03 Jun upside down leadership
Tonight within the Uniting Church Synod of Victoria and Tasmania our new moderator, the Rev Sharon Hollis, will be inducted. The Uniting Church, an Australian church,was formed in 1977 when the Australian Methodist, Congregationalist and most Presbyterian churches, came together.
The UC is committed to a style of leadership that is not about being dictatorial, that is not about ‘celebrity’ and is not about the ‘cult of the minister’. In contrast, in the UC the role of ministers, whether they are in agencies, congregational settings or being inducted as our moderator, is to follow the way of Jesus and be servant leaders.
Servant leadership is not about being a doormat, but it is about attending to the Spirit at work among the people, not assuming that you have all the answers. It is about listening deeply and openly to the gathered people and to the world, asking the hard questions and encouraging others to face their truths and to live into their gifts for the whole church and the world. As the words of the liturgy for the induction service state: ‘you are called to be a servant and a shepherd in this setting’.
It is with joy that we welcome Sharon into this role. Sharon has known the depths of life’s pain and does not shy away from the hard questions. These are rich and costly gifts that she brings to this leading-serving role.
To find out more about Sharon you may like to look here: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-06-02/husbands-suicide-made-church-leader-more-compassionate/7471924
Rich blessings for Sharon and the Uniting Church Synod at this time.
Rev Dr Sally Douglas