Welcome to St Lukes
On March 16th 2017, the Parish Council, with the Bishop’s approval de-consecrated St Luke’s Church.
You will ask why, after 105 years as a centre of worship, we have decided to do this?
The Parish Council, after several years of prayerful and heartfelt deliberation, saw:
* dwindling congregations in both centres of worship;
* a general movement of people in and out of Telarah / Rutherford and moving more towards Aberglasslyn;
* people’s mobility – the local community church is not the focus it used to be; and
* how as a Parish we can best fulfil being a Christ centred church.
Jesus lived a life of service to the poor, destitute, and outcast, so as a church of his people we have taken upon ourselves to “Feed the Hungry – in Body, Mind, and Soul”
For a number of years, we have run a Parish Pantry that has been centred on families in need in our local primary schools of Telarah, St Paul’s, and Rutherford. This was met through donations from the congregation.
In 2013, following the appointment of Mother Moira Evers to the Parish, we embarked on “St Fiacre’s Feast” - a community garden in two parts:
* a street garden where people can come and fossick;
* a structured garden to provide fresh food to the needy; and
* some olive trees that will take time to mature, but when fruiting will add to what we can provide.
A Government Community Grant, and generous work of the local Rotary Club has established this garden. Our plans in 2017 are to integrate this with a school program at St Paul’s primary next door.
The grant also allowed us to upgrade St Christopher’s kitchen to a “commercial standard” that allows us to prepare and sell foodstuffs, and teach “food preparation on a budget” to those that need it.
In 2015, we further developed our feed the hungry program, by partnering with Samaritans. This gives us a better base to provide food, but also assist in financial, housing and social difficulties. Our thanks also go to Real Life Church who through their programs can assist us with foodstuffs.
Our next "Feed the Hungry" project is to erect a double garage size shed, insulated, lined and with power. This will let us store frozen and refrigerated foods and receive stocks from OzHarvest who collect close to use-by date foodstuffs from supermarkets.
Part of the shed will be for garden stores, and we plan to instal a shower, and a place where homeless people can wash their clothes.
On Saturdays in the mornings we have run a Pop-Up Op-Shop from the Parish Hall.
A new avenue of Christian outreach to the needy opened up. Our quarterly garage sales have a different focus, and we are seeing now a regular clientele. It’s lovely when a single parent can come in and find clothes for themselves and their children.
So, what does all this mean and how does it impact on St Luke’s?
The Parish Council have decided to integrate the 8:00 am and 10:00 am services into the one building St Christopher’s. This gives us greater worship flexibility, an ability to have both the old traditional service, and to experiment with more contemporary ways of feeding people’s minds and souls.
St Luke’s will have a new ministry – it will be repurposed as a full-time op-shop starting with a couple of days a week.
But what an exciting opportunity awaits –
* not having to unpack and pack up our op-shop each week with more stock
* a place for unemployed / volunteers to get work experience
* hopefully, a place to share a cup of ‘real’ coffee
* a contemplative garden.
The repurposing of St Luke’s opens up new ways that allow the Parish to follow Christ’s ministry of feeing the hungry.
St Luke's is near 51 Capp Street Telarah