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Assembly: more than one issue

WHILE SEXUALITY and leadership might be the only issue reported on radio, television and in newspapers the Assembly will be considering a number of other matters. These discussions will include:

• calling the Uniting Church to adopt lifestyles which have a minimal impact on global warming;

• encouraging synods, presbyteries and agencies to hold discussions about enhancing the practical expression of the covenant between Congress and the rest of the church;

• allowing synods and presbyteries to tell the Assembly when they feel a decision is “vital to the life of the church”;

• offering maximum support to the Evangelical Christian Church in the Land of Papua as Papuan culture faces marginalisation through transmigration to, and heavy-handed military action in, West Papua;

• considering changes that would allow for better support and more guidance for a full-time President;

• endorsing a document called Being Church Differently, that will help foster faith development outside the structures of “normal” congregations;

• adopting a statement on human rights which would commit the church to ongoing assessment of Australian Government policy and practice against the international human rights instruments;

• considering a report from the Specified Ministries Task Group which proposes to amalgamate the existing ministries of lay pastor, community minister and youth worker into one new ministry called the “Specified Ministry of Pastor” to be in operation by 2008.

Marjorie Lewis-Jones from Insights provided this summary