Held at the beautiful, historic St Peter’s Church, East Maitland on June 7, we were made most welcome by the Rector, the Ven. Canon David Battrick. On a day that was fine, though very windy, about 120 people attended from 37 parishes.

Bishop Peter Stuart celebrated and preached on the anxiety of searching and the joy of finding, in a joyful Eucharist.

Following this, Guest Speaker, the Rev’d Fiona Bergstrom, a retired priest from Woy Woy Parish, shared her reflections on the new AW theme for the year, Joy: “The joy of the Lord is your strength”. Her explanation of Joy and its use in scripture was interspersed with stories of her own life and faith journey, which eventually led to her ordination in America in 1995.

Fiona said, “I often have described our move to Australia as a giant kangaroo leap. And in some ways I found it a difficult move, so far away from England, Sweden and North America, places so familiar to us. My time as chaplain has helped me to feel connected to the community in a deeper way, and has certainly brought me great joy over these years.

Altogether it was a great day of worship, learning, music and fellowship as we were able to catch up with members of the “church family” from many parts of the Diocese.


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