Prayer Ministry on Sundays.

We are delighted that we now have a team of volunteers who have trained to offer prayer ministry after the 9 am service on Sundays.  As a church family, St Nics is increasingly open to the work of the  Holy Spirit in our lives. Prayer ministry helps to facilitate this when we gather together.  It is different from intercession in that we invite the Holy Spirit to minister directly to the person coming forward for prayer.  We offer prayer for anyone who would like to seek the Holy Spirit’s touch in some way – whether it’s for guidance, healing, wisdom, peace, or encouragement from the Lord. It may include offering thanks to Him or asking for the Lord’s blessing on someone you love.  There are many reasons why you might seek prayer ministry. 

If you visit us on a Sunday morning please do feel free to come forward to receive prayer and more of the work of the  Holy Spirit in your life if you would like to.  We would also like to express our thanks to the volunteers who have chosen to be part of the new Prayer Ministry Team.

The men’s and women’s growth groups will work on the Prayer Ministry training Course together next term on the following Wednesday Evenings:   May 4th, 11th and 18th.  If you would like to learn more about Prayer Ministry – what it is, why and how we do it – please feel free to join us Send us an email via contact expressing your interest.

Keeping perspective

I used to walk hills and climb mountains in Scotland and Wales. Climbing often brought false summits, you think you are nearly there but you’re not. Understanding this helped in pacing the overall climb. Pacing through life is important, a marathon not a sprint. Scripture guides us on this

  1. We fix our eyes on Jesus the author and perfector of our faith. Wherever we are , whatever faces us we look to Jesus .( Hebrews 12:2 ) We run the race. We follow Him.
  2.  This life is not the end but a gateway to eternity in the presence of God. As we rest in our Father’s love this hope becomes stronger and more tangible. Where is the treasure of our hearts?
  3. There is a day when all things will be made new, that day, the day of the Lord. A wonderful day for those who belong to Christ Jesus.

I spoke on this late November 2020 and early December you can listen here again.

On Sunday 27th March I will be reflecting more on how we might live in the light of these truths. Should we be scanning the news and looking for prophetic fulfilment as some do? I suggest, not really. We know enough. The issue is today. How will I live today? Will it be in step with the Holy Spirit? Will I look to Jesus throughout the day? Am I honouring Him in my thoughts, speech, and actions? Am I attentive to His bidding? Do I love Him enough to want to do what He says? How does Paul pray in the light of all this?

Captivated by our Father’s love, our Saviour’s love we will give our all to His call to be a royal priesthood of believers bringing the good news to those around us. If you’re not there yet then why not ask God to meet with you in prayer and reveal His love afresh to your heart. As we say on Ash Wednesday the beginning of Lent

From dust, you came and to dust you will return. Repent of your sins, believe the good news, turn to Christ and be faithful.

Which narrative shapes our choices?

This Sunday I chose Psalm 46 as part of our readings. Anglican Primate of Australia Geoffrey Smith, Archbishop of Adelaide, referenced this Psalm as he wrote to us all, asking that we join with Christians across the world praying for a ceasefire and peace between Russia and Ukraine.

This act of aggression from President  Putin has awakened apathetic western democracies into united economic and humanitarian action. There is the shock that the greatest mobilisation of troops in Europe since WWII is occurring. The Ukrainian’s evident courage and commitment to a vision of a self-determined Ukraine led by President Zelensky remind us of the liberties we currently enjoy and take for granted.

The narratives are so different. A vision for a greater Russia safe from encroaching NATO countries or a sovereign nation seeking a democracy akin to Western Europe, not subject to an authoritarian government.

The narratives we tell ourselves shape our actions. That’s why it is so important to grow in understanding God’s narrative revealed through His Son and the scriptures. All history sits within this greater narrative. It is about His kingdom which is advancing across the world. As we are studying Thessalonians it’s clear they responded to Paul’s preaching of the gospel wholeheartedly. They owned this gospel narrative in the face of real persecution.

On Wednesday we marked Ash Wednesday, a day of fasting where we welcome the season of Lent. We receive the mark of the cross on our foreheads, the ashes a sign of repentance, the charge is as follows

‘From dust, you came. To dust, you will return. Repent and believe the gospel. Turn to Christ and be faithful. ‘

Let’s be that faithful church. Let’s continue to pray for God’s kingdom to come and His will to be done on the earth as it is in heaven. Let’s pray for the Prince of Peace’s rule to be established increasingly in the hearts of all people.

Shalom

Jamie

“FIRST FRIDAYS with THE CHOSEN”

On February 4th we commenced a new opportunity for our church family to gather for a time of Fellowship, Food and Film. At a time when Covid makes all things a little different and challenging, these evenings provide an opportunity to chat over a simple meal and to increase the love and support for one another. 

At the same time, whilst many of us have enjoyed Zooming, or completing the online teaching courses or watching series 1 and 2 of “The Chosen”, many others find the technology required a challenge. 

As Jesus says in an early episode “Get used to different”.

So we envisioned a new Ministry solution which can bless many whilst complying with Covid mandates and regulations.

We can:

  • Safely come together as a church family once a month on a Friday evening.
  • Reach out to extended family and friends to join us.
  • Enjoy company over a shared meal.
  • Watch part of “The Chosen” with our already christian friends, or friends who are interested on a big screen.
  • Chat about the challenges presented over a cuppa. 

Our first gathering was a positive and successful evening as we shared a sausage sizzle and ice creams then watched Episode 1 “I Have Called You By Name”.

On March 4th we will gather for Food at 5pm and commencing at 6pm we will watch Episode 2 “Shabbat” and Episode 3 “Jesus Loves The Little Children”.

The evening will conclude about 7:30pm. 

All are invited to join us, at 5pm for food with friends or at 6pm just for the film. 

Please register your attendance with Kate through the Church Office or send a message via email. This is necessary for efficient catering and Covid management. 

If eating with us, we invite a gold coin donation on the day to help with expenses.

May you be truly blessed. 

Lois (Ministry Coordinator)

Give thanks in all circumstances

The cultural world we inhabit through advertising and news tends to focus on what we lack or things
that are mad, bad and sad. It is therefore easy to be sucked into a spiral of negativity through media. We are also wired to focus more on threats to our safety.

Thanksgiving is a choice and a way of life and is encouraged throughout the scriptures. We can choose to be thankful people. It is not dependent on our circumstances. There is also plenty of evidence from secular psychologists that an attitude of gratitude is good for us – mentally, psychologically and physically.

There are many examples in the Old Testament e.g. King David, Daniel, Habakkuk ( 3:17-19) all have remarkable prayers of thanks in a wider variety of trying circumstances. The witness of these people and Jesus and Paul is that we can find a reason to give thanks in all circumstances. Often this seems to open doors in our responses and in the circumstances that follow. It’s impossible neurologically to express thanks and worry simultaneously as different parts of our brains are involved. Often you will find your emotions uplift as you develop a thankful heart.

One easy way to grow in thankfulness is by linking it to regular moments throughout the day( habit stacking) where we can simply pause, reflect and give thanks e.g. as we wait for the kettle to boil, as we complete a car journey, as we wash our hands or brush our teeth. Practise it and see how you go.

Carols and Cappuccinos at St Nics

“Carols and Cappuccinos” has become somewhat of a tradition here at St Nics. This year we once again turned away from all the glitter and hype that surrounds us in the festive season to focus on the true significance of Christmas. With simplicity and reverence we celebrated the birth of our Lord Jesus, embracing the theme from the beautiful song “Shepherd of My Soul” by Martin Nystrom.

What a joyous occasion we had on Sunday 19th December as 118 parishioners, family and friends joined together for an evening of worship and Christmas fellowship.

We were led in traditional carols by our talented worship team and in between carols, our Advent candles were lit by some of our younger church members. We highlighted the humble shepherds who were first to witness the miracle unfolding in Bethlehem with Rev Jamie beautifully presenting his own version of “O Little Town of Bethlehem”. 

This was followed by a screening of the video “The Shepherd” from the makers of “The Chosen”.  This gives a powerful message as it provides a realistic telling of Jesus’ birth in a stable and a focus on Christ as the “spotless lamb”.  This video can be freely downloaded via the online App ‘the Chosen’  from your phone app provider. It is so worth watching!

Then it was time to enjoy mingling and chatting, a tasty sausage sizzle and cappuccinos with cake. We had ice creams for the children (and some young at heart adults). There were happy faces, laughter with lots of chatter and true fellowship shared and enjoyed by all. It was my second Christmas Carols with St Nics and I thoroughly enjoyed being part of it.

How blessed are we to be so free to celebrate? May this St Nics tradition of true worship and singing of carols with bonus cappuccinos and fellowship continue to bring joy and blessings to all. Wishing you peace and a happy and blessed Christmas this season. 

Kate Tremble Communications Officer.

Christmas with St Nicholas.

You are most welcome to join us to celebrate the coming of the King, Christ Jesus. Details below.

Sunday 19 December 5.00pm “Carols and Cappuccino’s”

Friday 24 December 7.00pm – Traditional Carols and Communion

Saturday 25 December 8.00am – Short Traditional Service / 9.00am Informal Family Service

Sunday 26 December 9.00am – Communion

Rectory Retreat now available

We are excited to commence our new Ministry offering affordable accommodation to Clergy and churchworkers with Safe Church Compliance, along with their families and friends, or a study group. Buxton House is a fully furnished, large 4 bedroom and 2 bathroom residence, on the site of St Nicholas Church in Australind, in the South West. The house is ideally located within an easy 2 minute stroll to the beautiful Leschenault Estuary and is across the road from The Village shopping centre. The city of Bunbury is 12 kilometres away and the beautiful Margaret River region is only an hours drive from here.

The Rectory Retreat is available for stays from 1 night to 14 nights at a very reasonable cost. Click on the main Rectory Retreat Bookings tab above for the reservation enquiry form and schedule of fees.

We look forward to welcoming you to our lovely church family.

Start with Why?

Simon Sinek became famous following his excellent book ‘Start with Why?’  For those of us long involved with the church we forget, or perhaps have never considered, why we do what we do when we gather. Our current series on ‘Worshipping Together’ is an opportunity for us to reflect on the components of our Sunday gatherings and to embrace them afresh. However, it is also an opportunity for those new to faith or exploring faith in Jesus to learn why.  So for example this week we are considering why we always have a reading from the Psalm and why we do it antiphonally.

We welcomed two men into the Christian faith yesterday. So, for these men starting with ‘Why?’  is a good thing. As any new Christian or unchurched person begins to grow their trust in Jesus they will also be growing in relationship with His people, the church family. Understanding why we do what we do when we gather together on a Sunday is helpful?

What questions do you have about why we do what we do on Sundays?

Pastoral Care at St. Nicholas

How do we care for our fellow Parishioners? By John Jarvis Pastoral Care Co-ordinator

Pastoral care involves all of us, as we meet week by week, maybe day by day. As we greet people and talk and listen to people, we are showing we care for them.

Much of pastoral care is just that. We befriend people and look after each other and ensure they are o.k.  We, in fact, are doing pastoral care whether we realise it or not.

When we have not seen someone at church for a week or two,  we will phone them up just to see if they are alright. We may discover that they have been unwell and need some errands done. So, we help them. Maybe we go with them shopping of to see the doctor.       

So where does the Pastoral Care Team come into this? What is their role?

Your friend may end up in hospital for a while and so one of the team will visit that person to see how they are progressing. Often, they will be offered Communion, prayed for, and when appropriate anointed with oil. We are doing this in the name of the church. This, of course does not stop you from visiting as a friend.

The team will also visit those who are house bound or in a Care Home, with Communion and have a time of fellowship with them. Instead of them coming to church, we are taking  church to them.      The team is often reliant on you to inform us of those who need a visit or particular help.

Our current  team are Suzanne, Jamie, Verity, Ian, Fran, Jan and John.