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Brisbane South & Gold Coast Rally Day

Christine McDermott welcomed 44 enthusiastic attendees to Rally Day held at Bethania Lutheran Church on Tuesday 20th April, with the pivotal theme Days of Yore: Our unchanging God in a changing world, eternally trustworthy throughout generations nestled in well-known Hebrews 13:8 Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.

 With Covid safe rules, and prepared hot cross buns and hot drink in hand, everyone was encouraged to reconnect with ‘family’ not seen in the past year.

Naomi Marks, our BSGCZ President, opened the rally followed by Pastor Peter Laihia blessing our gathering with an opening devotion sharing his missionary work in PNG demonstrating the prayers we offer before going into the great ‘unknown’. Isaiah 55:12 tells us to ‘Go out with Joy’ in whatever circumstances we find ourselves, whilst Isaiah 35 tells us ‘Be strong – do not fear’ – God is the same Yesterday, Today and Forever.  We were thankful to have Bishop Paul Smith giving his report and an update on the ministry of our church, and his own transition in not accepting renomination as Bishop.

Sharon Tegan (with her generous passionate heart for Qld country women and their families) stepped us into the lives of country Queenslanders with wonderful PowerPoint photographs that featured visits to present gifts (pamper bags, children’s gifts, food vouchers, and Christmas gifts) to those suffering through the last 8 years of drought. The visiting members were humbled by the gratitude and the overwhelming welcome they received, seeing God’s grace at work in their amazing resilience and fortitude over many long and seemingly hopeless years.

Trish Keddie introduced our guest speaker, Margaret Kowald, who won the John Douglas Kerr medal of distinction awarded by The Royal Historical Society of Qld & the Professional Historians Assoc.(Qld) Inc. Margaret has authored and co-authored numerous publications including the two volumes on “Lost Brisbane ”; a testament to her enthusiastic and rigorous approach to preserving Queensland’s organisational, environmental and pastoral history. Margaret spoke with enthusiasm to a comprehensive photographic PowerPoint of Brisbane and its suburbs, Logan, Albert and the Gold Coast – memories flooded to mind as we viewed the old Story Bridge, Festival Hall, Roma Street Markets, Alan & Stark, Trittons, McDonnell & East, the Merlo Coffee, Cloudland, Lennons and Bellevue hotels, St Peter’s College, Tristram’s, Guy Fawks nights, air raid shelters, free milk for school children, the Logan ferry, Cobb & Co to the Gold Coast, Yatala Pie shop, Bullens Lion Park, Surfers Paradise Ski Gardens, Gilltrap’s Auto Museum and Jack Evans Porpoise Pool – to name only a few! Everyone greatly appreciated Margaret’s presentation which was complemented by the interesting display of yesteryear paraphernalia organised by Bethania women.

Our offering of $629 was directed to Lutheran Tract Mission (LTM), whilst the $307 of donations generated by the trash and treasure tables was divided between Lutheran Media and LTM. Collette Mangan thanked our hosts, Naomi and executives for their organisational skills and to Betty Schulz for providing piano accompaniment for our singing. Pastor Peter in closing, reminded us of the Living Waters call by Jesus to go into His presence to be refreshed Yesterday, Today and Forever.

This indeed was a wonderful morning of celebrating who

our God is – eternally trustworthy through generations.

 Leanne Kopp – Reporter

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