Second Sunday in Advent 2nd December 2012
Grace and Peace to you today. We are now moving through one of the shortest seasons in the church calendar, the season of Advent. Advent is a Latin word which means “coming”. It blends the anticipation of God’s reign coming in fullness with the anticipation of the coming Messiah.
Advent is an intriguing season because it suggests the complete antithesis of what we actually “DO” in our daily lives at this time of the year in our Australian culture:- Advent is meant to be a time of “waiting and wondering’!! You’ve got to be joking!! Actually, no I’m not joking. In the midst of a world where we expect things instantly, and where technology has made it so that waiting can feel obsolete, in comes this time where the church says to us “Stop what you are doing. Lay down your burdens and those things weighing upon you, and spend some time thinking about the coming of the Christ.” And so each year that is precisely what we try to do. So here we are in the Second Sunday in Advent.
Last week we focused on the theme of “Choosing Hope”. This week we are highlighting the theme of Peace, actually being Prophets of Peace. Christianity should be a countercultural movement that highlights the shortcomings of any practice that rejects the reign and presence of God. Other ‘market forces’ have hijacked Christmas and the church seems to be an obsolete voice in the ‘midst of the Christmas rush’ – even that statement is a paradox.
This week as we focus on Peace, we are reflecting on the idea that peace helps us to remember that the choices we make in terms of relating to this earth and to one another not only fashion the present, but they set the tone for the future. An example of these choices that impact the present and the future is the triumphant news made by the Queensland Premier this week as he has returned from India with the joyful news of massive increases in Uranium mining in Queensland in the years and decades ahead. This will significantly impact our earth and our human relationships now and in the future.
As Prophets of Peace, we (the church) have a significant role to play in the world. The moderator of the Uniting Church in Queensland has already issued a statement of concern regarding this issue. Here’s a quote from our latest UC Information bulletin issued on 29th November 2012.
Uranium Mining in Queensland
Rev Kaye Ronalds, Moderator, has written to the Premier, Campbell Newman, speaking out about the proposed reintroduction of uranium mining in Queensland. The Uniting Church is very clear about our position on this issue – complete opposition to the mining and sale of uranium. The letter outlined our concern that the decision to mine and export Queensland uranium might be based more on short-term economic interest, rather than consideration of the possible long-term consequences for our world.
On behalf of the Uniting Church in Queensland, Kaye called for a review of the decision to mine and sell uranium. She also encouraged the government to focus on developing clean renewable energy sources for our future.
Sue Hutchinson, Research Officer, Uniting Communications
I am pleased to see that The Uniting Church is taking a stand in this regard and I’d encourage any member of the congregation to contact your local State member with your own voice in this matter and any other matter that encourages you to be Prophets of Peace.
Calling all Prophets to practice Peace daily ……this week…..Rev Brad Foote