Around Australia – 24th September 2018

Here are a few recent stories from around Australia which may be of interest:

After a long struggle, the Uniting Church becomes the first to offer same-sex marriage – SBS News.

Bill Hayden, former Labor leader, turns to God despite atheist past – ABC News.

Former atheist and political leader Bill Hayden baptised at age 85 – Catholic Leader.

“There’s been a gnawing pain in my heart and soul about what is the meaning of life. What’s my role in it?” Mr Hayden said.

At What Price Awakening? Examining the Theology and Practice of the Bethel Movement – Gospel Coalition Australia.

Brisbane Cathedral Pride Evensong Offers Prayers to “Erotic Christ” – David Ould.

Peter Jensen to succeed Gerald Bray as Editor of Churchman

“After 35 years as the editor of Churchman, Professor Gerald Bray has decided to retire from the role at the end of 2018. We are very sorry to see Gerald hang up his boots, after sterling service over half a lifetime and nearly 140 entertaining, provocative, stimulating editorials. Over the decades he has established Churchman as the leading international journal for Anglican Evangelical theology, and we owe him a huge debt. …

We are delighted to announce that the new editor of Churchman, from January 2019, is Archbishop Peter Jensen.”

– Read the details at Church Society’s website.

Tim Chester ‘Meet the Author’ – in Sydney this Saturday

Reformers Bookshop in Stanmore is hosting a ‘Meet the Author’ event with Tim Chester on Saturday afternoon (22 September 2018) from 2:30pm.

Details from their blog.

D.W.B. Robinson and the puzzle of Sydney Anglicanism

“Donald Willian Bradley Robinson, AO (1922-2018), Bishop in Parramatta (1973-1982), Anglican Archbishop of Sydney (1982-1993), could appear to observers as something of a puzzle.

Not that he was complex or difficult personally. On the contrary, Robinson was famously measured and straightforward in his dealings with people – able to play the ball and not the player to an almost superhuman degree. Rather, his life and work puzzled observers by holding together a suite of commitments and values often assumed to be at odds. This is true of Sydney Anglicanism itself, which is more complex and more interesting that either its distractors or its partisans tend to realise.

To crack this puzzle is to understand one of the most profound developers of religious thought in Australia. And it is, in turn, to understand something important about the diocese of Sydney. …”

– The ABC has published this piece by Rory Shiner, who also supplied the photo. Read it all here.

A man of words and a man of his word – Bishop Donald Robinson

“The ninth Archbishop of Sydney, Donald William Bradley Robinson, has been laid to rest after a funeral service in St Andrew’s Cathedral which he helped write 40 years earlier.

Bishop Robinson died early on Friday morning, 7th September. He was 95.

A renowned New Testament scholar, Bishop Robinson was a lecturer and Vice-Principal at Moore College, before becoming Bishop in Parramatta and later Archbishop of Sydney and Metropolitan of New South Wales from 1982 to 1993.

Among his achievements was the production of An Australian Prayer Book (AAPB), highlighted in the eulogy by his daughter Anne. …”

– At, Russell Powell reports on today’s funeral service for a dearly loved and respected Christian leader.

See also:

Servant of the Church of God: Donald William Bradley Robinson, 1922–2018 – by Rory Shiner at Shenton Park, who recently completed a PhD on the life and work of Donald Robinson.

Remembering Donald RobinsonThe Gospel Coalition Australia has assembled a number tributes.

The Rev. Peter Robinson spoke about his father’s legacy on 2nd September 2018, as part of the Australian Legacy series at Holy Trinity Wentworth Falls.

(Photo courtesy Ramon Williams.)

Funeral service for Bishop Donald Robinson Tuesday 11:00am

The funeral service for Bishop Donald Robinson will be held at 11:00 am on Tuesday, September 11, at St. Andrew’s Cathedral in Sydney.

Donald William Bradley Robinson (1922-2018)

“We at Moore College rejoice today that our dear brother and father in the faith, Archbishop Donald William Bradley Robinson AO, has been called home to be with Christ, ‘which is better by far’.

The debt we owe to this faithful disciple and Bible teacher is truly incalculable. Hundreds of thousands of people worldwide, many of whom do not even know his name, have been shaped in their reading of the Bible by the approach to biblical theology that he pioneered at Moore College in the 1950s and 1960s. Graeme Goldsworthy’s Gospel and Kingdom and Vaughan Roberts’ God’s Big Picture have taken that approach around the world.

Donald William Bradley Robinson was born on 9 November 1922, the son of a clergyman in the Diocese of Sydney. He studied classics at Sydney University, graduating in 1946, and theology at Queen’s College, Cambridge, graduating in 1950. …”

– Moore College Principal Dr. Mark Thompson adds his tribute to Bishop Donald Robinson.

Read it all at Theological Theology. (Also published at the Moore College website.)

With much thanks for Bishop Donald Robinson

“One of the towering figures of Anglicanism in the 20th century and former Archbishop of Sydney Bishop Donald Robinson, has died at the age of 95. …

The first to pay tribute was the current Archbishop of Sydney, Glenn Davies, who described the contribution of Bishop Robinson as ‘immeasurable’.

“We have lost a giant in the world of New Testament scholarship” Dr Davies said in a statement.

“Bishop Robinson, who lectured at Moore Theological College for more than 30 years, influenced a generation of future ministers and scholars. His innovative approach to Biblical Theology is one of his many lasting legacies.

While a scholar of great intellect, he was also a man of great humility and grace.” the Archbishop said.” has the first tribute.

Bishop Robinson’s funeral service will be held at 11:00 am next Tuesday, September 11, at St. Andrew’s Cathedral, Sydney.

(Top photo courtesy Dr Chase Kuhn, via Dr Mark Thompson. Bottom photo from the 1982 Sydney Diocesan Year Book.)

When a Muslim village makes a bid for your daughter …

“When Paul writes to Timothy, ‘Continue in what you have learned … because you know those from whom you learned it’, he’s referring to his grandmother and mother. In Timothy’s childhood, it was the faith that first lived in Lois and Eunice that deeply impressed him. Paul reminds him how from infancy he had known the holy Scriptures.

Today, I’ve witnessed how this works firsthand, but in a setting for which I never thought I’d have the privilege. I walked in my friend Moses’ shoes for a day, sat with his ‘Eunice’, heard stories of his ‘Lois’ and discovered how oral tradition passes on the teachings of holy Scripture.

I’ll never be able to read these verses from Timothy in the same way again. …”

– Take the time to read the latest post from Moderator-General of the Presbyterian Church of Australia, John P. Wilson.

Ambulance staff see a lot of ‘death and dying’ and one man provides different help

“With only a Christian cross on the epaulet of his blue uniform to distinguish him from other paramedics, senior chaplain Paul McFarlane had barely finished parking when he was asked for help. …

‘We can walk right in because we are part of the team,’ said Reverend McFarlane. …”

– A Sydney Morning Herald story today on the value of Ambulance Chaplaincy.

(Photo: NSW Ambulance Service.)

Ramon Williams: a look through the lens – documentary in the works

As mentioned earlier this week, a documentary on Ramon Williams and his media ministry is in the works.

There is also an opportunity for people and organisations who have benefitted from Ramon’s work to help honour him.

Christian Media and Arts Australia have a story – and there is further information from documentary producer Richard Attieh at TV Group.

Ramon Williams on Christian media ministry

Ramon Williams, who retired in February 2018 after fifty years of using his media skills to serve Christ’s church, has been interviewed by Keith Garner on Wesley Mission’s Wesley Impact.

Ramon speaks about how he begin his media work in the 1960s, his coverage of Cyclone Tracy in 1974, and what you need, most of all, to serve in this way.

Watch the interview here. Part 2 begins at 23:30 into the program.

(We gather there are plans to tell Ramon’s story more fully, and will share details when available.)

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