Sunday 15th November, 2015

Welcome to everyone joining us for our monthly celebration today. It has been a big month and we have lots to celebrate, especially the way our other Sundays have been growing with increased participation, high levels of fellowship and the inclusion of some families from play group.

After the service today we will grab a coffee and get settled for our Annual Meeting. At the time of writing I have not received any items of General Business so the meeting will mostly be a matter of receiving reports and asking any questions pertinent to the reports.

We will not be having any elections as we have received the right number of nominations for the vacancies on offer. In this regard I wish to specifically thank Eric Dixon for graciously standing aside to allow some other folk to fill positions he has occupied of late. And so I also wish to thank him for his service as an inaugural (!) member of the “new” Parish Council and his faithful watchfulness as member of the currently inactive Incumbency Committee. Eric’s loyalty and steadfastness have always been very welcome.

And so I can announce that this year’s governance and care will be carried out by the Wardens: Jeanenne Thomas & Michael Sullivan with Chris Crook continuing as Vicar’s Warden. In addition, on the Parish Council, are Denise McConachy, Anthea McConachy with my nomination this year being James Anderson. Just in case we need them, Jeanenne Thomas and Ron van der Schoor will be the Incumbency Committee.

I'm writing this note from the Burvale Hotel where Gemma and I are staying as we help with the new 3dm Community of Learning that began its two-year cycle on Wednesday just gone at Crossway Baptist. There are about 10 new churches around Victoria formally beginning the journey we started 10 years ago and they value our input and experience.

This was proceeded by the Community of Practice that Jeanenne Thomas, Chris Crook and Joanne van der Schoor and I began on Monday just gone with leaders of churches from around Australia and New Zealand, including “our own” Andy Goodacre, still down at Launceston. It is hard to overstate the value we gain from mixing and learning with dither churches on the same journey. There are now workshops or Learning Communities in all states of Australia, Sydney being the latest addition.

St Matt’s was very much the catalyst in pioneering this movement in Australia and again, others value our contributions very highly. But now we in turn learn from brothers and sisters who are all of the same mind to do as Jesus commanded and make missional-disciple-making our first priority.

God bless,   Ian.