• image
  • image
  • image
  • image
  • image
  • image
March 2016

Sr Elizabeth Delaney SGS

During these past weeks as the National Council of Churches in Australia has begun preparing in earnest for the National Forum that will be held in Sydney on 24 – 27 June, I find myself reflecting on the theme of journey.

Our Lenten journey is always a time of challenge, of temptation, of walking with God, knowing that God is with us- even when we do not feel his presence. We pray that God’s grace sustains us as we journey towards Easter, the pinnacle of our Christian faith.

#LetThemStay - Churches Unite

#LetThemStay - Churches Unite

Following the High Court decision enabling the Australian Government to deport 267 asylum seekers, including 37 babies, back to Nauru, several churches and cathedrals across Australia are offering sanctuary to those asylum seekers at risk of being forcibly deported back to a hellish existence.

To date, more than 50 churches from nine denominations, six cathedrals, two orders of nuns and a mosque have committed to providing sanctuary.

In solidarity with persecuted Christians

In solidarity with persecuted ChristiansThanks to Act for Peace supporters, and the generosity of local doctors, refugees from Iraq are receiving essential medical care and much needed comfort in Jordan. It’s a Saturday, and Dr Haytham Aljbour, a paediatrician at the University Hospital in Amman, could be at home relaxing. Instead, he’s busy treating a clinic full of children who are attending a free medical day organised by Act for Peace’s local partner in Jordan. The temporary clinic, hosted in a church on the outskirts of Amman, is crowded with refugees from Iraq - all Christians persecuted for their faith - now seeking safety in Jordan and in need of medical help. 

Our Works - EAPPIPeter is just finishing 3 months of service with the Ecumenical Accompaniment Program in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI), a program of the World Council of Churches. He has been based in Bethlehem, where his work has included providing protective presence to Palestinian children on their way to school and while at school so they are not harassed by Israeli security forces. Peter has also been monitoring the operation of the Bethlehem Checkpoint which is one of the main entry points for West Bank Palestinians to access Jerusalem for work, worship, and family gatherings.

Archbishop FreierThe Most Revd Dr Philip L Freier, Archbishop of Melbourne and Primate Anglican Church of Australia, delivered an address to the Missions Conference at Trinity College on Thursday, 11 February 2016. The theme of the conference was Life in Abundance, and in his speech, Archbishop Freier spoke about three important elements for how we go about proclamation and loving service in God’s name: Relationships, Gathering/Community and Prayer.

Noelene Osora

Noelene Osora

Noelene Osora was appointed Executive Assistant to the General Secretary of the NCCA in May 2015. She was drawn to the NCCA and the programmes/works conducted in its name, having run the Christmas Bowl appeal annually at her church.

The Randwick Congregation of the Uniting Church is where Noelene’s affiliation has been since her three children were little – they are now adults and living in Sydney/Melbourne and Japan.

Lenten Resource 2016

Ecumenical and Interfaith News

Return to God: divine grace and human struggle is grounded in the Gospels that will be proclaimed in Western and Orthodox Churches each Sunday during Lent/the Great Lent. Each of the selected Gospels is followed by reflections from three different perspectives – Roman Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant. Icons and images are also included.

We hope that many of you will contact neighbouring churches and invite people to form interdenominational groups.  Please note that Lent begins on Ash Wednesday 10 February/ the Great Lent 14 March 2016.

World Day of Prayer – Friday 4 March

World Day of Prayer – Friday 4 March

This year the country of focus is CUBA, providently so much in the news over recent months. Cuba and its people have suffered much in the last half century. Its government and the sanctions, imposed by the USA and consequently other countries, means they have little. 

The practice of religion was marginalised and living conditions deteriorated. Today there is religious freedom and growth in Christian congregations but few adequate or new buildings. Housing conditions mean several generations share a small unit and tensions rise leading to discontent and violence. There is much to pray about for the people of Cuba and especially the young.