News, Notices & Prayer points - 23 June 2020

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News & Notices – 23 June 2020

Below are the news and notices from congregations, the Synod of South Australia and the wider Uniting Church submitted for the Tuesday 23 June edition of UC e-News.

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Prayer Points for the week

  • For everyone who has worshipped, witnessed and served as part of our Uniting Church over the last 43 years
  • All those who are yearning for face-to-face worship but who are still unable to gather safely
  • May we remember the principles set out in the Basis of Union and the Statement to the Nation as we seek to do God’s will in our lives
  • May God continue to speak to us through the Scriptures about our responsibility to care for the marginalised, to proclaim His message, and to share His love for all



COVID-19 update – Letter from General Secretary

On 17 June 2020 General Secretary Rev Felicity Amery sent out a letter addressing the UCA SA responses to the SA Government’s announcements about easing COVID-19 Restrictions. Her letter included the ‘Updated Roadmap to Re-Open Churches’ and Felicity’s encouragement to move cautiously with wisdom and care as many congregations are planning to start in-person Sunday Worship gatherings again. She encouraged all of us to continue the great work being done but not to rush into restoring activities that are hard to manage or may put people at risk. The full letter by the General Secretary can be read here: http://createsend.com/t/j-C96B87A3BFA2EB322540EF23F30FEDED

Further details regarding children’s ministry and hospitality/ morning tea are being sought and may be forthcoming in the next few days. Please contact your Presbytery or email your questions to the Associate General Secretary Rev Sue Page (spage@sa.uca.org.au) and we will try to respond as soon as we can.


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Introducing Bridget Ransome as the new Executive Officer Engagement

Following the 7 February 2020 meeting, where Synod Standing Committee approved the establishment of an Engagement Ministry Centre, a special meeting was conducted to approve the appointment of the new Executive Officer. The 26 May 2020 Special Synod Standing Committee resolved to appoint Mrs Bridget Ransome to the position of Executive Officer - Engagement.

Bridget has many years’ experience in a corporate environment, including 11 years with SAS Channel 7 Adelaide. She has a degree in Professional and Creative Communication from the University of South Australia, FirstClass Honours in Writing, a postgraduate degree in Evaluation and Assessment of Projects and an Associate Diploma in Business.

Bridget’s professional experience comes from working in a diverse range of industries and includes strategic planning, media relations, digital and website management and communications. She is also a professional editor and a published freelance writer.

“I am really looking forward to contributing to the work of the Uniting Church in South Australia, and to effectively engaging within the Church and between the Church and its diverse communities,” said Bridget.

The Synod of SA would especially like to welcome Bridget, who will commence her work on Monday 13 July.


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Microsoft Teams Survey

SA Synod staff and members have been using Microsoft Teams (MS Teams) for the last few months to stay connected with internal and external colleagues or to hold online meetings. MS Teams was new to most of us, therefore SA Synod Office is conducting a survey to hear about t your experiences when using MS Teams. Your feedback is appreciated and will help the Synod to continue to support and resource each one of us andthe mission of the Church effectively and well.

You are invited to complete the survey (https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/UCASAMSTeams) before Sunday 5 July. Please forward any queries regarding this survey to secretariat@sa.uca.org.au


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New dates announced for NAIDOC Week 2020

Due to the impacts and uncertainty from the COVID-19 pandemic across our communities and cities, the National NAIDOC Committee (NNC) has decided to postpone NAIDOC Week from the original July dates. National NAIDOC Week will now be held 8-15 November 2020.

NAIDOC Week is an opportunity for all Australians to come together to celebrate the rich history, diverse cultures and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the oldest continuing cultures on the planet. This year’s theme - Always Was, Always Will Be – recognises that First Nations people have occupied and cared for this continent for over 65,000 years.

For more information and further announcements, visit the NAIDOC website: https://www.naidoc.org.au/news/new-dates-announced-naidoc-week-2020


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CALD Research Project

CALLING ALL MINISTERS AND LAY LEADERS! The Synod’s CALD Ministry Centre is providing you with the opportunity to share your experience of, and attitudes towards, the Uniting Church in Australia’s commitment to becoming more multicultural and intercultural. This is part of the CALD Ministry Centre’s initiative to develop intercultural strategy in a number of areas in order to enhance understanding of intercultural awareness, activities and best practices to share with congregations.

3-4 research assistants will be selected from expressions of interest to form a research team with Paul Goh, Principal Researchers and Research Associates. If you would like to be considered for one of these positions, please email your expression of interest to pgoh@sa.uca.org.au.


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President’s Conference

The theme of the President’s Conference, which will be held on 2-5 October 2020, is “Called by God – living our Christian vocation in our daily life”. The conference will explore one of the core themes of the Uniting Church, “every member ministry” – what this looks like in its many forms, from local churches through to Uniting Church agencies and schools, as well as for faithful people serving in and living out their Christian discipleship.

There are 3 ways to join the Conference: attending a gathering at Adelaide U-City, in hubs with a group of 8-12 people or online through livestreaming and joining virtual group discussion. For more information and to express interest in participating, contact Neryl McCallum NerylM@nat.uca.org.au


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Calling OpShop contributions for Goodies at Hope’s Café

Goodies Op Shop at Hope’s Café is open again. Goodies is located at the rear of the Clayton Wesley UCA property, corner of Portrush Rd and Norwood Parade, and the staff would love donations of winter clothes, jackets, shoes (for men, women and children).

Many people can now happily shop again at the Goodies Op Shop.





Didn’t read the last “News & Notices”? The items below will keep you updated.

Step 2 Plus Recovery from COVID-19, Letter from the General Secretary and Facebook Live

A range of COVID-19 restriction changes has been announced with Stage Three being brought forward, a date set for the opening of state borders, and the lifting of further venue restrictions. The Synod of SA has released the revised ‘Step 2 Plus Roadmap for Re-opening Churches’ to assist congregations in the safe return to worship in church buildings. This roadmap can be found on Synod’s website: sa.uca.org.au/uniting-church-media-releases/covid-19-update along with the latest letter from the General Secretary.

Visit the Synod’s Facebook page feed to view the Facebook Live session held last Wednesday 17 June

Increase in scam emails asking for assistance

Reports of scam emails which pretend to come from ministry leaders, using a similar email address, and asking for urgent assistance and gift cards are on the rise. If you receive one, please do the following:

  • Check any email address carefully
  • If you are not sure whether or not the email is real, DON’T reply, instead start a fresh email using the contact details you already have or phone the person
  • DO NOT reply (however if you have already done so, just cease any further conversations / contact).

Please continue to be vigilant with emails during this time.

South Australia Council of Churches Newsletter

The South Australia Council of Churches in Australia has released its latest newsletter. The newsletter includes resources and news from the ecumenical community. The newsletter can be read here.

Working with Children Check

Do you volunteer with children? If you answered yes, then you require a Working With Children Check by 30 June 2020.State Government mandated the new Working with Children Check in July 2019. The former Uniting Church SA Screening and Authority will no longer be valid, regardless of any date listed beyond 1 July 2020. If you have not yet completed a new screening, please do so as soon as possible.

The Safe Church section of the Synod website has been updated to include a list of ‘Frequently Asked Questions’.If you still have any questions not covered by these, please email calledtocare@sa.uca.org.au.

A just recovery – post-COVID-19

The Uniting Church in Australia has outlined a set of principles and key actions that will guide the way to a better future as Australia recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic.

UCA President Dr Deidre Palmer said that the pandemic has highlighted the stark inequality and disparity in our Australian society and exacerbated the disadvantage faced by our most vulnerable people.

The Assembly has drawn together a document, Build Back Better: A Just Recovery, Post-Covid-19, with input from across the Church, including from our agencies delivering community services on the ground, our Uniting Aboriginal Islander and Christian Congress (UAICC) and others working in the area of justice.

For more information and to read the full document, visit: https://assembly.uca.org.au/news/item/3197-a-just-recovery-post-covid-19


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