Synod Standing Committee - February 2020 update

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New Times Online features brief summaries of Standing Committee meetings to inform the wider Uniting Church in SA community of the discussions, deliberations and decisions arising from each meeting.

This is the update from the meeting held on Friday 7 February 2020 at the Uniting College for Leadership and Theology (312 Sir Donald Bradman, Brooklyn Park).


Uniting Church Moderator Mr Bronte Wilson welcomed Synod Standing Committee meeting members with an Acknowledgement of Country. Ex-Moderator, Rev Sue Ellis, led the devotion from Isaiah 58: 3-7 and acknowledged the great work of Disaster and Recovery Ministries and other ecumenical chaplains during the devastation of the bushfires. She prayed for the new connections being made between organisations and people from all walks of life, as we rebuild the “walls” of our Uniting Church and restore the “ruined houses” in our local towns, communities and beyond. Thereafter the Moderator prayed for pastoral concerns.

Mission and Leadership Development (MLD) Board Report

This particular Synod Standing Committee Meeting focussed on the Mission and Leadership Development ministry centre. Members were encouraged to ask questions about the MLD’s ministries, activities and operations.

Rev Prof Andrew Dutney, Executive Officer MLD, and Rev Mark Schultz, Team Leader Mission Resourcing, led the UCLT building tour. Andrew started his presentation with the MLD Board mandate, explaining the MLD Operations Committee and the two main areas of activities within the MLD (Mission Resourcing and UCLT). Mark then continued to explain about Mission Resourcing ministries (Intergenerational Team and Transforming Mission Team) as well as its Mission Centres (Centre for Music Liturgy and the Arts, Effective Living Centre and Stillpoint). Mark concluded with team members’ updates and future directions of this ministry, which include the “Horizon Strategy”. Mark noted that future ideas for Intergen Events (KCO, LiveLifeLoud, SAYCO) have been considered and consultation with leaders will continue.

Placements and Safe Church Report

Rev Philip Gardner presented the Placements and Safe Church report. It was noted that each Presbytery appointed two members to the Synod Placements Committee for the period until the 2020 Synod meeting:

  • Generate Presbytery: Rev Barry Littleford & Rev Jonathan Button
  • Presbytery A: Rev Rebecca Purling & Ms Marian Wicks
  • Presbytery B: Rev Lawrie Linggood & Ms Susan Burt

Philip afterward spoke about the Placements Committee and the request for nominations from Standing Committee to the Placements Committee. It was agreed that the Moderator and General Secretary would determine the appropriate process for the next Placements Committee meeting.

Moreover, the Synod Standing Committee approved the membership of the Pastor Appointment and Competency AssessmentTeam (PACAT) to include:

  • A representative of the MLD Board
  • A representative and administrative support from Placements and Safe Church Team
  • A representative from each Presbytery
  • Up to 3 other members

UnitingCare Report

Rev Tim Hodgson, Executive Officer UnitingCare, spoke about the work of Uniting Country SA, which has provided staff to operate the emergency relief centre on Kangaroo Island during the past few weeks as part of an arrangement with the State Government.

The Standing Committee accepted all proposals, including several appointments to the boards of Eldercare Inc, Helping Hand Aged Care Inc, Lincoln College Inc, Resthaven Inc, Uniting Communities and UnitingCare Wesley Bowden. The appointment of Mr Jon Clarke as a co-opted member of the Resthaven Inc Board for a term less than one year was also noted.

Associate General Secretary and General Secretary Report

The General Secretary, Rev Felicity Amery, spoke to the Associate General Secretary’s report in particular about the amendment of the Synod By-Law. She then spoke to the General Secretary’s Report. Felicity shared her important and privileged opportunity (alongside the Moderator) to visit Pastors, church leaders, members of the congregations and volunteers who have been impacted by the devastating Kangaroo Island fires. Felicity then introduced the Strategic Planning Process Plan, after which three members of the Synod Standing Committee were selected to be a part of the Strategic Planning Facilitation Group. They are Leanne Davis, Rev Dr Ian Price and Rev Andrew Robertson.

The Synod Standing Committee members were introduced to the interim Logo Style Guide document, which guides the Synod of SA’s branding. This document will be reviewed further and completed at the conclusion of the Strategic Planning process.

The minutes from the meeting will be posted here when available later this week. The next meeting of the Synod Standing Committee will occur on Friday 3 April 2020 and will focus on UnitingCare Ministry Centre..

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