse, Tash Holmes, Clare Brockett and Craig Corby.
Brian Woodhouse also spoke, announcing the 'Hats for the Homeless' Project; it is an invitation for members, using prepared resources, to make woollen hats for those in need. A number of Presbytery Members indicated their interest in assisting in this project. And since the meeting, numerous hats have been made!Read more
Opening Worship was full of life as we kicked off the first Presbytery meeting of 2019.
Rev. Jenny Ducker preached on the theme – ‘Ordinary Love’.
Congregational Christmas Sharing
Ian Goff shared a presentation on how various congregations celebrated Christmas through, which highlighted the unique and vibrant mission activities and celebrations over the festival of Christmas. The Presbytery saw a snap shot of what went on at the Petersham Tongan congregation, Woollahra-Double Bay, Mustard Seed, Ashfield, Burwood-Croydon, Hurlstone Park and Lugar Brae.Read more