Central Queensland (CQ) Zone Annual Rally/Retreat 2020

Theme: F.R.O.G. (Fully Rely on God)

So we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. 1 John 4:16

Gladstone Ladies Fellowship was the host for the Rally/Retreat held on 14,15 March 2020 and we were blessed to have the company of ladies (and some menfolk) who came from far and wide. Thank you to all the 41 ladies and 12 men who joined in the Rally and the Men’s Mystery Tour; those who attended the Saturday night dinner; our wonderfully boosted Sunday service and, in particular, to those who travelled to join in the weekend.

Ladies were welcomed to the rally by Gladstone Fellowship President, Dee Challenor, backed up by welcome and prayer by Gladstone-Rockhampton-Yeppoon pastor, Peter Noble. We were reminded that we are in the time of COVID-19 virus but, fortunately for Gladstone Fellowship, the instruction for social distancing was announced only after our Sunday worship service.

Throughout the day the ladies enjoyed:

  • a character play by Dee Challenor and Di Harch, showing love and care by one friend for another;
  • introduction of the theme and F.R.O.G. song sung to the tune of Trust and Obey, with a few lyric changes;
  • a poem about frogs with relation to the theme by Deidre Dobbs of the Strauss poetry family;
  • lots and lots of singing.

Bible study was prepared by Pastor Steve Jaensch and conducted by Pastor Peter based on John 4:3 – Jesus and the Samaritan woman at Jacob’s well. Pastor Steve fell ill and was unable to attend the rally, so all were grateful to Pastor Peter for stepping in. Thank you, Pastors.

The guest speaker, Lois Colyer of Gladstone Fellowship, took us on a journey to Israel speaking of the country, the people, the history, backed up with singing of well-known songs, and the sights brought to us on screen.

The local project speaker, Sandy Prizeman, Chaplain at Trinity College Gladstone, introduced biblical Esther in her role of petitioning the king for the safety of the Jews. Sandy shared her task of working with, and praying for, the Trinity students. The offering of $1310.55 was for the provision of resources for use in her work.

Meanwhile, the menfolk went on a mystery bus trip to Queensland Alumina lookout, passing various industrial sites along the way, and ended up at Awoonga Dam for a BBQ lunch before returning to where our Rally was held. 

The CQ Zone business meeting was led by President Dianne Krenske who reminded all of the health and hygiene issues of the corona virus. Secretary Heather Behrendorff announced greetings and presented minutes of the meeting held at the 2019 Emerald rally. The President presented her report containing activities of the ladies in the Guilds/Fellowships of the Zone. The financial details were presented and the zone projects of Gladstone region School Chaplaincy, and ALWS Gifts of Grace were announced.

Rockhampton is to host the 2021 CQ Zone Rally with details to be advised. The memorial hymn was Take My Hand Precious Lord. Elections took place, with the elected ladies installed by Pastor Peter.

LWQ President, Karen Bryce, reported on the recent decision to cancel the combined 2020 Retreat/Convention with the dates set for Convention only at Plainlands College on 10October 2020, and Retreat on the second weekend in March 2021. Karen advised that Newsletter Editor, Inari Thiel, is stepping down from her role. 

The Uniting Church bookshop remained open for browsing and sales during our morning tea and lunch breaks.

Three young mums, daughters of three of Gladstone Fellowship members were thanked for helping with hosting at lunchtime.

Rally participants, their menfolk, and some St Martin’s Gladstone members gathered for dinner and were appreciative of hearing a short version, from Pastor Peter Noble, of his life story from acceptance of Jesus Christ at five years of age, through consequences of being a graffiti artist at 16–19 years of age, of meeting and marrying his wife of 12 years Altamira and birth of four children, army service, and then work with the Anglican Church before three years at Australian Lutheran College (ALC) with ordination as a pastor at end of 2019. He was then posted to Central Queensland. We viewed a video of Pastor Peter as a Christian hip hopper, recorded during his time at ALC – very talented.

As well as hip hopping on screen, we all had a “hopingly” good time with the green folded-paper creatures on our tables.

The singing at our worship service on Sunday was a joy to behold. Praise our Lord and God for love, care and fellowship and let us always Fully Rely On God.

Sue Hebel, Reporter

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