On International Women’s Day (Thursday 8 March), members of the Uniting Church in Australia, Queensland Synod share their thoughts on what it means to be a woman of faith.
Rev Melanie Wheeley is Minister at Moggill Uniting Church.
I started going to church as a teenager, it was my parent’s idea of an ethical upbringing which in hindsight is really funny, as I was the only one in my family who ever went to church. My faith journey began as a young teenager trying to make sense of her world, but what I discovered was a model of love that I had never known before both in the nature and character of who God is and also in my church community. I grew to love the expression of authentic Christian Community and had a desire to help others to find hope for their future in the same way I found mine.
Becoming a minister in many ways didn’t feel like a choice, I simply got to a point in my life where if I wanted to continue to live in this close, dynamic life with God, then I had to go for it. Today I am Minister at Moggill Uniting Church and am loving the adventure that is ministry. It’s tough sometimes, you wear many different hats as a minister (team builder, preacher, pastoral carer, administrator, cleaner…). But it’s also rewarding when you see others take hold of their God given potential and make a difference in the world – nothing beats that! I love to be in a place that challenges my limits and ministry does that.
If you are thinking of ministry, know that isn’t for the feint hearted. However, also know that the God who has led you this far will never leave you or forsake you and will see you through every challenge and hurdle.