Synod Leadership encourage hope and connection during lockdown
Dear friends across our Synod,
A colleague is preparing for the wonderful moment this Sunday of baptising a family of eight – an affirmation of faith, of salvation, of community and the call of God.
But we’re measuring out worship numbers with a thimble rather than throwing open our doors.
We’re here again, gathering in small handfuls of people for all those critical events of our lives – worship, affirming faith, covenanting together and celebrating the life and grieving the death of those we love. We’re meeting online and over the phone, just when we thought we might be ahead of the virus.
As we adapt to the sudden increase in COVID infections, and to the changes made to our lives and communities, our fear and frustration rise to the front of our minds. We are frightened for those we love – and for ourselves – and frustrated that we are caught again in this “half-life” of almost shopping, almost church, almost getting together for a meal with friends.
Many of us feel powerless, but there are things we can do. Loving God and loving our neighbour remind us that we are responsible to God and each other for the lives we lead. Our faith in Christ cannot be compromised by this virus.
First of all, we pray, asking God for strength, courage and hope:
- for our doctors, nurses, aged care workers and all front line medical and emergency staff;
- for our chief medical officer, and her associated teams, for the Premier, the Health Minister and all the public servants associated with resolving this crisis;
- for those at risk, whatever age they may be, and for those who are fearful;
- for those in ministry with those in need – all our Uniting staff in aged care, our Parish Missions across the Synod and our school communities;
- for the communities to which each of us belongs, particularly our congregations.
We can go and get vaccinated. All the medical people we trust are telling us that vaccination is the key to reducing the impact of this virus across our nation and the world. if you have concerns, talk to your local doctor, but please do not wait for a better opportunity.
We need to maintain contact with each other – email and phone and zoom and social media – to care for each other and to remember that we are created for relationship, with God and each other.
This will be a challenging time for all of us. The generosity of our care for our community and our neighbour will bear witness to our God who is present in every moment of our lives.
Please pray for the Synod and Presbytery leadership at this time, and for all who guide your communities of faith. We are seeking Christ’s blessing for you – grace, mercy and peace.
Yours in hope,
The Moderator, Rev. Simon Hansford
General Secretary, Rev. Jane Fry
Asscociate Secretary, Rev. Bornwyn Murphy
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