With the 15th Triennial Assembly Meeting of the Uniting Church recently held in Melbourne, this edition is jam-packed with news from the event. I didn’t attend myself, but as I watched along from home here in Perth I could see there was plenty of passion for the church in that meeting room.
Big news coming from the meeting which has gained a lot of attention is that Uniting Church ministers will be able to marry couples of the same gender if they wish to. Whatever your opinion on the issue, I think we can all agree that the Uniting Church has made history in Australia.
Like many have said, this issue has the potential to divide the Uniting Church, and I’ve already heard from many people with different views who’ve talked about why they don’t want this division to happen and, more importantly, how they are working hard for it not to.
I also like to think that this decision could encourage people who’ve been on the edge of the church to feel welcomed into some of our congregations. People in the wider community who’ve always thought of the ‘church’ as having one view on this topic can now know that there are many Christians with different views, and that not all Christians can be placed into the same box. And I think that’s a good thing.
Putting the marriage decision aside, there were also some other important decisions made, like affirming that the First Peoples of Australia are sovereign, repudiating all teaching and theologies that justify domestic violence, encouraging the wider Uniting Church to take action on climate change, and ensuring our churches are inclusive for people living with a disability. Read more from the meeting in our feature here.
Here in WA, of course we aren’t without our own news and activities and we have still included plenty of local stories from our Uniting Church WA family.
For more ‘good news’ stories from around the Uniting Church WA, sign up to the Hands and Feet newsletter. Hands and Feet is a Presbytery of WA newsletter sharing inspiring stories from our congregations all over the Presbytery. To sign up or to share your stories, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Editor, Revive magazine