The Uniting Church in WA welcomes its newest minister of the Word with the ordination of Corina van Oostende at Fremantle Wesley Uniting Church last Friday.
Rev Corina has had a long journey towards fulfilling her call to ordination and has always felt that she wanted to work with people. Coming to Australia in 1994 from the Netherlands, she became a member at Fremantle Wesley and took up roles in hospital chaplaincy; at Shenton Park Rehab Hospital and Fremantle Hospital in the Mental Health and Outpatients wards.
She has also worked with UnitingCare West’s Rainbow Project, a service that provides connection, friendship and support for people living with a mental illness.
Corina said that the people she’s met over the last ten years have confirmed her call to ministry.
Dr Sue Boorer, senior lecturer in theology at Murdoch University, preached at the service. Using the readings of Exodus 3:1-15 and Matthew 16:21-26; 17:1-9 she said that presence of the divine is can be an overwhelming experience.
“To encounter the Holy God is encapsulating and attractive, but also awesome and frightening,” she said. “This God cannot be summed up in human categories. This is not a static God that can be tied down in fixed concepts.
“So it is through the task of ordained ministry, and a life of faith in general, God is with us as we go into the future,” she continued. “May you be assured, Corina, that this God is with us in the risen Christ as we carry out the tasks which God has called.”
Corina said that she has learnt through her journey to ordained ministry.
“Over all of the years of my previous careers I’ve thought ‘I’ll keep my options open.’ Love nudged me a little to the left and a little to the right and I’ve ended up here.
“I’ve learnt a lot from that I hope; knowing that love will not let me go.”
Corina will be taking up a placement in Northam, WA.