Central

UNITED CHURCH

April 25, 2019

We were shocked and saddened by the terrible attacks that took place in Sri Lanka on Sunday. We have written a letter of support to our friends at Bethel Miracle Tamil Church (they meet at Central) and will continue to pray for peace and an end to senseless terror. Our Moderator, the Right Rev. Richard Bott has written a statement addressed to Sri Lankans in Canada. You can read it here.

Your Church Council Executive will meet on Wednesday, May 1 at 7 pm.

Just announced: The Central King Seniors Residence AGM will take place on Wednesday, May 22 at 7 pm. Guests are welcome to attend.

Final week: Our Easter Thank Offering will be dedicated to United Church Emergency Response for Cyclone Idai. Please see our Minute for Mission section (below) for more information.

This just in: Edna tells me that the food bank at WAES needs canned soup and vegetables along with Mac & cheese and rice. Powdered baby formula would also be appreciated. Drop these items off on Sunday, and they will be delivered to the food bank.

Worship at Central

We call it traditional worship with a twist. The service unfolds with the usual scripture-sermon-prayer format, but the added dimension of congregational participation and lots of interaction. We honour the children with their own place in the service, and prepare them for Church School. We have both Junior and Senior Choirs, an occasional Jazz ensemble and regular solo performances.

We follow the Revised Common Lectionary, which is available here.

This Sunday's Readings:

Psalm 150: "Let everything that breathes praise the LORD!"

Revelations 1.4-8: "I am the Alpha and the Omega."

Read last week's sermon

Introducing House™ the house band. What's a house band? It's a splendid collection of performers who will open worship on occasion, glorifying God in song. So thanks to Jenny, Heather, Dave, Taye, Bunny and Cor for being founding members.

Central's Makers Market, June 1, 2019

Register today to participate in our first annual Makers Market, to be held on Saturday, June 1 at Central, 1 King Street in Weston. To reserve a table, simply complete this form.

Announcements

This Saturday! (April 27) is the CKSR Spring Sale, 15 King Street, 9 am to 1 pm.

Our new friends (and neighbours) Shakespeare in Action are looking for Front of House volunteers to help out with our upcoming performances at Artscape Weston Common in May. From the invitation: "Volunteers are valued members of the Shakespeare in Action team and we are always happy to include anyone who wishes to contribute to making theatre in Northwest Toronto fun, relevant and accessible! Whether you want to become more involved in the community, get to know the budding arts scene in general, collect co-op hours for your school, or just enjoy interacting with fellow theatre lovers, we would love to engage with you. We promise a fun environment, an enjoyable show, and a volunteer experience like no other." Email Michael for details. Hours are eligible for high-school volunteer credit.

Minute for Mission

Cyclone Idai caused severe flooding and devastation after making landfall on March 14, 2019. The storm has affected an estimated 2.6 million people in Mozambique, Zimbabwe, and Malawi, ruining crops, injuring thousands, and destroying almost everything in its path. The current official death toll is over 760; that number is expected to rise sharply.

The United Church is proud to be part of efforts to respond through Mission & Service partner ACT Alliance and local partners. From Zimbabwe, Mission & Service partner the Zimbabwe Council of Churches writes: “We count ourselves blessed that The United Church of Canada have us in remembrance as we battle to respond to a crisis that keeps getting worse by the day as the extent of destruction to lives, property, and livelihoods becomes clear.”

Visit the UCC Emergency Response page to make a donation

Trying to Understand White Privilege

I feel I was fortunate to go to an all-girls school, founded by a woman famous for her work to ensure females – and poor ones too – had the same educational opportunities as the males. There was a strong tradition of breaking down barriers and proving we could succeed despite our gender. But it was a factor of where I was born – in London, England – that gave me that opportunity. I thought I had somewhat repaid by running Girl Guide and Brownie groups, being both an Affirmative Action and union representative in a predominately male workplace, and speaking out for women’s rights.

So, it took me a while to grasp the concept of “White Privilege.” I resented the idea I should feel guilty for being born a white-skinned female in a society that now has sexual equality, born straight rather than gay, and able to choose Christianity in a country where I am not persecuted, and so on. True, I did not think about it much until recent emphasis made me aware of not taking those privileges for granted.

Recognizing the opportunities gained for me by my forebears, I should be more aware that others are not allowed to feel as blessed. You cannot prove you can hold a job or be a good tenant, if your name, appearance, or even speech pattern mean you are already labelled negatively and therefore, immediately suggest to them that you are less capable than your peers.

When things go smoothly for us, the way we feel they should, it is only too easy to forget not everyone is as privileged. If you landed a job because your skin colour is acceptable, or had your opinion heard and accepted as fact because of your gender, or your parental fitness to adopt is not questioned based on your sexual identity, then you are privileged more than others. In a just society, those privileges should not exist and no one should be penalized for who they are.

I remember the grumblings of males at work when an Affirmative Action program was introduced. It meant that in a job interview, if a woman, francophone, Indigenous person, person living with disabilities, or visible minority and scored within a certain number of points of the top male candidate, and was equally qualified then the job should be offered to the underrepresented person. They had not been aware of their male advantage, or privilege, until it was challenged.

Likewise, we who are privileged, do not need to feel guilty, but be ready to accept, and may be join the work being done to reduce barriers that prevent others from having the same opportunities People can choose to take up or ignore opportunities as they come into their lives, but they should not be denied the chance to choose because of where they were born or who they are. My girls’ school taught us if you are privileged to taught a skill, then you have an obligation to use it for societal good. Now, if I have got it right, we have an obligation to remove barriers to prevent others being taught that same skill.

Barbara Bisgrove

Community Announcements

All events are free unless otherwise noted.

Weston Village BIA invites you to a Community Clean-up Day, Saturday, April 27 from 10 am to noon, BIA office at 4 John Street, Unit 3. Gloves and garbage bags will be provided, and there will be a pizza lunch to follow!

High Park Nature Centre presents Signs of Spring, Saturday, April 27 from 1.30 to 3 pm. Spring has sprung! Come and count the signs of spring on a hike through Toronto’s biggest park. Suggested donation, $2 to $5.

Weston Farmer's Market returns on May 11, at 1871 Weston Road.

The Weston Village Residents’ Association will be hosting their AGM at Artscape on Tuesday, May 14. The meeting starts at 7 pm and doors open at 6.30.

Worth a Look

Read about Barbara Brown Taylor: The Easter story helps an 'outcast' preacher find her way back home.

2018-19 at Central

See what's coming up in the 2018-19 church year.

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Photo by Mark Bisgrove