Interfaith September 2014

An initiative of the UCA National Assembly Working Group on Relations with Other Faiths
interfaith sep 2014
In September congregations within the Uniting Church in Australia are encouraged to create a community of hospitality, conversation and friendship with people of all faiths throughout their neighbourhood.

We are warmly invited to explore and celebrate the development of these friendships in the presence of diversity and difference through:

  • Interfaith September resources for ministry agents
  • resources for worship, themed for each Sunday throughout the month
  • a ‘tool box’ to assist congregations with activities
  • a dvd to facilitate interfaith engagement

These are all available for download:

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Safe Church Awareness Workshops

safe church

Equipping our church communities to be safe places through growing awareness and understanding of safety and protection.

Who needs to attend ?
Pastoral leaders, Elders/Church Council, Ministers, Children and Youth program leaders and helpers, including SRE/Scripture in schools. Refresher Workshops are for those who have attended a Safe Church Awareness Workshop before and are due for a refresher/update (every 3 years) – more about the refresher option trial below.

Workshops for Canberra Region (to be held in Queanbeyan and Narooma)
NSW/ACT Synod Uniting Mission and Education (UME) are holding the following workshops for Canberra Region Presbytery in October. To assist UME with preparation, please register with them by Tuesday 7th October.  Online: Email: safechurch[at]  Phone: 02 8838 8912.

Saturday 18th October - Queanbeyan Uniting Church Cnr Crawford St & Rutledge St, Queanbeyan Workshop (9.30am-3.30pm); Refresher Only (9.30am-1pm)
Sunday 19th October - Queanbeyan Uniting Church Cnr Crawford St & Rutledge St, Queanbeyan Refresher Only (12.30-3.30pm)
Friday 31st October - Narooma Uniting Church 134 Wagonga St / Princes Highway, Narooma Workshop (9.30am-3.30pm); Refresher Only (9.30am-1pm)

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Love your neighbour

The Synod Weekly Newsletter is distributed each Friday. To subscribe click here. The issue sent out Friday 29th August contained the following article. The full text of the ‘Love for 100 Years’ statement spoken of in the article, is available at the website  where supporters can also add their names to the list of signatories.

We'll love MuslimsUniting Church leaders from across Australia gathered with over 100 interfaith and ecumenical friends in a statement of solidarity with Australia’s Muslim community.

Assembly President Rev. Prof Andrew Dutney spoke to supporters in launching the ‘We’ll Love Muslims 100 Years’ statement at Lakemba Mosque on 22 August.

“Recent public statements and media coverage about Muslim-Australians in some sections of the Australian media have been inflammatory and divisive,” said Rev. Prof Dutney. “We recognise the deep concern and hurt this is causing to our Muslim friends and the risks these kind of generalisations present to social harmony and cohesion.”

“In our multi-faith society, Jesus’ call to love your neighbour means that Christians are called to meet, befriend and care about our neighbours who are Muslim. Because of this, we can’t just stand by if they are unfairly insulted or marginalised.”

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Anti-Poverty Week: 12-18 October

Anti-Poverty Week will be held between 12 – 18 October this year, and provides an opportunity for congregations and communities to focus on the issues of poverty, both internationally and here in Australia. We’d like to encourage you to get involved.

This could involve making poverty a focus for your service, having specific activities that focus on poverty during this week, or getting involved in the UnitingCare NSW/ACT anti-poverty week campaign that is focussing on children and young people.

Resources – download here: UnitingCare NSW/ACT have pulled together a range of resources and links that could be useful. Included are six resource sheets followed by four separate attachments: An Economy of Life Resolution 2009; Economy of Life Worship Resources (prayers); Beyond Poverty Reduction – An Economy for Life; The Problem of Poverty and Abundance.

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Rev. Gordon Ramsay* kneading bread dough in a practical demonstration of Matthew 13:33, (30 Aug 2014).

Rev. Gordon Ramsay* kneading bread dough in a practical demonstration of Matthew 13:33, (30 Aug 2014).

Kippax Uniting Church at Holt, ACT, has been studying the story of the yeast in the flour, as told in the Bible story in Matthew 13:33, during the whole month of August. This has been as a result of a period of discernment by the Church Council, and other committees at Kippax, that has culminated in the Annual General Meeting on 30 August 2014.

There is no radical change of direction for Kippax, but a realisation that we are a “community of communities” (individuals and families; groups, activities, and functions of our church and UnitingCare Kippax; community users of our facilities; etc) bound by the yeast of God’s love, like the flour in a loaf is ‘made’ by the yeast.

So August 2014 has been a time when yeast has been the topic of conversations amongst us, and a way of remembering our achievements and leavening the future, giving us a structure for how we approach the years ahead.

Note: * Rev. Gordon Ramsay is actually quite able to joke about his namesake, the chef. :-)