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A diverse church celebrates

A trumpet fanfare and procession with children, balloons, robed ministers and massed choir opened the celebration of the 25th Queensland Synod of the Uniting Church.

Uniting Church members from across Queensland joined the outgoing Moderator Rev Allan Kuchler as he welcomed and inducted the new Moderator Rev Dr David Pitman.

Local aboriginal elder Graham Dylan welcomed the gathering on behalf of the traditional owners of the land in his traditional language.

The words of the service was signed for the deaf and the Gospel was read in Tongan by Rev Hedley Fihaki and from the Braille Bible by 14 year old Haydn Smith.

Prayers were offered in Korean, Indonesian, Samoan, Taiwanese and English as the celebration offered an image of a multi-generational, multicultural and inclusive church.

Dr Pitman promised loyalty to Jesus Christ, to serve the whole church with compassion and patience and to work for justice, peace and wholeness for all and sang the words of the song, "Brother, sister let me serve you" to the assembled congregation.

The outgoing Moderator presented the modatorial scarf, the Moderator’s chaplains a pectoral cross, the Synod Secretary invited Dr Pitman to sign the Synod Bible and welcomes were given by the Uniting Church President Rev Dr Dean Drayton and President of the Lutheran Church in Australia Pastor Tim Jaensch on behalf of other denominations.

The congregation, choir and band joined in the singing of the hymn "Renewing the passion… hearing God’s call" written especially for the celebration by Queensland Uniting Church Minister and songwriter Rev David MacGregor.