Keeping you Informed – December 2013

An inclusive Christian community in Auckland, New Zealand

Keeping you Informed – December 2013

Mary & Joseph visit to homes throughout December.
Following the success and interest engendered last year by the rotating visits of the symbolic “Mary & Joseph” dolls to Congregational Members homes, this novel reminder of the coming of Christmas  is being repeated leading up to Christmas 2013.
Dolls representing Mary and Joseph will begin their journey by being accepted for a week’s stay at the home of the first host at the beginning of December, and will be passed each week to another willing host family in the weeks up to Christmas.  The idea is to remind us of the journey of Mary and Joseph leading up to the first Christmas in the stable in the town of Bethlehem, and also to instill a sense of family belonging and care within the family of St Aidans by the visits, and the caring engendered in the process of delivering our symbolic guests from one host to another as the journey to Christmas proceeds.
Five year Action Plan: and also a Schedule of Events for year 2014.
The Five year Action Plan Proposal to give purpose to our Mission Statement has been updated, and a large copy is on the Notice Board for your ongoing reference.
Also on the Notice Board is a large copy of detailed projected Services, Events and happenings, covering St Aidans’ coming events for the full 2014 year. Looks like an exciting and full year ahead!
Smaller copies of both theses schedules will be available for your personal use should you desire, and can be obtained by asking your Elder to arrange to order a copy for you.
A copy of the Five year Mission and Action Plan is being forwarded to Presbytery Northern to keep our Presbytery aware of our positive forward intentions and serious progress ofmission in the Community.
Bruce
Iona Close
St Aidans Presbyterian Property Trust
At a brief special General Meeting after the Sunday service on 23 November, the congregation elected two new trustees to the board of the St Aidans Presbyterian Property Trust.
The first to be elected is a member of the congregation, Lynda Burkett, who has been very active in the Christian outreach to children in our community. (Friday Fun Night, Kids’n All, Café Church).
The second to be elected is Tim Wood. Tim is the first trustee to be elected who is not a member of the congregation. This has only been possible since the Annual General Meeting of 29/11/13 passed a motion to allow the election of non-congregational members to the board.
We welcome the two new trustees to the interesting task of running a retirement village.
Colin
ABC of Thanksgiving
Thank you God, that we live, work, attend school and play in such a wonderful country. It is impossible to see and experience everything in our world.
Today, there is so much we can be thankful for.
But today, we want to be thankful for the Community of St Aidans
Let us use the ABC to help us.
A is for the Art Group that meets on Thursday mornings, we appreciate their creativity.
But A also reminds us of the After School Care that has met in our building for over 20 years, we ask a blessing on the teachers and the children
Now the letter B, what might that remind us of?
Babies, children and adults who have been Baptised in this place; we thank you for each one.  B can also remind us of this building which is our place of Belonging.
C is easy, I want to be thankful for all the Children who have been part of St Aidans for the last 125 years, for their energy and vitality, and their presence which enriches us.
C reminds me of those who have cleaned and cared for this sacred place.
I love the creativity which helps make St Aidans such a vibrant community.
I also want to say that when I think of the letter C it also reminds me of our Café Church & Chairs, which make it so easy to participate in creative layouts for our services.
I want to mention the different Cultures, each enriches our community.
The letter D reminds me of our Drop Inn Mornings; we thank you for those who have participated and led this ministry and ask a blessing on the residents from Regency and Shoal Bay Villa who have attended.
I am thankful for our Data Projector, which enables us to offer creativity in another way.
The letter E stands for our Elders, we thank you for all the Elders who have served here at St Aidans over the last 125 years.
Let’s not forget the Embroidery Group that meets every Friday Morning, we delight in their creativity.
F is an easy one, I want to say thank you for all the beautiful Flower Arranging which has graced this place over our 125 year history.  Can you think of anything else?
Friday Fun Nights of course, I am thankful for them, and ask a blessing on the helpers and each child and their family.  Thank you also for all the Friends we have in this place.
Thank you for all the many different acts of Fundraising which have been held, especially the Floral Afternoons which are now the Floral Affair.
Don’t forget the plates of Food which have been prepared and enjoyed in this place over the years, thank you.
I think that’s enough for F, now on to G, how about we are thankful for the Grass around this place, which offers us a relaxing place to be.
For Games played and enjoyment together we too are thankful.
For Groceries given to help others less fortunate.
Now on to the letter H.
For our acts of service at North Shore Hospital, we are thankful.
For Hymns, new and old, we offer our acts of praise to you.
For St Aidans and its place in the history of Northcote
For Hugs that are given freely.
For our Informer.  What’s the Informer?
It used to be called the Newsletter, so we are thankful for its various editors and all those who contribute to its pages.
Not forgetting Iona Close, we are thankful of the vision to create and develop that community and ask a blessing on the residents and the Trust Members
J reminds us of Joy, we experience it in our worship, for that we too are thankful.
K is of course for Kids Friendly, what we are seeking to be and do here at St Aidans.
Now the letter L, reminds of Little Acts of Random Kindness which are offered to each other.
I want to mention ARK@S and the energy of our young people in serving others.
Not to mention the laughter shared in this wonderful building.
Now we come to the letter M, which reminds us of the Ministers who have served in this place, each very different, each has their strengths and weaknesses, we thank you for them.
N is for Neighbours, we especially remember the Child Care Centre, De Paul House, Iona Close and Northcote Primary.  May we build bridges of hope and love with our community.
O is for all the Organists who have led us in worship and delighted us with their playing.
And for all the Offerings of money and time and service given over the years.
Let us not forget the Pianists who too have led us in worship and delighted us with their playing.
We too are thankful that we are part of the PCANZ with its rich heritage it offers to us.
Q is a difficult letter, have you any ideas?
How about Come to Quiet, and the Queues who wait for their cup of tea or coffee.
We are thankful for Roast Meet Lunches, those who have prepared the meals, cleaned up and those who enjoyed the food and conversation.
Not forgetting all the Repairs and maintenance that have been undertaken on this building.
For the many acts of Service we are thankful.
Songs sung, and music enjoyed – Sharing of preserves and fruit and vegetables.
T reminds us of Tea / Coffee / Orange juice offered by many different people over many years, for these acts of refreshment we say thank you.
Thank you for all the Teams and Committees that people have served on over the years.
U is also a difficult letter, any ideas?
U is for the Uniqueness of each person in what they bring to our community.
V reminds us of Values, like seeking to be an inclusive Christian community.
Also being thankful for Volunteers and all that they do in this place and community.
For the many Weddings held here over the years.
Xmas is such a modern word, but it does remind us of Christmas and the many celebrations held in this place.
Y reminds us of Youth.
Our energy, vitality and hope for the future!
We delight in your presence among us.
Z brings to mind Zeal.
Yes, the enthusiasm and passion of us the people who are St Aidans.
[We all say:]
For these and so much more
We are thankful to you our God.
By: Andrea, Liz, Lynda & Alf
Service of Remembrance or Blue Christmas
A Service of Remembrance or Blue Christmas, offers a special opportunity, to recognise the struggles, which often people face, during the festive season. It is designed for people who at times journey with pain, loss, isolation and grief in the Advent season. By offering this service of worship we can acknowledge the struggles that we all face, while providing a safe place of rest, peace, comfort and healing.
Also at this service it is a time to remember those for whom the Advent and Christmas Season is not joyful; they are the lonely, those in mourning, while others are feeling alienated and cast apart from family celebrations; they may experience depression and sadness and yet are often compelled to ‘put on a happy face’ for others, denying their true feelings.
Our service will include moments of silence, candles, meditative music, and psalms of lament, prayers and blessings within our welcoming worship space. A quiet sombre tone also testifies to the struggles of Mary, Joseph and Jesus that are often overlooked during the Advent and Christmas season.
I invite you to our Remembrance or Blue Christmas Service on:
Sunday 15th December at 7.00pm @ St Aidans
Meanwhile Peace on your Advent Journey
Alf