RU OK Day, where we are reminded to be aware of mental health issues in the community, occurs in September. The Canterbury Council of Churches held its Mental Health Liturgy on the same theme, on Sunday 11th September at Highfield Road. It was attended by about 50 people.
After a clip of harp music, we heard the reading of David playing the lyre for King Saul when Saul was depressed [1 Samuel 16: 14 – 23]. Jesus’ words: I have come that you might have life and have it more abundantly, [John 10: 10] were an appropriate text for the theme. Sister Ros Cairns, a former manager of Mental Health within the Healthcare Chaplaincy Council of Victoria, inspired us in her address, with her understanding of mental illnesses both on the person concerned and their families.
It was pleasing to see the choir stalls filled with members of the Anglican and Catholic churches, combined with our members. There was a great buzz of conversation in the foyer for supper afterwards when we got to know other Christians in our area.
Rev. Ross Pearce and Father Kevin Toomey of St Dominic’s were the co-presiders at this, the second of such ecumenical services.
By Alan Ray
Alan Ray, Highfield Road Uniting Church