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postheadericon 2015 Epiphany

The Psalms: “You have searched me and known me”

Sometimes known as the “hymnbook of the Bible” the Psalms have been a touchstone for “belief laden emotions” for centuries. There are Psalms of joy, awe, wonder, trust, lament and celebration. For example, the most famous Psalm 23, “The Lord is My Shepherd” has been an immeasurable comfort to the dying and bereaved. On the Sundays after Epiphany a series of services will draw on the psalm appointed for each Sunday in the common lectionary as the inspiration for the sermon and other aspects of the service. On Jan 25 Bathurst will join Trinity-St. Paul’s for a Joint Holy Land Service with guest speaker Wendy Gichuru.

Services in this series included:

  • Sun, Feb 15 - Epiphany VI
    Judgement and Righteousness Re-visited
    Ralph Carl Wushke

  • Sun, Feb 8 - Epiphany V
    Broken and Repaired: Two Ways to Read Psalm 147
    Deborah McGinnis

  • Sun, Feb 1 - Epiphany IV
    The Magic Sky: A Meditation On Seeing
    David Barker

  • Sun, Jan 25 - The Holy Land
    A joint service with Trinity-St. Paul's
    Wendy Gichuru

  • Sun, Jan 18 - Epiphany II
    Know Thyself: Psalm 139
    Frances Combs

  • Sun, Jan 11
    Sharon Goodier
    Refreshments: Sarah Gayman and Janine Dennie-Lightfoot

postheadericon 2014 Advent Services

Advent and Christmas: Right Relations

Our Advent series again allowed us to focus on the gifts of the creator. The first two services examined right relations with aboriginal people, followed by a series of traditional Christmas services.

Services in this series included:

  • Sun, Jan 4 - Christmas II
    Holy Wisdom
    Ralph Carl Wushke
    Refreshments: Sarah Gayman and Janine Dennie-Lightfoot

  • Sun, Dec 28 - Christmas I
    The stories behind our favourite Christmas carols
    Sharon Goodier and Cathleen Fillmore

  • Wed, Dec 24 - Christmas Eve, 10:00 pm
    A joint communion service with Trinity St. Paul's in the sanctuary

  • Sun, Dec 21 - Advent IV
    Christmas breakfast (starting at 10:00 am!), with a Christmas Story and traditional carols

  • Sun, Dec 14 - Advent III
    Our Annual Christmas Choral Concert
    Bev Lewis and the Choir

  • Sun, Dec 7 - Advent II
    Recommitting to solidarity with Aboriginal youth in Canada

  • Sun, Nov 30 - Advent I - Right Relationships
    What form will reconciliation take? How will Bathurst approach reconciliation – with the land, in the waters, with Indigenous peoples, and across genders and generations?
    The Social Justice and Community Engagement committee (Reg McQuaid, Diane Meredith and Ralph Carl Wushke)

postheadericon November Services 2014

Deconstructing Church: Breaking the Mold

For the record, the November series at Bathurst was a somewhat “out of the box” series. This series looked at what we do as church; what do we actually do? ... why do we do it (that way)? ... what must we do? And we tried to get at the questions (and answers) in various ways.

Worship communities often find themselves repeating themselves week after week, maintaining practices either from a sense of ritual ("this is how it always has been done") or from a fear that introducing change might upset current members of the congregation. In this series, we examined our practices at Bathurst, and asked the question "Can we change to engage communities whose needs are not being met, while remaining faithful to our call?" This was done in several ways.

The November 2 service looked at climate change using a creative ritual based on Johanna Macy’s work. On November 9 we examined our worship in detail, using small groups to get feedback and provide direction to the worship planning process. This process gave the Worship Committee a lot of material to work with. On November 16 we were joined by a number of Millennial and 'Gen Y' Bathurstites: Michael Carens-Nedelsky, Daniel Carens-Nedelsky, Naomi Douglas-Najem and Shintaro Tsukamoto, who spoke about their perspectives on faith, spirituality and religion, and how their needs are, or might be met by “church.” Finally, another 'Messy Church' service was held on Nov. 23, with a focus on the needs of families and young children.

Services in this series included:

  • Sun, Nov 23
    Messy Church: Engaging with Families and Children
    Refreshments: Frances Combs and Ulla Weimann

  • Sun, Nov 16
    Gen-Y Spiritual Voices and Perspectives
    Ralph Carl Wushke

  • Sun, Nov 9
    How and Why We Worship

  • Sun, Nov 2
    Social Justice and Community Engagement
    Ralph Carl Wushke and Diane Meredith

postheadericon Fall Services 2014

Bread and Roses: Living into a Moral Economy

In this series, we will attempt to draw links between economics, justice and theology from a predominantly personal and grass roots perspective, using the concept of the moral economy as a framework. On Sept. 21, Marilyn Legge (Associate Professor of Christian Ethics at Emmanuel College) will set the tone for the series by speaking to us about economy from a moral and theological standpoint. The subsequent services will explore our personal relationship with money and aspirations for a more equitable distribution of resources, feature presentations and stories by people working to bring about greater economic justice in Ontario, discuss food security and sustainability, and give consideration to the role of politics, social justice and social activism in our striving to bring about a moral economy.

Services in this series included:

  • Sun, Oct 26
    Living into a Moral Economy: A Reflection

  • Sun, Oct 19
    Experiences of Anti-poverty work in Toronto
    Reg McQuaid and Ronny Yaron

  • Sun, Oct 12
    Thanksgiving - Food Security
    Ralph Carl Wushke and Marie Simon

  • Sun, Oct 5
    Stitching the Social Safety Net

  • Sun, Sept 28
    The Matter of Money in a Moral Economy
    A personal account by Lloyd Mangal

  • Sun, Sept 21
    Go and Do Likewise - Towards a Moral Economy
    Marilyn Legge

  • Sun, Sept 14
    Faith and Life: A personal reflection
    As a prelude to the Bread and Roses series, Frances reflected on the connection between faith, life and social justice, with reference to the Bathurst context over the years
    Frances Combs

  • Sun, Sept 7
    Messy Church, a non-traditional way of experiencing the gospel and scripture stories. 'Messy Church' aims to be accessible to all generations and has a particular interest in reaching out to those who do are not familiar with traditional religious forms of worship. It is very children friendly and involves song, craft, story-telling and a shared meal.
    Ralph Carl Wushke

postheadericon Summer Services 2014

The Faith Project - Turning Bathurst Inside Out

In a modern, pluralistic and, for some, a post-creedal church it makes sense to periodically sit back and reflect on what underlies our Faith as well as what brings us together as a community. We often refer to "Faith Communities" but what makes it so in the case of Bathurst United?

All communities are made up of individuals and so it made sense to start by asking our members what Faith means to each of us.

Each week one or two people shared with us a testament of their faith and what brought them there followed by a discussion with questions from the group. This took the form of the simple sharing "Faith journey" stories, but also included references to favorite scripture, poetry, art, books, music, photographs or other items to help with understanding.

The hope was that by expressing our faith individually and listening to others we would gain new perspectives and a richer understanding of ourselves and each other.

Questions that members addressed included:

1) What does Faith mean to you?

2) What life experiences starting with childhood lead to the formation, unfolding or discovery your Faith?

3) Did your search for your Faith or did it come to you?

4) How has your Faith helped you in your life?

5) What meaning does God, Worship and Prayer have for you. How do you experience these in your life?

6) How have your Faith Communities supported or influenced you in your journey?

Again this year the summer services were held on Wednesday evenings at 6 pm at College St. United Church, located at the northwest corner of College and Bathurst, from July 9 to August 27. The evenings started with a pot-luck supper, followed by an informal service starting around 7:00 pm.

Services in this series included:

  • Wed, August 27
    Lawrence Goudge, Kathryn Humphrey

  • Wed, August 20
    John DiNovo, Sharon Goodier

  • Wed, August 13
    Beth Theis, Ronny Yaron

  • Wed, August 6
    Francesco Cattani, Dr. Pamela Reeve

  • Wed, July 30
    Reg McQuaid, Joan O'Laney

  • Wed, July 23
    Frances Combs, Marie Simon

  • Wed, July 16
    Sarah Gayman, Ken McEvoy

  • Wed, July 9
    Shirley Endicott Small, Jane Enticknap

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Next Service:

Sunday, June 25

10:30 am in the Chapel at Trinity St. Paul's Centre
427 Bloor St. West

Pride Service - The Gates Shall Not Be Shut
Caro Ibrahim

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