The Uniting Church came into being on 22 June 1977, after three denominations – Congregational Union in Australia, the Methodist Church of Australasia, and the majority of congregations of the Presbyterian Church of Australia – joined together.
In uniting, the members of those bodies testified to “that unity which is both Christ’s gift and will for the Church” (Basis of Union, para. 1).
Ecumenism remains a vital aspect in all of the Church’s life and work – in local congregations, national commitments to work together with other churches, and relationships and partnerships with churches of various denominations in Asia and the Pacific.
As a people journeying together we affirm our calling under God:
- to preach Christ the crucified and risen one and confess him as Lord;
- to bear witness to the unity of faith and life in Christ, rising above cultural, economic, national and racial boundaries;
- to engage in fearless prophetic ministry in relation to social evils which deny God’s active will for justice and peace;
- to act with God alongside the oppressed, the hurt and the poor;
- to accept responsibility for the wise use and conservation of the finite resources of this earth for the benefit of all;
- to recognise, treasure and use the gifts of the Spirit given to all God’s people for ministering; and
- to live a creative, adventurous life of faith, characterised by openness, flexibility, hope and joy (based on a statement from the inaugural worship service of the Uniting Church in Australia, June 1977).
The Uniting Church is the third largest Christian denomination in Australia and the first church to be created in and of Australia. On any Sunday more than 2,500 congregations worship at a Uniting Church including many congregations that worship in languages other than English. Our churches can be found deep in the heart of our cities, or in our most isolated and outback towns. Many congregations have existed for years while others are new and worship in different ways. Our congregations can be vastly different. Yet each is a community in which people seek to follow Jesus, grow in our understanding and experience of God’s spirit in the world, share their faith, care for each other, serve the local community and seek to live faithfully and with real joy.
This information comes from the web site of the Uniting Church’s national organisation, the Assembly. You can find a much fuller outline of the Uniting Church’s missional involvements, passions and structures here