September 2017 Research Colloquium

The next Research Colloquium is scheduled for this Friday 15 September starting at 1.30pm in G3. The program is as follows:

Time Presenter Presentation Type Title
1.30pm – 2.15pm Ian Robinson Faculty Presentation Hot Gospel
2.15pm – 3.00pm Kamaloni Tu’iono DMin Presentation Encountering the ‘va’ or sacred space in cross cultural supervision
3.00pm – 3.45pm Gaby Kobrossi DMin Presentation Telling Tales


Ian Robinson                   Hot Gospel

All the churches have recently made strong statements of the essential gospel-issue of creation-care. This represents, and requires yet more,  important shifts in missiology. For instance, how to work in strong alliances beyond the church, the apologetics of extinction-level bio-ethics, the everyday implications of a renewed doctrine of creation that is not about origin, a new empirical meta-narrative that does not need to be informed by religious statements.


Kamaloni Tu’iono                            Encountering the ‘va’ or sacred space in cross cultural supervision

In cross-cultural supervision, we must become aware of the cultural gaps that differentiate two cultures. Lack of knowledge of those gaps can impede mutual understanding and potentially place the one who is being supervised in an alien cultural space. This ‘va is known as sacred space in a Pacific Island world view. In order to have an effective understanding of this ‘va’, we must first seek to understand its place in Pacific worldview and how it is nurtured. It is only through this much deeper  kind of cultural understanding that the prospective supervisor will be able to be empathetic and competent. Writing on the va Kimberly Byrne notes that this sacred space is “not empty space, not a space that separates, but a space that relates, that holds separate entities and things together.”


Gaby Kobrossi                          Telling Tales

Following in the steps of Jung Young Lee and David Ng many writers living in the midst of a diasporic experience ‘tell tales’. These tales are autobiographical; Rebecca Chopp argues that they are a form of testimony and bear witness to what has happened. Written in the service of a faith seeking understanding Lee believes that they can even express a way of providence. The tale being told in this seminar is my own. In the SCM Study Guide on Theological Reflection Judith Thompson and Stephen Pattison argue that it is important for the practitioner to be clear about how he or she is both a participant and a critical observer. I am telling my story for three reasons. The first is because it becomes a way of describing the kind of life and cultural background that I share with Lebanese evangelical pastors living in Sydney. The second is because it maps out the experience of a migrant minister who has been received into the ministry of the Uniting Church. The reception process seldom enquires into the actual experience of the minister being revealed – which leads into a third reason. It may then become possible to imagine the obstacles other Lebanese evangelical ministers need to overcome. It may also raise an awareness of what gifts they might bring from their cultural experience into a church which has declared itself to be a ‘church for all God’s people’ and which seeks to ‘live cross-culturally’ for the sake of the ‘multicultural kingdom’.


HDR Students are reminded that their participation in the Research Colloquiums is a critical component of their candidature and that apologies should be sent to me at [email protected]

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