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The COVID Pandemic has created opportunities to think outside the box and be creative and stay positive. Holbrook Parish has been doing just that, especially with not being able to sing in worship.

Someone at our church came up with the idea of getting all the musical instruments from the Kids Corner and getting everyone to use them instead of singing. This has been a big hit as there is now a competition as to who can play the Tambourine the best, along with other non-authorised instrumental competitions happening, eg clapping.

Our attendances have been good also and we are doing what we call ‘Bunnings Communion’, which is where the elements are placed on a table with the wine in small cups and the breads laid out on a tray, and after these are blessed, the people come and have DIY (do-it-yourself) communion.

On the fourth Sunday of the month we have Cafe Church in the Hall which is an informal Communion service with a discussion time after the address and also with the musical instrument competition. It is a lot of fun to the point we have to repeat the recorded songs so that the joyful noise continues. We have been very good at doing the COVID Dance and keeping distance but the morning tea can push the boundaries sometimes as there can be a rush to get to the home made cakes and bickies.

On the second Sunday of October we combined the Woomargama and Holbrook congregations at the Park in Woomargama for the annual Parish Picnic and Sports day. We had an open air service in the park with DIY communion. A lazy Picnic lunch was then consumed and followed by the Egg (golf ball) and Spoon races. Holbrook were the victors and we look forward to doing it again next year.

Holbrook Parish has an Annual Flower show which is a big deal. This year we had the 99th annual flower ‘Event’, not a show. We combined with the local Community Gardens group and held a Plant and Produce Sale. It has rained here for near a month straight and we had to hold this event in the outside covered section of the Op-shop. It did not just rain on the day, it poured, and poured and poured down, and the people kept coming, and coming, and coming. The place was a quagmire and the event was a wonderful success as well as a boost to our economy and the morale of the community.

Staying positive in difficult times is not easy but it can be done when we move beyond what we call normal, and do what the ALDI add says, be GOOD, be DIFFERENT. Blessings from Holbrook Parish.

by Reverend Stephen Davis