News from Long Gully
I am happy to announce, beginning next year, a rural internship, supported by Manna Gum, that provides a great opportunity for a couple of people (or couples) to explore living on the land as a Christian vocation. The internship – A Year of Plenty – is being offered by two families who live just outside of Bendigo: Ali and Di Turnbull and Bron and Brian Hosking. Each family is connected with the Seeds Community/ St Matthew's Church and the Cornerstone Community/Old Church on the Hill respectively and between them have significant experience at low-impact living and high-volume organic food growing. If this is something you have wondered about and you are looking for a low-risk way to dip your toe in the water, this might be of interest to you. See here for more details.
Speaking of ventures in living on the land, in October Matt and Ashley Anslow ran a home economy weekend on their beautiful property behind the Blue Mountains. The weekend was attended by around 20 people and it sounds like a great time was had by all. If you have been thinking about running an event connecting faith with responsible and sustainable living, and would like some ideas or help, please contact us.
My back has improved from the first half of the year and I have been able to work more-or-less effectively, but it continues to provide challenges. The flexibility of my work for Manna Gum,the support of my local community and access to a First World health system have been enormous blessings. For so many families around the world an episode like this can be the beginning of a catastrophic poverty spiral.
Some reflections from participants in the Arts of Home Economy Weekend, Bendigo (July):
'The workshops were run by ordinary people who were able to demonstrate that learning good and useful skills isn't that hard'
'I was initially uneasy about being there, and not wanting to be confronted about my lack of sustainability or environmentally-friendly habits. However, there was something about these people that spilled out grace over me. If I was going to change my ways, I didn’t have to change everything, at least not all at once.'
'While it isn’t ideal, or perfect in any way, it gave me hope for my future lifestyle. I hope to one day live in a community that is supportive and family-like, where I can serve and be served by my neighbours.'
'Manna Gum told a different story that encourages me to keep going in this dark world and often frustrating faith tradition.'
'The things that struck me most about the community we were surrounded by at St Matthew's were that they lived their faith out and that their faith was visible in a practical sense. Lifestyle and faith met.'
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