Sharon Footit

A spiritual odyssey – Sharon

Born: Carlton 1952- lived in Box Hill – youngest of 6 children

1958-63 Went to Springfield Road Primary School.  Moved to Croydon at the end of 63

1964 – 1969 Attended Croydon High School – met Greg 1st day of school, engaged to be married in end of Matriculation year.  It was during this time that I experienced the voice of the Holy Spirit in my life, in a vision that sent me looking at the Christian Faith for guidance and direction. 

1970 – After conversion, but without deep knowledge of the faith I now held onto, the Holy Spirit's voice continued to guide me.  My faith was based on hearing and responding to the experience of God's presence, through still small voice within, or in dreams and visions.

1972 – Married Greg – Supported him financially while he worked on Diploma of Art and Design.  Both of us committed to Christ, and involved in Charismatic renewal within Anglican Church we attended.  Greg started as art teacher at Lilydale Technical School; we moved to Lilydale, started family; Melanie born in 1976.

1977-78 – Great upheaval in our lives, New Years' Day 1978, Greg was struck by lightning while working on my brother's house in Anglesea. Recovery slow, many hurdles, faith continued to sustain us.

1979- Ben, our son, was born in March.

1977-86 – Worshipped at Lilydale Anglican, heard the call of God to commit our lives to being leaders in the Anglican Church. 

1986 – Greg Ordained Deacon and appointed Deacon-in-Charge of St. Augustine's, Moreland, so we moved to Brunswick.   This began an amazing journey for me.  I began studying at Ridley Theological College, was asked to lead services at Moreland, and then asked to preach and finally to go for selection to be ordained.  It was a journey into the unknown, but I felt God's hand on my life and each decision that was made. 

1990 –Ben became ill, and was diagnosed with a brain tumour  This experience was the ‘watershed' of faith and understanding that I now hold to, particularly in understanding ‘Job', and faith that cries out in need.

1993 – Ordained Deacon, and appointed to St. John's, Bentleigh as Assistant Curate.

1994- Appointed with Greg to St. John's, North Frankston and St. Luke's, Carrum Downs.  I was to head up the church plant at St Luke's.   It was here that my passion for listening to the Spirit of God, in utilizing God's creative energies began in earnest, mainly in the dramatic arts.  I set up a drama group with teenagers, and part of our worship each week, included dramatic presentation, using humour, or challenge to draw out the point of the theme for that day.  At this time, the material we used was written by others, as it was at Moreland, but started the process.

1998 – Appointed, with Greg to Holy Trinity, Oakleigh.  I was responsible for the contemporary worship leadership, and for the ‘Special Event Worship contexts' of Christmas and Easter.  In this I learned to listen to that ‘still small voice of the Holy Spirit', and the creative direction it often took me on, when reflecting on the next Easter or Christmas Service.  These became a collaboration between Greg and myself

2001-2012- Christmas drama's and musical presentations, for both CRE and Carol's services, most using material resourced from others.

2001– A Good Friday reflection that was resourced by other peoples' stories and poems.  This led us to think more deeply on how we could use the work of other artists.

2002 – Good Friday – Encounter with Matthew -An Artist, who had a sad experience of mental illness and who had died as a young man, had painted some works that were stored at Reservoir Anglican, with no notes on their meaning.  We were loaned these paintings, and Greg used his skills as an artist and a theologian to put together reflections that made sense of the body of work.  With the family's approval, we presented these reflections, and paintings at OAC.

2006 – Good Friday - One of the members of OAC reflected poetically on Mark's presentation of the cross, and we used these poems as the focus of our reflective service.

2007- Good Friday/Easter Morning reflection ‘In the Footsteps of Jesus'.  While Greg painted 15 small paintings, while I wrote stories, and we both reflected on poems, inspired by the work of Katerina Whitlely, detailed in the book "Walking the Way of Sorrows".

2008 –broadened the focus to include Thursday, Friday & Sunday reflections.  Good Friday reflected upon three activities BETRAYAL, TRUTH & PRIORITIES, using a DVD presentation of an enactment of the Passion of Matthew, and accompanying this with acapella choir pieces for inspiration of an English translation of an excerpt of Allegri's Miserere (Psalm 51) and ‘Ah Holy Jesus, music by Johann S. Bach from his St. Matthew's Passion. 

2009 -"The Passion According to Mark" was a collaborative work, where I engaged Greg in completing 7 paintings reflecting on the passion narrative of Mark's gospel, while I wrote poems on the same passages.  Slides of the work were shown in the Good Friday and Sunday Services, and the work was displayed in Liddiard Gallery for the school holidays, where people could see the exhibition.

2010- Good Friday -Used some of the music of ‘Godspell' to tell the story of the cross.

2011 – ‘Ragman' a story by Walter Wangerin Jr, was re-imagined as a drama, to reflect the healing aspects of Isaiah 53:1-13.  This entailed the writing of the script from the story, while others designed and worked on props and staging.

2012 – Wanted to enable the people of OAC to participate in the process of ‘Sacred Reading' Greg and I had been using to reflect on Easter, so we invited anyone to come and be trained to reflect on Scripture, and listen to the Spirit of God in a creative way, to engage in paintings of what was revealed, and then to reflect their journey.  The works, from Palm Sunday to Good Friday became our Easter event, with small paintings done by the children in our Parish celebrating the Easter Sunday.

2013 – Wrote a drama that placed the story of Christmas into modern context; presented at 11.00pm service. It was first serious writing for a Christmas event.

2013 – "In the Shadow of the Cross" Wrote stories (6 in all) of people who were mentioned in gospel as knowing Jesus, and had them tell their story, and what it was then like to be in the Shadow of the Cross.  Others then worked on a huge cross to fill the ‘sanctuary area' and Greg sculptured a 5 metre Jesus to hang on that cross. 

2014 – A service of reflection on the life and death of Jesus Christ, through the music of M. Card.  Added to this music, we dramatized through mime, and actions that occurred to depict the message as the choir sang.

2015 –Using a dramatized version of segments of the story by C.S. Lewis ‘the Lion, the witch and the Wardrobe' we told the story of Mark's Passion.  This utilized my editing skills, and many at OAC working on props, acting, staging, and engineering to enable story to come alive at the Good Friday, and Easter Morning services.  This was our last event at OAC.

2016 – Commission: "Alpha and Omega"– Front cover of The Melbourne Anglican.  Greg & I used ‘Sacred Reading' process, and came up with design that included the hands of all the congregations at GWAC.  It reflected upon John 19:14-16,28-20:9, then 20:19-22 & Revelation 1:8 & 21:5b,6a. 

2017 –Reflecting on John's gospel account, Greg and I reflected, using ‘Sacred Reading' process, to come up with a series of 7 paintings surrounding the cup image –the cup of suffering/cup of wrath, which Jesus prepares to drink (John 18:11 – "Shall I not drink from the cup of suffering the Father has given me?"  This again was a collaborative work for us, as we read the scriptures, and allowed the creative process to be engaged and shared our ideas and further scriptures that opened up the concepts.  This became the ‘Good Friday Reflection' at GWAC for that year.  The paintings then stayed in place over the simple cross for a number of months.

2018 – RE-imagining ‘In the Shadow of the Cross' for a new community, I wrote another story (the 12 year old daughter of Jairus).  These 7 stories, and a re-presenting of a new cross, and the original sculpture became the Good Friday reflection at GWAC.  This was our last event at GWAC.




Glory of Jesus
Wonder of Creation

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