It gives me great pleasure to provide a report on the work of the Queensland Synod office (Synod office) over the last year. The Synod office is full of conscientious, dedicated and faithful people who know that their job is to serve the broader church community. Our hope is that through this work, we support the Uniting Church in Australia, Queensland Synod (Synod) so that it can continue to demonstrate the faithfulness of God and love of Christ across our communities.
There have been a number of internal reviews conducted so that the Synod office is better able to provide professional and quality services to all those we encounter and serve. We are working toward our goal that every activity of the Synod office adds value to another part of the church.
Across the Synod, we have assisted the church to navigate a number of critical issues including the decision to close Shalom Christian College in Townsville, the provision of adequate and sensitive redress to survivors of sexual abuse in our institutions, the maturing of our Safe Ministry with Children program, and the development of leadership resources and pathways. We have also supported all of the committees, boards, commissions and councils of our church in their decision making. The church is a broad, deep and complex organisation and there is always something happening that offers unique and wonderful challenges.
While this report does not provide the full picture of the life of the National Assembly, presbyteries, congregations, schools and agencies, and our various boards, committees and commissions in Queensland, it does explain how the Synod office oversees and implements services and strategies which are designed to support these activities and stakeholders.
This report can also be used as a reference point to assess how the Synod is progressing on an annual basis through the Together on the way: Enriching Community process. In particular this report reveals the key achievements to date in line with the 2016–2020 Priority Directions and the 2017 Key Change Initiatives.
It is a unique perspective into the operations of the Synod-wide church with commentary on current risks facing the church and a view to the challenges of the future.
This report will be updated annually and is available for download here.
I trust you find this report informative and I look forward to providing a further update at Synod in Session next year.
Rev Heather den Houting