This Sunday: Accept the Gift

Sunday 20 January - 9:30am

The difference between payment and a gift is that we are entitled to payment for the work we have done, while a gift is freely given. So if the Lord freely forgives and saves us, why does it seem like we have to work so hard for it? What do we get credit for and what do we have to acknowledge is the Lord’s? If we can clearly see how the Lord freely gives us what we need to work with, we’ll be able to accept that gift in every situation through the choices we make.

This Sunday: Ezekiel and the Valley of the Dry Bones

Sunday, 13 January - 9:30am

The sermon for this Sunday is one by Coleman Glenn, our former Associate Pastor. The text is a dramatic vision that the prophet Ezekiel had of a valley full of dry bones that come back together, have sinew, flesh, and skin cover them again and ultimately turn into a huge group of living people. It’s a dramatic symbolic picture of how the Lord can take what’s dead within us and bring us back to spiritual life.

Services During the Holidays

30 December, 6 January, 13 January - 9:30am

Here are a few notes about the worship services during the holidays, after Christmas:

  • Sunday, 30 December – 9:30am
    • One talk for children and adults – no adult sermon or Godly Play.
    • No tea or eats after church.
  • Sunday, 6 January – 9:30am
    • The service will be in the morning, even though normally the first Sunday of the month is an evening service.
    • One talk for children and adults – no adult sermon or Godly Play.
    • No tea or eats after church.
    • Sunday, 13 January – 9:30am
      • Normal service with children’s talk and separate adult sermon and Godly Play for the children.
      • There will be tea and eats after church.

This Sunday – Joseph

Sunday 23 December - 9:30am

Joseph is not the most important or active person in the Christmas story and so it’s very easy for him to fade into the background of the story. But Joseph still had an important role to play and if he had not done what he was supposed to do then things could have ended very badly. This Sunday, let’s spend a bit of time thinking about Joseph and what we can learn from his role in the story about what is needed for the Lord to be born in our lives.

This Sunday – Christmas Tableaux

Sunday 9 December - 6pm

This Sunday, at 6pm, we will have our Christmas Tableaux. People in costume will make scenes of the Christmas story, while the story is read from the Bible. This year we decided to have all the people involved be adults so that as many children as possible can enjoy watching the tableaux.

Here are a few other notes about how things will go:

  • There will be space on the floor in the front for any children/families who would like to sit there to watch the tableaux.
  • Everyone will be invited to go up during the manger scene to see the baby Lord in the manger with the shepherds.
  • Load shedding should not affect us. Even if Eskom has to escalate to Stage 4, the area we’re in should not be affected during the tableaux service.

This Sunday – Carol Sing – Our Childhood’s Pattern

Sunday 2 December - 5:00pm

Christmas and childhood go hand in hand. Much of the fondness that adults feel for Christmas goes back to the excitement felt when little. The connection goes deeper than that though. The Lord specifically chose to be born as an infant because there is something in infancy that is necessary for adult life: innocence. Without the innocence of childhood, none of us would be able to truly love and follow the Lord in innocence as adults. Just as Jesus drew on His own innocence as He grew into adulthood, we also draw on His innocence as we grow spiritually. As an old Christmas carol puts it: “For He is our childhood’s pattern; Day by day, like us, He grew.

This Sunday – The Two Gates

Sunday 25 November - 9:30am

We have the privilege of witnessing and taking part in the two sacraments: Baptism and Holy Supper. In some ways these two rituals seem worlds apart. In one, water is poured over a child’s head as he is dedicated to the Lord. In the other we eat bread and drink wine, symbolic of taking in the Lord’s love and wisdom. Yet these two rituals contain the whole span of spiritual life. Baptism represents the very first introduction to the Lord, the first glimmers of spiritual life. Holy Supper represents the fulfilment of that life, as we take in the Lord Himself to dwell within us. They are like two gates, and when we have gone through both, we are in heaven.

This Sunday: Reaching Out

Sunday 18 November - 9:30am

Life can be hard. Life can be lonely. Life can be overwhelming. A lot of things in life are beyond our ability to control but one of the things we can do is reach out. It can make a huge difference to us and to other people if we can have the courage to reach out — to reach out to offer help and to reach out to ask for help. Let’s talk about what gets in the way of reaching out and how we can learn to still reach out anyway.

This Sunday: Heaven is Not Transferable

Sunday 11 November - 9:30am

Wouldn’t it be nice if someone else could do all the work of getting into heaven for us? In traditional Christianity this idea takes the form of “substitutionary atonement,” the idea that because Christ suffered for our sin, we don’t have to. This idea is rejected in the New Church, but it is still appealing to believe we don’t have to do spiritual work because the Lord is doing it for us. While we could do nothing without the Lord, we actually need to take full responsibility for our spiritual lives. After all, no one else can do it for us.