Monthly Archives: May 2012

Bridging the contemporary and ancient

Melchite Hirmologion written in Syriac Sertâ b...

Melchite Hirmologion written in Syriac Sertâ book script (11th century, St. Catherine’s Monastery, Mt. Sinai. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Go to Aramaic: Efforts To Revive Jesus’ Language In Christian Villages Beit Jala, Jish In Holy Land, Sweden.

Recent conversations among us have led to a discovery of the delight of translations from Aramaic, particularly the Beatitudes and the prayer Jesus taught his disciples (aka the “our Father” or “The Lord’s Prayer). Various versions of these translations are easily found on a web search. An appreciation of the richly poetic and nuanced Aramaic and Syriac tongues adds a deeper dimension to biblical studies, and certainly has the potential to expand insights into the teaching and sayings of Jesus.

On another note, thanks to Graeme Worth for drawing our attention to ORBIS, a kind of Google Maps of the Mediterranean World for the centuries surrounding Jesus’ era. One could spend hours working out the most efficient travel routes by foot, donkey, chariot and trireme. A quick auto-calculation shows it would have taken Paul and his party 8.6 days to reach Damascus from Jerusalem whether by foot or donkey!

Record support for National Reconciliation Week | Reconciliation Australia Blog

Record support for National Reconciliation Week | Reconciliation Australia Blog.

In spite of nary a word in mainstream media, the National Reconciliation process is under way where it counts – on the ground! We hear of city councils, initially reluctant to get involved,  beginning to embrace Reconciliation Action Plans. The John & Jane Does of our local communities are beginning to recognise the significance of the bunting and banners that flutter this week from businesses similarly engaged. Even so, much remains to be done to raise awareness and a will for change in pockets of our country where neglect and exploitation remain endemic.

National Reconciliation Week – Reconciliation Australia

National Reconciliation Week – Reconciliation Australia.

Starts tomorrow (26 May) with annual Sorry Day commemorations.

In Perth:

Saturday 26 May

9.00 am onwards. Sorry Day launch in Wellington Square, Perth

4.30pm Archie Roach concert at Winthrop Hall, UWA. Tickets from BOCS

Monday 29 May

Madjitil Moorna and the Bringing Them Home Committee are presenting ‘Our Story, Six Sisters of the Stolen Generation’ a film by John McMullan. The film tells the story of the Warrell sisters. Welcome to Country given by Rev Sealin Garlett, guest musician Gina Williams followed by a panel discussion. 

This event will be held at the Kim Breazley Lecture Theatre, Murdoch University, South St Murdoch at 7.15pm. To reserve your place RSVP Jo Randell 0409116460 or Pauline 0412 671 583.


City of Wanneroo is hosting Reconciliation Week Community Gatherings on:

ñ  Wednesday 30th May from 4.30-7.30pm at the Hainsworth Community Centre, Hainsworth Ave, Girrawheen.

ñ  Thursday 31st May from 4.30-7.30pm at the Banksia Grove Community Centre, Grasstree Bend, Banksia Grove.

Combined Churches Pentecost Service at St Paul’s this Sunday

For the second week in a row the church building at the Downs will be empty – for good reason! We will join four other congregations for the annual celebration of an ecumenical Pentecost Eucharist at St Paul’s Anglican Church, Brompton Road.
It’s at 9.00 am – so set your alarm clocks half an hour earlier than usual.
Our eccentricity is that everyone is asked to wear something red – Pentecostal symbol of fire. (Also that way we can’t tell Anglicans from Uniting and Baptist!)
A shared plate for morning tea follows the service.

Churches’ response to pokie deal.

A pokie machine typically seen in a New Zealan...

A pokie machine typically seen in a New Zealand pub. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We can’t say it’s not a problem here because of WA’s pokie limit legislation. The Australian Churches Gambling Taskforce (of which we are part) is a national response to a national social challenge that is being subjected to national parliamentary expediency. Read the taskforce’s response to today’s events here.

Wild Goose continues journey as campers return

Another successful church camp followed the beatings of the wings of the Wild Goose (an ancient metaphor for the Holy Spirit.), paying attention to the variety of ways in which the Spirit leads in times of change and transition.

Some highlights:

  • Some playful exploration of the term through games, contests and video clips
  • story-telling from the Acts of the Apostles
  • meeting with Peter & Elissa Roberts as they launch a church-planting project under ours and others’ sponsorship
  • letting our hair down with a unique “Around the World in 80 Minutes” activity (watch those hot-air balloons hover!)
  • Traditional Saturday night bonfire
  • excellent eating courtesy of John Isherwood
  • great environment courtesy of the Landsdale Farm animal family
  • worship and communion to climax the weekend

Thanks to the team who put it all together.

(Photos courtesy Janelle Charteris)

Note relocation of Worship & Communion this Sunday (May 20th)

The Downs Church is in camp at Landsdale Farm School, Landsdale Rd, Darch. Our normal Sunday service will take place there at 11 am. Come and join us (earlier if you wish) . Day entry fee to the farm is $6.00.