Thursday, August 31, 2006

September 2006

Dear Friends

Stewardship Season

September is our Stewardship Season, where we focus on our lives being “living sacrifices” for God (Romans 12:1). Stewardship in Anglican circles often seems to centre around money – largely because we take our financial commitments seriously – but Stewardship is really about the wholeness of life, and the priorities we place on the various resources (including life itself) that God places at our command. I hope you will find the focus of our September Worship helpful and challenging as we focus on the principles of giving, the consequences of giving, and giving with vision and faith. At our August Council meeting conversation turned to the huge generosity of spirit that we have experienced increasingly at Corpus Christi this year; that Stewardship is far broader than just finances – it includes the gifts of time, skills, energy, knowledge, care … all of which we are experiencing at Corpus Christi.

Stewarding our Bishop

Please take time to prayerfully read the letter to the Diocese from our Bishop Jo. It speaks to his integrity and ours as we seek to build God’s Kingdom in a world caught in the grip of evil. I am thankful for Bishop Jo’s vulnerability in sharing with us his pain in fulfilling his more difficult responsibilities where right has to be upheld, and in doing so, his call to us to be faithful in upholding goodness in all situations. Please take seriously his request to pray for him as “part of our stewardship towards the bishop”. We also need to engage our minds in considering his question as to how we can best be “A Christ Centred Church” in the 21st century.

Stewarding our Leadership

It is also that time of year when we need to engage in prayerful consideration of who to nominate and elect into leadership positions (Churchwardens & Council) for next year. We will be holding a special elective Vestry on Sunday 8 October 2006, but in the meantime nominations need to be made. Please play your part in this process, and don’t leave decisions up to others. I believe it is critical that we elect people representative of our diverse community, in order that council can truly speak to the needs of our parish. Experience is important, but “fresh-blood” is also necessary. Our present Churchwardens have only served one year each, and so remain eligible for re-election, but this should not inhibit others from being nominated. There is no limit as to how many years an individual may serve on Council, but care should be taken that long-serving members do not inhibit younger, less experienced parishioners exercising their gifts of leadership at this level. According to Rule 25.1 of the Diocese of Pretoria: “Every Churchwarden … shall be a communicant of the age of twenty-one years and upwards and every Parish councillor … shall be a communicant of the age of eighteen years and upwards. One Parish councillor who [is a] communicant under the age of eighteen years may also be elected.”

Generosity of Heart

Thank you to Lionel Durrant who has donated two benches in the Garden of Remembrance in memory of his late wife, Denise. Thank you, too, to the very generous individual who has donated all the paving stones used to define our parking and road space. Thank you to the many who have donated new hymn books in memory of loved ones, and one very generous parental donation in thanksgiving for the Baptism of their child.

Practically Speaking …

I’m sure you will have noticed how wonderfully our parking area is coming along. Please help us to “steward” this new area well … which means park properly! This is defined as “Keep ON the Grass”! Please don’t park on the paved road area, but diagonally off to the sides on the grassed (some is still dirt) areas, using the new horse-shoed road in a clock-wise direction. Please note that the parking space between the hall and office is reserved for disabled parking. Thank you to Peter Davies and Trevor Wilson for all the hard effort that has gone into improving our property both visually and practically, and to Gilbert and Patrick, and David-the-builder and team, who have done all the hard slog!