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South Sydney Uniting Church is ecumenical (e.g. supporting the National and World Council of Churches) and inclusive,
affirming the gifts of people of all ages, cultural backgrounds, sexual orientations and identities. We seek peace with justice,
and the integrity of creation. We celebrate a service of Word and Sacrament (Eucharist) each Sunday at 10am.

"We acknowledge the traditional owners of this land: the Gadigal people of the Eora nation."

56a Raglan Street
Waterloo NSW 2017

Phone/Fax: 02 9319 1373

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Rev. Andrew Collis
Mobile: 0438 719 470

Homily
Ordinary Sunday 31, Year C
South Sydney Uniting Church
November 3, 2019

Wisdom 11:22-12:2; Luke 19:1-10


‘Zacchaeus was a wee little man’

“You love everything that exists
And you don’t hate anything you have created …”
“You save all things because they are yours, O God …”

Words from the book of Wisdom, a book, as Protestants, we don’t often open and read – a book we call apocryphal, or hidden away, texts of uncertain authenticity in the eyes of 16th-century Reformers.

And yet, texts making something of a comeback in ecumenical, postmodern and feminist circles – Wisdom reclaimed as the feminine figure of divine life animating all that is good in the world and in human histories and cultures. God be with you …

We might say, both affirming and overturning the apocryphal status of such texts, that Wisdom is indeed hidden away – we might say, as did the early Christians, Paul included, that Wisdom is hidden away in the very life of Christ – in the manger, upon the cross, within a small group of believers in a Christ crucified – in a small group of resisters, pacifists, dreamers, evangelists, egalitarian/communitarian poets, prophets and martyrs in a distant corner of the Empire.

My interest in Wisdom has led me, via a search of the worldwide web, to another corner, to a little-known tradition in Jewish folk-lore, dating to the Babylonian Talmud (the first half of the third century BCE).

The traditional story is this: The entire world rests on the merits of 36 anonymous righteous persons living in each generation. These hidden saints, called in Yiddish, lamed vov-niks, go unnoticed by other people due to their self-effacing, humble nature. In times of peril, however, the lamed vov-niks make a dramatic appearance, using reserves of faith and strength. The number 36, renowned in the Midrash, kabbalah and folkloric legends, is symbolic. It is twice the number 18, or chai, meaning “life”.

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The church, hall and garden are accessible by way of paths and ramps. The toilets, sinks and shower, located in the hall, are wheelchair accessible. Please ask if further assistance is required.

The Orchard Gallery (artist run space) invites applications for exhibitions

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UCA South Sydney
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This month – November

Wordplay Poetry Group: Saturday, November 2, 12pm meet at the Church. Bring along a favourite piece of writing and/or something you’ve written. All welcome.

Children's Activities: Sunday, November 3 & 17, 10am. During church services, activities for children.

Gospel Conversation: Sunday, November 3, 12-1pm at the Church.

Art Class: Saturday, November 9 & 23, 12-4pm in the Church Hall. Gold coin donation.

Contemplation/Meditation: Sunday, November 10, 12-1pm in the Church.

Bible Study: Thursday, November 14, 7-9pm at the manse. A light supper will be served, all welcome!

Music Jam: Friday, November 15, 3-4:30pm in the Church. A time to learn, share and workshop songs. Bring your instrument and ideas.

Pastoral Care: Saturday, November 16 for Elders.

Birthday Celebrations: Sunday, November 17, following the church service. After church during morning tea enjoy cake and celebrate with everyone having a birthday this month.

Liturgy Resource / Worship Planning: Sunday, November 17, 12pm at the Church.

Choir Practice: Sunday, November 24, 12-1:30pm at the Church.



Orchard Gallery Exhibition Opening: Saturday November 23,
5-6:30pm. Drawings

Exhibition: Drawings