Top stories that got us talking in 2017
As we close out the year, we recap the stories that got us talking, made us comment, made us celebrate the life of the Church or caught our attention. What got you talking in 2017?
- All of this is about sharing the good news In her final Moderator’s Reflection for Insights, Rev. Myung Hwa Park shares some thoughts about the Uniting Church’s 40th anniversary and the journey from here.
2. Pulse means that there is a sign of life. At the July Synod meeting, a unanimous vote brought Pulse to life. The new focus of Uniting Church youth and young adults ministry in NSW,Pulse is an exciting new initiative to train and resource young leaders in the church.
3. Does Religion Do More Harm Than Good? In October, an Ipsos poll found that 63 percent of Australians agreed with the statement ‘religion does more harm than good’. In this reflection, past Uniting Church president Rev. Prof. Andrew Dutney explored the poll’s implications.
4. Making Black Lives Matter in Australia. The Black Lives Matter movement, was awarded the Sydney Peace Prize in November. While the movement began in the US in response to the death of Michael Brown, it has international implications. Melissa Stewart explores what it might have to say to Australia.
5. Changing the Way We Talk About Dementia. With a recent visit from Professor John Swinton challenging the way the Uniting Church looks at (and talks about) dementia, this November piece by Lisa Sampson looks at the stigma surrounding this common condition.
6. Same Sex Marriage Bill Passes. After a protracted public debate, including the postal survey, same sex marriage passed into law. Insights covered the marathon sitting of parliament that saw the change in legislation.
7. Should We Continue To Use Their Work? The Church and #MeToo. With the #MeToo movement underway, Insights explored its implications for the church. In particular, this reflection focused on whether or not the church should still use the work of theologians who had been abusers.
8. Royal Commission Hands Down Final Report. After four years, the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse handed down its final report in mid December.
9. Roll out the mat and let the relatives talk. 400-plus attendees gathered at the Croatian club in Punchbowl for the Tonga Parish’s last youth rally on the 19th November to share their stories of faith.
10. Peacemakers at the grassroots in Israel and Palestine. A delegation from the Synod of NSW and the ACT visited this ongoing war zone earlier this year, to hear from people who live within the Israel/Palestine conflict.
11. Do We Still Need The Jedi? One of the year’s most anticipated releases, Star Wars: The Last Jedi has proven to be controversial. Insights‘ (spoiler free) review evaluates the latest episode in the saga.