12th Assembly 2009

Key directions simplified

Members of the 12th Assembly of the Uniting Church on July 21 agreed to continue for the next triennium the key directions originally adopted by the 11th Assembly.


Assembly Standing Committee recommended simplifying the language of the directions to remove duplication and to delete a clause prescribing the “means through which the Assembly Standing Committee would monitor the action taken in response to the key directions (that is, the requirement for ‘SMART’ goals).”

Describing them as “longer term aims that will be fruitful for another triennium”, the Standing Committee said the directions had ongoing relevance.

Initial discussion led to an amendment being adopted, changing the wording of the introduction and the addition of clauses relating to the promotion of leadership among young people in the church and the exploration of new expressions of mission and Christian community.

The Assembly agreed to continue the following key directions for the next triennium:

  • Continue working with the Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Christian Congress (UAICC) towards finding new and effective expressions of the covenant between the UAICC and other parts of the Uniting Church.
  • Engage in Jesus’ ministry of peacemaking within the word and the church.
  • In consultation with other councils of the church support and nurture a passion for evangelism, discipleship formation and leadership development with an emphasis on spiritual development and faith sharing.
  • Commit to the articulation of our doctrine in a way that communicates clearly to our members, that celebrates our identity and that educates members.
  • Critically evaluate the polity and governance of the church with a view to reducing the level of prescription and enhancing the capability of councils of the church to hear and respond to current missional imperatives.

Standing Committee stressed that the key directions were not meant to replace the agency mandates but to “complement them by providing a common framework to which each agency could contribute either alone or together with other agencies in areas where the church required particular focus or attention at that time.”

Reports describing the way in which agencies address the Key Directions are published annually in National Matters