Chaplain's Chat Week 9 Term 4

Wednesday, 07 Dec 2022
The angel said to Mary,  “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be holy; he will be called Son of God.”
— Luke 1:35

There is a beautiful legend of St Nicholas, bishop of Myra (now Turkey) in the 4th Century. St Nicholas always wanted to give a present to the Christ child and is remembered for leaving secret gifts for children on Christmas Eve. He saw the Christ child in every child, and after he had died the gifts continued to appear. This is a very special legend and tradition, reminding us of God’s presence within each child, the precious holiness in each person.

The annual Carols Service is taking place on Monday evening and it will be bigger than we’ve ever seen before. A special community choir has been rehearsing for weeks and will perform the Hallelujah Chorus from Handel’s Messiah accompanied by the BDC Orchestra. This is sounding tremendous! We will also have performances from the Dance Academy, Choirs, and of course, the largest kindy nativity play we have ever hosted! It is due to be amazing. We are hosting our carols picnic on the ovals beside the Branson Centre from 4.30pm, and the Carols Service will take place on the Branson Centre stage from 6pm. What a wonderful way to finish the year and enjoy the festive season. Don’t forget to preorder your food platter on Flexischools or bring your own picnic as there is no sausage sizzle this year.

Thank you to all the families that have contributed to the Christmas Hamper Appeal which has now concluded. The response has been overwhelming – all the items will be delivered to Warrina Women and Children’s Shelter and the Uniting Church Soup Kitchen over the next week. This week our service captains and members of the Human Rights Group met with Warrina members of staff who shared about their specialised support work. The toys we’ve donated will be set up for women to choose with dignity some special Christmas presents for their children, a thoughtful and meaningful process. It was mentioned that Warrina welcomes donations of brand new children and women’s clothes all year – the offering of new unworn clothes to choose from is another way that their clients are offered dignity in the midst of vulnerability.

All our local Anglican churches are delighted to welcome you to their Christmas services. Please contact me directly if you cannot find their service times online. It has been announced this week that Coffs Harbour Anglican will soon welcome a new priest in charge, Rev Nathan Dean. The Anglican Parish of Sawtell Bonville will be welcoming Rev Kevin Booth as their new rector in the new year. And Rev Simon Reeve has recently been appointed as the Priest in Charge of the Parish of Northern Beaches Anglican. Rev Anne Goode of Bellingen has asked me to mention that there is a service this Sunday at 4pm at St Barnabus Urunga for “Blue Christmas” which is particularly for those acknowledging their grief during this time.

I pray that our BDC families will have a beautiful time of rest and reconnection with family over the summer, safety in their travels, and may Christ be born in you this Christmastide.

Reverend Naomi Cooke