This week in Chapel, which we are again holding online, we are reflecting on the fact that we live in community; in fact, we live in several different communities all at the same time. Our communities include our nation of Australia, more than ever we have been conscious lately of living in the community of South Australia (a good thing!), and we belong to local communities.
We have taken this theme because Week 4 has been “National Boarding Schools Week”. Boarding families are a feature of the community we share at Westminster and we remain glad of the diversity and richness that our international and country families add to our school life. And so as part of Chapel we have welcomed back students gradually returning to school life after periods of isolation in quarantine under Coronavirus limits.
Of course, we remain a ‘scattered community’ at present with Indigenous students in towns interstate and international students in several places overseas unable to travel or cross State boundaries to be back with us just yet. They remain part of our community, though currently at a distance. We think of them as friends and fellow students and include a prayer for their wellbeing and learning. In the Bible, Saint Paul was often away from communities that he taught and cared for and so he wrote letters. Many of them begin with a greeting to a distanced community and his thanks and prayers for them.
Every member of our Westminster community is a part of us. Even now.
Rev Phil Hoffmann