St Dunstan’s Church, Camberwell on a Winters Day.
Pic by Cath Goss. July 2020
Weekly Electronic Notices
Week beginning 26 July 2020-No 74
COVID 19 UPDATES
- Hope you are enjoying our live streamed services while we are unable to meet together. Technology has been a blessing to us as we ‘do church’ in a very different way. Our love and appreciation go out to Roberta. Judy, Ama and all those who step in to do weekly readings and intercessions. Also thanks to those who help with the stringent cleaning measures during this time. We are indeed grateful. Please continue to pray daily for our city, our State and our Country.
20 July 2020
URGENT MEDIA RELEASE
CHURCHES TASKFORCE SEEKS ASSURANCES TO REDUCE DETENTION HEALTH RISKS
In an urgent letter to the Acting Chief Medical Officer Professor Paul Kelly and the Minister for Health, Mr Greg Hunt, the Australian Churches Refugee Taskforce of the National Council of Churches in Australia (NCCA) has sought urgent assurances from the responsible government public health authorities that the people at detention centres in Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney have safe accommodation during the continuing pandemic as social distancing is not possible in the common areas of current facilities and where bathrooms and bedrooms are shared.
The Churches Taskforce appeals for guaranteed access to COVID-19 testing when any symptoms are present in immigration detention centres and an assurance that people moving in and out of these locations in a staff role are both trained and monitored with regard to the highest standards of infection control and prevention.
Mr Rob Floyd, Chair of the Australian Churches’ Taskforce said that “With the recent infections of staff assigned to the Mantra Hotel at Preston in Melbourne’s COVID 19 lockdown area, and Villawood Detention Centre in Sydney, we believe that the public health risks mean that those moving freely in and out of these centres pose the highest public health risk at this time.”
“In seeking these assurances, we must reiterate that our preferred position is that refugees and asylum seekers in crowded immigration detention locations in Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney are safely transferred into community housing as a public health benefit for all. We are some of the groups that have offered to help with housing” Mr Floyd said.
“Our church members, chaplains and ministers, including religious sisters and brothers, who have previously undertaken visits and maintain life-giving and at times life-saving relationships with immigration detainees in Australia, have conveyed to us their utmost concern about the public health risks associated with the living conditions of refugees and asylum seekers in hotels and detention centres during the COVID 19 pandemic – specifically at Preston VIC, Kangaroo Point QLD and Villawood NSW” said Ms Liz Stone, General Secretary of the NCCA, in the urgent letter.
Last week workers assigned to working with people detained at the Mantra Hotel at Preston and at Villawood Detention Centre in Sydney have tested positive for COVID-19. This was a scenario feared by one thousand medical professionals in April, who asked the Government to release refugees and people seeking asylum from detention into safe housing, as part of a responsible public health approach to this pandemic.
MEDIA CONTACTS – Rob Floyd 0407 944 417 Liz Stone 0437 402 884
The Australian Churches Refugee Taskforce (The Taskforce) came together in early 2013 and is an initiative of the National Council of Churches in Australia (NCCA), a Council that represents 18 full members and 5 observer Australian Christian churches.
The Taskforce is committed to engage and advocate with asylum seekers and refugees in the national debate about Australia’s treatment and attitudes toward them and the constantly changing government policies affecting them. This commitment is based on the strong Christian values of compassion, generosity and hospitality in response to people experiencing injustice. Love for our neighbour and care for the stranger are hallmarks of our Christian faith lived in the world.
- Don’t forget our prayer wall in the church porch. You can use it to post prayer requests or pray for those already on there. Its a great way to be connected to each other while we are physically apart.
- There are many people in need and groceries are still being dropped off to Camcare. The next time you are at the supermarket, why not pick up a few extra cans of soup or some such like for those who need it. Please drop off your donations in the donation basket in the church porch. Alternatively, you can make a monetary donation if you wish. Please visit https://camcare.org.au.
- The Brotherhood of St Laurence https://www.bsl.org.au are also seeking donations. Many people are facing hardship, especially during this pandemic time and your donations would be appreciated and valued. You may also wish to donate to Anglicare who are also gratefully accepting donations.
- If you need some cloth masks, please let Vicar Roberta know. Some very clever parishioners are making masks to assist those who need them.
- If you would still like some sacred space kits to enhance your Sunday morning experience (or any day for that matter!), please let Roberta know.
- Sometimes lifting our eyes from our own situation to focus on somebody else helps us in our own difficult times. Is there someone in your sphere of life who needs checking-in on? Perhaps a word of encouragement? Please keep checking in with your buddies and anyone else you think needs a phone call.
- If you would like to join in Morning Prayer via Zoom each Tuesday and Thursday with a small group, please contact Trevor at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Please join us for Zoom morning tea after Sunday service at 10.45am. If you don’t already receive the weekly link, please email Tania on email@example.com. Here is a screen capture from today’s gathering. We shared a cuppa, ‘Iso’ projects, masks, pets and more! We would love to see you next time.
- Zoom Book Club has commenced. The book we will be discussing is Falling Upward: A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life by Richard Rohr (2011). It’s not too late to join if you are considering it. If you have not purchased the book yet and would like to join, please contact Roberta on firstname.lastname@example.org and she might be able to send you the first chapter electronically.
You can purchase the book on Kindle for $18.73 or from Booktopia in paperback for $17.25.
- Please continue to pray for each other from our updated Parish Prayer List:
- Don’t forget to follow our Facebook page St Dunstans Anglican Church Group .https://www.facebook.com/groups/482613181793174/and bookmark our websitewww.stdunstans.org.au. We will be live streaming Sunday services at 9.30am on Facebook and soon after, the Vicar’s message will also be uploaded onto our website.
ANGLICAN COMMUNITY NEWS
July 2020 TMA digital edition
The July edition of The Melbourne Anglican (TMA) is available at the links below. Scroll down for the April, May and June editions.
Flipbook (to read online)