Two views on Voluntary Assisted Dying and the Church

Victoria’s Voluntary Assisted Dying (VAD) Act came into effect on 19 June. This law provides a framework for people who are dying and suffering to take a medication prescribed by a doctor that will bring about their death at a time they choose.

It will not be mandatory for healthcare practitioners or for health and ...

Voluntary Assisted Dying the big issue for Synod 2019

The upcoming Synod meeting in July will, quite literally, be discussing matters of life and death, and for General Secretary Mark Lawrence this is a welcome change of focus.

That’s understandable considering the tumultuous events and transitions the Church wrestled with in the previous three Synod meetings, which Mark was charged with organising.

“It’s probably fair to ...

Moderator Denise Liersch takes up her leading role

By Stephen Acott

It always pays to try before you buy. Shop around, try on different things, different brands, even if they’re all essentially the same product. Otherwise, how do you know you have exactly what you’re looking for?

The same could be said of faith. You may have been brought up going to ...

Diep Tran and Trang Vo’s epic refugee escape – Double Take

Diep Tran

I was born in 1958 and am the youngest of 10 brothers and sisters. During the Vietnam War we were blessed by living in the very far south of the country, in Rach Soi, because the fighting was mostly in the north and the middle.

However, we were still affected because in 1968, during ...

Breakfast with Jesus is food for the soul – Write of Passage

By Rev Sally Douglas

Jesus said to them “Come and have breakfast.” – John 21.12

I have many favourite passages in the Bible. The whole of Mark’s gospel is one of them. Matthew’s gospel (aside from the gnashing of teeth) is another. I also cherish the ancient hymn fragments embedded in the New Testament, such as the Colossians ...

Julie Perrin’s kind of revelations in her new book Tender

If there is something Julie Perrin would like us to take away from her latest book it is that lessons in grace can happen in the most unexpected places and at the unlikeliest times.

This can even include a highly fraught taxi ride to the hospital to see a hurt loved one.

The Melbourne author’s new work, ...

Community Life survey reveals the state of pray in UCA

The Uniting Church in Victoria and Tasmania is a mix of old and new, a survey sent to all congregations and faith communities in the Synod reveals.

While many of the 52 per cent of congregations that completed the 2017 Community Life Return reported an ageing membership, the survey also showed 50 new faith communities.

These included ...

Why heaven could have wheelchairs – Andy Calder Q&A

What’s your title and when did you begin?

My title is Disability Inclusion Advocate. The position was created in 1995. I had some history working in the disability sector before being ordained so the church wanted to utilise that experience.

It doesn’t sound like you had much experience in the mental health sphere before assuming this role?


Meredith Lake’s award-winning soul focus on history

Learning about the past can open new ways of thinking about the present, something Dr Meredith Lake can personally attest to.

The award-winning historian and Radio National presenter grew up memorising Bible verses and praying at her dinner table in a devout Anglican household in Sydney’s outer suburbs.

She became hooked on the study of history in ...

Uniting Winter Appeal helps bring hope from the ashes

When Felicity was jolted awake at 3am by the fire alarm, smoke was already starting to fill up her bedroom.

“I just knew I had to get out of there,” the 51-year-old single mother says. “I had no time to grab any of my things,” the 51-year-old single mother said.

Thankfully none of Felicity’s three adult children were at home ...

Former TV reporter Jane Phelan takes it one step at a time

By David Southwell

Sitting in class last year, Pilgrim Theological College student Jane Phelan had a question to ask lecturer Sean Winter but found she wasn’t physically able to.

Asking questions was once Jane’s job across a string of prominent TV journalism and talk show roles. However, since suffering a major stroke 26 years ago the once consummate ...