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The crowd at UnitingWomen 2018

We are wonder women

“Welcome to Brisbane!”

With those words, Rev Heather den Houting, General Secretary of the Uniting Church in Australia, Queensland Synod opened the third UnitingWomen Conference.

The event was formally opened by Baringa Kukoyi, who performed a traditional Welcome to Country.

The Hon Di Farmer, Minister for Child Safety, Youth and Women and Minister for Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence in the Queensland Government addressed the 300 women in attendance, paying tribute to the Uniting Church for its commitment to preventing domestic violence.

“It was truly wonderful that at the 15th Assembly of the Uniting Church there was a resolution by consensus to adopt a statement on domestic and family violence,” said Di.

President-elect of the Uniting Church in Australia, Rev Sharon Hollis addressed the crowd.

“It is really a privilege to be in a room with this many women who are really committed and interested in each other, committed to discipleship and committed to growing our faith this weekend,” said Sharon.

“This gathering is all about letting us see in each other humanity, and the image of God in that humanity, in our wonderfulness, in our vulnerability, in our strength, our laughter, our tears and our joy.

“And if we encounter each other like that we will weave such a tapestry of faith, such a tapestry of wisdom, such a tapestry of wonder that we will enrich each other and we will enrich the life of this Uniting Church.”

When asked for her thoughts after the first night, Rev Yvonne McRostie said it was better than she could have ever imagined.

“To have this group of women here, they were the right people to be here, it was a real blessing,” Yvonne said.

Yvonne said Di Farmer was a true highlight for the first night.

“I thought she addressed us with a reality of the issues that face women,” said Yvonne.

When asked what the theme, “Weaving wisdom and wonder” meant to her, Yvonne said that throughout her journey it has been about being able to pick up the threads of her life that have been woven together.

“Particularly by really precious women in my life who have helped me reshape my life, bring threads together and to be shaped into something beautiful,” said Yvonne.

“The threads are all different, but they come together and make something beautiful.”

UnitingWomen is a national event for young women, older women and women in between to share their stories of wisdom and wonder.  

The 2018 conference is being hosted at Somerville House by the Queensland Synod. Stay tuned to Journey Online for ongoing coverage of the event which will run until 30 October.

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