Friday, 26 July 2019

Synod Stories

The Uniting Church Synods along Australia's east cost held their Synod meetings recently. The meetings saw a number of key decisions for the life of the church.

Project Plenty

The Uniting Church in Australia, Queensland Synod launched Project Plenty at its 34th Synod in Session held at the Alexandra Park Conference Centre on the Sunshine Coast in May 2019.

With the title of Project Plenty, this is an 18-month process underpinned by the intent for the Uniting Church to be “for the world”—contributing to a stronger, healthier, more vibrant Queensland community as part of our understanding of God’s mission in the world.

The last time the Queensland Synod undertook an intentional discernment process to develop a shared vision was in 2010. Since then, the world in which we live and work and participate in God’s mission hasn’t stopped changing and evolving – and nor has our church.

Consultation sessions have commenced across the state with more planned throughout the remainder of 2019.

To find out more, watch the Project Plenty introductory video.

The Living Church

NSW/ACT Synod met at Knox Grammar in Wahroonga from 5 to 7 July. 

The event had over 350 members from across the Synod.

As a Uniting Church – a Living church – the Synod committed to:

Supporting existing, growing new and renewing our missional focus in congregations and service agencies through Growing Healthy Congregations. This was underpinned by a Focus on Growth proposal.

Equipping and empowering disciples for missional leadership and ministry by Developing Vital Ministry. This was underpinned by a renewed commitment to Pulse, Saltbush and a Renewed Vision for Formation proposal.

Serving, leading and advocating with our congregations and communities to create a world that is inclusive, just and connected through Transformative Community Engagement. This was underpinned by the Climate Action Strategy and Treaty Makaratta Statement from the Heart proposals.

Stories on proposals and other Synod reporting can be found here.

All the video resources from the NSWACT Synod, including Jane Fry’s introduction video, keynotes from Jon Owen (Karina Kreminski and Joshua Gilbert will be added shortly), Bible Studies from Rev. Peter Walker and all the evening events are available here.

You can find galleries of photos on the NSWACT Synod Facebook page here.

A New Thing

The 14th Synod of Victoria and Tasmania saw a new Moderator installed and tackled profound questions about faith and the end of life.

The major item of discussion for the 270 Synod members who gathered in Melbourne from 5-9 July was the Church’s response to Victoria’s Voluntary Assisted Dying legislation.

The VicTas Synod decided that “exploring, accessing and conscientiously objecting to VAD were all within the range of faithful Christian responses”. You can read more about the decision in the Moderator’s pastoral letter or click here to read the unconfirmed minute of the Synod’s resolution.

The Synod’s theme, chosen by new Moderator Denise Liersch, was from Isaiah 43:19: “I’m doing a new thing, now it springs up, do you perceive it?”

Other highlights included the launch of Synod’s Disability Action Plan and a special acknowledgment of NAIDOC Week. For a detailed wrap of the event click here or to see a video recap, click here.