UnitingWorld is the international aid and partnerships agency of the Uniting Church in Australia, based in Sydney Australia.
The Uniting Church in Australia was established when most congregations of the Methodist Church of Australasia, the Congregational Union of Australia and most of the Presbyterian Church of Australia united in June 1977. Each of these Churches had established their own overseas mission board by the 1850s: the Methodist Overseas Missions (MOM), the London Missionary Society (LMS) and the Presbyterian Board of Ecumenical Relations and Mission (BOEMAR). At the time of union, these mission boards merged to form the Commission for World Mission, which eventually became Uniting International Mission (UIM).
In July 2000, Uniting Church Overseas Aid (UCOA) was established as a separate aid and community development agency of the Uniting Church in Australia. UCOA and UIM worked in tandem, but under separate mandates; UCOA to deliver development projects and humanitarian aid alongside partner churches; UIM to support church leadership, advocacy and Christian discipleship within partner communities. In 2008, these agencies merged under the name ‘UnitingWorld,’ and the twofold mandate remains.
The three denominations that united to form the Uniting Church in Australia each brought their own historic links with overseas churches and these connections have continued. Uniting Church members were still working in partner churches up until the 1970s but the decolonization of Oceania and the Asia Pacific and shifts in the theology of mission began to reshape how people engaged with partner churches.
The various churches often decolonized even before national independence, with founding denominations coming to prefer independent indigenous churches over a traditional missionary approach. This allowed relationships between the Uniting Church in Australia and churches overseas to mature from dependency (for leadership, resources and funding) into interdependence and partnership.
Mission and program areasEdit
UnitingWorld's mission is to drive collaboration with the global Church to strengthen its shared ministry and address the causes and consequences of poverty, violence and injustice.
It focuses on five areas: Poverty alleviation, gender equality, leadership, climate change and disaster risk reduction, and emergency response.
Recently UnitingWorld has been supporting partner churches in the Pacific to develop contextual theologies for development in the areas of gender equality, disaster resilience and climate change, and child protection.
Dr Sureka Goringe has been the National Director of UnitingWorld since July 2017.
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- "MANDATE FOR UNITING CHURCH OVERSEAS AID" (PDF). July 2005. Retrieved 6 November 2019.
- "UnitingWorld Annual Report 2018" (PDF). UnitingWorld Governance and Structure.
- edited by Helen Richmond and Myong Duk Yang (2006). Crossing borders : shaping faith, ministry and identity in multicultural Australia. Sydney: Openbook Australia. pp. 141–142. ISBN 1864072474. OCLC 224450283.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
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- Mission and development : God's work or good works?. Clarke, Matthew. New York: Continuum. 2011. pp. 167–186. ISBN 9781441153234. OCLC 778454545.CS1 maint: others (link)
- "UnitingWorld report to Uniting Church in Australia Triennial Assembly". Uniting Church in Australia Assembly. Retrieved 11 November 2019.
- "Unlocking the gate: Churches as agents of transformative social change | Aus-PNG Network". Retrieved 2019-11-12.
- "Australia's aid in PNG: the need for a gendered approach". www.lowyinstitute.org. Retrieved 2019-11-12.
- A Theology of Disaster Resilience in a Changing Climate. Australia: Church Agencies Network Disaster Operations. 2019. ISBN 978-0-646-80858-1.
- Bird, Siera (2019). Child Protection and Care. Australia: UnitingWorld. ISBN 978-0-646-81035-5.
- "UnitingWorld welcomes new National Director". UnitingWorld. 2017-07-11. Retrieved 2019-07-19.