eNews – June 2017

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Rising Above the Fog

By Executive Director Rev Dr Jenny Byrnes


A couple of weeks back there was some excellent photography in the media of Melbourne and Brisbane in foggy conditions. The fog was lying densely across each city like a heavy doona and in each case, there were several buildings projecting above the fog into the sunlight. (I’ve been unable to find any links to these recent photographs to share with you.)

I imagine on that day walking the streets of Melbourne – it would have been misty, dewy and with low vision – whereas on the upper floors of these tall buildings, the vista would have been to a far distant horizon, with the sun illuminating the view and offering a bright outlook. When one is immersed in fog it is hard to believe that only a short distance away clarity is available, and vice-versa.

In the practice of discipleship and the exercise of ministry, more and more is being demanded of us with regard to our ability to articulate our faith and meaning. We know that this ability to engage and communicate with others is a skill that is not easily acquired if it doesn’t come naturally to us.  Groping around in the fog of thoughts and ideas, struggling to find the words to explain our beliefs in ways that lift the dense doonas of confusion or complexity is so important in communicating our faith. This is a task that we do not need to tackle in isolation. Learning amongst colleagues, being in ministry groups or committees within the local congregation, whether it be in children’s ministry or adult fellowships, preaching or pastoral care, learning to share our faith and be articulate in conversation with others is a non-negotiable skill for us who seek to be reconcilers and peace-makers in today’s world.

Don’t hang about in foggy lanes of confusion or discouragement, participate in growing and learning in the CTM/Pilgrim adventures and enjoy a clearer view of life and discipleship.

2017 Calendar

Semester 2 calendar is now available online, with links to event details.


Learning Patience

‘We live in impatient times, and have been taught to think that with the right planning, hard work, and clear implementation, we can adjust our lives to ensure a good outcome. We would rather live with a clear idea about where the next steps should be, and how to take them…’

Opinion piece in June Crosslight by Rev Assoc Prof Sean Winter

CTM Events to Mark UCA’s 40th

The CTM is organising three fantastic opportunities to celebrate the Uniting Church’s 40th Anniversary: 


16 July @ CTM Parkville: A People of God on the Way – join this afternoon public forum with Assembly President-elect Deidre Palmer and Geoff Thompson to explore where the Uniting Church is heading, and how we will find our way. Register Now

17 July @ 130LC Melbourne: Pathways to Union and Beyond, a one day exploration of the faithful journey of three denominations towards union, and the formation of the Uniting Church in Australia. Includes site visits to three iconic CBD churches and reflections from four key leaders involved in the journey towards union and beyond.
Register Now
16-21 July & 12 August @ CTM Parkville, 130LC Melbourne and city churches: Uniting Church Studies, an intensive course that offers a fantastic opportunity for people who want to know more about the Uniting Church, its foundations, commitments and its priorities. The course explores the theology, history and life of the Uniting Church, and draws on a rich collection of leaders in local, regional and international roles in the Uniting Church. Uniting Church Studies includes registration for both ‘A people of God on the Way’ and ‘Pathways to Union and Beyond’ (no separate registration required).
Register Now

For Worship Leaders… Learning, Inspiration, Networking

2017 National Conference of Lay Preachers
7-10 July @ CTM Parkville
More information 

Transforming Worship National UCA
27-30 July in Adelaide
Conference More information

June 2017 

3 Make it Messy Conference
4 New Texts in Context (3/3)
20 RE:GENERATIONS – Hoppers Crossing

July 2017

7 National Lay Preacher’s Conference
11 What Makes USA Leadership Distinct
16 Uniting Church Studies – 40th Anniversary (1/2)
16 A People of God on the Way
17 Pathways to Union and Beyond
17 Reading & Interpreting the Bible
17 Medieval Monastic Wisdom
24 Living Leadership Core Intensive (3/3)

August 2017

4 With All Due Respect: Theology, Feminism, and Conflict 
4 Readings in Christine Doctrine (1/4)
5 Prophets and their Writing (1/3)
12 Uniting Church Studies
12 Effective Christian Leadership & Ministry (1/5)
18 Culture, Beliefs & Theology (1/2)
18 Wisdom’s Feast
19 Effective Christian Leadership & Ministry (2/5)
25 Lay Preachers & Pastors Training (LP + MoP) (3/4)
25 Readings in Christine Doctrine (2/4)
26 Effective Christian Leadership & Ministry (3/5)

FREE Intergenerational Resources –

This new and FREE resource takes as its source material the suggested readings from the Revised Common Lectionary, thus making it especially suitable for particular denominations (such as the Anglican, Lutheran and Uniting Churches) and usable by any church. Its basic approach is to take as a foundation the general principles of multi-age worship – such as seeking to be multi-sensory, multi-intelligence and multi-ability aware – and add a layer of intergenerational awareness.

Season of Pentecost

Broadly speaking, this resource addresses the Welcome, Call to Worship, Prayer of Confession, Music and Bible Reading elements often found in the first third of a mainline worship service.


We’re offering two substantial leadership programs in July

Living Leadership

11-13 July @ CTM Parkville: Living Leadership: What Makes UCA Leadership Distinct   Explore ethical leadership and teaching, shared leadership and ministry in an inter-cultural and inter-generational church, and communal discernment and decision-making in inter-related councils. Register Now

24-28 July @ CTM Parkville: Living Leadership: Core Intensive   Build capacity, insight and resilience in your leadership through this five-day intensive learning opportunity, exploring the DiSC profile, change and conflict, and shared leadership in the Uniting Church. Register Now


20 June Geelong    21 June Hoppers Crossing

If an intergenerational approach is the key to effective ministry with people of all ages, what does it look like in practice? How can it be implemented by local congregations? What can stay the same and what needs to be changed?

Re:Generations – Exploring intergenerational ministry and mission is a unique opportunity  to engage with these questions and more.  Register here