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L-r: Pastor Kurt Langmmead of Lightning Ridge with daughter Lydia, Pastor George Mann of Bourke says the challenges of 2022 have unified the community, Rev George Ferguson of Walgett reminds us to seek Jesus this Christmas. Photos: TWH/contributed

Tricia Duffield

Hope for better times is the message at Christmas from the mayors and church leaders of Bourke, Brewarrina, and Walgett, as another tumultuous year draws to a close.

For many people, 2022 has been a year of hardship and challenges, but community leaders have praised the resilient spirit of our towns, faced with the ongoing challenges of COVID, wet weather conditions and one of the biggest floods recorded.

Bourke Mayor, Councillor Barry Hollman said he was grateful for the unswerving dedication of those who rallied yet again to see the community through tough times.

“On behalf of Bourke Shire Council, I would like to thank our volunteers, police, State Emergency Service, government organisations and council staff who have given their time throughout the past year,” Councillor Hollman said.

“These people have seen us through the impact of drought, then COVID and now the floods and we are all very grateful for their efforts.

“I would like to wish all our residents a Merry Christmas, a healthy, happy New Year - and I would encourage everyone to shop locally and support our business community.

“To the community I wish peace and goodwill in 2023.”

Brewarrina Mayor, Councillor Vivian Slack-Smith, said Brewarrina had faced a particularly tough time in flood isolation but she said now was the time to enjoy the spirit of Christmas.

“Now that our roads are all open, just about, everyone can do what Christmas is all about - spend precious time with friends and family,” she said.

“I especially want to thank all the people who kept our community safe during the floods - our council workers, the volunteers and the emergency services who did so much during such difficult times, and now I hope we can all enjoy the good blessings of the festive season.

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