Monday, February 13, 2006
Church celebration in Hopetoun
Next weekend there is a church celebration in Hopetoun, a small Mallee country town where we lived some time ago and we were invited to attend. However I had to turn down the invitation because of another commitment. It is the 20 years celebration of the development of the Co-operative Parish of the Uniting Church and the Baptist Union which is an unusual mix of churches. Due to depopulation in the area one minister now looks after three towns - Hopetoun, Rainbow and the rural area of Speed.
I regard Hopetoun as a special place because I was a minister there for six good years. Our family then consisted of Wendy, and the three boys and a dog called Suzie. Wendy involved herself in the community life such as teaching Religious Education, CWA, music and the boys went to the Primary School and enthusiastically played tennis and football and because it was so hot in summer, we all swam nearly every day in the local pool.
I worked as a pastor to the wheat farming community and the town. I joined the Rotary Club where members are supposed to have different job classifications but almost everyone was a wheat farmer, so they had to juggle that a bit.
I still remember in my first service in the Church on Sunday and they told me that most men of the town were playing golf on Sunday. From there I started to learn to play golf and join the club. I have now regretted learning golf because I can't get it out of my system and now I play four times a week in Geelong.
We can't forget Hopetoun and our special friends there.