It was a full day at Christ Church Swan Hill. We gathered in the foyer, for readings, prayers and the blessing of the palms and crosses.
Then we processed in to the music of Murray’s clarinet singing ‘We have a King who rides a Donkey”.
During the service Parish Council were commissioned and Rev’d Robyn Davis introduced herself and her partner Ed to the Congregation.
Robyn and Ed live at Balranald but their ministry extends over a wide area and Robyn will be working a couple of days a week at Swan Hill, and become part of Swan Hill Parish after her ordination to Priesthood on 3rd of May.
Together Robyn and Ed presented the church with an Aboriginal Flag.
To complete the festivities, Rev’d Denis had researched Palm Sunday, and found that there is an Old English custom of celebrating the day with a ‘Figgy Pudding’ cake.
Not only that, he had discovered a recipe for the aforementioned cake, and he had it cooked and ready to be served as our refreshment after the service. The photo is borrowed from the internet where you can read more information. http://kdrunlimited1.blogspot.com.au/2013/03/a-very-blessed-palm-sunday-to-you.html and even find a recipe – http://www.catholicculture.org/culture/liturgicalyear/recipes/view.cfm?id=43
All 3 clergy of Swan Hill Anglican Parish went to the Diocesan Blessing of Holy Oils and Renewal of Vows, which takes place each year on the Monday of Holy Week. The service is followed by a shared meal. The service took place at St Augustine’s Inglewood, and the parishioners there catered for the meal. For Rev Jan it was a return to her previous parish and a time to catch up on the latest news. Our vows have been renewed and our Holy Oil has been replenished all ready for Easter. Holy oils are used for blessing and anointing, in services of baptism, confirmation and ordination, and in ministry with the sick.
With Mothering Sunday falling on a fifth Sunday there were so many possibilites for the day that it was difficult to decide what to include; so we did it all. The men of the parish provided breakfast for the women. There was cereal, juice, tea, coffee, toast and pancakes, with toppings of berries, jams, caramelised figs, yoghurt and cream. It was a banquet full of life and health and colour.
The men arrived early and our pancakes were handmade on the barbeque.
One of our parishioners Donna Salathiel, director of The Wellbeing Path, was our guest speaker, sharing her journey and encouraging us in our wellness.
After breakfast we continued with our Harvest Festival Service. Pews were decorated with wheat stalks and the altar was surrounded with fruit and vegetables, the large and the small as well as greens and herbs. After the great thanksgiving for the fruits of creation, non perisables were donated to St Luke’s. At morning tea, the rest of the produce were available for purchase at Emily’s Fruit and Vegi Stall. The proceeds also went to St Luke’s.
The traditional Simnel Cake was prepared by Mrs Maggie Williams.
Wonderfully refreshed by these Refreshment Sunday activities we are ready to continue on our Lenten journey towards Easter.
It was generally agreed, that perhaps with the exception of Emily, the greatest fun of the morning was had by Rev Denis’ breakfast chefs.
Rev. Jan Harper
Photos Jon Roberts
I am just back from the Flag Raising Ceremony at SHDH.
The Reverend Robyn Davis blessed the Aborigional flag and the flagpole before it was raised, with a lovely prayer which I will publish later.
We were entertained by dancers …..
and a Didgeridoo player from the Marruk project
The Hospital Board Member who spoke had some difficulty trying to pronounce indigenous names. Official host Debra Chaplin, the Swan Hill District Health Aboriginal hospital liaison helped with the correct pronunciation.
The railing near the flag poles was beautifully decorated with Illyarrie (Red Cap Gum)
And here is a link to The Guardian’s coverage.