We have been fortunate in having such a useful property on a hill in East
Geelong, with a large area for garden, parking and space for extensions.
These days a high mobile phone tower reaches into the sky. Over the years
the initiative, imagination and a lot of volunteer work have resulted in
several stages of establishing multi-purpose buildings that are neat, inviting
and welcoming to members and strangers alike.
Firstly in 1955 the army hut was used for a Sunday School and worship. In 1958 the foundation stone of the brick building was the start of a large hall, meeting room for worship and kitchen.
The extensions in 1982 relocated the worship centre within the hall. Then
an imaginative move in the early 1990?s meant the relocation of buildings from
Belmont to replace the army hut with the Bay Room and to build a modern chapel.
With the formation of the Uniting Church in Australia when most Presbyterians,
Congregationalists and Methodists amalgamated, this site, formerly known
as Ormond Rd Methodist became a Uniting Church. Over recent years we have
been in partnership with St Andrews and St Albans, but now call ourselves
East Geelong Uniting Church.
A church is sometimes designated as property but the word ?church? also
means the people. We started as a hilltop army hut, then a brick building
for the nurture of children in the Christian faith, and step by step we
had changes as the people developed a rhythm of worship, planning and service
to the community.
The baby-boomer children in the Sunday School from the 50s are now the seniors
in our church. Over the years we have developed new insights to becoming
more welcoming of people of different backgrounds, to find new ways of reading
the Biblical texts, and to explore different styles of prayer and music.
These days the rhythm of life in the church also includes our website, email
and contact with people from all over the world.
We know that we need to seriously engage with our local community in better
ways. This may be perceived as risk-taking by some people. However we need
to be passionate about this so that God?s love and compassion is acknowledged
and experienced by the people in our neighbourhood. We, the people, are the
church! Thanks be to God.