What’s in a name? UCA Act2
So why did we call a project that’s thinking about the future of the Uniting Church, “Act2”?
In a movie/story the first act introduces the hero/main character and identifies the challenges that need to be faced or the problem that needs to be solved.
In the second act, the main character spends most of the time trying to meet the challenges using the easiest way possible. It’s only when they become vulnerable and realise that to find the way forward it’s going to be tough and many times they need to work with others.
This is what is at the heart of the UCA Act2 Project.
We have identified challenges which mean we have to look to the future and consider how we order our lives as the Uniting Church so we can continue to be true to our identity as a movement of God in Australia. We have to do this together, and be open to where God is leading us.
Connections to the Act2 theme
We are part of a whole story
The second act of a theatrical production or a movie is still part of the whole of the story. It is a time of moving through complexity or the unknown towards resolution.
The Uniting Church also looks to the future as we work through/look towards some significant challenges. While this happens, we continue to be on a journey, a pilgrim people on the way.
We are open to God’s leading at this time
As we work through the challenges we face, we are open to where and how God is leading us. To do this, we have to be vulnerable and let go of pre-conceived ideas about what the future will hold for us, and be open to the new.
For some this will be confronting, even scary. Like the members of the three founding churches of the Uniting Church, we also acknowledge God’s presence and faithfulness with us as we too are faithful as we listen and wait on God.
God’s Spirit will be with us
Act2 can also refer to Acts 2 where the story of the beginning of the church is recorded. Not only is there an outpouring of the Spirit, it is also an account of the followers of Jesus being faithful to what they were asked to do, and the establishment of the early Christian community built on justice and service.
As we work together to look to the future, we are also open to God’s Spirit as we are part of Christian communities (in congregations, agencies, schools, etc) built on justice and service.
We have a task to carry out
In a story, there is often a task that needs to be completed.
The Assembly Standing Committee has defined the task for us and this provides the foundation for this project. Clarifying it for the church, as well as it being informed by our engagement before the 16th Assembly will be important.
I’m looking forward to receiving your feedback for UCA Act2, which starts by reading the Introduction Paper.
If you have questions about the UCA Act2 Project please email UCA.Act2@nat.uca.org.au
Grace and peace,
Assembly General Secretary