August 2017 Crosslight out now

On 19 July 2013, then-Prime Minister Kevin Rudd banned all asylum seekers who arrived by boat from ever settling in Australia. Candlelight vigils were held nationally in July to mark four years of cruelty and death in Australia’s offshore detention centres. Click here for the full story.

All of the August Crosslight stories are available 

Letting Go

By Deb Bennett

In western society death is rarely discussed, perhaps because it stirs the deepest of emotions and raises the most profound existential questions. So it is to be expected that when the Victorian government introduces a Bill into parliament later this year to allow voluntary assisted dying in the state it will generate an intensity of ...

Languages matter

The theme for this year’s NAIDOC week was ‘Our Languages Matter’. It celebrated the richness and resilience of First Peoples’ languages and the important role of language in connecting Aboriginal people to their cultural identity.

Michael Walsh is a senior research fellow at the Centre for Australian Languages and Honorary Associate at the Department of Linguistics, University ...

Lobbyist sit-in secures meeting with minister

Environment Minister Josh Frydenberg has agreed to meet with faith leaders opposing the Carmichael coal mine after a six-hour sit-in protest of prayer and worship was staged on Tuesday at his office building in east Melbourne.

“It’s a significant win,” Fairfield Uniting Church minister Rev Alex Sangster, said. Ms Sangster was one of the core group of eight ...

Story of Noah’s arc


When Monash University student Noah Yan first set foot in Melbourne 18 months ago, he did not know anyone in the city. Most of his family and friends were back home in China and it was the first time he lived by himself.

Just across the street from where Noah stayed was a red brick ...

Table talk

Review by Tom Allen

Book | Tales from the Table: Stories from the Indigenous Hospitality House | Various Authors

Hospitality is a rich word. It is a concept, it is a practice, it’s complex and simple, profound and mundane. Tales from the Table: Stories from the Indigenous Hospitality House makes this rich, big, slippery word come ...

Forty years of fighting for justice


In its first Statement to the Nation, the newly minted Uniting Church declared it would seek to rectify injustice wherever it saw it and vowed to stamp out racism and poverty.

In the fairly brief statement, 143 of the 509 words – or better than one in every five – were devoted to either justice ...

Historic day for new UCA society

Historians and archivists from various synods came together in June to launch the Uniting Church National History Society.

The landmark occasion was a highlight of the National Uniting Church History Conference, hosted by the South Australian UC Historical Society.

It was held at Pilgrim Uniting Church in Adelaide over three days as attendees reflected ...

Telling tale

Review by Garth Jones

TV | The Handmaid’s Tale

Marketing material for SBS On Demand’s The Handmaid’s Tale depicts a young, disfigured woman sheathed in a demure scarlet cloak, her bonnet evoking 17th century Puritanism.

Paraphrasing 1 Corinthians 7:4, the poster starkly declares “your body is no longer your own”.

Based on Margaret Atwood’s 1985 ...

Familiar stories

Review by Charles Gibson

Book | Known to Social Services | Freya Barrington

This novel by Freya Barrington is not, in fact, written by Freya Barrington.

Barrington is the pen name used by a senior child protection social worker in a local authority in England. And while it is a work of fiction, Barrington clearly draws ...

Radical conservation


Book | The World-Ending Fire |  Wendell Berry

Wendell Berry is a novelist, poet and essayist, a self-described ‘crank’, a critic of technology and the idealism that comes with it, a Kentucky farmer who uses horses instead of a tractor, and a writer who uses a pencil rather than a computer.


Putting First Peoples first

I recently had the privilege of attending the President’s Conference in Darwin. The conference focused on what it might mean for the church to acknowledge the sovereignty of the First Peoples of this country and to seek a treaty with them. The theme arose from a commitment at the last Assembly meeting to explore the implications of Treaty and ...