Rev Faama Leota and Rev Jacob Yang



Co Chairpersons                       Joan Cooper, Sue Yang

Co Secretaries                          Anthony Cooper, Mi-jung Konakov

Treasurer                                   Joan Taylor


Ministers                                   Rev Jacob Yang, Rev Faama Leota

Congregation Chairperson         Roslyn Lowe

Elders/Leaders                          John Cooper, Margery Heard, Lindsay Herbert,
Myung-sook Maurovic, Nigel Tsai, Mary Wheeler, Jae Eun Yun

Councillors                                Anthony Cooper, Joan Cooper, Alison Head, Barbara Herbert,
                                                Baeyi Kim, Jong min Kim, Joy Kim, Mi-jung Konakov, Seomok Lee,
                                                Sunnie Lyew, Joan Taylor, Fenny Tsai, Sue Yang

Committee Convenors

Executive                                  Joan Cooper
Pastoral Care                            Mary Wheeler
Property and Safety                  Lindsay Herbert
Public Relations
Social Concerns                        Anthony Cooper
Worship & Education                 Rev Jacob Yang

                                                Revs Jacob Yang and Faama Leota, Lindsay Herbert, Joan Cooper


Walks on the Level                                Convenors                    David Scott and Mary Wheeler
Friendship Circle                                   Convenors                    Sadie Stevens and Dalys Grant
Korean Ladies’ Mission Group               President                      Jenny Jung
Korean Playgroup                                 Leader                          So-young Yun
Dinner Out Together Group                    Convenor                      Mary Wheeler
ECOS                                                   Convenor                      Barbara Herbert
Halmonie                                              Convenors                    Barbara Herbert, Jean Provan
Boroondara Community Outreach           Co ordinator                  Joan Cooper
U3A Deepdene                                      President                      Sue Wilms
Deepdene Scottish Dancing Group        Secretary                      Margaret Leversha
Deepdene Uniting Cricket Club               President                      John Franklin


Congregation Chairperson                     Roslyn Lowe
Congregation Secretary                         Anthony Cooper
Choir Director                                        Sunnie Lyew
Organist                                                Stuart Shearman
Administrative Assistant                                    Rhonda Menz

Rev Jacob Yang

Greetings to you all.
Another year has passed quickly.  During 2016 many challenges rose in our church like any other year.  However with God’s help and his grace we have journeyed well so far.

This year we put a lot of energy in the Boroondara ASP.  The main issues were focused on how these regional congregations develop the strategies to use resources efficiently.  We hoped to have an answer by the start of 2017, but no decision has been made.

We resumed the Paton seminar in 2016.  This year Alison Head and Margery Heard gave us lectures about the history of missionaries’ work in Korea and Vanuatu respectively.
Instead of inviting a guest speaker from outside church we listened to our church members’ precious experiences and knowledge.  This was a wonderful time that we shared.  I am so proud of our Deepdene community.  I hope we are able to become more passionate in mission work through this seminar.

I visited Myanmar for two weeks in September.  I travelled the west area of Myanmar and Kalemyio which is bordered by India.  I lectured Leviticus to the church leaders in the areas and preached three times on Sundays.  I had wonderful opportunities to get to know the villagers and the church members.  They were so kind to me and the Christians worshipped with all their hearts singing and praying enthusiastically.  It was very impressive and also challenging to me.  One thing which gave pain in my heart was the fact that there was only one hospital and two high schools in the city where 700,000 were living.  I believe they need ongoing support and help.

We had three concerts organised by Stuart Shearman.  The choir gave glory to God singing beautifully.  Many thanks go to Stuart Shearman, Sunnie Lyew, Ashley Noh, Jim Provan, Wendy Yang and the choir members.  We greatly appreciate their contribution to Sunday worship.

Korean members had a small camp in Warburton.  Lindsay and Barbara Herbert generously let the families stay in their holiday house.

During Lent I led a bible study and prayer meeting with Wednesday prayer meeting members.  I also shared my reflections of Lent bible passages with all Korean members through SMS to encourage them to meditate on God’s Word.  Also both Korean and English members had one week prayer meeting during Holy week.

We actively tried to recruit a youth worker but did not succeed.  Despite the difficulty of finding the right person, we should keep trying for our youth ministry.  Our church is multicultural and multigenerational.  This is a great advantage but also very challenging.  To meet these demands we should not be afraid to experiment new ways in every aspect of ministry.

I would like to say thank you to all members of Deepdene for your support and hard work to maintain and develop our church.

Joan Cooper, Co-Chairperson
Anthony Cooper, Co-Secretary

The Church Council continued to meet bi monthly with the Executive meeting in the alternate months.  Meetings continue to be held in both Korean and English.  

The main business of the year has been the Asset Strategy Programme, with many councillors attending Combined Church Council meetings at Habitat, to make decisions and ratify the work of the ASP Task Group.  The members representing Deepdene were Ros Lowe and Joan Cooper.
Pontier Advisory, the company given the task of collecting the background information, presented their Report at the end of 2016.

There had been concern throughout the process that a step had been missed out as the members of each church, (Auburn, Deepdene, East Kew, Habitat, Joong Ang, and West Hawthorn) were very unsure of the mission of the other congregations.  People began to feel that a Regional Network was being planned that individual churches had not agreed to.  Presbytery were then asked to delay the acceptance of the Report to allow the churches to decide that a regional network was something each wanted.

So at the start of 2017, a new Task Group was established, called the Boroondara Intentional Regional Network (BIRN).  Again, Ros Lowe and Joan Cooper were chosen as the representatives from Deepdene.  This group is seeking to better understand the mission of each to see if there are common objectives, which would be enhanced by a regional network.

The congregation and council owe a debt of thanks to Joan and Ros for their committed attendance at these meetings, from which we hope for a positive outcome.

Locally, Church Council received with regret the news that Rev Fa’amatu’a Leota had accepted a call to Hoppers Crossing UC, and the later part of the year was spent planning for this.  The church presented at Kew Festival 2016 and hosted another successful International Dinner (with Christian entertainment group ‘Island Breeze’).  We managed a very busy property use timetable (with thanks to Rhonda Menz) including multiple users on most days.

Approximately 30 members as well as both ministers, attended Safe Church Training with Synod-appointed trainers (Mr. and Mrs. Edwards) on 1 May 2016.  One church councillor attended a later session and all 2016 councillors have now participated in this training.  Korean translation enabled full participation.  

Of course most importantly we sustained each other’s faith journeys; shared news and insights; and enjoyed each other’s company week by week.

Joan Taylor, Honorary Treasurer

2016 has been a year with a range of major challenges for Deepdene Uniting Church and this has been reflected in the financial performance of the church.

The main sources of income of the church – offerings, rental of church buildings and rental of the church flats – each provided substantially less income than budgeted:  $160,274, in total, compared with $188,000.  However, fund raising for special purposes during the year, particularly for the upgrade of the AV system in the church and for the installation of a fence to provide additional security for the small children of the church, and proceeds from much appreciated Sunday afternoon concerts, have generated additional income of almost $8,000.  In addition, fund-raising from the production and sale of cards and the sale of marmalade (approximately $3,700) provided funds which were directly distributed to the Share Appeal and to Uniting World.

In the early part of the year, approval was given by the UCA Synod for the Deepdene congregation to use, for a limited period, the interest on the proceeds of property sale proceeds generated from the sales of the church properties in Balwyn (St Paul’s) and South Hawthorn and the sale of the manse in Burke Road.  Arrangements were put in place in June 2016 but the interest earned during 2016 was only part of the anticipated annual income from this source.  This arrangement is expected to terminate when alternative sources of income generated from developments under the Asset Strategy Program are in place.

On the other hand, expenses were contained so that they were substantially below budget:  $224,804 compared with $261,310, mainly because the church did not appoint a part-time Youth Worker, for whom budget provision had been made, following support from Presbytery and Synod.  Because a Youth Worker was not appointed during 2016, the special Youth Fund allocated in 2016 for use by a Youth Worker was also not used. 

In 2016 spending on maintenance was kept to a minimum, with members of the congregation with relevant skills undertaking essential work.  It is recognized that, at the end of the year, there are some maintenance tasks requiring urgent attention. 

A decision was made to change the mode of payment of municipal rates to quarterly instalments, to assist with cash flow.  This has meant, that in 2016, the annual rates for 2015 - 2016 were paid, plus two instalments for 2016 – 2017.  In 2017, rates to be paid will be for four quarterly instalments.

A critical feature of the church’s financial performance in 2016 is that reserves held in UCA Funds by the Deepdene church were reduced by almost $35,000 to $58,315 by 31 December.  It was very clear that if operations in 2017 had continued in the same way, the church would exhaust all reserves within 15 months.  Access to the Interest on the Interest Only Mission Fund gives temporary respite from this difficult situation.

An audit report on both the 2015 and 2016 accounts has been received.  In both reports, a qualification is included.  The auditor acknowledges that it is impracticable for the church to establish more control over the counting and banking of offerings and for the audit procedures to monitor this more closely.  With this qualification the auditor’s opinion is that the financial reports present fairly in accordance with established accounting policies the financial position of the Deepdene Uniting Church as at 31 December 2015 and 31 December 2016 and its financial performance for the years then ended.

2017 Budget

In 2017 it is anticipated that the church will receive a full year’s interest on the Interest Only Mission Fund (IOMF) in the name of the Deepdene church, held by the Uniting Church of Australia Synod.  This is conservatively predicted to be $85,000 per annum (2.5% on $3.4 million, our holding at Synod).  This represents a substantial increase on the interest received in 2016.  

This arrangement for the Deepdene church to receive the interest on the IOMF is a short term arrangement – only operating until additional sources of income from property are created through the implementation of property developments under the Asset Strategy Program.

It is understood that if, at the end of 2017, there are some surplus funds from this interest, that Deepdene will return these funds to the Synod for use by other churches. 

The budget assumes that our level of offerings will decrease only slightly in 2017.  This may be optimistic but is presented as a goal for which to strive.  It is proposed that some action will be taken to ensure that this is achieved – alerting members to increased running costs needing to be reflected in increased giving and encouraging more members to register for direct debit arrangements.

Serious efforts have been made to ensure that the church halls are tenanted to capacity for 2017.  New licences with tenants have been negotiated at slightly increased rates on those charged in 2016.  The rental on the church flats has also been increased, in line with increases in municipal rates.

Ministerial stipends have been adjusted in line with a recent directive from the UCA Synod relating to ministerial stipends and charges.  The organist’s salary has similarly been adjusted, for the first time for a number of years.

Early in 2017, Rev Faama Leota, has concluded his placement at Deepdene and the congregation is considering the ongoing arrangements for ministry.  This decision may affect total ministerial stipends.  Similarly, it is assumed that ongoing negotiations for a Youth Worker will lead to an appointment early in the year.  To ensure that adequate funding is provided for this part-time appointment, the budgeted allocation is higher than in 2016.

The allocation for Christian Education provides for resource materials used by the Sunday School.  The Youth Budget allowance is intended for use by the Youth Worker, when appointed.

It is proposed that, in 2017, the Deepdene congregation will maintain its current contribution to the Mission and Service Fund.  The allocation of an additional amount for Mission Activity is a reflection of our desire to directly support some mission activity.

Other expenses have been budgeted to increase, generally by 4 per cent, reflecting, in particular, changes in utilities costs and municipal rates.

The budget provides for a modest increase only in spending on maintenance.  Whilst discussions are underway for some developments of the property in line with the Asset Strategy Program this seems to be an appropriate position to take.

The budgeted surplus is largely because of the substantial interest to be received, in 2017, and for a short term only, from the IOMF.  Because major changes are expected to occur, even in 2017 and certainly within the next two or three years, which will impact on the church’s financial position, no attempt has been made to provide a budget beyond 2017. 


Lindsay Herbert, Convenor
The Property and Safety Committee has been restricted as in the previous year, by the requirements of the Asset Strategy Program that no more than basic maintenance be done on church properties until the outcomes of the ASP are implemented. 

The committee has dealt with various minor matters of property maintenance as they have arisen including upgrading the playground with new tan bark and sand and adding handrails to the internal steps at the front of the main worship centre.  Plans are in hand to install safety fencing and gates to create a safer area for the children during lunch on Sundays.

Mary Wheeler, Convenor
The Committee met on three occasions, on Sunday afternoons.  Joan Cooper acted as Secretary.
Communion was celebrated on the first Sunday of each month.  With Rev Faama on long service leave in the later part of the year the congregation worshipped together with Rev Jacob leading the services.  Rev Joan Wright-Howie, Rev Dr Philip Creed and Rev Christo Roberts also visited during this time.

Our membership at the end of 2016 consisted of 195 members:
            Communicant members             117
            Baptised members                      39
            Adherents                                   39

The Church Roll continued to be updated.  People taking communion each month usually numbered between 70 and 90.

We celebrated one baptism in 2016 and gave thanks for the lives of those who died during the year:
            Mavis Shannon
            Mavis Davies

Responsibility for the co-ordination and advertising of the congregation’s various activities was undertaken by a number of members.

Real estate firm Christopher Russell continued their willingness to supply advertising boards for which we are most grateful.

Both the English and Korean websites continue to be updated regularly and we thank those responsible.  The Korean website address is www.facebook.com/deepdeneUC and the English website can be accessed at www.ucadeepdene.info

Anthony Cooper, Convenor

The Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child Appeal was run again in 2016.  Members contributed time and effort as well as goods to make the appeal a success.  We organised this differently in 2016 with less emphasis on the monthly change in items requested and more emphasis on the individual box.  However this seemed to be less successful in drawing people’s attention to the appeal.  We were pleased to take 27 boxes to Operation Christmas Child in September.  Thanks go to all church members who contributed to this appeal, and to Joan Cooper for transporting the boxes when this writer was unwell.  Thanks too to Susie Bauer and a mystery donor for wrapping paper for the shoe boxes.

Members have also kindly donated and made items that were given to the Cottage by the Sea at Queenscliff, which hosts children from disadvantaged backgrounds for beach holidays and recreation opportunities.

Recently one of our members has been unable to attend meetings due to ill health.  My thanks to Rev Faama Leota, Susie Bauer, Helen Heathcote, Margery Heard and Joan & John Cooper for attending meetings during 2016.  Church members are encouraged to join us for time spent thinking and acting to help others.

Rev Jacob Yang, Convenor

Ministers, Sunday school teachers and Joseph class leaders formed the Educational Committee.  The Committee agreed to follow the same bible passages each Sunday.  The committee discusses and co-operates to nurture our next generation.  The Worship and Education Committees merged to form one committee.


Primary Sunday School
Joan & Anthony Cooper

We were pleased to welcome at least six weekly regulars and three or four fortnightly regulars to Primary Sunday School in 2016.  We particularly welcomed a new student who was in Foundation (Prep) and has fitted in very well.  Our thanks to the parents and supporters who bring the children and encourage them to come along.  Thank you to the church members who are occasionally asked to come into sessions to play piano or play a character in a story.

We continue to use the “Seasons of the Spirit” resources which follow the lectionary readings and are written in Canada.  Although occasionally we adapt these, the resources generally provide an excellent programme. There is a variety of activities and topics, and a consistent theme is the loving actions that the children themselves can take to improve their own lives and the lives of others.  One of the practical things they are involved in is card making for fund raising for wells in Zimbabwe.  This was the children’s choice and in just over 12 months $1280 was collected and sent to UnitingWorld to pay for two wells.

Regular highlights include the Palm Sunday walk we take around the church and grounds, stopping at a series of ‘stations’ to hear and think about the Easter story.  We also all enjoy the “Seasons of Creation” sessions in September; in 2016 they included “Cosmos Sunday” and “Storm Sunday.”  Children stuck fabric onto one quarter of a circle each week to represent each part of creation.  We also sometimes write prayers which we take into Children’s Time for use with the rest of the congregation. 

It is a real privilege to watch the children growing in understanding and maturity week by week. 

Nigel Tsai
Occasionally, young people have played table tennis after Sunday fellowship lunch.  During school or university holiday period, young adults have organised youth gatherings for meals or movies once or twice.  On Sundays apart from combined service, Joseph Class, for nurturing young people’s Christian faith growth, are organised by Rev Jacob, Lindsay, Barbara and Nigel.

Rev Jacob Yang

We have gathered to study the Bible and to pray at 7:30 on Wednesday.  Usually, 6-8 people participate in this prayer meeting.  We studied Lenten Bible Study, Romans, 1 Peter and 2 Peter and some topics, and psalms.  We sing for 20 minutes and study the Bible for 25 minutes then pray for 15 minutes.  Wednesday evening prayer meeting is a very important and meaningful time for us to pray for the church.

Stuart Shearman, Organist

Music has continued to be an integral part of the Sunday services, performed with reverence and greatly enhancing the liturgy.

Both the organ and the piano have been regularly used to lead and accompany congregational hymnody and choral singing.  Pre and post service music as well as offertory music has been performed on the organ on a weekly basis.  The choir under the capable direction of Sun Nie Lyew has led the congregational singing, and accompanied on the piano by Ashley Noh and Wendy Yang, effectively performed anthems in both English and Korean at the Sunday morning services throughout the year.  Jim Provan has again proficiently provided flute accompaniment to hymns and anthems as well as regularly playing for the offertory during services.  Members of the choir performing as soloists and in various ensemble formations have also presented offertory music.

The now well established annual concert program, with local and visiting artists has continued to be well received by both the congregation and the wider community, adding another dimension to the church and its community outreach.  In 2016 the inaugural H R Stevens memorial concert was presented in the church to honour the life and work of the Reverend Herbert Rhead Stevens AM, Minister and Educator, and member of the Deepdene congregation.  Performers from schools and organisations that Bert was associated with willingly gave of their time and expertise to present an outstanding concert that was performed to a near full church. 

The piano and the organ in the church, both of which are very good instruments and we have every right to be proud of, have continued to serve the congregation well, however; we need to be mindful of maintaining them in first class order at all times.  The pianos in our halls are in need of tuning and attention, and this needs to be attended to in the near future if we are to maintain them in good working order.

As was mentioned in last years report, it is now over twenty five years since the organ was installed and we are fortunate that it was so well built and has required very little maintenance other than tuning.  Given that this instrument is one of Melbourne’s finest instruments of its type and is of some historical significance, having been originally built by Grandfather George Fincham, Australia’s first Colonial organ builder I believe that it is incumbent on us to ensure that it continues to be kept in good order.  The organ console from the previous instrument was used when this organ was installed and this is now over fifty years old and parts of it are showing signs of wear.  The pedal board, in particular, now requires refurbishment in order to facilitate effective and accurate performance, and this is something that financial consideration needs to be given to.

All of the musicians who have contributed throughout the year are to be applauded and thanked for their efforts in contributing to the liturgical and secular life of the Deepdene Uniting Church.

Mary Wheeler

We continued to meet in Nungerner Street each Thursday at 10am.  David and Shirley Scott co-ordinated the dedicated group of walkers and suggested destinations for our walks.  Very few days were missed due to weather or other reasons.  We carpooled to the starting points, walked as far as we could in 20 minutes or half an hour, and then retraced our steps to enjoy morning tea together, before returning to Balwyn.

New walkers are always welcome.

Sadie Stevens & Dalys Grant, Co convenors

On the second Monday of the month Friendship Circle gathered at Sadie Stevens or Dalys Grant’s homes to enjoy the friendship and support of the group, devotions, planned activities and news of our church.

In 2016 we held ten gatherings with attendances ranging from twelve to eighteen friends.  During the year Joan and John Cooper thoughtfully brought and set up sound equipment at each venue which has made such a difference for our hard of hearing members.  We thank Joan and John for organizing this for the meetings.

Rev Faama Leota attended most of our meetings leading us in devotions, helping with furniture arrangement and transport.  His friendship and support will be warmly remembered and we wish him a fruitful ministry in his new parish at Hoppers Crossing.

Our program was stimulating commencing with Traditions of Pancake Day, a celebration of World Poetry Day, social justice issues and concluding with a happy Christmas celebration hosted by Dalys assisted by the beautiful music of U3A Ensemble recorder group.

We thank the many hostesses who provided the delicious afternoon tea and the kindness of drivers who picked up members requiring transport.

Sue Yang, Convenor

In 2016 Jenny Jung and Mijung Konakov served KWMG as president and secretary respectively.

We prepared Sunday lunch every week and although it was simple, everyone was welcomed including visitors outside church.

To celebrate Lunar new year and full moon festival Korean traditional food and some activities were organised by the members.

We volunteered cooking a Korean warm meal for Kew homeless people in July.  Some years ago we fundraised $800 by cooking and selling food at church for the Boroondara Outreach program however this time we went to Kew church and cooked for them.  It was fun and rewarding.

We had a fellowship gathering at So Young’s house.  She opened her house and welcomed us generously.  We appreciated it.

Some of our members have been gathering for prayer meeting after Sunday lunch for years.  This fellowship helps people feel connected and supported.

We look forward to another meaningful and fruitful year.

So-young Yun, Leader

The playgroup is held every Tuesday from 10:30am to 2:30pm during school terms.  There are currently 15 mums and 19 children coming to the playgroup and there are 8 children on the waiting list.  

Children start with free activities such as play dough, puzzles, blocks, drawing and crafts, followed by story time and dancing.

And then all mums and children have lunch called Bibimbap which is a traditional Korean rice dish.  All people love to have lunch together and enjoy Korean tastes.  All the ingredients of the lunch are brought by all the mums.  Every person has their own duty that helps to keep the playgroup room clean and tidy.

Those children who don't speak Korean at home have a chance to learn and practice Korean language while playing with Korean speaking kids.

After lunch we have fruit snack time and mums' tea time.  Sometimes children celebrate their birthday at the playgroup with some treats.  This enables them to learn how to share food and other things naturally and gradually as they enjoy all the activities.

Mary Wheeler, Convenor

We continued to meet at Concierge Balwyn on the 1st Wednesday and Box Hill RSL on the 3rd Wednesday of each month.  Both venues offer lovely and well-priced meals, in pleasant surroundings.

New diners are always welcome and transport can be arranged.

Barbara Herbert, Convenor

ECOS has been running for 29 years now and has become not only a group of people who meet to converse each Friday night but an association of people who have attended the group in the past and who like to keep in touch, usually by email or phone.  We have contact from people all over the world, updating us on their news or seeking advice about work situations, future plans, problems with English, etc.  We are quite often delighted when, on a Friday night, someone walks in whom we may not have seen for years, or when past students call in bringing visiting family members to meet us.

Our volunteers are people of all ages.  For some years we have enjoyed the frequent company of a little girl who was the grand-daughter of one of our helpers.  She loved talking with the students and they to her.  We were very sad when she left us during the year, aged 7, to move to Europe with her parents.  We held a special farewell party for her on her last ECOS night and were very sad to see her go.

Our lives have been greatly enriched by the regular attendance of three men from Iraq.  Some of us have enjoyed meals at their home, a special time being the Iftar meal shared with them at the end of Ramadan.  One man has now been joined by his wife and 3 children and we were able to entirely furnish and equip his apartment with donations from ECOS members.  We helped  by meeting the family at the airport and by providing transport for moving to the new home.

It is important to acknowledge the great contribution to ECOS made by Rev and Mrs. Jacob Yang and Mrs Taega Leota who have all volunteered to be on the ECOS roster.  Rev. Yang has attended ECOS nearly every week and has endeared himself greatly to the students.  He has also provided invaluable pastoral care to ECOS participants.

Sincere thanks go to all our helpers, but especially to those who are not members of our church. Their help, and that of all our volunteers, is invaluable.  We are particularly grateful to those who attend who are not rostered on duty, and encourage other members of the church to call in on any Friday evening between 6 and 9 pm, just to help keep the conversation flowing.  It is always a very enjoyable and enriching evening.

Barbara Herbert, Convener

The number of Korean families being supported by Australian "Halmonies" (grandparents") has decreased this year as members of the church become older and less able to take on other roles.
However the few who do continue do a wonderful job at providing various kinds of support to children in the church whose grandparents are not in Australia. We thank these people as it means a lot to the Korean members and their families.

Lindsay Herbert

The Presbytery of Yarra Yarra meets quarterly.  Permanent staff include:  chairperson, secretary and three presbytery ministers each with separate roles.  There is also a treasurer.  Meetings are on Saturdays and occupy most of the day.

The DUC congregation was represented by Rev Jacob Yang, Rev Faama Leota, Joan Cooper and Lindsay Herbert.

The role of the Presbytery is broadly to provide oversight of the life and mission of the congregations.  It does this chiefly through four committees:  Standing, Pastoral Relations, Resourcing and Ministry Formation committees.  A current mission concern focussed on by the Presbytery is the Mental Health ministries including the Boroondara Outreach which is hosted by the Kew congregation and supported by the DUC.  Other issues concerning the Presbytery include:  the church as a safe place and ‘the shape of the church to come’.

The Presbytery is currently finalising its response to the (Synod) Major Strategic Review (MSR) which was commenced in May 2016.  Our congregation and several of its members made inputs to this review.

The preliminary recommendations of the Asset Strategy Program (ASP), although a Synod initiative, have been noted with some concern by the Presbytery of Yarra Yarra.  It has been authorised to form the Boroondara Inter-Church Regional Network to examine more closely the potential for increased cooperation and sharing of resources of the six nearby congregations.  The ASP process reminds congregations that ownership of the church land, buildings etc. is not vested in the congregation but in the Victorian/Tasmanian Synod Property Trust.  As such, congregations are reminded that the Synod has oversight of the congregations ‘beneficial use’ of assets and that proper attention must be given by congregations to responsible stewardship of asset use.
The uncertain outcomes of the MSR and the ASP have made it difficult for the Deepdene
congregation to undertake some costly maintenance, let alone building activity, to support the life, witness and mission of our congregation.


Boroondara Community Outreach Ministry
Joan Cooper, Co ordinator

This is the name now being used by Kew Regional Ministry and BCO is its common name. 
Rev Natalie Dixon-Monu is responsible for this outreach ministry.  BCO is currently based at Kew Uniting Church.

BCO is involved in Good Grub, a lunch on Tuesdays, a community choir and a monthly service followed by a meal.  About 100 people are helped in this way, but shared involvement in other community programmes, reaches about 400 people.

Deepdene’s offering continues to be the compiling of the roster for the Sunday meal, providing food for the larder cupboard and Christmas food for the Christmas lunch and a clothes collection. In addition the Korean church members prepared a Korean meal, one of the two Korean meals provided as Joong Ang congregation do so too.

It has become harder to fill the roster for BBQ cooking.  As Natalie is given food, a different type of meal is cooked on the premises.  As a result of the introduction of Good Grub and the commercial kitchen, the meal is always served on plates and eaten with knives and forks.  This means that more workers are needed in the kitchen after the meal.

If anyone feels that they could help with preparing sausages, making hamburgers, cooking or helping in the kitchen, please talk to Joan Cooper.

Trinity Manor Nursing Home
Betty Blaskett

Beginning in February each year, Betty Blaskett, Joan Cooper and June Stockman meet at Trinity Manor every other Friday afternoon where we join about 10 or 12 residents, called “elders” and chat whilst knitting squares to make into knee rugs.

Having completed enough rugs for the Trinity Manor bus, the rugs now go to a Rotary group, which is raising money for wheel chairs to send to children in Asia.  A rug and a toy go with each wheel chair. 

A son of one elder and a daughter of another have commented on the way the group has helped their mothers use a skill that they thought had been lost to them.

Occasionally a pianist comes and plays and we all sing along as we knit.  We all enjoy the time together and laugh a lot.

Worship in nursing homes

Rev Faama Leota conducted regular Christian worship services at Trinity Manor throughout the year.  This was in co-operation with friends from Our Lady of Good Counsel, providing outreach to residents of various Christian denominations.

Susan Wilms, President

Deepdene U3A continues to grow and by December 2016, our membership stood at 940 with an estimated 76% living in the City of Boroondara.  Word of mouth has played an important role in our growth along with the increasing use by the community of the internet.  

Our program, now into its 7th year remains appreciated for its interesting topics and its very high quality tutors.  Many of our tutors are highly regarded as professionals in their field and as a result, classes often start the term with waiting lists.

All classes are well attended and there is a continuing demand for yearlong subjects including languages, exercise, walking groups and bridge.  Twilight sessions have been very successful and very well attended as have travel sessions and specialist speakers providing news and views.

An exciting innovation has been the use of technology to deliver classes, and to create opportunities to open up new topics.  The use of our new Smart TV enables us to access programs to be used as an aid to speakers on particular topics. 

With increasing membership and the ensuing presentation of more classes, we find it necessary to seek new class spaces.  The City of Boroondara has worked with Deepdene U3A to assist in providing additional spaces; however the Committee of Management is hoping that we will retain strong links with the Deepdene Uniting Church, long into the future.

U3A Deepdene remains ever grateful for the relationship it has with the Deepdene Uniting Church and for the enormous advantage we have as lessees of so much space at the church.  We appreciate the flexibility this provides, and the willingness of the Church to accommodate our needs when possible.  For U3A Deepdene this is a very happy arrangement.

Along with the Uniting Church, the City of Boroondara continues to be supportive, encouraging, accommodating and helpful.  Lina Tallarida, Active Ageing Project Officer, City of Boroondara, is ever available for advice and guidance and we thank her most sincerely.

Deepdene U3A looks forward to fostering healthy and productive relationships with its communities now and into the future.

Margaret Leversha, Secretary

The newly incorporated Deepdene Scottish Country Dancers (A0092626V) celebrated their 60th anniversary in 2016.

The highlight of the year was our formal dress Ball on 9 April at the Hawthorn Arts Centre.  Nearly 140 dancers enjoyed a great program of dances put together by our teacher Julia Grant, all to the wonderful music of David South and Matthew Robertson and their band.  We were particularly fortunate that David South was able to play for us as we had feared that a scheduling conflict would prevent him from leading the band on the night.  Our youngest member Ailsa Barrie sang Flower of Scotland, and the anniversary cake was cut by Glenda Lucas, who also celebrated 60 years of dancing in 2016.

Group membership has increased slightly to 36 financial members this year.  Once again we were pleased to welcome a number of visitors through the year, including former member Andy Steele who came from Queensland for the Ball.  This year we did 95 different dances at our regular monthly Saturday Socials, with repeats of favourites including Irish Rover (our “signature” dance), Mrs Milne of Kineff, and The Minister on the Loch.

We thank retiring treasurer Barrie Stacey for his efforts over the past 5 years, and welcome new treasurer Jacquelyn James.  We also thank retiring supper coordinator Sylvia Stacey for all her hard work in the kitchen, both for class nights and socials.  The Staceys were presented with tokens of our appreciation at our end of year party night, and now look forward to enjoying more time on the dance floor.

Thanks to all our members for continuing to make Deepdene classes and socials so enjoyable.

The Club fielded three senior teams for the 2015/16 season.  Home games were played at Hays Paddock and Willsmere Park. 

The 1st XI played in the top grade, Macgibbon Shield, and again just failed to make finals.  The 2nd XI played in A Grade and despite losing only two games for the season, was tipped out in the semis.  The 3rd XI played in E Grade and lost a close match in the grand final.

A successful Milo In2Cricket program was run reflecting the importance of juniors in the Club’s future development.  Support from a happy group of parents was very much appreciated.  Juniors have always been important at Deepdene and a large percentage of young players have gone on to play senior cricket for the Club. 

The regular Thursday after-training meals and post match BBQs were always most enjoyable and the special social events were well supported by members and guests.

Our Club continued to provide a healthy and happy environment for all players and families.  Members are always grateful for the work of the committee, captains, and others who do a great job performing the many tasks necessary to run a successful Club.