News, Notices & Prayer points - 5 May 2020

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News & Notices – 5 May 2020


Below are the news and notices from congregations, the Synod of South Australia and the wider Uniting Church submitted for the Tuesday 5 May edition of UC e-News.



Prayer Points for the week

  • The staff and leaders of the Uniting Church's community service agencies, who are doing magnificent work in very difficult circumstances.
  • The UAICC National Executive, Interim Chairperson Rev Mark Kickett and outgoing National President Rev Garry Dronfield.
  • For those in the poorest parts of the world who are facing devastating hunger and poverty due to the fallout for COVID-19.
  • For those on the fringes of our society who are currently excluded from Government's COVID-19 support.


A letter from the General Secretary to Congregations and other ministries

Yesterday Uniting Church SA General Secretary Rev Felicity Amery sent a letter to congregations and other ministries detailing, among other topics, the COVID-19 financial relief measures that are available to them from the SA Synod. Read Felicity’s letter here.


What do you miss about church life?

New Times is looking for photographs that show what Uniting Church members from across our state are missing most about church life. Do you have a picture that you think fits the brief? If so, please email it to us at We are also running the campaign through Facebook here.


COVID-19 devotions from UCA leaders

UCA President Dr Deidre Palmer and the Moderators of the six UCA Synods have released a seven-day devotional resource for the Church. What Sustains Us is a collective reflection on faith and spiritual practice, shared with love and hope.  The President is also inviting UCA members to share about how their faith is sustaining them. Read more here.


Federal COVID-19 response measures failing church community services

Uniting Church agencies have joined other major not-for-profit providers in a battle to get Federal Government COVID-19 support applied to their work in the community sector. Read more here.


Together in spirit

Muslims across the world have entered Ramadan, a month dedicated to fasting, prayer and acts of charity. Register now for our annual UCA/Affinity Iftar meal which will take place online from 4:20pm on Wednesday 13 May. 


UAICC Update

There are some major changes in the UAICC national leadership. National President Rev Garry Dronfield has tendered his resignation to the UAICC National Executive and the Assembly Standing Committee.

Rev Mark Kickett of the South Australian UAICC has been appointed as Interim Chairperson until the next Congress National Conference in April 2021. On behalf of the National Executive, Mark thanked Garry for his commitment to Congress over the past two and a half years as President, and as Deputy Chairperson from 2015 to 2018.

“We wish Garry God’s blessing in his journey ahead. We look forward to his ongoing engagement in whatever capacity God leads him”, Mark said.

Garry has given extended notice to allow for a hand-over of his ongoing commitments to the National Executive.

“It has been a privilege for me to work within the National Executive Committee and with the wider UAICC family, and it has taught me to value people’s stories and to acknowledge that we each have our own story,” he said. “May Creator God continue to bless the work of UAICC, from our national body to the grassroots communities.”


The #SAythanks Campaign

The State Government has launched a social media campaign to applaud the workers in the social services sector – including those who work around the clock – such as social workers, call centre staff, domestic violence and child protection workers, workers in aged care, in housing and homeless services, and workers supporting people living with a disability.

 We can show our support by celebrating the contribution of this workforce using the hashtags #SAythanks and #thanksforcaring on any of our social media platforms.


Calling for social impact sector contributions

The Australian Department of Social Services is undertaking a scoping study focused on outcome and impact measurement within the social impact investing sector. A key part of this work is hearing insights and perspectives from the sector and we are all invited to participate in the national consultation process.

This consultation paper explains what they’re doing, why they’re doing it and what they would like to hear about from us.


Book Review: An Eco-Stoic reading of Colossians

Read a review by John Littleton of Rev Dr Vicky Balabanski’s latest book, Colossians: An Earth Bible Commentary, An Eco-Stoic Reading. The book was launched by Rev Dr Andrew Dutney after a Sunday worship service earlier this year at St John’s, Halifax St.  The book is available from Bloomsbury here.



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


Vacancy – Board Director Uniting Communities

A unique opportunity exists for a Uniting Church person to apply for a vacant Board Director position with Uniting Communities. Interested people with a work or academic background in either social/human services, business, management, strategic planning, or organisational governance, should email Dr Sue King, Chairperson, Uniting Communities at


President's Conference to go ahead

Dr Deidre Palmer has announced that her 2020 President’s Conference will go ahead in Adelaide from 2-5 October, as originally scheduled. Read more here.


UnitingWorld appeal for COVID-19 affected partners

UCA partner churches in Asia, Africa and the Pacific are providing emergency food, access to clean water and sanitation, care for those at risk of violence in locked-down communities. Your gift will save lives. Find out how you can help here.


Bush Chaplains hit the phones

While volunteers have stood down due to COVID-19 pandemic, Frontier Services' chaplains are providing a vital lifeline for people in the Australian Outback. Read about their work in the May edition of Frontier News


SA COVID-19 Mental Health Support Line

Uniting Communities is operating the South Australian COVID-19 Mental Health Support Line, established by the State Government to help those struggling with the current situation or with feelings of isolation. Counselling is offered over the phone and via video calls, along with referrals to a range of services if needed. The Support Line is open 7 days a week from 8am to 8pm on 1800 632 753.


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Synod Meeting Update

Members of Synod, please note that many of the reports for consideration at our Synod meeting are now available on the Synod website.


Kangaroo Island Disaster Recovery Update

As we approach the anniversary of the extinguishing of the disastrous bushfires on Kangaroo Island and after many delays, we are pleased to announce that Rev Mark Dickens will work with the Kangaroo Island community on behalf of the Uniting Church in a half time capacity.


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