1 August, 2022

31 July 2022 Newsletter

Front and Centre

I find myself ‘waking up’ to the realisation that, upon reflection, the experiences that I have journeyed through have formed me for ministry. In preparation for the Worship Workshop that I am leading in early August I was ruminating about my values as a worship leader and how to communicate them well through practical exercises.

One of the exercises I have devised is about journeying through different parts of worship in a way that flows well and encourages continuity. The premise is that as we move from the end of one aspect and into the next, it’s helpful to try to take something from what came before and use it at the start of what is coming up. You sometimes hear this when we quote the start of songs as we lead into them. However, it is also helpful to be conscious of the ‘feeling’ or the ‘sense’ of what came before to be the foundation of what is to come. So if we have a moment where a sermon ends on a more reflective note: it is wise to be reflective as we come out of that space and then shift appropriately from there. If we do it well it creates a sense of flow and continuity, if we don’t do it well we risk trampling on important moments.

I was asking myself “wait… how do I do this? Why do I care? Where did this concept come from?” I realised that it came from my time studying jazz. When we used to learn about improvisation the encouragement was to “try to copy the end of what I do as the start of what you do.” I rarely managed to completely and accurately copy the person who came before me but attempts created a sense of continuity and flow as the ‘general idea’ became my starting point.

I never really thought that it would be a transferable skill, but here I am realising that jazz has helped me to be formed for ministry.

The question is this: how has your experiences throughout your life positioned you to take part in God’s mission of bringing more people into a relationship with him?

Is it a transferable skill?

Is it a passion that helps you relate to others and others relate to you?

Is it a series of experiences that help you to journey alongside others empathetically?

Maybe it is something else!

The last couple of times that I have preached I have focused on the reality that we all have a part to play as part of the body of Christ, and we must trust God with the heavy lifting of ministry. I find myself comforted as I realise that God invites us to take part, but in the end, he is so gracious and loving towards us as we stumble our way through discipleship. God forms us for ministry and I am so curious to see how God uses Emmanuel for the sake of His kingdom in the coming years

Grace and Peace

Dom Chan

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16 July, 2022

Emmanuel Communications officer - We are hiring -

Emmanuel Uniting Church is seeking an experienced Communications Officer to develop and grow the Church’s marketing and social media presence. You will manage the Church website, and assist with promotion and bookings for Church activities through effective use of Emmanuel’s social media channels and Church management software.

The position works with a range of stakeholders including Church staff, members of the congregation and the community to promote messaging and activities.

Key duties will include producing the weekly newsletter, social media posting, setup and scheduling of events using Church management software and providing training and assistance to church staff and congregation members.

Enquiries in relation to the position and the position description can be made via email to Brian Hoole brian@emmanueluca.org.au or 0435 242 000. Closing date Friday 5 August 2022.

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16 July, 2022

17 July 2022 Newsletter

Sunday 17 July 2022

Face to face Worship Services 8:00am and 9:30am

9.30am Sunday School.

Both services are live-streamed on our website and on Youtube.

What's happening at Emmanuel

18 July Church Council

22-24 July Brian and Claire away at Chrysalis Flight

23 July Enoggera State School Trivia Night

28 July Intergenerate Conference

30 July SMC training

14 August The Story launch -BBQ lunch

Front and Centre

What makes a good church? It's a very difficult question to answer. When I was Presbytery Minister I would often hear accounts from people of the good old days when congregations and Sunday Schools were full, and you would see pictures of Sunday School picnics with hundreds of children. There was a longing for the ‘good old days’. Recent events such as the Royal Commission have shown some of the dark side of that era. The widespread societal acceptance that we are all Christian and that the church is the central hub of our society has gone. The recent release of last year’s census data was the first time that the number of people identifying as Christian was under 50%. The number identifying as having no religion was 39%, only 4% less than those who identified as Christian. Even amongst those who identify as Christian we find that only 10% are regular church goers. They look like pretty sobering figures, and if you base things on figures it might be, but we are in the people business not the numbers business. Jesus started with 12 disciples, and though the Australian figures are challenging, and indeed the figures in most of the Western world, but world-wide we are in the middle of a revival, and there are more people becoming Christian across the globe than at any other time in history. Christianity is not dead. And in fact we are now finding that missionaries are coming from overseas to Australia rather than the other way around. What makes the difference? One of the differences is that we have forgotten how to invite people to come. Research has shown consistently that 75-85% of people come to church because someone asked them. As we seek to be Real people with a relevant faith for our community we need to be just that. Real, with a faith that is relevant and inviting. To be more invitational and welcoming. And this has to be true at a personal level. Its about real people not areal church. Its not about the programs and activities we run. They provide ameans for you to be invitational but it ultimately comes down to you. The strength of this, and any church, is, and always has been its people. Its about you.. The Story provides us with an opportunity to be invitational but it still comes back to you. I started by asking what makes a good church. I think the answer is you. You as a part of the church, as a part of the people of God make this a good church and I encourage you to continue to live it out.

God Bless,

Brian

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9 July, 2022

10 July Emmanuel Events

Sunday 10 July 2022

Face to face Worship Services at 8:00am and 9:30am

9.30 All age worship no Sunday School at today

Both services will be live-streamed on our website and on Youtube.

What's happening at Emmanuel

10 July Small group leaders training 10.45am

12 July Small group leaders training 1pm

23 July Enoggera State School Trivia Night

28 July Intergenerate Conference

28 July Amplify Conference

30 July SMC training

TBA Story Launch and BBQ

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4 July, 2022

3 July Newsletter

This week I’ve been blessed to get to spend the week with 80 children and 20 or so adults at Samford Valley Community Church for our annual presbytery Day Camp. Across the week we’ve learned that: God made people with a purpose, Jesus invited people to follow him, you can trust Jesus with your life and, how to love others the way Jesus loves you. Through Games, Craft, Cooking, Music, Worship, Prayer and Fun we have engaged with scripture and others to challenge and encourage each other to Make Waves, and to join God in changing the world around us.

Day Camp is one of the Mountain top experiences (named for the transformation that usually happens there: think Moses & the commandments, and Jesus’ transfiguration), that we offer within our yearly program, and is an important part of our children’s, youth, and young adult ministry. Such mountaintop experiences push us deeper into relationship with each other and with God, and because of the extra time spent together, and intentionality of the activities, we see great transformation happen at these programs.

Some of the current leaders and directors are young adults, and recent Day Camp graduates themselves, and have experienced God’s transformation for themselves. At Day camp, they have built supportive relationships that have enhanced their own Christian formation and life, and through the intentional leadership development built into the program, have learned how to, and are now giving back, and discipling the next generation of young Christians, and leaders in our churches. I got chills (the good, Holy Spirit induced kind) this week as I listened to a room full of children and youth today singing at the top of their lungs about “Jesus their King”, and “what Great Big things” they can do, and almost couldn’t believe it when I heard the fusion team (grade 7 & 8) crying out “I am a child of God” from across the camp as their leaders modelled how you can praise and worship anywhere, anytime.

Many of the children (20-25%) who attend Day Camp, do not have regular contact with church in any other way, and so at the same time as providing peak experiences and depth for our church families, at the same time, we are reaching those outside our churches, and offering connection with a faith community. A fresh expression called “Park Church” actually emerged out of Day Camp last year and over the last 12 months has been providing a safe space for those who don’t feel comfortable in a more traditional church setting to belong and explore what it means to be part of a faith community and believe in Jesus and share his love for us with others. In addition to the activities on site during the day, Day Camp also encourages and equips families by giving information and questions to parents to help guide conversations and further faith development at home. This grounding and connection back to reality, the local community and everyday life is a vitally important part of the mountain top experience, and one that is often missed.

Day Camp is a highlight of my year, for me personally, and for my own children and their faith and leadership development. Through our involvement, I get to see them learn and grow and be challenged and get to watch them teach and challenge others as they stretch their own faith and discipleship muscles. Through it I am also challenged and with each new challenge am further equipped for the new and exciting and crazy things that God calls me to do, to make my own waves, in His name, through the world. Thanks for your ongoing support for Day Camp, and I encourage you to join in next year, to bring your kids, or to come yourself and be part of it.

God Bless,

Jess

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25 June, 2022

26 June Events

Sunday 26 June 2022

Face to face Worship Services at 8:00am and 9:30am

Interactive prayer service

9.30 All age worship no Sunday School at today

Both services will be live-streamed on our website and on Youtube.

Worship resources for those at home is found at https://emmanueluca.org.au/sermons/26-june-2022

What's happening at Emmanuel

28 June - 1 July Day Camp

17 July The Story commences

23 July Enoggera State School Trivia Night

28 July Intergenerate Conference

28 July Amplify Conference

30 July SMC training

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11 June, 2022

12 June 2022

Sunday 12 June 2022

Face to face Worship Services at 8:00am and 9:30am

Sunday School at 9:30am

Both services will be live-streamed on our website and on Youtube.

What's happening at Emmanuel

12 June SMC training

28 June - 1 July Day Camp

17 July The Story commences

23 July Enoggera State School Trivia Night

28 July Intergenerate Conference

30 July SMC training

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7 May, 2022

1 May 2022 Ne2sletter

The next few months are very important for us as a church here at Emmanuel. We have both Church Council and Congregational meetings coming up where we will be discussing how we move forward as a church. We have responded well to COVID, we have kept things running but we need to move from surviving to thriving. Changes in staffing mean that we are in a position to invest into our future but we need to make sure that we look to the future. What sort of church do we want to be and how do we invest into that? We need to do some dreaming about the church we want to be. We can build upon our strengths, and we will, and bring on people to resource us for the Emmanuel of the future. We will be a church that seeks to minister to all people regardless of age, background or circumstance. We will continue to be a church that wants to grow disciples, encouraging people to come to faith and grow in their faith. We will grow disciples who will exalt God, explore what God is saying them as they engage with Scripture, who embody the Christian lifestyle in their workplace, school and neighbourhood, and continue to engage with friends and family to help people know Jesus and come into a living relationship with him. We will do this through living out our core values of transforming worship, Intentional Outreach , Fervent Prayer, Healthy Relationships , Christlike Growth. These basic commitments of our church do not need to change but the important question is how do we do this? How do we adapt to our changing society and culture so that you are empowered to be the best disciples you can be. What will help you grow to be disciples who grow disciples? As we look at our future as a church then real question is how we help you to be the best disciples you can be?

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23 April, 2022

24 April 2022 news

There have been lots of positive comments about our Easter services so thank you for the encouragement, and thank you to the team that have helped prepare these services. Also for the craft and creative events that were provided. But Easter is over, school is back, life has returned to normal, or has it. As you have participated in the Easter services, how have you engaged with God, and as a result what has changed for you. The events of Easter are so earth shattering and world changing that our life is changed. Our life should be different. When we encounter God, life is and will be different, and we should expect this to happen. God wants to know you and wants you to know him and this should change your life. So the real question is not did you enjoy the Easter services, but how have they made a difference to you, and your relationship with God, with your family, with your world. As much as we might want nice and innovative church services it is far more important that people have encountered or re-encountered God, and that as a result you have drawn closer to God. The questions that are at the core of the Bible Discovery method, Questions that ask

What does Easter tell me about God?

What does Easter tell me about humanity?

What is God trying to say to me?

What am I going to do about it?

Who am I going to tell?

Each Sunday should not be a pat on the back or a feel good session but rather a new encounter with God where we are asking ourselves the questions above. My hope and prayer is that you come to church expecting to meet God and that you actually do. That your relationship with God continues to grow and grow.

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