A number of community partnerships have been forged to increase the opportunities for reaching out. The six-bay machinery shed on the Lifeworks property is the safe home, at one end, of an OzHarvest food-rescue van and small cold room, while the larger portion is home to a Women’s Shed, a group of people who rescue fabric and make items like face masks for sale and hospital packs for charities.
A partnership also exists with a community garden group who aim to help vulnerable folk to grow and maintain food gardens, but also to teach ways to prepare meals from less expensive classes of food, using the commercial standard kitchen in the main building.
A fourth partnership is planning the construction of housing for disabled young men, a venture aiming to supply a desperate need in Toowoomba.
About Lifeworks Uniting Church
Lifeworks Toowoomba is a lively congregation of the Uniting Church in Australia comprising people from a range of language groups and theological perspectives. Gathering takes place on land whose traditional custodians were the Jarowair & Giabal peoples.
The worship is characterised by enthusiastic participation. The music features an array of talented musicians, including outstanding vocalists, guitarists, drummers, trumpeters and flautists, regularly accompanied by a brilliant Makin organ, all taking their turns to provide rich and uplifting backing for the singing of hymns old and new, songs and choruses. Worship services are recorded for viewing on YouTube as required.
Worship is usually led by a competent team of lay members, with the message presented by the full-time minister, one of the other clergy members, or one of the lay preachers. The Lifeworks congregation encourages lay participation as a way of enhancing the talents of the members.
Small groups also meet regularly beyond the regular Sunday mornings. Home Bible studies and large or small social and spiritual support groups are a feature of the fabric of Lifeworks congregation.
As well as the Lifeworks Uniting Church congregation, another, comprising Portuguese speakers originally from Brazil, also meets in the main auditorium. Given that a number of these folk consider that their English-language skills need improvement, English classes led by trained TESOL teachers will resume once Covid restrictions permit.