"What Wesley means to me", viewpoints of people from our church community.
Michael - What being a member at Wesley means to me.
Michael Nolan speaks about the welcome he received when he came to work as the Director of the Wesley Centre.
“I was a stranger – and you made me welcome”
Six years ago almost to the day I came to the Geelong City Parish of the Wesley Uniting Church to make enquiries about an interim position description at the Wesley Centre for Life Enrichment.
From the moment I entered the building and met one of the key members of the Centre I had a sense of being drawn into “A Place to Call Home”!! The story of how I came here in the first place, and the voices and hearts of my friends who literally propelled me to Wesley can be shared at another time. Suffice to say that over those first ensuing weeks I was made so welcome and affirmed that I was brought back to life.
The counselling work of healing, nurturing, guiding and giving life that is offered the Centre is a genuine reflection of a faith-filled, loving community that practices what it preaches. The Geelong City Parish of which I am a member in Association is filled with beautiful Christian people. I hold warm memories of many individuals who personally came to welcome this odd stranger who was at that time walking the difficult journey of grief. The “Elders” of the faith family brought to me their deep personal faith, their serenity, the wisdom of their life experience; people who have since gone home to God – like Rev. Keith Tinkler, Rev Jock Lavender, Ken Nall, Joyce Mann, and of course in very recent times Bert Fagg. The devoted spouses of these folk, and the worshipping members of both services at Wesley are wonderful witnesses to the life of the Body of Christ.
Dr. Elizabeth KublerRoss, Swiss-born Author and Psychiatrist writes:
"The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen".
I thank God every day for the blessings I have received here in the Wesley Community, and for the life and love that sustains and nurtures me in body and in Spirit.
Sue provides constructive and positive leadership in our community in many ways and shares what she loves about our community.
A place where I learn that God loves me.
A place where I learn to be forgiven.
A place where no discrimination of age nor sex occurs.
A place where my contribution is valued.
A place where I am accepted for who I am.
A place where I meet with likeminded folks who are seeking to do God’s will.
A place where I can sing loudly.
A place where I can play the piano in a band.
A place where I explore what it means to be a Christian.
Jan shares her thoughts about our community
Since joining Wesley some 20 odd years ago the first feeling was of a very warm welcome. I have continued to enjoy the company of the members of the congregation especially the wonderful warm and caring ladies of the Evening Fellowship and the comraderie of the Church Council members.
The extra activities such as Nativity in the City, knitting "wise guys", Trivia Night, and pancake days have been heaps of fun for everyone. I 'm also delighted that our family also attend Wesley and the children Kaos and youth groups and they all continue to enjoy the many friendships they have made. I look forward to many more happy years at Wesley.
Miles - Music at Wesley Church
Some wonderful musical traditions came together when the Uniting Church was formed. Just think of the Presbyterian metrical psalms. And they say Methodism was built on singing!
But not everybody is interested in the old traditions. Here at Wesley there is a choice of musical styles. If you prefer modern songs with piano, guitars and drums, come along at 9.00am on Sundays. If your tastes run more to traditional hymns accompanied by our magnificent pipe organ, the second service at 10.45am is for you. Either way, we love our music!
Music is such an important part of worship. We read the Bible to hear the Word of God. It is interpreted for us in challenging sermons. When we pray, we direct our thoughts towards God. But it is by music that our hearts are lifted up and our souls are set on fire.
There are some Christians – even at Wesley there may be a few – who have strong opinions on what kind of music should be performed in Church. At times I have wondered if we are going through a new Reformation with music as the bone of contention!
Surely the right way is to explore music in a different spirit. Let us put the music we love before our fellow worshippers and say to them, “This is what I love; show me what you love.” Then we can come together and give our best to whatever music we can find that best expresses our love of God.