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Darling Downs Rally Report

RALLY April 20th 2021

What a joy it was to awaken on April 20th to a lovely autumn morning and to know that today we were going  to meet as a Zone for our Annual Rally at Our Saviour’s Toowoomba. It has been a long time since we could have fellowship with our sisters outside of our individual Ladies Fellowships.

Theme Display: Day by Day

44 sisters, Pastors and visitors met under the Theme ‘Day By Day’ based on the Bible Text, Romans 14:5-8. One person thinks that a certain day is more important than other days, while someone else thinks that all days are the same…..None of us lives for oneself only, none of us dies for oneself only. If we live it is for the Lord that we live, and if we die, it is for the Lord that we die.  So whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord…

Sue Donges explained the lovely display. We start our journey with our Baptism, learning more about God’s love and guidance from our parents, Pastors, Sunday school teachers and other people we meet.  As we get older we learn more and as we see new and wondrous things we can keep praying ‘You’ll be looking along with us’. The display showed shoes placed on shelves but some shelves were empty, as sometimes we walk away and forget about God. Maybe this is when the world is rough and tough BUT we can keep praying for courage to keep us going. Two other other parts of the display were the word of God as in the Bible and the Sacraments – Holy Communion and Baptism. All this we experience ‘Day By Day’ as we walk with God.

In her welcome, our Zone President Meryl Rosenberger read a poem by Helen Steiner Rice – Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

The Devotion and Bible Study lead by Specific Ministries Pastor, Ken Von Pein from Dalby was based on the previous Sunday’s Gospel reading, Luke 24: 36b – 48. God is present, we are his children…I am the Lord your God. WE need to keep hearing this Good News. ‘I AM’- ‘Jesus’.  He then told us the history of how he came to be an SMP to the people in isolated towns out west, St George, Roma, Dirranbandi, Charleville, Glenmorgan. He works in with the Anglican and Uniting churches. He can cover up to 600 kms in one trip and also does the odd home visit. God has allowed him to share the love and Good News.

 Guest Speaker Joanna Bender on behalf of Drought Angels told how the organisation was started by two ladies in Chinchilla in 2014 after hearing heartbreaking stories of drought from farmers. It started in a Café and grew and grew.

‘Drought Angels provides a unique service for which it is has become well known within the rural sector.  They are a charity run by big hearts who offer a listening ear, a warm hug and personalised support to farming families who are impacted by natural disasters such as drought, fire & flood. ‘We like to tell our farmers we don’t deliver charity – but rather a thank you.’  “Thank you for all you do to put the food on our tables and clothes on our backs”. Through their direct personal contact with farmers, Drought Angels has earned a respected reputation for providing personalised, practical, heartfelt, and discreet assistance, sensitive to the needs of each family. Tangible assistance is delivered in the form of food hampers and care packs.  Pre-Paid Visas and IGA & BP Gift Cards that bear no reference to their charitable source, empower farmers to provide for their families with dignity.  This form of direct assistance allows families to purchase supplies from their local businesses, ensuring not only the family farm remains operational, but the economy of these vital rural communities is also kept viable for future generations. We assist those who would not normally reach out, but would prefer to battle it alone, which all too often can lead to mental health issues. One-on-one support aides in breaking down the barriers of this proud demographic, many of whom have never received a hand up in the past. They are often the first generation of many contemplating walking off the land. These are the people of most concern and often forgotten – Drought Angels will always be there to deliver hope and respect, easing the strain caused by drought and natural disasters. They assist 4,000+ families.

The usual formalities also took place during the day. New LWQ President Shirley Horrigan gave a report and told of plans for LWA Convention in Horsham Victoria in September. Praise Time was enjoyed with some lovely hymns/songs being sung.

After prayerful consideration by our sisters, Val Kath agreed to stand for Zone President for one year as no names had been put forward and Jenny Stollznow 1st Vice President. We thank these ladies from the bottom of our hearts for taking on these roles. The Extra Member positions were also filled by ladies volunteering from the floor. So thankful.

1st Assistant Bishop Mark Vainika read a Report on behalf of Bishop Paul Smith. He then installed the new Darling Downs Zone Executive.

Executive: Hazel Weis (Sec), Avalon Hall (Treas), Val Kath (Pres), Beth Toomey (Extra Member), Jenny Stollznow (1st Vice Pres), Cheryl VonHoff ( Extra Member), Joy Wurst ( Extra Member), Gloria Hamilton( Extra Member), Pastor Mark Vainika ( 1st Assistant Bishop)

President – Val  Kath

1st Vice President – Jenny Stollznow

Secretary – Hazel Weis

Treasurer – Avalon Hall

Extra Members – Joy Wurst, Cheryl VonHoff, Beth Toomey, Gloria Hamilton

Spiritual Advisor – Pastor Mark Demmer

Pastor Mark led an inspirational Closing Devotion. On Epiphany day in January, he was struck by lightning. He remembers seeing a whitest of white lights, then felt pain down his arm. For three days after he experienced a great peace. It is for the Lord that we live or die. You are safe in the arms of the Lord. Nothing to fear. We are not as much in control as we think we are….. God is…. as in Pastor Mark’s experience, a lightning strike. He closed with prayer.

We sang ‘When the roll is called up yonder’ and everyone’s favourite, ‘May the feet of God walk with you’ to close the day.

Thank you to the Cornerstone Parish (Our Saviour’s / St Peter’s Warwick) for hosting the day.


With Christian Greetings

Lois Schultz


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