From Rev Andrew Smith
Presbytery Minister - Congregation Futures
Our National Assembly of the Uniting Church has launched a new series of five reflections on the Uniting Church's key foundational document, the Basis of Union. Developed for use in a range of settings across the UCA, the studies are designed to foster reflection on the themes and directions of Act2 (the Assembly process for looking to the future of the church) in light of the foundations shaping Uniting Church theology and identity.
As we look to the future, it is important to know what makes us who we are.
The studies were commissioned by the Act2 Task Group and written by Rev Dr Geoff Thompson, a Uniting Church theologian and a member of the Assembly Standing Committee. Rev Dr Thompson has written extensively on the Basis of Union and Uniting Church theology.
Uniting Church President Rev Sharon Hollis introduced the studies as a way of beginning to respond to recommendations of the Act2 paper launched last week, that the UCA ‘reconnect with its core identity' and rearticulate common theological and other frameworks.
"The Basis of Union is a key guiding document allowing us to reconnect with our core theological identity as we continue to chart our life together," said Rev Hollis. “It is our prayer that these studies will deepen your love of God, encourage you in your service in the world and strengthen your commitment to God’s church."
Each study includes reflections on a particular section of the Basis of Union, related biblical passages, and questions for discussion. At the end of the studies there are some specific Act2 questions you can use to provide feedback on the Act2 project.
It is hoped these studies may be used across the breadth of the Uniting Church as we reflect on Act2 from different perspectives. You might use them in small groups, Church Councils, Presbyteries, and school and agency settings. We recommend you have both the Basis of Union and a Bible available as you participate. The Basis of Union is available on our website in English, with a link to translations into other languages.
The Assembly Resourcing Unit will also lead a series of sessions exploring the studies over five Thursdays: 4, 11, 18, 25 November, and 2 December. You can choose to attend either morning sessions (10:00-11:30am AEDT) to be run by Rev Charissa Suli and Rev Lindsay Cullen, or evening sessions (7:30-9:00pm AEDT) to be run by Rev Dr Apwee Ting and Rob Floyd.
For further information about the studies, and to register for the study sessions led by the Assembly Resourcing Unit, please go to this link: Our Life Together: Reflections on the Basis of Union - Uniting Church Australia