Celebrating 150 years of Anglican Worship in Berwick!
We’re Excited – Are You?
Make sure these dates are in your diary!
Sunday 2 October Afternoon tour of the old church, talk and viewing of restored items in the new church, followed by High Tea
Saturday 8 October Bush Dance at the Akoonah Park Centre
Sunday 16 October 10:15am Confirmation Service
Saturday 22 October Flower Show and Fair
Sunday 30 October A Special Celebration Service at 3pm with the Archbishop of Melbourne followed by afternoon tea.
It has been great this week to finally have spring back with us. I’m sure that like me, you too have been enjoying the warmer weather, seeing flowers and trees in blossom in our gardens and also the bush covered gold with wattle. Things are growing again!
At Berwick Anglican Church we have four core values: Growing in Christ, Growing in the Word, Growing in Prayer, and Growing in Mission. One of the things I like about these values is their logical structure; if you want to be attaining the first one (Growing in Christ) the next three tell you how to do it (grow in the Word, Prayer and Mission).
As has been pointed out by many people, spring is a wonderfully symbolic time of new beginnings. Why not use the start of spring this year as a prompt to grow yourself deeper into the Lord Jesus Christ? You could do this by renewing yourself in the Word (maybe by joining a BAC growth group to be involved in regular bible studies) or Prayer (maybe by committing to daily quite times of prayer and prayerful bible reading) or Mission (maybe by singing up to support a CMS missionary like Brad and Michelle Jackson, or volunteering on one of BAC’s many Church service and ministry rosters).
Because as we together grow in the Word, Prayer and Mission, we will also, as individuals and as a Church community, grow more and more into the image of Jesus Christ.
In our Confirmation classes our youth pastor Peter Noble recently reminded me of the famous Romans road. It is a simple way of remembering the gospel in a few verses from Romans:
“For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God…” Romans 3:23 (NIV)
“While we were sinners, Christ died for us…” Romans 5:8 (NIV)
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” Romans 6:23 (NIV)
The whole letter of Romans itself is a clear presentation of the message of salvation through Christ leading into unity with the whole body of Christ. Do you have a favourite promise or verse from Romans? Please let me know what it is – or even better, tell
someone outside the church!
Not everyone at BAC will be familiar with the Church Missionary Society. They are an evangelical missions society of the Anglican church both here in Melbourne and around the world. They have a long standing record of depth and quality in sending gospel workers around the world to make Christ known.
At our church we support Brad and Michelle Jackson. They are a Melbourne family who now live and serve the local church in Japan. Today Brad is preaching and they will be reporting on their gospel work. Please feel free to invite them to visit your Growth Group to share in more detail about the gospel in Japan. You can also subscribe to receive their prayer updates directly or you will get them if you have subscribed to our BAC prayer email list.
CMS runs an excellent January Christian conference called “Summer Under the Son”. There is also a youth conference at the same time at Philip Island which my kids love. Both these conferences are great opportunities to hear God’s Word taught and hear from the front lines of global gospel missions.
It is a delight for our church to work together through this great New Testament book. Romans is famous for outlining with great clarity the way of salvation in Christ. As we progress in the second half we are entering lots of fresh territory. The first 8 chapters of Romans are much more well known than the final 8 chapters. We could structure the book in this way:
Romans 1- 8: salvation and perseverance through faith in Christ (NIV)
Romans 9-16: the identity and life of the people of God in Christ (NIV)
Roughly speaking, the first half of the book deals with our fellowship with God. The second half of the book addresses our fellowship with other Christians. The latter depends on the former. However we cannot have Christ without being part of the body of Christ. Only in Christian community can we grow up in Christ together. The second half of Romans needs as much attention as the first half!