Championing ministry for the generations

Uniting Generations is officially the new intergenerational ministry model adopted by the Presbytery of WA.
At the recent meeting of the Presbytery of WA, held on Saturday 5 November, members agreed to the new
model which will encourage and resource churches to engage in intergenerational activities.

Moving on from First Third Ministry, which was adopted in 2007, Rev Luke Williams, a member of the First Third Committee, believes Uniting Generations is the obvious next step.

“I think the first ten years of First Third Ministry gave us an opportunity to go from very little focus on ministry with and to young people, to an opportunity to try and do something,” Luke said.Continue Reading

Wesley unveils Science Centre for Tomorrow

Wesley College’s ‘Science Centre for Tomorrow’ was officially opened in August by WA Chief Scientist Professor Peter Klinken AC, in a fitting celebration of National Science Week. In addition to Professor Klinken, Wesley College welcomed local teachers, media, government and industry representatives along with its extended community to view the state-of-the-art facility for the first time.

The Science Centre is named in honour of one of Wesley’s longest serving and much cherished teachers, Mildred Manning, who taught biology from 1923–1970 and retired in 1976.

In planning for the Mildred Manning Science Centre, Wesley College’s team of leading educators researched: foremost secondary science facilities in Australia; University Science and Engineering learning spaces and research centres; medical and Science research facilities across Australia; and consulted internationally with experts in learning space design for inspiration before designs were finalised in 2015 and construction began in 2016.

Their vision culminated in a building that is designed as a living, breathing science experiment to excite students who can learn in a hands-on approach.Continue Reading

A man for all seasons

Rev Brenton Prigge has been in placement as a First Third Specialist for the South West Region since March 2009. He will be leaving WA in October to take-up a new placement in Queensland.

Brenton immigrated to Australia from South Africa with his family after his ordination in the Methodist Church of Southern Africa. He was admitted as a Minister of the Uniting Church in Australia in 2014.

Rev Hollis Wilson, Past Convener of the First Third Working Group shares his thanks for Brenton’s intergenerational ministry in WA.Continue Reading

Youth group building intergenerational relationships

Arising out of a need in the congregation, the Maylands Mt Lawley Uniting Church Youth Group began in February 2016. After a year of being in operation, it is a much loved activity of the church.

Rev Kim Francis, Minister at Maylands Mt Lawley Uniting Church, co-ordinates the Youth Group alongside her son, Joel Francis, and Liz Lee, a member of the congregation, with the help of other parent volunteers. The group has about ten members, with around six attending each week. Some are members of the congregation, who also bring along friends.

Each Sunday, from 12noon–2.00pm, young people in years 6–12 share food, activities and discussion. Sometimes the group meet at the church, other times they head out and about. Outings have included activities like badminton, mini golf, kayaking, rock climbing and sailing.

Once a term they hold a cooking competition, and every week they enjoy a simple, but varied lunch together. Occasionally, they also meet with other youth groups from The Billabong, Mt Pleasant and Nedlands Uniting Churches, and they have worked through the Alpha Youth Film Series, a course designed to create conversations for young people exploring life, faith and meaning. Continue Reading

Ecumenical youth ministry convention

The National Youth Ministry Convention (NYMC) will be held from Monday 9–Wednesday 11 October at Sea World Resort on the Gold Coast.

Join people from around the country to take part in workshops, electives and networking, exploring current topics for youth ministry today. NYMC is an ecumenical event for youth ministry leaders.

Keynote speakers for NYMC include Mark Sayers, author, and Pastor of Red Church: More Than Me, in Victoria; Enuma Okoro, award winning writer, speaker and communications consultant; and Steve Chong, founder and leader of the RICE movement, a youth Christian evangelical movement based in Sydney. Continue Reading

Nurturing all-age connection and community

Society around us constantly divides and labels people on the basis of their age. We are divided into generational cohorts and given nicknames that supposedly summarise our most defining characteristic: ‘Boomers’; ‘Gen Y’; ‘Millennials.’

These divisions serve political and marketing purposes, but they leave our community fractured. The Gospel of Jesus, however, reconciles us to God and calls us beyond boundaries of age, gender, ability and culture, into community together, to be formed by one another as together we love and serve a world in need.

Churches are increasingly aware of the need to recover the values, practices and skills for gatherings with all generations together. Multi-generational, multi-age, all-age, crossgenerational and intergenerational approaches offer us different ways of healing the divisions in our gatherings and create the potential for new spaces of engagement with those not yet part of a faith community. Continue Reading

Life’s big questions over Elevenses

With a name inspired by JR Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, Elevenses at Trinity North Uniting Church is a discussion-led worship group making a big impact in the lives of the people who attend. In the book, Elevenses is a meal break taken by Hobbits at 11.00am. Although they do provide refreshments, at Trinity North, Elevenses is so much more than just a snack.

While the group has been beneficial for the young adults who attend, it is not specifically aimed at young people and attracts members of all ages. Its intergenerational scope has created a space where people can explore life’s big questions with others who have different perspectives.

Jana MacAdam is a member of Trinity North Uniting Church, Greenwood Worshipping Community, and a first-year university student. Feeling too old for youth group, Jana felt she needed more theological discussion than traditional Sunday morning worship could provide. On approaching her church council, she found they too had been discussing how they could provide a space for young adults to explore their faith.

“We found there was a need for something to cover the gap,” said Jana. “We’ve got the youth group and that’s really running well, but then you’ve got nothing for anyone who’s too old for youth group, and nothing on a Sunday.”Continue Reading