The practice of being a Lebanese minister in the Uniting Church in Australia

Gaby Kobrossi

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

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Abstract

The aim behind this thesis is two-fold. It is designed to explore the practice of ministry of the first Lebanese Arabic-speaking evangelical minister into the Uniting Church. Through personal narrative and what has been described a ‘loitering’ it provides an example of what ministry can be like if a somewhat reluctant migrant steps out of a monoculture and embraces ministry in highly culturally diverse region within one of the most multicultural cities in the world.
This subjective experience is explored with reference to the three waves of Lebanese emigration to Australia.
Its second intention is to consider why other Arabic-speaking evangelical pastors in Sydney are very suspicious of the Uniting Church on Australia. It is regarded in the perspective of these believers as being too liberal and not really a true church. The points of contention have to do with the ordination of women, the practice of infant baptism, the willingness to receive those who are divorced into the practice of an ordained ministry and its attitude towards same-relationships, -leadership and -marriage.
Is it possible for the Uniting Church to manage its cultural and linguistic difficulty and these issues, especially those to do with same-gender?
This tension naturally leads into a reflection on how well the Uniting Church realizes its ecumenical calling and its self-proclaimed declaration of being a multicultural church that seeks to live cross-culturally. Is it more of an aspiration than a declaration of having arrived?
These issues are explored by way of personal journey, call, and the life and witness of the Bankstown Congregation of the Uniting Church.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Ministry
Awarding Institution
  • Charles Sturt University
Supervisors/Advisors
  • Pearson, Clive, Principal Supervisor
Place of PublicationAustralia
Publisher
Publication statusPublished - 14 Jul 2022

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