Christine Brain travelled from Perth to be our preacher and guest speaker at Holy Cross Anglican Church, Hackett, where members of Mothers’ Union and friends gathered on 26 June to hear of the wonderful projects being promoted, both here in Northern Australia and Overseas.
The service was presided over by our MU Chaplain, Reverend Joan Smith and the Rector of Holy Cross, Reverend Dr Tim Watson, also an MU member.
Christine’s sermon was from the Book of Ruth and explored her relationship with her mother-in-law, Naomi. Ruth found ways to serve Naomi in a loving way and by being faithful to her God’s promises. Christine encouraged us not to be bitter, grumpy and disappointed, allowing our disappointments to cloud our vision of life but to find our hope and joy in the many ways God cares for us and the Nations.
Following communion Christine used a Power point presentation to outline some statistics relating to Mothers’ Union projects along with her enthusiastic reporting of God’s work being carried out under the MU banner in 84 countries, supported by over 4 million members worldwide.
In all that we undertake to do we are asked to focus on the Objects central to our Charter; to uphold and support marriage and family life, protecting children, helping families who have met with adversity, and underpinning our work with prayer.
Christine highlighted some of the overseas projects that Mary Sumner House London, UK, is coordinating in 2019-2020. Reaching out to refugees is a key area of focus: of the 25.4 million refugees worldwide, 2.4 million are from South Sudan and Uganda hosts 1.4 million of them. Both of these countries with large Mothers’ Union memberships have priority in the 2019/20 project; Training and Support for South Sudanese church leaders who were hosted in safety in Uganda as they worked out Peace and reconciliation strategies for their people in trauma. There are also members working with internally displaced people and refugees in Myanmar, Burundi and Manchester, UK. This diocese is the first Mothers’ Union to officially sponsor a family from Syria under the government’s Vulnerable Persons Resettlement Scheme.
Here in Australia our 5,000 members focus on local needs such as hospital visiting, Marriage Enrichment, Parenting Programs, Women‘s Refuge Centres, Family Court Duty and praying for families affected by a parent in prison.
Christine outlined how monies received from Branches across Australia were administered, describing in detail the allocation of grants for 2019 her in Northern Australia. Altogether well over $55,000 was allocated.
As convener for Overseas and Northern Outreach, Christine concluded her talk with a challenge (referring to 1 Timothy 2:18). If each MU member (5,000) put aside $1.00 per week for 50 weeks it would add up to a staggering $250,000. There is much that could be done to grow God’s Kingdom in remote regions of Northern Australia and in Overseas Countries with such resources.
Members and guests enjoyed a hearty soup lunch in St Margaret’s Hall where Hackett Branch members demonstrated their wonderful hospitality and care to those present.
We look forward to and welcome seeing new faces at our next Diocesan Day on Wednesday, 21st August. when AMUA’s Australian President, Reverend Anne Kennedy will be our Guest Speaker at Holy Cross Hackett.
by Joan Eberlé, Diocesan President