Rural Fire Service – Blessing Service
As residents of The Hills surrounded by bushland, I’m sure that we are all too well aware of the debt of thanks that we owe to our “Firies”. These volunteers are prepared to put themselves in harm’s way for us and give their time and energy to protect us from fire. This is especially so during our hot summer bushfire season.
It is therefore only fitting that we hold them in our prayers and ask for God’s protection of them before the fire season commences. Thus, for several years now, Galston Uniting Church has held an annual RFS Blessing Service for local RFS Brigades, with the purpose of asking God’s protection for our volunteers and the “Blessing of the Fleet”.
This year’s blessing service was held on Sunday 19th August. Imagine the church, a sea of yellow uniforms with some in more formal “administrative” attire, and the church driveway full of red fire engines. Despite an extremely early start to the bushfire season, the local brigades were well represented. In fact, some of the Arcadia brigade had been on an all-night call-out but still managed to attend. Unfortunately, some other brigades such as Glenorie, were well and truly on duty! But our thoughts and prayers go with them.
The main speaker on this occasion was Rev. Nich Cole. Nich is a former member of Galston Uniting Church and also a former member of the Arcadia RFS Brigade and is currently an RFS chaplain and minister at Mt. Colah Uniting Church.
At the conclusion of the service, the “firies” and the fleet of fire engines received a “spray” from our minister Rev Geoff Smith and Rev Nich Cole, using backpack sprays followed by a “blessing of the fleet” prayer. Of course, the children and those not-so young enjoyed the opportunity to inspect the fire engines at close quarters and to chat with our local heroes over lunch.