Author Archives: Mardi Lumsden

Searching for the real Shalom

(L–R) Shalom principal Chris England, deputy principal Sandy Hindmarsh, students Dyontae, Kiarna, Djuvaan and registrar Jodi McLean. Photo: David Oxenburgh

Uniting Church school Shalom Christian College has been in the news lately after participating in a recent Royal Commission public hearing. Mardi Lumsden discovers the school behind the headlines. As the dust settles on another school year and a small group of students from Shalom Christian College in Townsville celebrate the end of Year 12, they may not realise the ...

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What the church needs to learn from Pokémon GO

Pokémon GO is taking the world by storm. Photo: Pokémon GO YouTube channel, Niantic

The augmented reality app sweeping the world is sending a lot of people to church. Mardi Lumsden offers some lessons the church needs to learn from the phenomenon. Your buildings are landmarks, but you need to get out more PokéStops, gyms etc. are decided by a database of user-supplied data created for a previous game by the same company. It uses players’ ...

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Expanded: Rev Dr Geoff Thompson and disturbing the Basis of Union

Rev Dr Geoff Thompson at the recent launch of his book, Trinity Theological Library, Brisbane. Photo by Mardi Lumsden.

Here in Queensland to promote his new book, Disturbing Much, Disturbing Many: Theology provoked by the Basis of Union, Rev Dr Geoff Thompson sat down with Journey to delve deeper into issues of faith, society and the Uniting Church in Australia’s foundational document, the Basis of Union. Journey: If there’s one takeaway from the book, what is it? Geoff: The ...

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Christ in the classroom

Megan Thomson leads RI at Oxley State School in June. Photo by Mardi Lumsden.

Each week hundreds of Christian, Baha’i, Buddhist, Jewish and Muslim volunteers provide religious instruction to students in Queensland state primary schools. Should objections to one particular program lead to unprecedented intervention from Education Queensland? Mardi Lumsden explores. In early June, religious instruction (RI) at Windsor State School in Brisbane’s north was suspended for the third time since 2014. Principal Matthew ...

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32nd Synod closes reflecting on beauty

The 32nd Synod's closing service reflects on beauty. Photo by Mardi Lumsden.

The 32nd Synod of the Uniting Church in Queensland has closed how it begun, in a celebration of the rich cultural diversity of the church. Rev David MacGregor opened closing worship by acknowledging the traditional owners of the land on which the Synod gathered, the Gubbi Gubbi people. Stillness descended over the meeting as members watched a short video called ...

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Rebuilding finances for mission

Ralph Collins and Peter Cranna at the 32nd Synod. Photo by Uniting Communications.

Finance, Investment and Property (FIP) Board chairperson Ralph Collins and Finance and Property Services (FAPS) director Peter Cranna addressed the 32nd Synod saying the Synod office’s finances are in a stable condition. The Synod Reserve Fund (SRF) is a reserve to cover unexpected costs or meet ongoing expenses if all other income ceased. This fund is being rebuilt, with a ...

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Living the covenant: room to grow in Indigenous connections

Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Christian Congress chair Rev Dennis Corowa at the 32nd Synod. Photo by Uniting Communications.

Several Aboriginal and Islander Uniting Church members told 32nd Synod members of the challenges and opportunities for the church in their communities. Rev Dennis Corowa, chairperson of the Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Christian Congress and the Calvary Presbytery in Queensland, said the Uniting Church has a long history in supporting and encouraging Indigenous people. He made particular reference to the ...

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Service recognised in Moderator’s Medals

Five recipients of the 2016 Moderator's Community Service Medals with moderator Rev David Baker (far left) and UnitingCare Queensland CEO Anne Cross (far right). Photo by Holly Jewell.

Since 1999, the Queensland Synod has recognised the outstanding and invaluable commitment of volunteers to the Uniting Church’s mission in community services through the Moderator’s Community Service Medal. The medals are coordinated by UnitingCare Queensland and were today presented by CEO Anne Cross and moderator Rev David Baker. “This year we received 41 notable nominations—all of which exceptionally deserving—so I’m ...

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Synod agrees moderator can nominate as moderator-elect

Members participate in the ballot process. Photo: Holly Jewell

The first full day of business at the 32nd Synod was full of meaty reports and proposals. General secretary Robert Packer and Governance, Nomination and Remuneration Committee chairperson Andrew McBryde presented the Synod Standing Committee’s proposal that the Synod allow the current moderator’s name to go forward in the ballot for moderator-elect. It was noted by many that this proposal ...

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Synod starts with a purpose

Deaconess Terani Lima, Rev Dennis Corowa and moderator Rev David Baker take part in a Samoan symbolic time of confession. Photo: Ben Rogers

The 32nd Synod meeting of the Uniting Church in Queensland began on 20 May 2016 as Rev Dennis Corowa, Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Christian Congress and Calvary Presbytery chairperson, acknowledged the traditional owners of the land at Alexandra Headland, the Gubbi Gubbi people. “We pay our respects to elders past and present and say prayers with all those in the future,” ...

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