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Wed 9th May 2012

Y'All Come

Here at BUC we have a gospel band. The Olde Tyme Gospel Band was formed 8 years ago. There are now nine members who practice every Tuesday night. On the last Sunday of every month they provide the music for the early service and on top of that they have a very special ministry. Once a month they play at The Pines Seniors Residence, they take their music out to many of our local and rural churches and every September the whole community gets to hear them playing at the Bracebridge Fall Fair.

Last night they treated us to a whole evening of fabulous gospel music. The sanctuary was full and not one person there could resist tapping their toes and humming along to their marvelous music. It was two hours that was entertaining, inspirational and touching.

In the course of their 8 years together they have raised over $16,000. That is remarkable. They give much of the money raised to the church; they keep some to upgrade their equipment – seems fair!

The money raised is a great benefit but the more important gift is their generosity of spirit and the entertaining way they communicate the gospel. They are true evangelists – giving people assurance and hope through their music. Their outreach into our congregation and into our community is a blessing through and through. Thank you to our Olde Tyme Gospel Band!

Fri 4th May 2012

Marking Days

Once again the week has slipped through my grasp; here it is already Friday and this is my first blog of the week. I never know quite how this happens but it does!

This was a week of marking events. Tuesday marked the 20th year since the riots happened in Los Angeles. They were a result of the trial declaring innocent the police officers who beat Rodney King. It was one of the first times such a beating was filmed thereby giving the world a glimpse into the racist response of some police officers to people of colour. Tuesday was also the day marking the one year anniversary of the death of Osama Bin Laden. Hard to believe that it was a year ago that an elite force of American soldiers crept into his hideout in Pakistan and murdered him.

On a lighter but still sombre note this week also marked the death of James Marker at age 90. Don’t know who James Marker was? He invented Cheezies the quintessential Canadian snack food. He lived in Belleville where he had lived since 1949 as the Vice-President of the W. T. Hawkins Cheezie Company. The production line at the plant shut down for the day when they received the news that the man who invented the snack had died.

It is important to mark days of significance. They are sometimes days of history that calls us up short because of their power and world-changing nature but they can also be days that we celebrate because of the joy they bring. I hope you have had some good days this week.

Here’s our Friday poem. I Arise by Mary Austin.

I arise, facing East,
I am asking toward the light,
I am asking that my day
Shall be beautiful with light.
I am asking that the place
Where my feet are shall be light,
That as far as I can see
I shall follow it aright.
I am asking for the courage
To go forward through the shadow,
I am asking toward the light.

Fri 9th Apr 2010

Welcoming Arms

In the fall of 2006 an outreach ministry called Welcoming Arms was formed. This ministry was under discussion for some years by the pastors of a number of churches in Aurora, searching for a way to work together to optimize the financial and human resources used to help the needy families in Aurora. A pilot was launched between:
  • Our Lady of Grace
  • Aurora United
  • Trinity Anglican
  • St. Andrew's Presbyterian
whose congregations donated monthly funds and provided willing volunteers. The purpose was threefold:
  1. Provide needy families in Aurora with food vouchers, bus tickets, cleaning supplies and toilettries
  2. Provide information on resources available in York Region
  3. Provide a listening ear in an environment that encourages and does not judge
The mission statement was, an still is: "In loving partnership, we seek to be the hands and feet of Christ by promoting human, physical,and spiritual well being in our community."

In 2009 the Aurora Cornerstone joined the other churches with more talented, compasionate and willing volunteers. The work goes on and the need is great. In 2009 we had 1169 visits representing families with a total of 3200 adults and children.

This ministry is a solid example fo churches of different denominations working together in harmony towards Christ's commandment to us to help those in need.
Fri 9th Apr 2010

Martha's Table

St. Andrew's provides a soup and sandwich lunch every Thursday from 11:30am to 1:00pm in it's church hall. All are welcome to join this opportunity for a good meal and fellowship. Listen to Jim play out old favourites on the piano, watch Helen manage 70-100 patrons through her tables. Feel free to donate $3 for lunch or if times are tight, have lunch on us. PS, all the soups are homemade from kitchens around our community. All are welcome, come join us.