Newsletter 29 March

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“Learning is a lifelong process…

and the most pressing task is teaching people how to learn”

Peter Drucker

The world has changed a lot in the last week. I remember not long ago, that pastors still laughed at the idea of Internet church. No-one has been laughing during the last week. Most churches have now moved online, and connectivity via the internet has become the new normal. What would happen now, if the internet suddenly crashed? If we were not able to connect with our congregations for the next 6 months, what would we find when we met together again? Would people at Emmanuel continue to grow in their faith?

In the past, we’ve placed a lot of focus on providing content. We have blogs, YouTube, books, podcasts, and downloadable content. Information is great, but let’s not neglect to teach people how to learn. Like the old saying, ‘teach a man to fish and he’ll never hunger’, perhaps we need to get people more involved in the process of learning from the scripture themselves. People might faithfully attend church (online included), and have a “spiritual meal” served to them each week, but left alone with a Bible, can they grow in their faith and teach others? We do not want people who have to be spoon-fed. We want to grow people who can read and share the bible with others and who can pray together. If you are not there yet let us help you. The coming months will be very challenging but they also create a tremendous opportunity.

Rev Brian Hoole


Pastoral Care and Staying Connected.

Thank you for your support over the last week as we seek to find a new way of being church. Now more than ever we need to live out our mission statement of being real people, with a relevant faith for our community. As we move into week two, I would ask you to think about what practices you will put in place to sustain you over the coming months. We are unlikely to meet as a combined church family for quite a while, and we need to prepare ourselves for what lies ahead. I want to take the opportunity to encourage you to grow your faith, and the faith of others. It is very important that people stay connected even when we are not physically meeting. Our discipleship, pastoral care, encouragement and support will be happening primarily through our explore and engage groups, using whatever technology people are comfortable with (telephone, smartphone, computer, tin cans.).

We are asking our group leaders to make contact with you and check how you are travelling. Those not in a group we will be grouping together to help us all stay connected. They will be asking you what support you might need and what this support might look like. So have a think about what support might be helpful to you. This could be physical, emotional and/or spiritual support.

We want to encourage people to pray with each other, to share Scripture, to answer the question ‘What did God say to me this week?’ And just as importantly ‘What am I going to do about it?’ Matthew 18:20 reminds us “For where two or three gathers in my name, there am I with them.” God is in our midst. So, what can you do? If you are in lockdown you will have the time you never had. How will you use this time effectively. You could:

1. Ring someone from your group and pray together over the phone. You may organise to pray with a different member of your group each day.

2. Read the bible every day. Again, as you ring someone share your insights. There is a great tool called the Discovery Bible Method which Dom posted a video about on our facebook page.. The Discovery Bible Method encourages us how to read the bible with our friends and family. You can even do a bible study over the phone.

3. Read one of those books you have that you have never gotten around to, or listen to a book on audible or borrowed from the library. You can do this electronically as well.

4. There is a series called ‘The Chosen’ which portrays the life of Jesus to watch on your smartphone or tablet.

For those who are on Facebook or the Church Website, we will try and keep people up to date with regular happenings. The church newsletter will be coming out in an electronic format, and we will be focussing on producing what we have committed to do and trying to do it well.

Just a reminder of some of the message from last week.

· The office will be open Monday and Thursdays only, or by appointment, if people need to come in. Telephone contact is recommended and is available for normal church office hours 8.30-2.30 weekdays.

· Community Helping Hand and Tiny Town will continue to operate with additional cleanliness measures in place. There are extra demands on CHH at the moment so your continued financial support of that is appreciated.

· We remind you at this time that worship isn’t just about meeting in the church building on a Sunday and encourage you to continue to worship, albeit differently. We have provided some suggestions below. You may like to meet as a household, or link with 2-3 friends or other families using some of the resources provided, share in worship yourselves. You may not feel you can meet in person but please think about how you can connect and share with others. Be creative. In the current climate, you may prefer to meet electronically or over the phone. Please share on Facebook what you are doing, with photos or videos so that we can encourage each other. We will be setting up a new private Facebook page for this purpose.

1. We will continue to record the weekly sermon and post it on our Church website and app. We will also provide a list of suggested songs that you can find online or play at home yourself (if you are musically inclined). You can find sermons and the weekly discussion questions at or on the church app.

2. We will continue to provide a weekly “Dig in at Home” resource with additional discussion activities, videos, and prayers for all households with and without children to use. These can be found at or on the church app. You can use these and the online sermon to create an all-age worship experience at home.

3. If you want a ‘live’ worship experience, here are some recommended live streams of other Uniting Church services. Note for those who prefer a traditional service the Albert St link below is traditional.

Newlife Church 10am, 4pm, 6pm Sundays

Real Life Christian Church 7pm Fri. 9:30am Sun

Toowong Uniting Church 9.30am Sun

Albert St Uniting Church

· In addition to the above, the ministry team will be posting daily on Facebook to encourage, equip, and engage with you during this time. Follow us at

· We realise that finances will be a struggle for many of us. However, I do want to encourage you to continue giving as you are able. This is likely to continue for quite a while. Without a weekly face-to-face service, we need people to give electronically. Please contact Barry (33534551) for more information or if you need help. The details are BSB: 334 040 Account Number: 553 839 228 Account Name: UCA – Emmanuel Uniting Church Enoggera. Please ensure that you include a name and a brief reason for the payment. Alternatively, you can use the church app or website and give online.

This is a developing space and there will be regular updates, new information and constant tweaking of what we do. However, the key message is that while we need to do things differently for the coming few months, we continue to remember the big picture.

In the current circumstances we still have a vision to be real people with a relevant faith for our community, and we still want to grow disciples who will exalt, explore, embody and engage. It is important that we stay connected and take advantage of this time as an opportunity to grow and develop the practices and habits that create better disciples. There will be opportunities for people to deepen their relationships with others and with God, within the constraints that our current times place upon us. The coming few months will be a challenging time but there is the potential that we can grow a stronger and more resilient church out of it.

Yours in Christ

Rev Brian Hoole


On behalf of the Church Council and the Ministry Team.

Follow up questions

29 March 2020 - Heaven Scent

Read: John 12:1-8

Here’s what happens…

Here in the house of Lazarus, who Jesus previously raised from the dead, we are invited to witness a model of discipleship beyond words and understanding. Mary, sister of Martha, anoints Jesus with expensive perfume and wipes his feet with her hair. When Judas rebukes her wasteful actions, Jesus tells him to leave her alone saying “you will always have the poor among you, but you will not always have me”.

Mary’s unusual action offers a very clear picture of her deep and extravagant love for Jesus. Mary seemed to know what was coming. Maybe she had been paying attention to what Jesus had been saying or maybe she just knew that it was time. Whatever was happening, spending time with Jesus had changed her, and it showed in her actions.

Talk About…

- Do you think Mary’s actions were wasteful? Why?

- How do you think Jesus might have felt at this time?

- How would you have felt if you had been in Jesus’ place? In Mary’s place? In Judas’ place?

- What would you happily spend a year’s wages on?

- What could you give up to devote something of equal significance to God?

- What do you think God is saying to you through this? What are you going to do about it?


Take turns saying a line, or paragraph of this prayer as a communal prayer of thanksgiving and intercession.

God, for the powerful aroma of coffee that brings us gently into the world, or kick-starts our day, we thank and praise you.

Yet we are reminded of those who toiled in the fields for us, who harvested the beans for next to nothing.

We pray for those who exploited the vulnerable to give us our awakening.

May you, O God, arouse in us a heart for justice that we might fight for fair trade in our world.

God, we thank you for the smell of freshly baked bread, that reaches out into the streets,

warming us, tempting us to taste and eat more than we know is good for us.

We thank you for the variety of choices we have and for giving to us our daily bread.

Yet we understand there are those who have no bread: people who are hungry, destitute, or refugees.

We think of those in places where harvests have failed and famine prevails, where war and terrorism stops supplies, or raging inflation makes bread a rich man’s food.

May you, O God, arouse in us a heart of compassion, that we might share what we have,

and be willing to feed the hungry as you challenged us to do.

God, we thank you for the sweet smell of perfume and aftershave, as it titillates our senses, arouses our desires, and makes us feel confident and luxurious.

Yet, Lord, we know of its extravagant cost, and what other things the money could have been used for:

an increase in our offerings, a charitable donation,

a meal for the homeless people we try to ignore?

Help us Lord, to be as extravagant with our love, as Mary was, who gave her all for you.

These things we ask in Jesus name.


Material adapted from Spill the Beans, Issue 7, Lent 5 © 2013 Spill the Beans Resource Team [](

Discovery Bible Method


Hey Friends!

The Discovery Bible Method is a simple tool to help others read the Bible in order that they may encounter God through His written word and the movement of the Holy Spirit. It begins with a small group of 2 – 4 and can be used for people of all ages.

If you choose to use this method the encouragement is to remember that as a leader your role isn’t to provide answers, but it is about empowering people to read the Bible and discover what God is saying for themselves. God is the one who will move the hearts of the people in our lives, we are there to pray for them and encourage them on their journey.

Find someone who is a “Person of Peace” (a person who likes you, listens to you, and helps you) and ask “I was wondering: would be willing to read the Bible with me?”

The structure of the Discover Bible Method can be broken up into 3: Ask, Bible, and Commit.

Ask – is about asking how they went with last weeks “Commit” (more on that later). The questions are “How did you go with _____” and “Who did you tell?”

Bible – Is about reading the Bible together and encouraging one another to think about where God is leading them. You may consider reading the same passage from a different translation or even a paraphrase as sometimes it encourages questions or conversations.

- Read a short passage from the Bible

- Re-Read the passage

- Have someone re-tell the passage from memory. Allow them to finish before inviting others to “fill in the gaps”

- Invite everyone to read silently

- Prayer Silently for God to speak from the passage

- Ask Open ended questions such as

- “What do you see?”

- “What does this say about God?”

- “What does this say about us?”

- “What is God saying to you?”

Throughout the conversation, it is important to prioritise the thoughts of the participants. Sometimes this will mean that there won’t be any talking because people are thinking. That’s okay.

Commit – Is about asking them to make a commitment to what God is saying to them. Ask the questions:

“What are you going to do?”

“Who are you going to tell?”

More information can be found online if you want to look up “Discovery Bible Method” but that’s the gist of it.

If you have any questions or you’d like someone to help step you through the steps, please don’t hesitate to contact me via email and I’d love to have a chat about it.

Grace and Peace

Dom Chan

Faith at Home

As parents we want the best for our Children. As Christian parents, we want our children to grow up to know, love and accept Christ and see them grow in their own faith and mature as Christians themselves.

Regardless of the circumstances that we currently find ourselves in, research shows there is a direct correlation between practising ‘Faith at Home’ and the faith development in children, teens and adults. We also know that the most important spiritual practices to help people grow in faith are regular prayer, regular bible reading and talking with other Christians.

Right now, we have no choice but to do Faith at Home if we want to see our children, families (and ourselves) grow in their own faith and discipleship. I’m actually quite excited that we have such a great opportunity right now to explore, develop, and practice our own Faith at Home routines and methods, with so few other distractions in place.

But what is Faith at Home? Well, it simply means incorporating faith practices like bible reading, talking and prayer into everyday life at home. Whether it be talking in the car, at the shops, while eating dinner, or watching TV. Faith at Home is simply having organic conversations about life and faith wherever you are. Faith at Home starts with parents, caregivers and adult Christians, modelling a life of faithful discipleship everywhere they go. Parents need to own their own faith development so that they are equipped to teach their kids at home. But it doesn’t mean that you need to know all the answers – faith and discipleship is a journey not a destination.

As a church, we continue to commit to partnering with you to model discipleship and teach faith in your homes, especially at the moment, when things are so different to normal. Every week I will continue to post a weekly ‘Dig in at Home’ resource on our church app and website that will give you some ideas for how to have faith conversations and implement discipleship practices at home. This is in addition to the weekly sermon, follow up questions and worship songs list from Brian and Dom. To access these simply head to our website []( or download our church app.

We will also continue to share extra resources for your own and your family’s faith development at home on the church website and Facebook page. The ‘Bible Discovery Method’ which Dom posted about this week, is another great tool to use for talking about life and faith with adults and children.

I look forward to continuing to work with you, supporting, encouraging and equipping you to make disciples who make disciples. If you have any questions or want to shar something with me, please do not hesitate to contact me, I would love to hear from you anytime.

God Bless,


Jessica Pinkerton

Families Pastor

Hot Cross Bun

Fundraiser 2020

The amazing team at Mr T’s Bakery, Grange are showing their fantastic support for our kindergarten by partnering with us for a Hot Cross Bun Drive.

The Hot Cross Buns are sold in packets of six and are available in two delicious flavours. The buns you will receive are guaranteed freshly baked the same morning as you receive them. Hot cross buns will be available for collection from the Emmanuel Church foyer on Wednesday 8th April after midday.

You can order as many packs of 6 as you like for $5 each.

Orders forms and payment must be received by 5:30pm on Friday 3rd April 2020.

Traditional – A traditional Easter treat- filled with fruit and spices. Choc Chip – A sweet twist on the traditional Easter favourite.

* Unfortunately, we are unable source Gluten Free Hot Cross Buns.

$2 from every pack goes to Tiny Town Childcare and Kindergarten

Thank you for your continued support!


Newsletter 15th March

The 46th Brisbane Boys’ Brigade Company is a ministry of Emmanuel Uniting Church with the Company being registered on 15th March 1980. Over the past 40 years there have been countless people who have served and supported the company, both directly and in supporting roles. Celebrating 40 years of Boys’ Brigade (BB) at Emmanuel is a great opportunity to reflect on this time, and the individuals who have gone before us, and the steadfast foundation their ministry has provided for two generations.

Most have heard the parable of the two housebuilders and the success of the builder who built upon the rock. Brigade provides an environment for Boys and young men to develop habits that will keep them in good stead, become Christian men and lead a purposeful life. Whilst the activities done in each company varies and have changed over time, the principles behind these have not changed since the movement started in Glasgow in 1883.

BB is designed to challenge each Boy to reach their full potential. Having the discipline and self-respect to persevere through and succeed at challenges in life provides them with a sense of achievement. The award scheme challenges each Boy to work towards and earn badges in different categories which culminates in the Queen’s Badge - the highest international award a Boy can earn in BB. 19 young men from 46th Brisbane have earned their Queen’s Badge, presented by the Governor of Queensland at a special ceremony. The many hours of work put into a Queen’s Badge provides a foundation for being a leader both in Brigade and the wider community.

BB provides an environment for weekly discipleship and mentoring within a supportive Christian community enabling Boys to develop their own personal relationship with Jesus. I know for me; BB provided the opportunity to explore and build the foundation for my faith. The impact that BB has had on my life is immeasurable and words cannot express the thanks I have for the leaders I had as a Boy. I started at 46th as a boy in 1996 and in 2009, accepted the role as company Captain. The support and mentoring I received as a boy, and continue to do so as a man, assists me to now shape the lives of the current members of the company. If you knew me as a boy, you’d know the difference it made (if you didn’t know me then, just ask someone who did).

BB is just one thread in the Emmanuel community that builds disciples and encourages Boys and men to be anchored to the ultimate rock. The weekly commitment of leaders, Chaplains, Captains and BB supporters has formed the lives of generations of men - both here at Emmanuel and wider abroad - and we thank them for their tireless service over many years. If you ask any current or past BB leader, I’m sure they will say it was a privilege to have played their part in raising Boys to become true Christian men. If we hope to achieve this goal, we must remain anchored to the rock of our Saviour; who is Sure and Steadfast and cannot move.

Noel Pinkerton


46th Brisbane Boys’ Brigade

Emmanuel Uniting Church


Newsletter 1st March

Welcome to everyone reading this Newsletter, whether in print or electronic version online or in our church app. Whichever way you are connecting, we’re thrilled to count you as part of our community. If there’s ever anyway in which we can serve you, please don’t hesitate to ask!

As we approach our congregational meeting at the end of the month people are asked to consider who they would like to see in leadership within the church. The role of elder is a very important one for us each to consider. Elders share with the minister in the mission, pastoral care and spiritual oversight of the congregation (Reg 3.1.2).

As members of the Church Council they are asked to give priority to building up the Congregation in faith and love, sustaining members in hope and leading the congregation to a fuller participation in Christ’s mission in the world. Church Council set the direction and focus for us as a congregation. All of this is so important to the life of our congregation. As you pray and discern who may be suitable as elders may I ask you to seriously consider two very important elements. As leaders of the congregation, and as elders, it is important that we are discerning both their competence and their character for the role. Quality leaders need to be trusted (we can rely upon their character) and respected (we can rely upon their competency.) Both of these are essential in good leadership, and it is important that you play your role in nominating and electing people that you are wiling to support and follow. Both of these characteristics are important within our leaders. Please seriously take the time to consider who you would like to see in leadership. Please do not leave it for someone else. It is too important not to be involved in the process. As a church we need good leaders. Could it be you? Please pray seriously and faithfully and consider whether you believe God is calling you to nominate someone. The quality of our ongoing leadership depends upon us all spending quality time with God and discerning the way ahead. Please take this time as you seriously consider how God is using you.


Rev Brian Hoole



February 16 Newsletter

Welcome to everyone reading this Newsletter, whether in print or electronic version online or in our church app. Whichever way you are connecting, we’re thrilled to count you as part of our community. If there’s ever anyway in which we can serve you, please don’t hesitate to ask!

What an exciting few weeks we have had. The 9 Feb saw my induction and a great time of celebration as we formalized our commitment to each other. I felt very blessed by the mix of people from this congregation, this Presbytery and my old Presbytery. I particularly valued my friend Uncle Joe Kirk who came to do a welcome to country on behalf of the traditional custodians of the land. Thank you to all of those who played a part in the worship, and in providing nourishment for the supper after. It was a great celebration.

This Sunday is even more exciting as we share with two families in baptism. At 8am Sebastian McCreery-Rye, the grandson of William McCreery-Rye will be baptised and we welcome Sebastian, and Christian and Storm, his parents. Then at 9.30 Olivia Smith, Helen and Darren’s daughter has come to the decision that she wants to be baptised and become a member of Emmanuel Uniting. The journey for Olivia through Girls’ Brigade and Sunday School is bearing fruit for Olivia who wants to acknowledge her own growing faith. Personally I am very excited to be able to share and celebrate both of these with the relevant families and with our church community. As a part of baptism the congregation is asked to make a promise. ‘to maintain a life of worship and teaching, witness and service so that our young people may grow to maturity in Christ. I hope and pray that we take those promises seriously and do not just mouth them off. What do we do to ensure that our young people and their families feel welcomed and encouraged. It is something the Church Council and Ministry Team take seriously but it is for all of us. How do we ensure that we are a welcoming space for all people. That we prioritise meeting and talking with new people who may come and spending time with people who may feel on the outer. This is a good church and we need to keep on top of these things as God provides us with opportunities to minister and grow.


Rev Brian Hoole



February 2nd Newsletter

Welcome to a New Year here at Emmanuel. And welcome to a new face. I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself. My name is Brian Hoole and its my pleasure to be called as your new minister. I am 57, married to Claire with three adult children, Bec, Daniel and Matthew, all of whom are currently living in Brisbane though none live with us. My wife Claire and I are very excited to be joining you and to be sharing with you in the years ahead. This will be one of the opportunities to share a little about myself. I was born and grew up in Victoria, in a place called Sunshine. As the eldest of 3 children we were all sent along to the nearest church which was a Methodist Sunday School. Mum and Dad were not regular church goers. Involvement in the Sunday School and Youth Group, beach missions with Scripture Union kept me connected to this church community as I grew into wanting and committing to a relationship with Jesus. As I continued I trained as a high school teacher and taught for 3 years in Robinvale and then for 4 years with Uniting World in Vanuatu.

I sensed God’s call to ordained ministry and returned to Victoria to candidate and study for the ministry. In that time my continued involvement with Scripture Union saw me re-meet Claire (she literally was the girl around the corner in my primary school years) who I had not seen for 20 years. After a brief period we were married and Rebecca was born. Our first placement was Break O’Day on the east coast of Tasmania for 3 years. In this time Daniel and Matthew were born. We then moved back to Melbourne with 5 years in the Pascoe Vale churches. Then a big leap as we moved to Hervey Bay and commenced ministry there in 2004. Hervey Bay was a very fruitful time for us in ministry and a time when we were very connected into the community. Claire working as a pastor for the church, Blue Care and St Stephens Hospital at different times as well as raising 3 young people, with myself heavily involved in the community. 11 years later I responded to a call to become the Presbytery Minister of Bremer Brisbane.

I served in that role for 5 years while Claire looked after the needs of her mother who needed constant care. 2019 saw major changes for us. I discerned a calling back to congregational ministry, Claire’s mum passed away and Claire was accepted as a candidate for ordained ministry and we accepted a call to Emmanuel UC. We are still in a state of change. We are in the process of selling our house and moving to Emmanuel.

We are both excited about getting to know people and about our involvement with the Emmanuel community. We look forward to catching up with people in the coming weeks ahead.

Rev Brian Hoole

Lead Minister


29th December - 26 January Newsletter

As 2019 draws to a close, and we begin to step into 2020 we would like to take the opportunity to thank the Emmanuel community.

2019 has been quite the journey, and as I reflect on the year I can’t help but be thankful for the way the people of Emmanuel have been “Real People, with Relevant Faith, for Our Community.” We’ve had people involved in being God’s salt and light in Schools through Chaplaincy, RI, and Kids Hope. Creating an environment for families to be welcomed into the community through Boys and Girls Brigades, Playgroup and Sunday School. Emmanuel has been a worshipping community supported by members of the worship team - not only those out the front, but the people behind the scenes doing things that others don’t see. We’ve had people working hard to ensure that the building is in working order, and the newsletters are able to be ready for Sundays. We’ve had fellowship groups, explore groups, and leaders that have run both. We’ve had the Church Council leading the church alongside the Ministry Team. There’s been a lot that we have done in the year. However, I realise that what we do is not the whole story of Emmanuel. It’s not the whole story, because our identity is not only in what we do but in whose we are.

We belong to Christ, and our namesake “Emmanuel” means that God is with us. God is with us as we go out being disciples. God is with us when we are with our families, friends, and workplaces. God is with us and I am thankful that we are a Christ following community who reflects this reality. It is an important distinction to make as we step into 2020, beginning with a time of rest over January.

- A time when we prepare for the year ahead.

- A time when we can intentionally make the time to listen to God.

- A time when we can breathe and be thankful.

In this time of rest, a time when a lot of our normal activities are put on hold, how will you spend time with God? How will you remind yourself that you are loved by God and can find your identity in Him?

As we step into 2020 together, I look forward to seeing how God works in and through Emmanuel, and I pray blessings and safety over all who are resting and travelling during this period.

Grace and Peace

Dom Chan