THE ANGLICAN PARISH OF WESTMEADOWS / BULLA Web site: www.anglicanwestmeadowsbulla.com.au Vicar: Revd Judi Pollard 27 Pascoe Street Westmeadows 3049 9309 5061 or 0402 268 001 MARCH 2009 Greetings, It’s March! Where has January and February gone? Maybe after all I am getting old – I have hardly had time to catch my breath after Christmas and now we are in the season of Lent struggling with all that is expected of a Lenten journey toward the crucifixion and the Resurrection. Ask yourself “will I be able to sustain the penance I have imposed for myself? Do I give up something or take up something?” Both. You will find that when you take up something for Lent you invariably need to give up something to fit the other into your lifestyle. Perhaps it is your leisure time, or sleep, or your busy-ness which may have to be put aside to make way for meditation and reflection, sitting still when you really do not want to. Without doubt the recent trauma inflicted by flood and rain within our country has impacted on everyone. Though our Queensland neighbours will be glad the rain has eased for them, we southerners cannot get enough of it. I cannot recall having welcomed the sound, sight and smell of rain with such relief, joy and hopefulness ever before as I have this past week. As I prepared to gather with my peer support group I stood in the garden and allowed the rain to fall gently on my head and then as the rain fell more heavily and I was getting quite wet I gave thanks for this water. I heard a deep sigh, was that me? No I heard the earth sigh with gratitude and relief for this much needed sustenance which was soaking deep down into the soil. I sensed a tiredness from the garden, the strain of being deprived of nourishing rain, straining to survive with so little to feed on has exhausted the soil, and the plants I prayed for the fire stricken areas hoping that the rain was quenching the parched and burning forests and farmland of our rural friends. A number of us stood under the veranda mesmerised by this phenomenon - rain, glorious rain! The fires will burn themselves out with the cooler weather and with the rain comes the inevitable mud, and pollution. The duration of the fires has not been forty days in length, for this we give thanks but I feel that all concerned have been challenged way beyond the ‘ashes to Easter’ concept. Now there is a sense of hope emanating from the community. Hope of reconstruction, of renewal, of being resurrected from the ashes, hope for the future, even though the grieving will continue surely something good has to come from such deep, raw pain. We have already witnessed the generosity of the wider world, this nation, and the people of Victoria showing how and what it means to be a neighbour. May our generosity of spirit continue because it is not over yet. Life continues people tend to move on yet those who suffered will continue to suffer within the renewal. Let us not forget. Good to see a number of people committing themselves to the Lenten Studies, a good sign that we are a “people on the way” seeking and opening ourselves to the Spirit. In a similar way Lent can be our time to reconstruct, renew and be refreshed to embrace faith in the living Christ; a shedding of the old way of life and moving forward with hopeful hearts and renewed vigour. I look forward to celebrating Holy Week and Easter within this faith community. I wish you all God speed and rich blessings through this time of trial till we meet in celebration of the resurrected Christ on Easter Day, Judi Priest in Charge My Favourite Books – Rachel ‘The Return of the Prodigal Son: A Story of Homecoming’ by Henri J.M. Nouwen In 1985, Henri Nouwen went to St Petersberg to see Rembrandt’s beautiful painting, The Return of the Prodigal Son. Over the following six years, he reflected often on this painting, culminating in the writing of this beautiful book. He writes about the characters portrayed in the painting and how, at some point in our lives, all of us are physically or spiritually akin to them: the prodigal son, returning home after escaping his mundane life; the older son, jealous and embittered at having to stay at home and be responsible and sensible; or the watchers, who observe but don’t participate. Nouwen contends that we move towards being the father, compassionate and all forgiving. MCG. Wednesday’s at the MCG What better way to spend Wednesdays than at the MCG. My volunteer time is divided between the Tours Department which is responsible for organising ground tours and supervision in the new National Sports Museum. The Tours group, of which there are over 200 MCG volunteer members run tours seven days a week at 15 minute intervals for all different groups including service clubs, schools, industry groups and people who just turn up wanting to see the magnificent stadium. Some days can see as many as 500 people visiting this wonderful facility. People from all around the world want to see the stadium. My job on the Tours desk is to welcome those going on the 1 ½ hour ground tour and introduce visitors to the “guide in the stripe jacket” who will escort them on the tour of the ground and facilities. Tours include an opportunity to stand on the “hallowed turf”, a visit to the top decks of the stand which offers wonderful views of the city and surrounds, the Long room, library, player change rooms, cricket viewing rooms and practice net areas, media centre from where all TV, radio broadcasts and press reports are sent. Along the way via the different rooms, corridors and larger areas we can see many fine exhibits of cricket memorabilia relating to the MCG and it’s history as well as the game world wide. The National Sports Museum including the MCC museum offers an incredible array of sporting memorabilia, visual displays, touch screen information and an interactive area for all. The museum is divided into different sections including Higher, Faster, Stronger an incredible display of Australian Olympic history. Backyard to Baggy Green as the name suggests all about out cricketing history. A special display of “Baggy Green” caps including a Sir Don Bradman cap and life size statue is a highlight for many. A wonderful area called the Peoples Ground exploring the evolution of the MCG. Another area called Australia’s Game tracing the history of our own AFL football. Other areas include the Spirit of Sport, Multi Sports, MCC museum and Game on Interactive area. Many of our visitors are returning again and again as there is so much to see. I just love my MCG Wednesday and the new friends I have made including Olympians, footballers, coaches, umpires and sports people and I would love to share it with you some time. Just talk to me any time and we can organise a tour for you or you can check out the museum web site at www.nsm.org.au. Or the MCG we site at www.mcg.org.au Lyn YOUTH AND YOUNG ADULTS This year the youth and young adults of Westmeadows/Bulla will be meeting every 6 - 7 weeks to share in some times of fun and chatter, taking time out from our busy lives and enjoying the occasional outing together. ALL YOUTH AND YOUNG ADULTS WELCOME Know anyone that may be interested? If so pass the below information on to them or talk to Kerrie for further details 2009 GATHERINGS Saturday 14th February Southbank and tour of St Paul’s Cathedral Friday 27th March Westmeadows – Church Hall @ 7pm Saturday 9th May Westmeadows – Church Hall @ 7pm Friday 19th June Further details to follow Saturday 1st August Westmeadows – Church Hall @ 7pm Friday 11th September Further details to follow Saturday 17th October Westmeadows – Church Hall @ 7pm Friday 4th December End of year celebration - Further details to follow If you have any ideas for the group or would like to know more speak to Kerrie or one of our youth or young adults On February the 14th a group of people from St Pauls church Westmeadows, had a guided tour of St Pauls Cathedral in Melbourne. We saw the paintings of former priests along the walls, and we got to go in the place where the priest and choir go when services are on, some of us went to a special service, we also got to go in the vestry room and hold the challis’s, plates and the cross, we also saw the organ, which has 3 750 pipes then last but not least we got to go up into the towers and bell room. Then we said goodbye and thank you and left. Did you know? The person who built St Pauls Cathedral was William Butterfield. And was originally built with one tower but now there’s three. By Nicholas A day at St Pauls Cathedral On Saturday 14th February, friends from our church went to St Pauls Cathedral in the city of Melbourne. The stained glass was beautiful and colourful. Kerrie and I took lots of photos of the inside of the cathedral. We saw the pipe organs which had over 3,700 pipes. We also saw the big altar which was made with gold leaf. We saw lots of paintings, carvings and statues. We saw the altar that adults can be baptised in. We learnt that William Butterfield built the St Pauls Cathedral and it took over 10 years to build. The last thing that we did was we went up into the towers and we had to climb up the narrow stairs and when we got up to the top we could look over the inside of the church from a birds eye view. By Thomas Kerrie and Roger’s South African Trip What a wonderful time we had on our holiday in Southern Africa late last year. How lucky we were to have the opportunity to experience many of God’s wonderful creations. We hope the following snippets give you some insight into our experience. SOUTH AFRICA CapeTown and Township Tour Cape Town is a beautiful city with a dominant Mountain line at the back and a city (of sorts) on the flat leading to the ocean. We liken it very much to a Perth or Adelaide. Nothing seemed to happen in a hurry. We were on islander time here. We completed a tour of the townships and district six. The townships tour was a tour of the effects of apartheid (apartness). District six was cleared of all coloured and blacks for the land to be purchased by whites for development. Nothing was ever sold so this prime land lay vacant, currently the housing / land prices are so high its unaffordable (sounds familiar). The townships have solved that issue, a 2.5 by 2.5mtr size is enough to build a shanty, no need for government approval or utilities, just find the materials and the plot and build. There are "blue pipes" around which allow residents of the township to collect fresh water. There are contrasts within the townships. The townships are like small states or countries with their own mayor and president. The people stay in their township, it is their tribe and home and that’s where they belong. You feel a real sense of community. Their challenge is not to move out but to improve the township for all. Inspiring? From Capetown we travelled north from through the Cederberg Rangers (beautiful), to Orange River, our last stop before heading into Namibia NAMIBIA We travelled through the desert and dunes. A couple of highlights. Anyone fancy spending one of their first nights camping in a national park camping ground? That is, one regularly visited by hyenas and jackals throughout the night. Just don’t leave your shoes outside your tent if you want to see them in the morning! Dune 45 We were up at 4.45am (definitely not the highlight), had breakfast and before long were making our way to Dune 45, a sand dune we climbed (150m) to watch the sun rise over the Soussus Vlei desert. Truly beautiful. Desert Walk We learnt much about the life and survival of all in a desert as we enjoyed a guided walk through the hot Soussus Vlei desert with our guide Franz, a native Namaqua guide. We wondered around the Ostrich Vlei and Dead Vlei (1.3km long) where we marveled at 400 year old petrified trees. Etosha National Park Our favourite national park. Our first ‘Safari’ drive was driving from the entrance of the national park to our first campsite. The campsites are full blown caravan parks with huts and cabins for hire. The best feature is definitely the floodlit, permanent water holes. The water holes are the only source of water for miles around and every animal visits either one of the water holes during dusk, the evening or in the early hours of the morning. When you sit at the water hole for any length of time you notice that there is a definite pecking order that determines who comes when. So, who has first dip at the waterhole? Naturally, it’s the elephants that are always first. Looking further afield you see groups of animals wait in the background, patiently waiting for the bigger animals to leave. Although, we did see a cheeky zebra steal a drink amidst some elephants. They weren't particularly fussed but it wasn’t long before the elephants had had enough and scared the zebra off. Many others visit the water holes; rhinos, giraffe, oryx, springbok and impala (various antelopes) all taking their turn to drink. In addition to the abovementioned we also took delight in seeing ostrich, jackal, lizard, various birds, lions and hyenas hunting a pack of zebras. BOTSWANA Maun You know you are in Africa when you arrive in Maun. Driving into the town we saw our first donkey walking by the side of the road, and it was not our last. Maun is known as the donkey capital. After putting up the tents, infact occupying someone else’s tent for the night, we made our way to the airport where we signed up for an hour flight over the Okavango Delta. A magical experience, flying between 500 and 1500 ft above ground level. This allowed us too not only look down upon the area but see elephants, buffalos, giraffes and others from the sky. Okavango Delta To enter the delta we had a 1 hour truck ride to a Mocorro station, this is where the Mocorro would launch from to go into the delta. Each Mocorro took two guests, their guide and luggage into the delta. Mocorros are hollowed out tree trunks lined with straw to keep its occupants dry. It was a long 90minute ride in the hot sun. We ended up 30minutes behind the rest of our group. Our guide had to stop and bail water 3 times. On our first morning we go up early for a 4hr walk. The most exciting thing that happened was an elephant stampede. Strangely we only knew they were there when the elephants stampeded. We ran away as soon as we realized what was happening. The elephants were more scared of us than we were of them. Sleeping out in the delta was a great experience, just like regular camping with just a hint of danger. The days were spent relaxing at the campsite, staying out of the heat. Late afternoon we headed off in the Mocorro to the ‘hippo’ pool where we watched not only the hippos but a beautiful sun set before heading back to camp. After 2 nights we had our Mocorro ride out of the delta and back to the truck. Chobe National Park Another National park, well not just another one. Chobe National Park is on the edge of the Chobe river which flows from the great Zambezi. The Chobe river is the border for four countries, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe. We did a river cruise and saw many water birds and the other usual animals (elephants, buffalo, hippo etc) but much closer and in action. Chobe was our last stop with the tour group. We would make our way alone to Livingstone the next day. Livingstone— Livingstone—Victoria Falls The way into Zambia was through a ferry crossing at Kazangula. We were dropped off outside of immigration. After passing through immigration we walked approximately 1km alongside bumper to bumper semi trailers, to the river bank. We waited for our non existent transfer before deciding to hop on the public ferry and make our way to the other side. We found our way to a pick up point and after waiting another 30 minutes we were on our way to Livingstone. First stop was Victoria Falls national park. We caught a taxi to the national park for the price of 33,000 Kwacha (10USD). Whilst on the main highway we had noticed elephants on the side of the road, munching away at the local bush. These elephants were wild and not in a national park. Apparently, they are very dangerous at night because the are so hard to see. You usually don't see them until it is too late, and then the elephant gets grumpy after you run into them! Victoria Falls national park is a park with walks going either side of the Falls and alongside the Zimbabwe border. To see the falls from directly in front you have to travel to Zimbabwe, the Zambian side gives a great side- on view. We walked around the park taking in the falls from various angles. At one stage we had to move over on the pass to let others going the opposite direction pass us. These ‘tourists’ were a group of baboons. They walked around the park just like other tourists. The trick to not having problems with the baboons is not too have any food showing, they will steal it out of your hands and get upset if you resist. The Falls although small in width were still quite magnificent to see. They are very high and the chasm it flows into is not all that wide. It’s like the land has been pulled apart ever so slightly and the river drains into it. We were lucky enough to enjoy a helicopter ride over the falls. We flew around the falls both on the Zambian and Zimbabwe sides. The Falls were basically at their lowest flow but still quite interesting. Must be magnificent in full flow. The water fell off the edge in four or five places and then flowed into the Zambezi river. Back to South Africa for the final leg of our trip. SOUTH AFRICA Kruger National Park Here we had the opportunity to once again see many animals including impala, elephant’s, zebras, lions, hippo’s, monkeys (of which one tried to get into our truck through a window that was slightly open), baboons, giraffe, crocodile, warthog, hyenea’s and various species of birds roaming this vast area. Our Kruger highlights included Sunset Drive: We headed off in an open vehicle, spotlights attached, onto the roads, roads which are closed between sunset and sunrise. You really feel like you are in the animals territory now. We watched and listened fascinated at a power struggle amongst a group of Baboons, had our vehicle menaced by a bull elephant who just refused to let our truck pass and had to detour around some male lions who had made their bed for the night in the middle of the road after a feed. Game Walk: We got up very early, met our guides and headed in a truck to the area which our walk would begin. Not long into the walk our guide realized we were down wind and too exposed. Apparently, humans are super predators, as soon as they hear or smell a human they run away. So we saw lions and giraffes in the distance moving the opposite direction. We walked for a while without any success. We had breakfast and decided to head back. This is when we saw four rhinos in the bush. We stayed downwind and headed towards them. Silently we crept within 20metres of the rhinos. It was exhilarating to be so close too these wild animals. Kruger to Capetown We enjoyed many other highlights on our tour as we headed from Kruger, down the coast back to Capetown. Our drive through and stay in the Drankensburg mountains allowed us to enjoy the peace and beauty of the mountains. What a wonderful place to celebrate our 5th wedding anniversary. Then it was from mountains to ocean. Our 2 nights camping at and exploring the beachfront at Tsitsikamma National Park was magical, despite the wind and rain. Johannesburg and Pretoria We decided to do a ‘two’ town tour in our one full day at Johannesburg. The first half of the tour was spent in Pretoria. Pretoria is one of the country's three capital cities, serving as the executive (administrative) and de facto national capital; the others are Cape Town, the legislative capital, and Bloemfontein, the judicial capital. Pretoria is very green and they have an abundance of a particular tree, cant remember what though. Johannesburg is the financial and crime capital of South Africa. Touring around the city was an eye opener, a place you don't mind visiting but enjoy leaving more. There are many tall buildings but most are empty. The corporations moved to the country towards Pretoria in the mid 90’s due to civil unrest. Our stay here was brief and informative. It was most interesting however it is not on our must see again list. News from the Women’s Circus – Rachel The German Wheel The German Wheel is my favourite piece of circus apparatus. You can do some really nice tricks without having to be particularly strong or athletic. The best wheels are imported from Germany where they are used in national gymnastics. Picture a hamster wheel two metres across, made of steel tubing, with two handles near the top and wooden footplates with leather straps near the bottom. Spinning inside the wheel is like Leonardo da Vinci’s classic diagram of a man inside a circle, with arms and legs outstretched. Your feet are strapped to the footplates and you hold on to the handles to each side, and slightly above, your head. You press down with one foot and swing that arm back to start you rolling one way and get momentum, then you press down hard on the other foot, grab the handle again and over you go. Your feet grip tightly to the footplates (the straps alone won’t hold you in) and you hold your body straight and strong. Over the last year, I have done several classes with Mel Fyfe, a fabulous ex-Circus Oz performer. Last month, I worked with twelve women (most of us over 40) as Mel encouraged and cajoled us to spin inside the wheel, ride on top and around it, and even to balance standing on the top! The best part is the feeling of mastery. Our momentum got us over, our strength held us safe, we did it! It’s better than any fairground ride! Wednesdays through LENT Meditation & Eucharist 7.00 pm HOLY WEEK Eucharist Monday 7.00 pm Tuesday 1.30 pm N W G Nursing Home 7.00 pm Wednesday 11.00 am St Anne’s Nursing Home 7.00 pm Maundy Thursday 7.30 pm Eucharist; washing of the Feet; Stripping of Altar followed by the Vigil til midnight Good Friday 9.00 am Liturgy of the day 7.00 pm Taizè style service EASTER DAY ST PAUL’S 6.30 am New Fire & Eucharist 9.00 am Family Eucharist and receiving of First Communion ST MARY’S 11.00 am What an exciting year it has been for us as Cursillistas with a wonderful Cathedral Ultreya in November 2008 with the Witness Speaker, Joy Freier, speaking about her experiences at Lambeth conference and how the Lord had placed together study group who were able to help a new Bishop’s wife from Lesotho set up a home there. If you missed that try to go to some Ultreyas this year. We started the year at Bentleigh and were able to raise almost $1000 for the bushfire Appeal from the rainbow basket. The secretariat allocated another $5000 dollars to the Appeal . Our next Ultreya in April at St Chads, Chelsea. Closer still , hopefully in June we can go to Melton to assist Sr Elisa with an Ultreya there. I will be asking for some help with that one. Good news is that Kerrie Lante from this parish, is the next Lay Coordinator for Women’s 35 in September so please pray for her as she calls a team together . The Cursillo Getaway on May 15th -17th will be exciting and challenging, as we will be discussing where Cursillo is fitting into the mission of the church today. The Archbishop is the Keynote speaker on the first night and he is very excited about the programme we will be presenting. A great team of Mark and Beckie Sims, Joy Freier, Sybil Gibson, Richard Pennington and Ross Byrne will lead the weekend. Think about joining us that weekend. Think about where God is calling you on your Christian Journey. Remember we are Christians first, Anglicans second and Cursillistas third. Ultreya . Marie Associate Lay Director Melbourne Anglican Cursillo Our next edition of ‘The Parish Bridge’ will be June 21st ‘09 therefore the deadline for articles will be June 7th ‘09 You don’t have to wait until the last minute. I will take articles at anytime. Remember if it’s of interest to you, it’s of interest to us. Please think about writing for our magazine so we can keep it alive and running. This is your magazine, so come on let us all get involved. Editor: Sue Brennan Brenan.email@example.com As we are all well aware many have been touched and affected by the tragic events of Black Saturday. It was with some uncertainty, not knowing what we would be walking into, that I headed off with Judi and Pat Blake on the morning of Monday 9th February to the Wallan Community Centre, one of many areas that had been set up as an emergency centre. Over the past day and a half I, like many had been listening to the radio and watching the television with shock and disbelief. Now it was time to respond. I would like to share with you a part of my day at Wallan. In the afternoon I came across a twelve year old girl, let’s call her Rebecca. Rebecca had come to the centre with her mother. Mum was trying to register and gain some assistance. Rebecca was trying to help, be there for her mother, who herself needed some time and space to get sorted what she needed. I caught up with Rebecca in the children’s play area. As I sat down to join in some craft activities with Rebecca, a peer from her school and a couple of younger children, Rebecca and her peer began talking about the impact of the fire, how many of their teachers and friends no longer had a house, what had happened to their pets and what would happen now. Rebecca was in a great deal of shock and still very much shaken. Before long Rebecca was again worried about her mother and wanted to find her. After making sure mum was alright I suggested to Rebecca that we grab a drink and go outside to get some fresh air. We found a rock to sit down on. It was this space and a listening ear that Rebecca needed. No longer had we sat down that Rebecca began to pour her heart out. I sat and listened, answering Rebecca’s questions and providing words of support and comfort when appropriate as she talked about her experience of being caught in the bushfire. She described from the time when someone in a nearby community rang them to say the fire was approaching and hearing them having to abruptly hang the phone up, at this time she wondered what had happened to this person, to the fire rapidly approaching their place. Before they knew it the fire had completely surrounded her house. She recalled how the noise was terrifying, greater than anything she had ever heard before. This stuck in her mind. Rebecca kept talking, telling of her fright as her mother and father were outside fighting the fire, trying to stop their house from burning, while she was inside, under a bed, covered by a wet blanket, finding it difficult to breath and trying to look after her two younger brothers. Rebecca tells me that her parents were able to save most of their house. As I sat and listened to this young girls terrifying experience she told of her horror as she walked outside after the fire had passed. She recalls yelling out words to the effect of “this is not our place.” Anger then struck as she began to question and struggle to understand why the local fire brigade weren’t there to help fight the fire in their town. Why were they off helping another town? Why weren’t they helping to defend their own town? She understood how lucky they were but she wanted to know if it was okay to feel frightened by what had happened and upset about their losses and all that her and her family had gone through when others were worse off and have lost all of their house and loved ones. There were many unanswered questions in this 12 year olds mind. Worried about her mother, Rebecca had a need to check that mum was ok. Following we sat in an outside veranda type area where we continued to talk, at times it was a seemingly normal conversation, talking about the typical happenings in a teenager’s life and the challenges of starting secondary college. This was inter-dispersed by snippets of Rebecca’s bushfire experience, how she made attempts to keep or save some of her treasured possessions, concerns about friends and teachers who have lost their houses, worry over how her parents are coping and about what happens from here. As the reports relating to the fires on the radio and television diminish and the print and electronic media returns to normal I ask that you continue to keep the communities and individuals affected by the fires in your prayers as they begin the process of rebuilding. Especially the Rebecca’s of the bushfires and their families as they continue, like many individuals, on the rollercoaster of emotions for some time to come. I would like to leave this piece with the same departing words Rebecca left me with. Words that brought home the impact of our presence on the day You have given me my faith back. Kerrie This Months Recipe is: GNOCCHI 500 G Potato (2 cups cooked and mashed), 1 egg yolk, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, 1/4 tsp salt, black pepper to taste, 3/4 to 1 cup flour. Put 2 cups of mashed potato into a large bowl, mix in egg yolk, parmesan cheese, salt & pepper & gradually add enough flour to form a slightly sticky dough. Knead for 5 mins. Adding flour if needed until a smooth dough is formed. Divide dough into 4. Roll each portion on a lightly floured board. Form a sausage shape 2 cm thick. Cut into 2.3 cm and shape into oblong pieces. Press into floured hand against a fork to flatten slightly and indent one side with pattern. Cover until ready to use. Boil Gnocchi in a large pan of salt water uncovered for 2 mins. Or until Gnocchi floats to the surface. Drain ( I just us a ladle to take out of the water) Serve Gnocchi with spaghetti sauce, mushroom or pumpkin sauce or any of your favourite. Enjoy - Anne Fresh connections At the launch of the AIM4 Melbourne - Anglicans in mission - making Fresh Connections, four candles were used as part of the prayers in the Cathedral. Following the launch, the candles were dispersed and began a journey. One candle was taken to Bishopscourt and will be used at times of prayer there. Each of the other three candles was taken to one of the three Regions, to the most distant point from the Cathedral, and will make their way back to the Cathedral in time for Advent Sunday. The candle for the Northern region came to us from the Parish of Hume and from here continued to the Parish of Epping. Wonderful to be a part of the diocesan prayer journey.