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The Uniting Church in Australia, Queensland Synod


20 February 2018


It is our hope Uniting News continues to help you grow, transition and innovate as the people of God.

Rev Heather den Houting
General Secretary, Queensland Synod

From the Moderator

Monday midday prayer

Join us for Monday midday prayer

Lord, may our hope be in you, your faithfulness, that we may be agents of your purpose in all that we do. Amen

Moderator's diary

This Wednesday Moderator Rev David Baker will attend the commissioning of the new Brisbane Boys College Principal Paul Brown.

Next Monday, David will attend the State Correctional Services Chaplains Conference dinner in Diddillibah.

Moderator's musings

In this week’s Moderator Musing, Rev David Baker reflects on Warren Mundine’s autobiography and what the Uniting Church in Queensland is doing to build informed and productive relationships between First and Second Peoples.

From the Associate General Secretary

Living the Covenant

Earlier this month, people from across the life of the church in Queensland met to make action plans to implement the spirit of the Covenant with UAICC and the church.

These plans include encouraging local congregations to be aware of the culture, history and spirituality of local Indigenous people, strengthening the leadership and discipleship of Calvary Presbytery congregations and increasing involvement of First Peoples in Synod committees and commissions.

An initial step congregations can take is to display a poster with the words of the Covenant. Copies of the poster, produced by the Assembly, may be obtained by contacting the Synod office.

Rev David Fender
Associate General Secretary

Presbytery and congregation news

"Healing and Hope"–resources for prayer and worship

The Assembly resourcing unit has prepared a liturgical resource "Healing and Hope" for use by Uniting Church congregations on the second Sunday of Lent (25 February).

These resources can be used in a worship service or a small gathering that encourages the church to engage in lament and to honour our commitment to be the safest church we can be for children in our care.

Synod office news

Changes to the Privacy Act as of 22 February

The Privacy Act now mandates notification of the Information Commissioner and any affected individuals where a data breach may have occurred.

A data breach response plan is being prepared. In the interim, please notify the Synod Senior Legal Counsel/Privacy Officer for advice.

A reportable data breach arises where there has been unauthorised access to, or unauthorised disclosure or loss (for example leaving the information on a bus) of personal information about one or more individuals which could result in serious harm to affected individuals.
Serious harm, while undefined in the legislation, is likely to include serious physical, psychological, emotional, economic and financial harm.

Terry Selva
Manager, Risk and Compliance, Queensland Synod

2017 audit declaration form

The 2017 audit declaration form is now available online for completion by congregation Treasurers. For details of the accounting and audit regulation, please refer to section 3.8.7 of the Regulations (2015) in the Governance section of the Synod website.

Please note that the audit requirement threshold for 2017 is gross receipts exceeding $140,570 (the 2017 notional stipend was $56,228). The audit declaration is due for submission no later than 30 June 2018. For any queries please email or call 07 3377 9765.

Irene Hoving
Accountant – Mission Support, Queensland Synod

Changes to the payroll team

Next time you are speaking with the Synod office payroll team, you will most likely have some new voices at the other end of the phone. Emma Johnston, who was with us for eight years, has now taken up a new role, and finished with the Synod office on 15 February. Karoline Lane will also be finishing this Wednesday to take maternity leave.

We are happy to welcome two new staff members to the payroll team. Victoria Gala will be here three days per week, on Monday to Wednesday, and Kathrine Gooding will be here on a full-time basis.

Please bear with us over the coming weeks as we train Victoria and Kathrine in our processes.

Angela Drew
People and Payroll Manager, Queensland Synod

Youth and young adults news

Easter Madness '18 guest speaker!

We are very excited to announce the guest speaker for Easter Madness is Bradon French! Currently Bradon is the Pulse Consultant working with young people in the Synod of NSW and the ACT. With an extensive background in youth ministry and a passion for young people, Bradon will bring his invaluable insight and experiences to the camp.

Easter Madness is our state-wide camp for high-schoolers. Held the weekend after Easter, it is a unique camp that brings together so many young people from diverse backgrounds and places to grow in community and faith. Registrations close very soon so hurry to register all the young people you know!

To register or find out more go to

Position vacant

Executive assistant and office manager

A vacancy in Trinity College Queensland exists for a person to provide high-level, efficient, professional and confidential executive administrative support to the Director of Education for Ministry and fulfill the responsibilities of the office manager.

The successful applicant will provide a high level of customer service and will participate in the college community through engagement with faculty and students.

For further information, see the vacancy details on the careers page of the Queensland Synod website.

Kellie Broderick
Manager – Office and Events, Queensland Synod

Learning news

Commencement evening 2018

Trinity College Queensland has invited Dr Justine Toh to speak at our commencement evening on “Why apologetics is a little (or maybe a lot) like falling in love.”

As well as celebrating the start of the academic year, the evening will be an opportunity to bring along people who are looking to develop a reasonable account of their faith.

Justine's talk may appeal to younger Christians trying to figure out why they believe, people who would like to develop their own approach to sharing their faith, and those people who contemplate whether it remains reasonable to believe. She will explore an "apologetics of attraction" and its potential to re-enchant our disenchanted age.

Tisa Lacey
Marketing and Event Coodinator, Trinity College Queensland

Reaching out and speaking out

“Suicide: The Ripple Effect”

This is a feature-length documentary film telling the journey of Kevin who attempted to take his life at age 19 by jumping off a bridge. Today he is a world-renowned mental health advocate, motivational speaker and author who spreads a message of hope, recovery and wellness.

The film explores his own journey and the ripple effect it has on those impacted by his suicide attempt and his life's work since. The film also highlights the stories of individuals and families who are utilising their personal story to bring hope and healing to others.

Screenings have been organised in Moranbah, Harbour Town, Toowoomba, Chermside and Smithfield. Host your own!

Sue Hutchinson
Research and Policy Officer, Queensland Synod

A lonely death

At a small and heartbreaking funeral in suburban Tusmore, Adelaide lawyer Mal Byrne says he grasped the full horror of the damage wrought by Australia's immigration detention system. "By the time he was released, Aref was in too many pieces to be put back together again. I finally understood the full horror, the wastefulness of what those places did to people." Read his full story.

Sue Hutchinson
Research and Policy Officer, Queensland Synod

Humane and timely

Here is a petition to the Australian government regarding the processing of refugees. In short it asks that the processing of refugees be humane, done in a timely manner and done in Australia with proper oversight.

Sue Hutchinson
Research and Policy Officer, Queensland Synod

Agency and service provider news

Cyclone Gita appeal

On 12 February, Tonga was hit by the strongest storm its seen in 60 years. The damage toll is massive. At least 70 per cent of the population has been affected. 

Please donate now to support the recovery efforts in Tonga.

Dr Sureka Goringe
National Director, UnitingWorld

Photo: A home destroyed by Cyclone Gita. Rohit Pillay