Regulation 126.96.36.199 requires that the Assembly Standing Committee provide advice to the Church on the challenges and issues which may be faced by the President and the Assembly in the next seven years. This is to assist the discernment process as the Church nominates and elects the President-elect.
In July 2017 the ASC addressed itself to this responsibility and offers this guidance to the Church.
“As the Uniting Church continues to move through a season of significant change, the ASC believes that the challenges and issues likely to be faced by the President and the Assembly in the next seven years will include:
- The Covenant relationship with UAICC
- Sovereignty and how we understand this in the practices of the Uniting Church
- Ways in which we can be a people of hope where God’s grace upholds us
- Call to the renewal of God’s church by listening to what the Spirit is saying to the Uniting Church
- Being, and identifying as, members of the Uniting Church and what this means
- Holding our identity as the Uniting Church in amongst diversity
- Call to disciple-making
- Importance of investing in leadership for now and the future
- The changing form of faith communities, and the importance of resourcing them
Being the Church in the public space
- Being the Church as a prophetic voice in the public space
- Re-establishing our place of trust in civil society
- Managing and critiquing how we understand the relationship between Church and State
Responding to changing contexts
- How we are the Church in a changing world, including the importance of having a national perspective
- Responding to demographic forces in the Church eg changing membership profile
- Understanding and educating ourselves about the world of social media
Name: Apwee Ting (Rev. Dr)
Nominated by: Western Australia Presbytery
Synod of residence: Vic/Tas
Age range: 50 - 59
Personal Interests: Walking around parks, reading books, listening to music and travelling in Australia and overseas (and taking photos)
Placement / employment: As a National Consultant at the Assembly Resourcing Unit since July 2017 and for two years as National Director for Multi/Cross Cultural Ministry (2015-2017): working closely with 12 different National Conferences (Fijian, Tongan, Samoan, Niue, Korean, Indonesian, Vietnamese, Chinese, Filipino, Tamil, Middle Eastern and South Sudanese), intergenerational and intercultural relationship between 1st and next generations, and seeking new ways of ministerial and mission approach for dominant and marginal groups in the UCA.
Served as a Congregational minister in a multicultural context Dandenong (English, Hindi and Fijian speaking Congregations work together with Cook Islands Congregation and Oromo/Ethiopian Congregation), Camberwell Cross Cultural Congregation and Elsternwick English Speaking Congregation.
Relevant church experience: Also served on Presbytery (including as Chair), Synod (placement, educational, intercultural committee, etc) and Assembly Bodies (Admission of Ministers, Multi/Cross Cultural Ministry, Relationship with Other Faiths etc.)
Passion for the vision of the Uniting Church in Australia arising from the Basis of Union and the Preamble.
Passion for working collaboratively with different people in a multicultural, multifaith (no faith) society in Australia, and passion for the prophetic voices of the gospel in public areas.
Vision for the UCA
In the past 40 years the UCA has lived faithfully according to the vision based on the foundation laid by the Basis of Union, the ecumenical relationship, the covenant with the first people and the engagement with culturally and linguistically diverse groups.
As well as the Australian society has changed; the UCA also has changed since 1977. The context where we live is changing rapidly. The past experiences and memories may not be enough or able to guide members and leaders of the UCA to go through every changing context. The UCA encourages every member and leader to pray and discern the will of God and take a risk as faithful members of the Body of Christ in the world. The UCA is not ashamed to share the gospel with others.
The UCA is also not afraid of differences or disagreement among its members because the foundation of our identity is in the Body of Christ, one body many members. Christ has given us the eschatological hope to sustain our present identity. The changing context and the diversity is no longer to be seen only as the challenge to be overcome but it is a gift of God in the life of the UCA.
It is important to be ready any time and place to be surprised by the Spirit of God. Through conversation, negotiation and mediation, we can creatively find a new possibility, a new space of grace, and a new narrative that includes everyone.
The life of the UCA reflects the core of God's reconciliation in Christ. In the past we were all strangers, but now we are all belong into one body of Christ, members of the household of God. In the household of God each of us brings our best to nurture, sustain and mentor the next generation leaders. The platform of leadership has opened for every member.
In light of the advice provided by the ASC (this will be developed at the July 2017 meeting of the ASC) on the challenges and issues likely to be faced by the President and the Assembly in the next seven years I can/will:
I bring my love and commitment to God, church and UCA. Since I became a disciple of Christ in my early teen year, I grew up with two communities of believers, first Gereja Kristen Indonesia (the Christian Church in Indonesia) and the UCA, who nurtures, supports and offers hope with love and care.
I will offer myself as a person and leader who faithfully prays, listens and discerns together in a community, God's will, and take necessary actions on behalf of the UCA in a public arena, encouraging the UCA to live out its own commitment to justice and peace for all people.
I will continue the UCA's commitment to the sovereignty, the covenant with UAICC and working together as first and second people. I can intentionally work collaboratively with UCA's councils to seek the best ways of working together as a national church in the 21st Century.
I can work together with diverse communities to build a bridge cross culturally to live out our identity as a multicultural church in Australia, nurturing, resourcing and giving platforms to the next generation leaders to lead UCA creatively and faithfully into the future.
From time to time as a leader I will remind UCA to live gracefully, joyfully and generously. I will call the UCA to relying on the Holy Spirit to give us courage to make difficult decisions and guide us not to lead into temptation.
I bring my commitment to further education, personal and communal development for practice of ministry.