Candidates for Ministry of the Word and Ministry of Deacon work through a formation program focused on church context, community, ministry, study, and the minister as person. The program usually takes three years. Each person in the program works with Christine Sorensen, Dean of Formation, on a personalised track, taking into account previous experience and particular vocation.

Candidates meet with a wide range of people in the formation process, including field education supervisors, personal mentors and supervisors, Presbytery support people, the Dean of Ministry Formation and an academic supervisor. Often their most powerful learning experiences are in the context of field placements, clinical pastoral education in hospital and urban settings, and rural ministry experiences.

Candidates for ministry study subjects in biblical studies, church history, liturgical studies, mission, evangelism and apologetics, pastoral theology, theology, and Uniting Church Studies.

While the ministry formation program has been designed with candidates for ordained ministry in mind, presbyteries are able to encourage those working in lay ministry roles to participate in workshops, seminars and learning experiences alongside candidates.

Contact Christine Sorensen to explore your options for ministry formation in 2018 and beyond.

Christine Sorensen, Dean of Formation
United Theological College
[email protected]
(02) 8838 8919

The following are topics and projects explored as part of the formation program.

Knowing Self

A journey statement, reflection on life events, spiritual disciplines and practices, self identity in relation to family of origin, cultural settings and life experience, well being and resilience in ministry, group dynamics, collegiality and team ministry, inter-personal boundaries, and time management.

Knowing Church

Exploration of the Uniting Church in Australia Basis of Union, the Preamble to the Constitution and other key documents, UCA regulations, ecumenical relations, safe church training, ethical ministry training, working in teams, congregational responsibilities, Presbytery oversight, Synod oversight, Synod resources, Assembly resources, and using National Church Life Survey profiles.

Knowing Community

Social analysis, community development, community organising, rural orientation, interfaith relations, using National Church Life Survey community profiles.

Knowing in Ministry

Leadership development, adaptive leadership and change management, racism awareness and cross cultural orientation, conflict and peacemaking, reading congregational life, hospital orientation, funerals and bereavement support, weddings and marriage support, disaster training, baptism and communion, transitional ministry, alternative placements and starting fresh expressions of church.

Download the Formation Fact Sheet