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M46 Cursillo was a very spiritual time. It was encouraging that we were able to share the weekend with the ladies of W46. Although there were only two candidates at the beginning, one had to drop out halfway through the weekend. So we ended up with just one! However we were just as committed to the weekend as if we had several more. Our theme statement was from Romans 8:28 “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to his purpose.” Our Theme Song was “Guide me O thou Great Jehovah.” This is a natural song for men and we seemed to sing it better as the weekend went on. We sang all the songs with gusto and I am sure that our candidate will have good memories of the weekend. He will especially be inspired by the testimonies of the team members. I am sure that the team members grew spiritually over the weekend.
Bishop Peter celebrated the closing Eucharist and he was very encouraging with his sermon for the movement. Tony Farmer – M46 Lay Director
A TIME APART AT W46.
When you have been away and then come home, how do you describe your experience?
You talk about what you have seen, what you have experienced, what you have learnt and the people you have met.
Well, I have “been away” at W 46 at Quorrobolong Retreat. What I saw was a beautiful place, an opportunity to step aside and experience God’s creation in a lovely rural bush setting in the Watagan Mountains. Tall gum trees and Australian bush. Accommodation was very comfortable and the food great!
The staff were friendly and accommodating.
What I experienced was a time apart giving everyone the opportunity to grow in their understanding and their love of God through the talks, worship and prayer times. People who came to the weekend a little hesitant went home with a new understanding of what being in the family of God means. They responded to the talks, the chapel times and their table communities with enthusiasm and showing a readiness to go out to share the Gospel. I saw the team who had come to our first training day, a rather diverse, disassociated group of individuals, really work as a cohesive unit to show God’s Love to all they came in contact with. I saw our S.A .s Michelle Hazel-Jawhary, Rosemary Gillham and Judy Walsh provide much support and inspiration. Rosemary saw us through team training but, sadly, had to withdraw through ill health. We were blessed that Judy Walsh was able to step in seamlessly at the last moment.
I learnt that God’s family gain insight and strength from being together praying learning and sharing. I met many people who were willing to be open, to listen, to contribute and to grow.
Another weekend where God’s presence and the Cursillo motto of make a friend, be a friend and take that friend gently to Jesus was achieved.
Welcome Day is next Saturday (16 September) at St James Morpeth. An invitation is extended to all Cursillistas. 9am for a cuppa concluding at 3pm.
Other News: The Diocesan Ultreya will be on Sat 18 November, 9 am for 9.30 am, at the Cathedral. Please note that this is a change of date from our usual annual date. Please continue to pray for the Secretariat, giving thanks for those who continue to serve and for those who will be taking up new roles.
Synods: The First Session of 52nd Annual Synod will be held on Saturday 23 September at Bishop Tyrrell College.
- The date for the Special Session of the 52nd Synod for the purpose of Bishop Election has not been finalised. Nominations have closed.
Prayer for Bishop Electoral process
God of Wisdom and Light: You alone have power to bring blessing out of all our choices and use our actions for the building up of your kingdom, be with members of our Bishop’s Nomination Board as they take counsel for the future.
Turn their hearts and ours to listen to your spirit. Guide them in discerning faithful people for consideration as Bishop of the Diocese, and help us all to know your will for us at this time, and in all things seek to give you glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Sweet Perfume of Jesus – was the theme for our National Secretariat Meeting in Busselton, Western Australia. National Lay Director Roger O’Hara chose it from Paul’s second letter to the Corinthians, chapter 2: 14-15 “14 But thank God! He has made us his captives and continues to lead us along in Christ’s triumphal procession. Now he uses us to spread the knowledge of Christ everywhere, like a sweet perfume. 15 Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God. But this fragrance is perceived differently by those who are being saved and by those who are perishing”.
There are many smells and aromas that surround our daily lives – that distinctive smell of the local garbage truck or the road kill left behind on the main road … but what about the smell of freshly baked bread, or the sight, sound and smell of bacon cooking for breakfast, or enjoying the achievement and smell of a freshly cut lawn. I’m sure we all have our favourites.
So, how can our lives spread the sweet perfume of Jesus? How can everyone with whom we come in contact see Jesus in us? Some background: In a Roman triumphal procession, the victorious general would display his treasures and captives amidst a cloud of incense burned for the pagan gods. To the victors, the aroma is sweet; to the captives, the prisoners in the parade, it was the smell of slavery and death. When Christians share the Gospel, it is good news to some and repulsive news to others. Believers recognise the life-giving fragrance of the message. To non-believers, however, it smells foul, like death – and in this case, their own.
So, how can we change the way we live each day in order to spread the sweet perfume of Jesus? I’d like to suggest 3 things we can do – we can change our words, change our deeds, what we do – and change our attitudes.
Our Words – Ephesians 4:29 and 5:4 are relevant here. We can upset, disappoint or grieve the Holy Spirit by the way we live. Here, Paul warns us against bad language, fighting, saying false things against people and having a bad attitude toward others. Instead of all this, we need to be more patient, forgiving and showing love towards the people we meet – just as God did when He sent Jesus to die for our sins. Obscenity and coarse joking are so common that we begin to take them for granted. Paul cautions, however, that improper language should have no place in the Christian’s conversation because it does not reflect God’s gracious presence in us. How can we praise God and remind others of His goodness when we are speaking coarsely?
Our Deeds – Matthew 5:16 and Galatians 5: 19-21 are our scriptural basis here. The well-worn description which asks the question: ‘Can you hide a city that is sitting on top of a hill?’ Its light at night can be seen for many kilometres. If we live for Jesus, we will glow like lights – emit Christ-like perfume – showing others what Christ is like.
We hide our light or keep Christ’s aroma to ourselves by:.
1. Being quiet when we should speak;
2. Going along with the crowd;
3. Denying the light;
4. Letting sin dim our light;
5. Not explaining our light to others; OR
6. Ignoring the needs of others.
We need to be a light that shines, and to spread the knowledge of Christ everywhere, like a sweet perfume.
We all have evil desires, and so we can’t ignore them. In order for us to follow the Holy Spirit’s guidance, we must deal with them decisively – or as Ephesians 5:24 tells us, crucify them. Such desires include the obvious sins such as sex-ual immorality and witchcraft – but also the less obvious ones like selfish ambition, hatred and jealousy. Those who ignore such sins or refuse to deal with them show that they have not received the gift of the Spirit that leads to a reformed life. And lastly,
Our Attitudes – Philippians 2: 5-8 and Romans 8: 5-8 are our go-to scriptures here. Jesus Christ is humble – willing to give up His rights and serve people. Like Christ, we should have a servant’s attitude, serving out of love for God and others – not out of guilt or fear. We should always remember that we can choose our attitude. We can approach life expecting to be served – OR – we can look for opportunities to serve others. When Jesus walked this earth as a human being, he voluntarily assumed a human body and human nature. He did not cease to be God BUT He did set aside the right to His glory and power. Jesus of Nazareth was subject to place, time and many other human limitations. But by being without sin, He was unique. He showed us that everything about God’s character can be conveyed in human terms.
In Romans, Paul divides his audience into 2 categories – those who are dominated by their sinful nature, and those who are controlled by the Holy Spirit. All of us would be in the first category if Jesus hadn’t offered us a way out. Once we say YES to Jesus, we will want to follow Him, because His way brings life and peace. Daily, we need to consciously choose to centre our lives on God. By immersing ourselves in the Bible, we can discover God’s guidelines, and then follow them. In every perplexing situation, ask “What would Jesus have me do?” – and when the Holy Spirit points out what is right, do it eagerly.
May we ask God to help us be aware of the place of Jesus in our lives: “May the Holy Spirit guide the words we say, the way we conduct our-selves and the attitudes we choose to have. We give thanks for the Cursillo Movement in this Diocese and throughout the world. May it prosper and bring glory to your Holy Name by spreading your sweet perfume to all.
This we pray through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Fr Steve Niland – National Spiritual Advisor & our Diocesan Spiritual Director
DOWNLOAD ENCOURAGER HERE: #97 the encourager 2nd proofread
– the gathering of 75 men on the Saturday and 57 men on the Sunday at Tahlee Bible College on the shores of Port Stevens in May 2017 was an excellent opportunity to reflect on our faith.
We were challenged very effectively by our main speaker Rev. Rod Lewellyn as we studied the 4 chapters of the second book of Timothy.
A real surprise came when the mystery speaker was introduced. His name was Brigadier Jim Wallace AM (retired) who is currently heading up the Australian Christian lobby. He spoke on his role and interaction with the various politicians; and ACL’s commitment to pursue a Christian influence into our Federal Parliament.
He was particularly passionate about gaining support for a petition to be presented to Federal Parliament. ACL is seeking active support for persecuted Christians in some of the world hot spots where Christians are being singled out for torture and murder.
There was good support for question time and further information sessions throughout the weekend.
The film “Luther” was shown and was an excellent springboard for good discussion as a start to the weekend.
There was great singing led competently by the band of 3 guitars, keyboard and drums.
The weather was quite exceptional (not cold and wet as expected).
Great friendships were formed and others renewed.
30 men were there for the first time and were impressed with the format and friendly atmosphere. It was an excellent weekend and full credit goes to Jaimie Young, Dr.James White and their team for organising it. The Christian Fellowship was great as was the food. Looking forward to another next year (May 18th – 20th -put it in your Diary!) Planning has already started.
Blessings and Ultreya Brian Walsh.