Counting God’s Blessings

The Vietnamese faith community at Mountview Uniting Church in Victoria has been counting God’s blessings over the last five years.

Pastor Minh Bui invited me to preach because he believes the community needs some further encouragement to take on future challenges.I encouraged the community to start looking beyond their own ministry and mission.

It is God’s gift that the English and Vietnamese speaking groups can share their ministry together at Mountview Uniting Church.

It is important for each worshipping group to serve faithfully to its members, for God’s mission in the world belongs to everyone. The Good News of Jesus Christ is for all people.

So one challenge this multicultural community of faith faces is how they can work together in sharing God’s ministry and mission.

As the congregation sang the hymn “Loi Ta On” (Give Thanks) during the Sunday service, I shed a tear. I remembered what local minister Rev. Brendan Byrne said at the commissioning service for Minh Bui as  pastor last year:

“The Vietnamese faith community has gone through difficult times in the last year. After losing their leader not long after their inauguration, the community has coped with uncertainty and an unpredictable future. Indeed, there have been times when many have wondered if the community would survive.

“Through the faithfulness of its members and through the support and assistance of the wider Church, they have now come to a stage where they can look once more to the future with hope and expectation.”

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Mountview Uniting Church is a very generous congregation. They have welcomed the Vietnamese group over the past five years with love and care.

In fact, they follow the Assembly Guidelines for Property Sharing.

I am confident that under the leadership of Brendan and Minh Bui, there will be more space for grace for them to truly become a cross cultural congregation.

Relying on God’s wonderful guidance and recognising God’s presence in midst of our lives are blessings to be counted.

This Vietnamese faith community is just one of God’s blessings in our Church.

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