Category Archives: Discussion

Walkabout this week in Balmain, Sunday at 3pm: forum on Asylum Seeker policy.

Imagine this week is not meeting at 5pm, 182 Campbell St

Instead, we are going on a walkabout to a special community event “Australia’s shameful asylum seeker policy. Where do we go from here?”
Two speakers will update on what is actually happening in offshore processing centres at Nauru and Manus Islands and what action is being taken about asylum seekers with adverse security clearances in indefinite detention.

  1. Greg Lake. former Immigration Director of Regional (offshore) Processing and Director of Processing on Nauru will speak out as an insider who resigned in disgust to speak out against the barbarism within offshore and remote detention centres.
  2. Stephen Blanks, NSW Secretary of the Council for Civil Liberties, will update us on the fate of refugees and asylum seekers with adverse security clearances.

Details: Sunday 18th August, 3.00–5.00pm | Balmain Uniting Church, 344 Darling St, Balmain (look for the big gum tree!)

We consider this to be a very significant event and so have decided to make this the Imagine gathering for this Sunday. RSVP to will@imagine.org.au to help with catering, and also email Will if you would appreciate a lift from the city. This is one of the most significant and complex issues of our time and I encourage all of you to make every effort to be there and hear first hand from people who have a lot to say on this matter.

— Will

Pathways in Christian Spirituality

On Sunday night we discussed the idea of “Pathways” in Christian Spirituality. Most simply, this is the idea that there is no one Christian spirituality for everyone, but everyone’s unique temperaments and abilities are realized in different ways. Beyond a common core of experience, not everyone grows, experiences God, or finds fulfillment in the same manner.

(Click to enlarge)

As a church we should aim to realize all Christian potentials. We’re not suggesting that any person is excluded from the common responsibilities of each area: we all have to about God, whether or not we think we’re ‘Intellectual’; we all have to help people whether or not that’s our main thing. But we do want to invite everyone to explore and develop their life to the fullest by trying what challenges them and doesn’t come naturally.

  • Activist – Mission, Justice, Opportunity, Aid + Development
  • Aesthetic – Tactile Senses, Nature, Beauty + Craftsmanship, Romance
  • Creative – Artistry, Innovation, Communication, Entrepreneurship
  • Experiential – Charismatic, Ascetic, Mystical, Spiritual Disciplines
  • Intellectual – History, Theology, Inquiry, Problem-Solving
  • Reflective – Contemplation, Meditation, Solitude, Wonder
  • Relational – Community, Family, Hospitality, Counseling
  • Serving – Care-giving, Administration, Practical Help
  • Worship – Celebration, Expression, Devotion, Liturgy

This may not be the full spectrum, or the best way of organizing it. But hopefully it illustrates the range of experience that we want to foster in our community.

Nigel.

Pathways, Framework and Character

For those who’ve missed the discussions in the past week or two, we’ve been asking what makes a church. This has covered three different areas: (1) pathways in Christian life and faith; (2) the basic framework of Christian thought; and (3) the essentials of Christian character. For this, we’ve been using the following discussion sheets. How would you fill them in?

Christian PathwaysDownload as PDF

  • List as many kinds of Christian spirituality as you can think of. By that we mean, all the ways Christians experience God, develop as a person, and serve the real needs of others.
  • Can they be arranged in groups, each around a key passion, gifting, or need?

Christian FrameworkDownload as PDF

  • What are the universal and foundational concepts in the Christian life? – the things that everyone needs to know.
  • Can these concepts be arranged in groups, each around a major idea?

Christian CharacterDownload as PDF

  • What qualities should characterise Christians?
  • Can these qualities be arranged in groups, each around a primary virtue?

 

Answers in coloured crayon, please. 🙂

Nigel