Four Synod inspirations

I was inspired by the recent Synod meeting at Box Hill Town Hall – all five days of it!

By the end, I was tired. Very tired! But I felt honoured to have been part of it all.

Here are four particularly inspiring themes that came to mind:

I was inspired by the ...

Walking the walk


Recently my wife and I walked part of the Camino, The Way, to the Spanish city of Santiago de Compostela – a city which has been destination for pilgrims for almost a thousand years. We were not pilgrims for extended weeks.

We walked for a week along the Portuguese Camino – still ...

Always on the Way

IT is the week after the 2017 Synod. Once again we were reminded in a number of reports and speeches from the floor that the Church is on a journey. We are a pilgrim people, ‘always on the way’.

The theme of the church as a pilgrim people emerged strongly in the early decades of the Christian movement.


What is the Uniting Church for?

This might seem a strange question to ask. After all, our very name tells us: we’re uniting. Yes, this tells us something about the ecumenical context of our origins. We are one product of the 20th century pursuit of visible church unity.

For a while, our existence was something of a beacon to other churches – a sign of ...

One in Christ

the last couple of weeks I have found myself reflecting on Paul’s statement in Galatians (3:26-28) that through Christ we are all made children of God through faith. Divisions we construct are no longer the categories by which Christians are to view each other for we are all one in Christ.

We often act ...

Care, discipline and courageous conversations – effective pastoral leadership

Is there a difference between pastoral care and pastoral oversight or leadership? I think so; however, I am aware that many assume both terms refer to the same thing.

For our life as a vibrant church I think we need a clear distinction between pastoral care and pastoral leadership. The latter is a requirement ...

Powering up the Network

On Saturday 15 July it was my privilege to join about 60 people from the Banyule Network of Uniting Churches for their retreat day focused on mission planning.

The day was built around three key sessions:

  • seeking to strengthen understanding of God’s mission
  • exploring a refreshing of mission priorities
  • exploring future ...

Liberated by God’s grace

The 12th assembly of the Lutheran World Federation was held from the 10-16 May and I was privileged to participate in it.

This assembly brought together over 309 delegates representing its 145 member churches in 98 countries, as well as many others totalling 800 attendees. This year marks the 500th anniversary of the Reformation and the Assembly, ...

Love and grace in a world of fear


But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed;
perplexed, but not in despair;
persecuted, but not abandoned;
struck down, but not destroyed.
We always carry around in our body ...

What women hear


Over the past month, Christian women have flocked to Twitter to share their experiences of #ThingsOnlyChristianWomenHear.

The conversation started on 19 April with a tweet from Christian author Sarah Bessey and quickly snowballed as women eagerly unburdened themselves.

The tweets addressed issues such as modesty and objectification, abuse and rape in the church, racism, and ...

God’s invitation

As a leader of congregational worship, I typically speak the familiar words of greeting to the gathered community saying:

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.

As we again approach Pentecost on 4 June, the third part of Paul’s words from the ...

Change is in the nature of our union

When I look at the photos of the inauguration, I barely recognise the current Uniting Church. In the photos, the Church is represented largely by a group of older white men. The only person of colour on the stage was a guest of the World Council of Churches. The majority of female faces are schoolgirls in a choir.

While ...