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This website will cease when the Transitional Presbytery is concluded and the new Presbyteries are set up. We are anticipating this will be in November, but could be later. In the meantime, this will continue to be updated.
Latest news: Transitional Presbytery informal gatherings
The Transitional Presbytery of South Australia Standing Committee is keen that there are gatherings of congregations before the November 2019 Synod meeting in order to:
o Gain a better understanding of the tasks required to form a Presbytery
o Meet your Presbytery colleagues and commence building community
o Identify the values, directions and the likely resources available to your Presbytery
o Identify a pool of people who can provide strong leadership in all facets of your Presbytery life
o Look forward and start to shape and create your emerging Presbytery.
At the Transitional Presbytery meeting held 21 September a report and recommendations were presented by the Restructuring Task Group for discussion and comment. While a decision was not sought, those present had opportunity to indicate their level of support for each of the recommendations. The recommendation to establish two geographic presbyteries with a ‘soft’ presbytery border from St Vincents Gulf along Henley Beach Rd, Currie St, Grenfell St, East Tce, Bartels Rd, Flinders St, The Parade, over the hills, north of Norton Summit, Woodside, Harrogate, Mannum, Bowhill, Sandalwood, Kringin and Peebinga to the Victorian Border is strongly supported. This gives a slightly larger number of congregations north of the line, however the proposed presbyteries will have similar capacity for financial and missional sustainability. The RTG, after some minor tweaking of the recommendations, will present proposals at the Nov. 2019 Synod meeting.
Anticipating that the proposals will be adopted at the November Synod meeting, the Transitional Presbytery Standing Committee invites congregations in the proposed emerging Presbyteries to attend “Informal gatherings”.
Proposed Presbytery A
(for congregations north of the suggested boundary)
Saturday 26th October, 10.30am-3pm
Two Wells UC, 34 Gawler Rd, Two Wells
BYO lunch or go via the Two Wells Bakery! Tea and coffee provided.
Proposed Presbytery B
(for congregations south of the suggested boundary)
Saturday 2nd November, 10.30am-3pm
Murray Bridge UC, 1 Narooma Blvd, Murray Bridge
BYO lunch. Tea and coffee provided.
All welcome to attend.
Note: These are NOT formal meetings of the Transitional Presbytery SA.
More information here: TPSA informal gatherings
A letter from the General Secretary, Rev Felicity Amery, 14th October
Dear Members, Ministry Agents and office bearers of the Uniting Church in South Australia
Thank you for your ongoing contribution to the life and witness of the Uniting Church, for your faithful response to the Gospel of Jesus Christ and your openness to the movement of God’s Spirit.
As you know the Synod of SA has been participating in some restructuring to help strengthen our pastoral and missional support and resourcing of congregations and other ministries. At the June 2019 meeting of the Synod, two presbyteries were formed – the non geographic Generate Presbytery and the temporary Transitional Presbytery. In the weeks that have followed, over 600 people have participated in a series of conversations around the future of the Transitional Presbytery in the Synod of SA. The conversations which included a number of people from the Generate Presbytery, sought to actively listen to the voices of the church, about how they imagined the new presbyteries might reflect God’s hope and purpose for the church.
The Restructuring Task Group has worked hard to prepare the landscape for multiple presbyteries. An extensive review of by-laws and rules associated with the separation of the One Presbytery One Synod model and the establishment of multiple presbyteries within one Synod has been necessary. This work has been undertaken by the Process and Implementation working group. Rev Sue Page has headed up this group. You will find some of the updated Synod By-Laws on the Synod website, as well as a working document exploring how the Regulations that guide the life of the presbyteries might work in our new structure on the presbytery restructure webpage. Much work and many conversations will need to happen as the new presbyteries form to clarify how each presbytery will operate, and manage its life. Presbytery Rules will then need to be written. It is anticipated that this will take some time in the new year. As presbyteries form and discern how they want to work, the Associate General Secretary, and other Synod staff will be available to support and guide these conversations.
At a meeting of the Transitional Presbytery (21st September 2019) the Restructuring Task Group presented a series of proposals for consideration and discussion. The presbytery had opportunity to ask questions, raise issues of concern and affirm various aspects of the proposals. During October there is an opportunity for others to participate in a second round of conversations.
This letter is an invitation for you and your congregation or ministry context to give feedback. I appreciate the time is short and we are not asking for congregations to organise meetings or vote on the proposals. We are simply asking you to share the information with your congregation and encourage people to offer feedback and ask questions that might help you and the Restructuring Task Group to prepare for the meeting of the Synod in November. I have loaded the draft proposals with some explanation and rationale for your consideration on the Synod website.
This letter is intentionally being sent to the whole church and we look forward to your feedback, by email, letters or phone messages. You can contact us: email@example.com or phone 08 8236 4200. Following the integration of your feedback the Restructuring Task Group will prepare a final series of proposals for the November meeting of the Synod.
We would also encourage members of the Transitional Presbytery to begin to consider who might be suitably gifted people to take on the office bearer roles for the new presbyteries. Two special conversations are being planned by the Transitional Presbytery. While these are not decision making bodies they are opportunities for interested people to gather and share ideas. The gatherings will be held on Saturday 26th October at Two Wells Uniting Church and Saturday 2nd November at Murray Bridge Uniting Church. You are welcome to attend and we encourage you to check the Transitional Presbytery website for further details (also found on the Synod website)
Following the decision of the November Synod we anticipate giving the new presbyteries an opportunity to meet and elect office bearers so that the work of being a new presbytery can begin. The Synod will continue to offer support to all presbyteries during this transition period and beyond.
Thank you for spending some time reflecting on the proposals and we look forward to meeting with your representatives at Synod in November.
Grace and peace
Rev Felicity Amery
Check out the strategic thinking and proposals page for updates about geographic presbyteries.
Please check out the FAQ page on this website.
The website will also serve as a repository of resources related to the process and priorities. See also information on the SA Synod Restructuring Task Group website and the Urban Mission Network website (note: the UMN ceased at the end of June 2019, but the website will continue for some time after that)
Standing Committee updates June 2019 (particularly Presbytery Task Group report)
Rev Sue Page (Associate Gen Sec) updates
Proposals to Presbytery meeting – who has responsibility for what
Transitional Presbytery – summary of congregations
(note: a number of congregations have chosen not to vote on the decision to avoid unnecessary conflict. By default they become part of the Transitional Presbytery going forward)
At the November 2018 Presbytery and Synod meeting (SA Synod), voting members agreed that the existing structure of one Synod and one Presbytery in South Australia (existing since 2006) be modified to allow for more than one Presbytery. The meeting further agreed that a non-geographical Presbytery (NGP) (to be known as Generate Presbytery) would be created to operate by 1 July, 2019. Generate-Presbytery-Info-Sheet
The June 2019 Synod meeting, in accordance with Reg.3.4.6, will determine the initial congregations and faith communities to form Generate Presbytery and the Transitional Presbytery of South Australia. This will be based on the decision made at a meeting of each congregation or faith community to nominate whether they wish to join the NGP or be part of the Transitional Presbytery.
The initial meetings of the Generate Presbytery and the Transitional Presbytery will be held in June 2019 following the Synod meeting.
The Transitional Presbytery of SA will be dissolved in November 2019, and it is anticipated that 2-3 Geographical Presbyteries will be formed at the November 2019 meeting of the SA Synod.