... Special Ministries across the Christ Church parish
There are a variety of special ministries across the parish of Christ Church - these focus on worship and on the support and nurture of its parishioners, and the maintenance of the Church and its facilities. These include -
There are other ministries across ther parish which have a community or outreach focus - for further details on these use the menu link to Ministries in the wider community.
Children's and Families Services (CAFS)
In addition to the regular services held at Christ Church (at which children and families are ALWAYS very welcome), Children's and Family Service ('CAFS"), are held in the Parish Hall or Schoolroom alongside the regular morning services. With a special emphasis on inclusion and involvement of children and families, CAFS includes foot-tapping songs, craft work, Bible stories in actions, a short message for children and adults and ... lots more! Everyone is welcome... bring your friends! Contact the Parish Office or our Vicar for details of what is on offer through CAFS.
The Ministry team are happy to talk with parents and their children about spiritual education and involvement in CAFS, and may be contacted via the Parish Office ... see Contact Us on the menu above.
Home Fellowship Groups
These small gatherings of people meet in the parish meetings spaces (for example, in the Schoolroom) or in the home of a fellow parishioner. They enjoy each others' company, share their experiences and grow together in knowledge and faith. New members of the congregation can always join these groups, if they wish. The groups are led by members of our church who are themselves searching for understanding and a deeper faith. The leaders meet with the Vicar to prepare for each home group session, as a leaders Fellowship Group.
Fellowship groups meet at various times throughout the year in school term time, particularly during Lent and other special seasons in the Christian calendar. Each group follows a theme or draws on a particular book or other writing, and there is a discussion guide to help get the discussion going - over a cuppa of course!
See Contact Us for information on who to talk to to link you to a group. New groups and themes are announced in the weekly Sunday Parish Press.
the Church Choir, our Director, and the Courcelle Organ at Christ Church
Music is an integral part of the Christ Church Community, and has its focus in worship. Christ Church has a splendid and historic organ and has been well served by fine organists. There has been a fine tradition of choral singing and the choirs have reflected the prevailing strengths and abilities of our people. The Christ Church Choir sings at the 10am Sunday service every week (except during January) and at all the main celebrations and festivals throughout the year.... and new members are always welcome!
Our church organ has an interesting history. Though Christ Church was established in 1843, the original single manual six stop organ designed by Henry Bevington of London, located at the Western entry, proved too small for the church, which had been enlarged by 1859 by addition of the Eastern (Sanctuary) and transepts. So in 1862 a new organ of 842 pipes, designed by John Courcelle of London, was installed by George Fincham, a former colleague of Courcelle. The organ then included a pedal open diapason of 30 large wooden pipes, nine ranks of 56 pipes and a 44 note dulciana. It was extensively renovated and enhanced by the very high quality work of Hill, Norman and Beard in the early 1960s, and now (from 2018) has 1639 pipes, but six hundred of the present 732 Great Organ pipes are the originals which Courcelle designed. A plaque on the organ commemorates the outstanding musicianship of the late Arthur Firth (d.11th August 2008), who was the Organist at Christ Church from 1958 to 1993. The Christ Church organ is a a fine example of 19th Century organ building, and is an integral part of worship, special celebrations, weddings and other festivities at Christ Church.
In 2018 a recording of various works played on the Organ by the late Gary Cowling, who was Organist and Choir Director from 1993 to 2012, was released and is for sale ($15) through the Parish Office or whenever the church is open. The CD includes the following tracks -
Pictured to the right is our Organist and Music Director, Winton Barry, appointed in 2013. A celebrated organist, Winton worked as an Organist, Choirmaster and Arranger in Adelaide, and as a pianist in a light music trio – all of which he continues in Geelong. As Christ Church Organist, Winton arranges music for the choir and organ, and himself composed the Christ Church Eucharist setting which is regularly used in our church services, and has composed and arranged numerous organ works.
If you have any queries regarding the Choir or music generally at Christ Church you can speak with Winton, or with the Vicar or one of the Ministry team after any Sunday Service.
The Choir sings throughout the year, but takes a break each January, and you would be welcome to join. Choir practices are at 7.30pm each Thursday, and the choir sings at the 10am service each Sunday and at other special occasions as arranged.
the Church Social ClubThe aim of this group is to provide facilities for all adult parishioners - but regardless of age! - to meet together in a friendly social atmosphere, for visits, outings, meals and other activities. The group meets about once a month, generally on the first Saturday each month, and announcements about the programme are made in the Parish Press (the weekly pew bulletin available at Sunday services) and in the quarterly Chronicle magazine.... it's a chance to meet, eat, enjoy eath other's company and relax!
The Brass (in the Sanctuary and on the various wall plaques) is cleaned once a month on a roster system - a necessary and often thankless task!. Additional cleaning days are organized prior to special festivals or events. at Christ Church. Further information can be obtained from the Contact Us page.
the Parish Flower Guild
Church services and celebrations are always enhanced by the beautiful surroundings we enjoy at Christ Church - and the church flowers are an important part of that and the atmosphere of our worship. If you enjoy arranging flowers or simply enjoy helping to arrange them, then the Flower Guild could be an interest for you.
Members of the Guild generally work in pairs or as a small team, on a Friday or Saturday morning, and each team arranges the flowers four or five times a year. The roster is arranged so that people who are busy during school holidays can volunteer for flower arranging during term time.
Donations of flowers from gardens are always appreciated. For weddings and festivals flowers are purchased if necessary to supplement those donated from within the Parish. More information about the Flower Guild can be obtained via the Parish Office or the Contact Us page.
the Church Maintenace teams
Our parish and its buildings and grounds are old and need lots of TLC! Volunteer parishioners work as groups as and when required, as announced in the Parish Press. The normal practice is to work between 9am and 12 noon on the 2nd Saturday each month, and then other days/dates as announced from time to time. Morning tea is always enjoyed by everyone in the maintenance groups! Gardening and a range of handyman [handyperson] type activities, which may include painting, cleaning spouting, minor building repairs etc., are always needing to be done!
Projects are prioritized and the Coordinators of the working groups can be contacted via the Parish Office ... see the Contact Us page.
the Parish Council
The Parish Council (formerly known as Vestry) manages the business affairs of the Church and promotes its well being and life. There are up to 15 members elected or appointed at the Annual General Meeting of parishioners, held in October or November each year. Three of the Council members must be Wardens - they are responsible for all finances, items for worship, plant and property of the parish. The Vicar or his designate is the Chair Person of the Parish Council which meets monthly throughout the year, or as required, to oversight the mission, outreach, finances and work of the Parish, and to bring forward issues which parishioners may wish to raise.
See Contact Us for details of the membership of the Christ Church Parish Council. Information about Council matters is available from the Church Wardens or the Vicar. The current membership of the Parish Council is published in every edition of the quarterly Chronicle.