Bishop’s Banter 25/01/2018

There is a story told that when a Hindu man had explained to him what Christian’s believe about the presence of Christ in the Eucharist, he was amazed and responded by saying that if he believed that it was so he would walk over hot coals to receive it! Well it looks like Sunday is going to be a bit of a scorcher…not so much underfoot but above ground! Feel free to bring hand held fans with you..

Ben preaches
New pastoral assistant, Peter Cotterill
Sunday week @ 6








How good it was to have Ben Petschel preaching at the 10 a.m. mass last Sunday. He spoke with clarity and conviction, and his    testimony about his own life did what testimony is exactly meant to do: point the hearers to Christ. We are lucky to have Ben around the place! His sermon was about the call to be a ‘fisher of people’ echoing a good number of the mass readings lately that have been about the call to, and responsibilities of discipleship. It is so much more fruitful to discover what it means to be a disciple as opposed to simply a ‘church goer’ though it’s important to say for most of us the journey from one to the other can be a long one, maybe even a life long one. It’s certainly the case that it took some time for me. As I look back on my early years as a regular churchgoer by my own choice (initially we were taken and then sent to Sunday school!) for quite a time I measured my participation more in terms of what I was getting from it than on discovering and nurturing my life as a disciple.

New pastoral assistant…

And here’s more good news!

I am happy to let you know that Peter Cotterill will be arriving as our next pastoral assistant in mid March and will be with us for nine months. 27 year old Peter hails from the north of England, and I met with him when I was in the U.K. before Christmas. Like Mason his predecessor, I think he will make a great contribution to our life together. His degree from Winchester is in Business Management and he is just completing a Masters in Reconciliation and Peace studies, skills I hope won’t need to emply during his time with us! Among his hobbies he’s a keen motor racing enthusiast and he plays the keyboard. Please start to pray for him!

Wake Up and smell the Incense…..and the Coronation Chicken

Don’t forget the special event next Sunday (February 4th) at 6 p.m. Evensong followed by the Annual Philip Harris Memorial Lecture, this year offered by yours truly on ‘Wake up and smell the…incense’ Is Secularism enough to sustain a ‘marvellous’ Melbourne?

 Followed by Coronation and wine in the fountain garden.

 And then there’s the opportunity to put on your L plates during Lent!


As I wrote last week, the next series of MEET UP@5 starting on Sunday 18th February will be about what it means to be an Apprentice to the Lord, a disciple of Christ. I think it will be a fruitful time. Why not come along? It all takes place in the vicarage and is as relaxed as it is focussed and ends with the opportunity to eat together.

Although she won’t be so well known to those who attend the 10 a.m. service, this week marks a milestone in the life of one of our long time parishioners, Monica Jacomb  as she celebrates entering her ninth decade!  Monica is a regular 8 o’clocker and at the Healing Mass on Fridays at 12.30. We wish her a happy birthday!

In the midst of writing this banter I took a break to open the post and found much delayed but most beautiful letters from Charlotte and Daniel Lion, now living back in Germany. In a few too short months beginning  in March 2017 at the Sydney Road Street party when their first visit to Christ Church found them serving sausages to passers by and then playing guitar and singing in that evening’s ‘Meet Up’, they became part of our life together. How I fell in Christian love with them both! Many of us did. They send their love to the parish, and that includes those who have arrived since their departure! Their letter speaks so warmly of their experience of the mass and community here and how much they miss it, though of course they are continuing faithfully in worship. Let’s be thankful to God for our life together at Christ Church!  They’d love to hear from folk: or or