Inner Circle


Thursday, 30 June 2016

Dear Inner Circle,

Surprises abound at Wayside. Some of the loveliest things happen in a way that is quite out of order. Luckily people are generally not problems to be solved but people to be met and so often the least likely turns out to be the wisest. It’s why at our little Sunday morning church service we adore the little lady we call, Saint Interruptus. She and I have become something of a double act. Once I noticed that we were running a little over time and so I said, “I’ll pick up the pace here, I don’t want to bore you.” “Bore us!” she said, “That’s your job!” Sunday just gone a dark-skinned Aboriginal man decided unannounced to play us his didgeridoo. He stepped up to the altar and rested his didge near a microphone. It was an incredibly beautiful and moving gift he made for us. The dear Uncle however, had some time ago, had his own precious didge stolen, so on Sunday he played on a pipe from a vacuum cleaner. It may have been the first retractable didgeridoo in 40,000 years to be played in this country. A couple who had been with us that day, showed up on Tuesday this week with a brand new didgeridoo. When I gave it to our dear Uncle he melted in my arms and wept for some time. There is a good chance this Sunday that the happiest Aborigine in Australia will lead us in devotion with his beautiful new didgeridoo. We’re not much like a church but it works for those who are not much like Christians.

You’ve heard me talk about Wayside’s expansion to Bondi Beach a few times over the past year and I’m happy to tell you that from 1 July 2016, this will officially become a permanent arrangement. Chapel by the Sea in Bondi Beach will come under the governance and management of The Wayside Chapel and as of tomorrow, we are one strong organisation serving the community in multiple locations. This means that Wayside has full governance and management responsibility of the Community Services Centre at Norman Andrews House and the North Bondi Op Shop, as well as the programs, worshipping communities and the resources that formed part of Chapel by the Sea. We’re delighted to have more opportunity to live our mission of creating community with no ‘us and them’ in the eastern suburbs. We will be a stronger presence to address social issues in the area in such a way that the whole Bondi community will feel strengthened and better served.

Our first priority will be a $100,000 upgrade of the facilities at Norman Andrews House so that Bondi’s most vulnerable residents can access adequate support in a safe environment. This will be followed by a $630,000 redevelopment of the Chapel by the Sea to transform the site into a beacon for the community. The new site will feature an improved worshipping space and a number of social enterprises including a café, performance area, co-working space and two serviced holiday apartments, with 100% of the profits going back into programs that support some of the most marginalised people in the area. There is much work ahead for us and we will work hard, believing that Bondi will be a better place because our beating heart is there to meet people and help humanity soar.

All of us struggle to make ends meet but gosh everything is harder for the poor. A fellow this week, with no drug or alcohol problems, parked his car where he shouldn’t have. It’s true he shouldn’t have risked it, but he thought for an hour he’d get away with it. He returned to find his car had been towed. So it cost $265 to get his car back and an additional $30 for every day while it’s impounded. For me this would ruin my day, but this car was the man’s home and the fine was a full week’s income. Measures like this, which are an irritant for most of us, are the end of the world for people who barely hang on to their sanity.

Thanks to all who’ve made the world a better place by making a donation to help us do what we do. It’s June 30 today, D Day for charitable donations. It is you, our inner circle, who make possible everything that Wayside does to make this world a more loving place. Our deepest, widest, highest thanks.


Donate to Wayside's Winter Appeal here.

Rev Graham Long AM

CEO & Pastor

The Wayside Chapel

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Be sure to follow Graham on Twitter if you have an account; @waysidepastor

Previous Inner Circles


23 June: My cup runneth over

16 June: Injecting some joy

9 June: At the end of the line

2 June: Lots of perspiration and a touch of inspiration

26 May: Swimming against the tide

19 May: Every 7 days but not weakly

12 May: I once was blind

5 May: A place to belong

28 April: Lest we forget

21 April: I've seen into the abyss

14 April: Colourful language

7 April: Poetic licence

31 March: Happy in the Cross

24 March: Easter

17 March: A party mix

10 March: The intimacy of everything

3 March: An unusual look

25 February: He ain't heavy

18 February: Tears of laughter and sadness

11 February: Wisdom is a tricky business

4 February: A wave from The Wayside Chapel

28 January: Some long distance loving

21 January: No time for judgement


17 December: Last note for 2015

10 December: Sanity Clause if coming to town

3 December: It's all about the presence

26 November: The joy of not knowing

19 November: The curse of perfectionism

12 November: To speak is to act

5 November: My cup runneth over

29 October: Prophet and loss

22 October: Finding yourself in a magical team

15 October: A silly question

8 October: Surprised by the joy

1 October: Being dead right

24 September: A day by the Wayside

17 September: It's a gold rush

10 September: The psychology of onions

3 September: Life comes from without

27 August: Surprised by the beautiful

20 August: Light shining through the cracks

13 August: A matter of balance

6 August: Recognising a gift

30 July: Your weakly note

23 July: 'A thing' from the Wayside

16 July: The future is calling

9 July: In love with some Dame

2 July: Better days ahead

25 June: Something funny, something beautiful

18 June: Seeing what's there

11 June: Amazing mates

4 June: There's a time and a place

28 May: The weight and the joy of being a neighbour

21 May: You're invited

14 May: Laughing, lying and loving

7 May: The awesome in the ordinary

30 April: Wayside light

23 April: Priceless gifts, freely given

16 April: Good news from the Wayside is great news

9 April: Awesome

2 April: Easter by the Wayside

26 March: Thankful for little things

19 March: A few minutes in the cross

12 March: Seeing what isn't there

5 March : A tour like no other

26 February: Tough love

19 February: Puffing or building

12 February: The two shall become two

5 February: Chest pains

29 January: Shear joy

22 January 2015: Fully alive

15 January 2015: Blessed interruptions

8 January 2015: A glimpse of glory


18 December 2014: Christmas hat in hand

11 December 2014: A little season of goodwill

4 December 2014: There was nothing silent about that night

27 November 2014: It's not about feeling better

20 November 2014: Gathering Moss

13 November 2014: Love the land, love the people

6 November 2014: The power of presence

30 October 2014: Paralysed by presence

23 October 2014: The joy of sight

16 October 2014: The best medicine

9 October 2014: Who would have guessed?

2 October 2014: There's no such thing as a terrorist

21 August: Saving souls

14 August: Squeaking out

7 August: A time for turning

31 July: You're okay

24 July: Happy tears

17 July: Let's aim higher

10 July: Gristle and good

3 July: The joy of not knowing

26 June: If not now, when? If not me, who?

12 June: Longing for riches

5 June: When you least expect it

22 May: Finding home

15 May: Flying

8 May: Tests, triumps and tissues

1 May: Skuse the French

24 April: Lifting the curtain

17 April: Collective love

10 April: Cardiac arrest

3 April: Awe struck

27 March: You're invited to something special

20 March: Rather a prohet than a loss

13 March: It's all happening at the wayside

6 March: Love makes all the difference

27 February: What goes around

20 February: The joy of being empty handed

13 February: Loving the growth spurts

6 February: Mighty glad to be back by the wayside

23 January: Some criminals have class

16 January: Wonderful surprises

9 January: Ready, set


19 December: Thanks for an awesome year

12 December: Mission and wishin'

5 December: The ups and downs and all is well

28 November: Kissed by the community

21 November: Our cup runneth over

14 November: A revelation from wayside

7 November: When excrement happens

31 October: I am therefore I think

24 October: We are surrounded by heroes

17 October: When you least suspect

26 September: A wayside wobbly

19 September: Knowing a gift

12 September: Advancing at the retreat

5 September: A little dose of good

29 August: Fighting with a feather

22 August: The boom is just beginning

15 August: True riches

8 August: Small is beautiful

1 August: Sensitive people miss all the best views

25 July: A whole lot going on at wayside

18 July: Kings Cross a place of courage

27 June: Holy ground

20 June: You cannot take what can only be given



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