Blow up the balloons, crack open the champagne (or a non-alcoholic alternative!) and light the candles: the Uniting Church celebrates its 40th birthday this month. Journey offers five great ways your congregation can celebrate the milestone.
The Queensland Synod will be sending congregations, presbyteries and schools complimentary celebration packs including a large outdoor banner, balloons, cake toppers and posters. Get your invitations out to friends and family with plenty of advanced notice, and don’t forget to take lots of photos of the event (cf. “Editor’s note”, May 2017 edition) and tag @unitingchurch.queensland on Facebook and #UCA40 so others can see them to.
Hopefully you’ll have a stash of photos with the people and buildings that represent the rich history of your faith community. Why not put together a photo album with your favourite snaps for future visitors to learn about the history of your congregation or add a digital photo gallery to your congregation’s website or Facebook page?
Every fortieth birthday bash contains plenty of stories from the past so get everyone—from your leaders to congregation members—to chip in with their own memories and milestones in the history of your church. Younger members may not be aware of the achievements and challenges the older generations faced so this is an ideal time to reacquaint them with where they’ve come from and pass on lessons for the future.
There will be hundreds of other congregations throughout Queensland celebrating the event so spread the love and send others birthday cards, e-greetings or even a simple phone call to wish them well. If there’s a nearby church you could coordinate a joint celebratory event or share party-planning tips for the big day.
It may be more fashionable nowadays for people to prioritise “presence” over “presents” but there are many great causes to consider donating towards if you’re planning an event. Pick a Uniting Church mission area and collect gold coin donations at your birthday celebration. Visit the Uniting Church Foundation website for inspiration.
Digital resources are available at ucaqld.com.au