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Lectionary Resources

Worship at Mark the Evangelist typically features readings from the Revised Common Lectionary, a 3-year cycle through the major texts and themes of the Bible.

A printable table of the Sunday readings for the present year (Dec 2018-Nov 2019) is available here; the lectionary for Dec 2019-Nov 2020 is here. The lectionary for Dec 2021-Nov 2022 is here.

The text of the readings for each week can be found here; there are also readings for each day of the week which provide more context for the Sunday readings: Year A (2017, 2020, 2023)Year B (2018, 2021, 2024); Year C (2019,2022,2025).

It helps to come to worship with a sense of what is in the readings, and what it means! While not every reading will be heard or commentated upon each week, you can find background and commentary for most of the Sunday readings via the links to the web sites of Howard Wallace and Bill Loader below — just choose your date!

MtE Update – September 21 2018

  1. We will gather for conversation following worship THIS Sunday September 23 to hear and discuss information on the proposed subdivision of the MtE site for divestment and some building concept options for the new complex. September-November will be a period of considerable input into design of the new buildings. This will not be a formal congregational meeting but will set us up for important decision-making about the project over the next few months.
  2. If you’re interested in following up further the material Robert Gribben presented last week on the Great Prayer of Thanksgiving, you might be interested in looking at his book on the subject; some copies are available here ($10 plus postage…). It can also be consulted at the theological library at the CTM. (Robert Gribben, Uniting in Thanksgiving, The Great Prayers of the Uniting Church in Australia,  Melbourne: UAP, 2008.  It has three parts: (1) The Genealogy of the Great Prayer; (2), a commentary on the texts and (3) A Practical Commentary).
  3. A pastoral letter from the UCA Assembly President on church governance (and the recent marriage resolution).
  4. Our readings this week are ‘contrived’ from various lectionary resources to help our reading further into last week’s gospel reading; click on the following for some background to the texts: Isaiah 51:1-6; Psalm 138; Mark 8.31-38.
  5. Other things potentially of interest

Brunswick Uniting Church is offering a forum on the Victorian Voluntary Assisted Dying legislation

  1. Old News

Our series on the Ten Commandments will return for 4 consecutive weeks in October; if you were planning get one of suggested background reading resources for this series but haven’t yet, now’s a good time to order it!


10 am Sunday

Worship at Mark the Evangelist is a modern take on traditional liturgical styles reflecting the festivals and seasons of the ecumenical Christian Year. The Eucharist is celebrated weekly in Sunday worship and morning tea follows the service. You are very welcome to join us at Sunday worship!

On most Sundays there is a short program for children of the congregation during the sermon time.

The scriptural focus for our Sunday services is usually taken from the Revised Common Lectionary, although sometimes we’re off-lectionary (usually indicated by a sermon series on our home page).

More information abut the RCL calendar of Sunday readings is availale on our Lectionary Resources page, including links to useful online commentaries on the readings for upcoming Sundays. Another great resource is the three volume Texts for Preaching, available in hard copy and electronic versions.

The text of the Sunday sermon is usually available here within a day or so after the service.

Resources for those who lead the prayers of the people in worship are available here.

Ezekiel – That they might know I am the Lord

Over the period from August to October 2020 — COVID-19 willing!!! — our principal focus for Sunday sermon reflections will be the writings of the prophet Ezekiel.

Ezekiel appears in the Revised Common Lectionary cycle about 10 times, although largely as a ‘supporting artist’, complementing other readings or events in the liturgical calendar. Our 2020 series will be to look more closely at the preaching of the prophet himself, now supported by whatever other texts pops up in the Lectionary on those Sundays.

Ezekiel is a ‘long haul’ read, and attention to the whole of the text in detail would take a couple of years of Sundays! We will, instead, draw from the text via a series of themes central to Ezekiel, in order to develop a picture of his proclamation and what it might mean for us today. The principal text(s) for the coming Sunday’s reflection will be made known via the weekly MtE Update posts on our home page.

Preparing for the series

Whether you are going to be following the services online or attending MtE once we’re back for worship post-COVID-19, you’ll find it helpful to read the whole of Ezekiel. It’s a long text, and may take a couple of sittings.

Good support for this reading can be found from the Bible Project’s summary of the book in two videos — Part 1 and Part 2 (about 15 minutes in total) — and from Professor Christine Hayes’ introduction to Ezekiel in her Yale lectures (about the first 30 minutes of this lecture). A text intro with a structural breakdown of the book can be found here.


Two possibilities include Nancy Bowen’s ‘Ezekiel’ (Abingdon Old Testament Commentary – full range of purchase options), or Bruce Vawter and Leslie J. Hoppe’s ‘Ezekiel: A New Heart’ (International theological commentary – full range of purchase options. The Interpretation commentary series is also a reliable resource; the Ezekiel one can be previewed here, with a full range of purchase options (paperback) here (hardback and e-versions are also available). These three commentaries haven’t been sighted (libraries are not yet open on the COVID-19 regime!) but can be expected to be quite accessible and are commended on the basis for the quality of the series of which they are parts.

For the intrepid, Robert Jenson’s Ezekiel is a thorough commentary from a historical-theological perspective. Full range of purchase options, also available on Kindle.

MtE Update – 18 April 2020

  1. In the Easter season (from now till end of May), our Sunday reflections will look particularly to the lectionary’s selections from the book of 1 Peter. For more information, see the dedicated post.
  2. We have a new paschal candle!
  3. Again, links to the online services can be found on the home page as the services become available, and on the online services page. Remember that, if you have a smart TV (or Apple TV, Chromecast, etc.), you can watch the service on the TV by opening the YouTube app on those devices.
  4. News from the Justice and International Mission Cluster.
  5. “Getting through the crisis. As we are planning the autumn edition of Mark the Word, we would like to include contributions from you about any aspect of the topic of Covid-19. If stuck , please turn to possible sources such as the radio, Letters to the Editor, cartoons, literature and anything else you wish to draw upon. If you have something to contribute, please contact Rosemary or Suzanne.
  6. Synod e-news update (April 9)
  7. Synod e-news update (April 16)
  8. Presbytery e-news update (April 17)
  9. For commentary on the RCL readings for Easter 2A, April 19, see here;  These weekly commentary resources now include a link to the new lectionary  podcasts from the Synod’s Centre for Theology and Ministry
  10. A brief account of ministry of the saint commemorated this Sunday can be found here.

MtE Update – 26 February 2020

  1. Lent commences THIS EVENING with our Ash Wednesday service, 6.45pm in the church.
  2. Details of our Lenten Studies for this year are now posted here; there are presently three groups in place for these studies in Nth Melbourne, the city (Syond office) and Hawthorn. The studies commence next week. It will help if you indicate which of the groups you’d like to attend via the registration page.
  3. If you are planning to attend the first of the Lenten studies on Wednesday night (March 4), please let Craig know whether you can assist with the catering…
  4. We are planning to run an children’s ‘Easter workshop’ in the first week of the school holidays (morning of April 2). This will be a morning program of learning, playing games, singing songs and working on the new Paschal Candle for Easter. If you are able to help in running this, could you please let Craig know…
  5. The latest (Feb 20) Synod eNews is here.
  6. During Lent (on the Sundays Craig is preaching) we will be considering the songs of the ‘suffering servant’ in Isaiah as our Sunday focus texts most weeks. See here for more information.
  7. THIS SUNDAY March 1: the focus text will be Isaiah 42:1-9; See Howard Wallace’s commentary on this text here or Anna Grant-Henderson’s here. The gospel and the psalm will be from the RCL readings for Lent 1A; some online comment on them can be found here. These weekly commentary resources now include a link to the new lectionary  podcasts from the Synod’s Centre for Theology and Ministry

Old News

  1. This Sunday we will continue with the new communion setting for use during Lent and Easter. If you would like to familiarise yourself with in or refresh your memory, the melody line is available in PDF here; a simple audio version can be heard via the following links (will download or automatically open a media player: ‘Lord, have mercy‘; Holy, Holy,…Blessed is he who comes…’; ‘Christ has died‘; ‘Blessing and honour‘; and ‘Lamb of God‘. The ‘Gloria’ will be introduced late March for Easter.
  2. Details of our Lent and Easter services are now available here.

Advance Dates

  1. The MtE congregational AGM will follow morning tea on Sunday March 29
  2. Sunday April 5 – Our morning service will be built around a hearing of the Passion narrative of St Matthew

MtE Update – December 12 2019

  1. Sunday December 22 will follow the fashion of Advent 4 services at MtE in recent years — a cycle of advent carols and readings featuring our cantors and choristers.
  2. CHRISTMAS DAY service: 930am, with Eucharist
  3. THIS SUNDAY December 15: the RCL readings for Advent 3A are here, with some online commentary available here. These weekly commentary resources now include a link to the new lectionary  podcasts from the Synod’s Centre for Theology and Ministry

Other things of interest

  1. 12th ISCAST Conference on Science and Christianity, July 2020

Advance Dates

  1. Sunday December 22 – Advent Readings and Carols (with Eucharist)
  2. Christmas Day – 9.30am service (with Eucharist)

MtE Update – December 5 2019

  1. The latest Presbytery new is here (Nov 27).
  2. News from the Justice and International Mission Cluster
  3. Latest Synod eNews (Dec 4)
  4. PLEASE NOTE that the Advent Studies at St George’s Travancore have been cancelled.
  5. THIS SUNDAY December 8 the service will be led by Peter Blackwood and Rob Gallacher. The RCL readings for Advent 2 are here, with some online commentary available here. These weekly commentary resources will now also include a link to the new lectionary  podcasts from the Synod’s Centre for Theology and Ministry.

Advance Dates

  1. Sunday December 22 – Advent Readings and Carols (with Eucharist)
  2. Christmas Day – 9.30am service (with Eucharist)

MtE Update – November 14 2019

  1. Following worship THIS SUNDAY November 17 there will be another of our hymn-learning sessions.
  2. Sunday November 24 will be a service of readings, psalms and hymns around the theme of the Reign of Christ to wind up the liturgical year (Advent beginning the following week!).
  3. There will also be a congregational meeting Sunday November 24 following worship, to receive the proposed budget for 2020 and a proposal for focusses for ministry and mission over the coming year. Papers are available in the church or via the email circular.
  4. ‘The Bible in My Head’ is our current project in ‘with the children’ time in worship. Last week we thought up 4 visual prompts to remind us of the first four books of the Torah — Jeans (Genesis), Exit (Exodus), Lever (Leviticus), Numbers (Numbers!). We now need thinking caps on for a visual prompt to remind of ‘Deuteronomy’ to round out the first section of the Old Testament.
  5. ‘Illuminating Faith’ is an MtE ministry in service of the wider church; have a look at recent additions to the suite of resources now available.  There have been over 1600 downloads for the various studies and orders of services in the two years they have been on offer.
  6. The latest Synod eNews (November 8) is here.
  7. This Sunday we welcome again Matt Julius as our preacher, looking at the set RCL readings for this week. 

Advance Dates

  1. Sunday November 17 – Hymn-learning session after morning tea
  2. November 24 – Congregation meeting (2020 budget approval and ministry and mission focusses)
  3. Sunday December 1 – Responding to the 1 Timothy series: a ‘sermon feedback’ session after morning tea 

MtE Update – October 31 2019

  1. THIS SUNDAY – All Saints Day Lunch Sunday 3 November – After Worship. As has been our practice for many years, this Sunday morning, 3 November, we will be celebrating All Saints Day with a lunch after worship. All are welcome – the more the merrier. The lunch is always a great occasion for good conversation, and for enjoying life together over good food. Most important: Please give your names to Rod or Ann if you can come. AND equally important – please talk with Ann, Mary or Mepandi and let them know what you can contribute for the lunch.
  2. The last of the Hotham Mission Bunnings BBQs for 219 will be THIS Saturday November 2 (Sydney Rd, Brunswick). Please let Joey known if you are able to assist for a period of time – particularly for any period during the busy 11.00-2.00pm time slots!)
  3. ‘Illuminating Faith’ is one way in which MtE seeks, out of its own life, to serve the wider church; this week several new resources were published, to be made known across the UCA Assembly via presbytery email lists. Have a look at the IF home page here.
  4. THIS SUNDAY October 20 we continue with our reflections from 1 Timothy — 1 Tim 3.14-16, complemented by a couple of the readings for All Saints: Psalm 149 and Luke 6.20-26.

Old News

  1. TOMORROW: ‘Religion in the University’ Seminar, November 1
  2. ‘The Bible in my Head’ is a new project with the children (and others who listen in!) on Sunday mornings, particularly as part of our ‘With the Children’ time. Over the next few months, we’ll be working to build up an understanding of how the Bible holds together. This will involve a number of images and other mnemonic techniques . Most weeks new images or thoughts will be included in the pew sheet and also on this web page, as well as small ‘pointers’ within the order of service itself as to which parts of the Bible are being used at different times.

Advance Dates

  1. Sunday November 3 – All Saints luncheon
  2. Sunday November 17 – Hymn-learning session after morning tea
  3. Sunday November 24 – Congregation meeting (2020 budget approval and ministry and mission focusses)
  4. Sunday December 1 – Responding to the 1 Timothy series: a ‘sermon feedback’ session after morning tea 

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