News, Notices & Prayer points - 15 December 2020

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News & Notices – 15 December 2020

Below are the news and notices from congregations, the Synod of South Australia and the wider Uniting Church for the Tuesday, 15 December edition of UC e-News



Prayer Points for the week:

  • We give thanks, as with optimistic hearts, we are once again renewed by the Nativity scene of Christmas
  • We pray for those that are separated from their families and loved ones at this time that they may soon be reunited
  • Over this Advent season, we pray that the joy of the Lord is evident in our hearts and homes.



Key Dates for Synod meeting 11-13 February 2021

It is a bit early to be thinking about our Synod meeting in February when we are only two weeks away from Christmas, but please keep these key dates in mind, especially 2 events that will take place prior to the full Synod meeting on 11-13 February 2020:

  • Saturday 30 January 8.30am – 10.30am online.This will be the first business session and will be completely delivered online. Attendance of all members is required at this session to conduct business, whilst also testing our capacity for an all online meeting should the need arise. More details and links to the event will be emailed in the New Year.
  • Sunday 7 February 2:30pm Celebration of Ministries service at Burnside City Uniting Church. This service celebrates the ministry, those who have retired since the last Synod meeting, and those who are celebrating the 50th anniversary of their ordination. This service will be both in person (bookings required and will be available in the New Year) and live streamed online. More details and links to the event will be emailed in the New Year.
  • NOW – Registrations are open. Members must register via the link sent to them. If you have not registered already, please do so as soon as possible.
  • Friday 8th January 2021 – Proposals from members are due by this date. Late proposals will not be accepted.
  • Thursday 21st January 2021 – Nominations close on this date. Nomination forms will be available later this week.

If you have any questions about membership, nominations or proposals, please email




UCA Act2 Project

In November, the Assembly launched the UCA Act2 Project – a whole-of-church consultation on the future together as a people of God on the way - in the words of paragraph 18 of the Basis of Union.

Through the UCA Act2 Project, in the lead up to the 16th Assembly in July 2021, members of the Church, in congregations, agencies, schools and other Councils are being invited to consider a shared vision for the future.

To find out more about Act2 and how you can be part of this important conversation, first read the Introduction to the Project at this link:

You are also invited to take the survey and to review further information from the Assembly General Secretary Colleen Geyer about the Act2 theme:




Assembly President Dr Deidre Palmer Pastoral Letter

As we come to the end of a difficult 2020, Dr Deirdre Palmer has written a Pastoral Letter to all UCA members.    

The letter thanks all members for continuing our life of worship, witness and service to Christ as the Uniting Church in Australia.

The letter is available on the Uniting Church website and is available to download in PDF form:




Congregation Responses to COVID-19

All ministers/pastors/faith community leaders are invited to participate in a research project exploring how congregations responded to the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly during the lockdowns.

This first phase of the research explores how congregations adapted their worship, mission and ministry practices during the lockdowns; what motivated those responses; and the extent to which congregations have continued these new or adapted practices post-lockdown(s). We hope the research will be useful to the church.

Depending on your responses, the questionnaire might take up to 30 minutes to complete and you can access the survey here: You can read the information at that site without a commitment to participate.

If you have any questions please contact Tanya Wittwer, UCLT +61 8 8416 8434 or Lynne Taylor, Theology Programme, School of Arts, +64 3 479 5358,

[This project has been reviewed and approved by the Ethics Committees of Adelaide College of Divinity and the School of Arts, University of Otago.]




Christmas Events

In spite of COVID-19 there are a range of Christmas events still being planned and delivered, from carol singing and stories, to a Christmas movie night, and nativity plays – check out the full list on the Synod website at the following link:

And for a comprehensive list of Christmas services and times visit:

For congregations that have yet to share their Christmas services and event details you can do so by emailing Please include the service dates, times, locations and titles (e.g. Blue Christmas, Carols Service etc.) and they will be added to the Synod website.




Synod 2021 Calendar Update

Please be advised that Calendar orders are now available for pick-up at the Synod office between the hours of 9.30 am and 4.30 pm Monday to Friday, at Level 2, 212 Pirie Street in the city.

If you haven’t yet placed an order, you can still do so at the following link:

For any queries, please contact




SA Heritage Grants Program

Round 3 of the SA Heritage Grants Program is now open. Grants are available for owners of State heritage listed places; with up to $20,000 for conversation work or documentation; and are provided on a dollar-for-dollar basis.

Applications for the program close on 26 February 2021. All applications must be submitted through the DEW Grant Management System. If you would like further information please contact Malcolm Wilson, phone 8236 4206 or email

Further information is also available at the following link:




Free Christmas PowerPoint Templates to download

This year’s Synod of SA Christmas theme is ‘Joy,’ which is centred on Isaiah 43:19 – ‘Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth … I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.’ The message is that we all may experience God’s love and peace in new and unexpected ways as we celebrate this Christmas season.

Along with other themed resources (postcards and posters), the Engagement Team also provides a set of free, PowerPoint templates for your use. You can download these templates here:, which also includes Christmas graphics for PowerPoint presentations to be used in your background slides.

For more information, contact:




Out of the Box Christmas – locally made movie by The Corner UC

Christmas will be different this year. ‘Out of the Box Christmas,’ is a South Australian kids and youth short movie produced by The Corner Uniting Church.

Follow the adventures of decorations stuck in the garage, with a near impossible plan to make sure the Christmas message is celebrated. The full movie is approximately 25 minutes long and could be adapted for a worship service, children and families ministry presentation, home group or families to enjoy at home. It presents the story of Christ’s birth in a different perspective and includes information for church leaders as well as an activity sheet for the movie.

With a cast of over 40 children and young people, please don’t miss out, watch the full movie here: or the trailer here:




Position vacant: Staff Chaplain SALHN

The Full Time Spiritual Care Chaplain within SA Health is a Spiritual Care Practitioner who, together with members of the spiritual care team and other staff, seeks to address the spiritual care needs of patients, families and staff.

They provide professional leadership to the spiritual care program in a public hospital and work collaboratively with the Spiritual Care Coordinator as part of a team.

Within the role they will ensure the provision of quality compassionate spiritual care within one’s scope of practice and provide a caring resource at the person’s point of need. Such care will allow the ‘person’ to ‘set the agenda’ with the Spiritual Care Chaplain being available as a compassionate, skilful and respectful human being.

Location: Southern Adelaide Local Health Network - SALHN

Length: Initial period of 5 years.

Applications to be sent to Rev Wendy Prior, Chaplaincy Manager, by close of business 18th December 2020.




#16Days Against Gender-Based Violence 2020

Although the #16Days Against Gender-Based Violence initiative is now over, the struggle against violence goes on.

National Consultant Rev Charissa Suli offers a final word and prayer to bring to a close #16Days of activism against gender-based violence at the following link:




Sally Stamp (UCA Stamp Group)

A huge thank you to all Churches and Members for saving their stamps during 2020. Even though we have been unable to meet in the Church Office we have continued to work from our homes to keep this group going and to bring in cash to enable us to fund donations to Frontier Services, Bush Chaplains and South Pacific School Aid Inc.

During this Christmas season, please save your stamps, we are happy to accept collections no longer needed by families. Pick-up in metropolitan areas can be arranged!!

Contact, Maxine Haines, Convenor, UCA Stamp Group
Mobile: 0427 972417




Book Launch - Don’t Fret: The Worship Leader’s Pocketbook is here!

Written by Don Purdey, this is a quick to read and comprehensive guide to the shaping and presentation of worship in Australia today.

Please join us at 5pm on Thursday 17 December for the official launch at the Bible College of South Australia, 176 Wattle St Malvern.

Light refreshments provided.

Please RSVP to Annette Purdey 0438 386 081 (due to seating capacity limits to meet COVID requirements).




#Build Back Better

10 December was World Human Rights Day, and advocates want human rights to be central in shaping our post-COVID world. Earlier this year the Assembly worked with Synods and Agencies to produce a blueprint for a just recovery. Read more here and to download the Blueprint:




Born is the King

Come and celebrate at the CoroUniting Church Christmas All Age Service 'Born is the King.'

This service will be a wonderful opportunity to invite family and friends to experience the nativity play 'Born is the King' (by Laurel Moffatt, directed by Thorin Cupit.

Join CoroUniting church 10am on Sunday 20 December and then afterwards for a BYO picnic from 12 noon.

For more information contact David Buxton, Phone 0438 500 375 or email or visit




Daily Reflection for Christmas

Prompted by the limitations imposed on face-to-face worship by COVID-19, Gartrell Church has proactively moved into the production of online resources for both its members and as a way of virtually walking beside those who are searching for God.

This Advent, they have produced Daily Reflections, which are posted online each day and they happily share them with others.

As we can so easily lose sight of the peace, hope, joy and love that are the promises of the Christmas season. These Daily Reflections - have been prepared for you by members of the Gartrell Church community – and will help to keep your heart and mind on Jesus and his coming into the world and into your life amidst all the planning and events for Christmas.

As you enter this period, you are invited to hold in prayer those who have been impacted by the COVID19 pandemic knowing this year Christmas is going to be very different for many families, maybe even your family.

May you and your loved ones find the blessings of love in the life of the holy family and the child born to dwell in us.

View the daily reflection and prayer at




UC-enews Christmas/New Year Period

The final UC-enews for this year will be Tuesday, 22nd December, 2020 and will resume again on a weekly basis from 12th January 2021. If you would like any items featured either next week or in the New Year, please keep sending them through to


If you didn’t get to read the last ‘News & Notices?’

Click here for the News, Notices & Prayer points – 8 December 2020, which included updates about:

  • Key Dates for Synod meeting 11-13 February 2021
  • UCA Act2 Project
  • Congregation Responses to COVID-19
  • Christmas Events
  • Synod 2021 Calendar Update
  • Free Christmas Powerpoint templates to download
  • Out of the Box Christmas – locally made movie by The Corner UC
  • Position Vacant: Staff Chaplain SALHN
  • Position Vacant: Engagement & Communications Coordinator
  • Last NYALC Online for 2020
  • #16Days Against Gender-based Violence 2020
  • Sally Stamp (UCA Stamp Group)
  • Music on Flinders
  • A prayer, a plea, a bird.

Check out last week’s UC eNews to keep you updated.

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