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State of the Synod

HOW are we, the Uniting Church in Queensland, travelling towards our Vision 2020?

This is a good question to ask at just over a year since we gathered for the 29th Synod meeting.

THE role of Moderator provides me with an opportunity to visit many places.

Some places have enthusiastically embraced the call to be Uniting in Christ, acting with love, living with hope, witnessing in faith, and working for justice.

As I journey around the Queensland Synod I tell stories of the variety of ways different parts of the church are implementing our Vision 2020.

It becomes a two-way process as I listen to people share their stories and initiatives.

In the Mary Burnett Presbytery, the Central Burnett congregation identified that their members are already engaged in building authentic community relationships.

Gayndah runs an op shop, Central Burnett hosted a day camp with the help of the Redlands congregations and in Mundubbera a congregation member organises a monthly market day.

I like to think of our current five priority directions set by the 29th Synod as hat hooks for the work of God.

When Synod Standing Committee meets we ask how each decision fits with these priority directions.

Collaboration between Trinity Theological College and the Synod office has continued the Stretching Faith young adult theology events. Moreton Rivers Presbytery is now hosting a monthly Stretching Faith event.

This contributes to forming active and accountable disciples of Jesus who are confident in sharing their faith and complements what is happening in local congregations.

Blue Care has developed a state-wide property strategy and the UnitingCare Board is currently recruiting new members.

Some congregations have not yet explored how the Together on the way journey can help them with their local mission planning and how they are connected with the whole of the Uniting Church in Queensland.

I invite you to make the link between what you are already doing and the Vision 2020 captured in the wheel above.

A church council might ask: How are we promoting a discipline of prayer and spirituality and what are we doing locally to be sustainable in our mission?

Oxley Uniting Church used the Together on the way balloons in its anniversary worship celebration to highlight the call statements.

Bald Hills Bracken Ridge Uniting Church has begun exploring what it means to be Together on the way, enriching community as part of their season of intentional interim ministry with Rev Lynne Davis.

A member of Middle Ridge Uniting Church in Toowoomba crafted a stunning patchwork banner depicting the five call statements: Uniting in Christ; acting with love, living with hope, witnessing in faith, working for justice. She caught sight of the vision held within the call statement and then worked to understand it in a way that she could communicate it to others through her craft.

What could you do in your context?

To read the whole State of the Synod see the Together on the way website.

Rev Kaye Ronalds is the Moderator of The Uniting Church in Australia, Queensland Synod