In the final report by the Commission for Mission to the Vic/Tas Synod, members were asked to stand as different activities were named. At the conclusion of the list almost the entire membership was standing.
It was a tangible demonstration of the diversity of work the Commission for Mission has engaged in with and on behalf of the Uniting Church over its 20 plus year life span.
Outgoing chairperson Rev Greg Crowe and one of the CFM staff Cath James listed camps; rallies; advocacy and justice; chaplaincy; fundraising events; forums; multi cultural, youth and multi faith activities; service on boards; committees and reference groups; and the list went on. As each activity was listed, more people stood.
At its conclusion, Mr Crowe said people often ask “what does CFM do?” Quietly he said, “Thank you for being part of what CFM does.”
Acting executive director, Cheryl Lawrie, provided a word of hope and of warning.
“The CFM governing committee continues to be hopeful for the new mission and capacity building unit,” Ms Lawrie said. “We note, however, the questions and challenges that lie behind the new unit are not new, they are the same as have been around since the CFM’s formation.
“Our prayer for the Synod is that we don’t become despondent if there isn’t a magic fix. Structure never fixes relationship. It just makes good relationships possible.”
The report was received by consensus.