Monday, February 25, 2013

SLYM+ at St Lukes Uniting Church at Belmont

   Things have a timing and ground work is invaluable... this is true when hard work has been put in and also when things are on the slide and need rebuilding. In the case of St Luke's Uniting Church at Belmont the most recent chapter has been ten years of ground work in ministry and mission with young people. The decision to 're-vision' and look at a different direction sees the group well placed for new energy from well trained and mentored volunteers, for parents to 'step up' and for people to be reminded of what is sometimes left as the work of the Youth Worker.
   Richard & Kylie Moors ministry at St Lukes will continue to shape and encourage this generation of leaders and punters in healthy ways!!
   So in what's been a hard time, people have also been asked to consider what they can do and what needs to be done to give "space, permission and validity" [my favourite themes] to worship planned and led with and by young people at least once per month on a fourth Sunday.
   The first one for the year came together well and gave people breathing space to think they could make a contribution. When planning began for the second one I had been booked to participate, having offered my support & resourcing in this first part of the year!!
  The parents and young people who met to plan put in a few hours 'getting their heads around the task' and around what had been set up from the first month. A suggestion of giving the time identity as SLYM+ as an extension of the SLYM Friday night group was a good one...
   We spoke about the invitation to young people to shape it for them, beanbags, music, people with gifts, dinner beforehand etc and mapped out a worship around this years chosen song 'Guardian' by Alanis Morissette. The theme became 'Who do you say that I am?' from Luke 9: 18-24...

What happened?
There's quite a collection of musicians and voices and others helped with sound and vision

Specific pre music background was chosen
[2] Songs were played without Intro from the Band [words onscreen]
A Current Affair reporter introduced the key question between the songs
The songs included a 'We Will Rock You' mash up
Mark M was Leader and introduced the idea, the song for this year and prayer
'Guardian' Alanis Morissette clip with lyrics
[1] Skit with older man, hip hop DJ and Nerd asked 'who they say Jesus is?'
[1] Song with the Band
[3] Voice Reading of Luke from mics at rear of space...
simple things create interest and engagement with the 'story'
Talk introduced by 30sec title video... and centred on stories, joining our story to Jesus story and that 'who we say he is?' was a plural question asking who we say by how we live and are community... acknowledging our stories and identity... included a collage of JC pics and the vox pop 'Who is Jesus' NYC clip...
I took the opportunity to say a few things about allowing space, permission & validity [not in those words] but I'm sure I was in trouble with someone... it's not about you...
The Offering was of money and a written card with what gifts or abilities people might offer...
Josh gave the relevant announcements
Prayers for the World were tea light candles and world maps
[1] Song with the Band including mosh pit
Bec had chosen a Sending Out alongside the pre music and we spoke it together...

A lot of work goes into creating and delegating and month by month will be fun to evaluate and grow this space and endeavour!!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Photo Scavenger Hunt 15th March

An event welcoming any and all our Uniting Youth Groups from across the Hunter... they are high schoolers and some Yr5,6s plus any individual young person or carload is welcome to join in!!
See you at 7pm on the 15th March at Charlestown Uniting Church!!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Riding the Bike

   I'm trying to get back into a more consistent exercise program for 2013 [restricted to the bike and swimming] but time is often a factor... except that when I go I remember that a big part of my role, my gifts and the way I work best is to have time to 'think' or space for thoughts to be processed!! So it's time well spent when it's spent!!
Today I was reminded of a couple of missional possibilities that are 'not rocket science'!!

The Ethnic Communities Council of Newcastle and Hunter Region at the old Waratah Bowling Club near the train station [2A Platt Street, Waratah] hosted a multi-cultural celebration this morning and ABC1233 radio were there. They talked to people I know and groups I was and wasn't aware of. If I had known about it ahead I would have gone along. Had I not been riding my bike I would not have heard it at all.
They spoke of SPICE the Islander support group at Waratah High School [by it's new name as part of Callahan High Uni links] which has changed and now includes Africans etc. There were dancers, food and the boys from Mayfield East Rugby Club. May East have 40 or so young islanders in the club despite having been out of the top Division for a few years [long story, two sides].
A congregation, faith community or group of people who felt inspired saw the intersection between their passion or energy and God's desire for the world... could [a] support and partner with the Multi-cultural centre or [b] offer support to the High School Group as mentors or ??? and/or [c] build a relationship with the young islanders and all players at May East...
The relationship is the beginning but who knows...
The dance performances and sports are connection points with the young people from various cultures who were there today... a congregation, faith community of group of individuals could do worse than a soccer afternoon once a week, a youth event with hip hop, rnb flavour [which would require significant planning, people and work].

While I'm awaiting further developments of a helping involvement with my own rugby club I will make a contact with 'Bones' and Tala and see if any help would be needed with the polynesian boys!!

I take a scenic drive when I leave the centre of Newie and I drove past the set up [at Merewether Beach] for Surfest, which goes for about 2 weeks in all but started today with the Indigenous Classic [I assume Stanley Moylan is still involved]. We used to think [and some still do] how could we run a stall, be on the street, turn up at events and evangelise people [the narrowing of language at the time] but I think today it's more inspired to think of partnering and volunteering with the organisers to serve the overall good of the group, event and community... food, bodies onsite in yellow vests, set up crew etc etc... just a thought!!

Worship ponderings are less structured but still possible churning up and down the pool... when I get back to 30 laps a session I'll report back in...