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BIRTHDAY GREETINGS 26 June – 3 July 2016

28th – Doreen Stuart-Saunders

30th – Theofred Nkomo

1st – Margaret Tate

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Vows and Vision

On Saturday 3 October our new Rector was instituted by Bishop Rubin of Natal.  These are the promises the people of St. Thomas made:

Commitment to Evangelism

We, the people of this parish, by our baptism, are called to be Christ’s witnesses.  We will do all in our power to bring young and old to the knowledge and love of Christ.

Commitment to Prayer

We, the people of this parish, will be faithful in prayer. We will come together frequently, and especially on Sundays, to worship Almighty God.

Commitment to the Word of God

We, the people of this parish, will read and meditate on the Holy Scriptures so that we may grow in the knowledge of God, and in obedience to his word.

We, the people of this parish, will hear what is preached, apply it to our lives, and by word and deed, commend the Gospel to others.

Commitment to the Holy Eucharist

 We, the people of this parish, will come with joy and thanksgiving to take part in the Holy Eucharist, preparing ourselves in faith and penitence.

Commitment to Christ and One Another

We are the Body of Christ in this parish.  Through us God continues his work today.  We will make full use of the varied gifts which the Holy Spirit richly bestows on each of us for the common good.  We will support one another in prayer and fellowship.

We will witness to Christ in our work, in our leisure, and in our homes.  We will strive for justice in society.  We will be instruments of Christ’s peace and love.  We will do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, without whom we can do nothing.  We therefore  dedicate ourselves afresh to him.

The response from our Rector, Michael Fourie, was his dream for us as a parish.  He said:

As I reflect on the year thus far, I can see God’s hand clearly at work.  I want to give all thanks and praise to God who has brought Elaine and me to this point in our lives where we are fully integrated into the St. Thomas family.  I am thankful to everyone for welcoming us and trusting me to lead you in becoming more Christ-like and in making a difference in our community.

In order to continue doing this, and to do so more intentionally, I share my dream for the Church, and my prayer is that God will guide us at St. Thomas in leading the way in Durban.  My dream is of a church that is:

Fully inclusive in that we continue to welcome all people who visit our church, irrespective of their situation in life, their age, their gender, their culture, creed, race or language.  I dream of a church where all people are comfortable to visit and know that they have a safe refuge in the St. Thomas family who will not judge them in any way.

Growing in numbers, but more importantly, one that is growing spiritually.  I dream of a church in which home groups are active and form the backbone of the church.  That the hunger for scripture and thirst for  God will be what drives us.

Praying constantly, in and for everything that we do as well as for our city, our province and country, and for the world.  I dream that our first response to anything will be “How can we pray?” and that our second response will be “How can I be involved in being an answer to my prayer?”

Vibrant and active in which every person is playing a part and making a difference to the community.  I see this applying not only to our ministry as the church, but also to our fellowship within the church, our caring for one another and for those on the fringes of our community.

I realise that once again I am dreaming big, but in the five months spent here already I have seen this dream becoming reality.  I believe that as we continue working together, as a family, we will make all of this dream a reality and that through each one of us, Christ will be more and more visible in Berea, Durban, KZN, South Africa and the world.  I look forward to making this dream real with you.