Newtown Mission is part of the Uniting Church in Australia, which was formed as an Australian church in 1977. It brought together the Methodist, Congregational and most of the Presbyterian churches.
In the Uniting Church the local congregation is the primary body, though there are three other ‘levels’ within the church. Each body has different functions.
Our local congregation
Within Newtown Mission. leadership is shared by the Elders and Church Council, with the Minister being one of the Elders. The Minister is called by the local church but appointed by the Presbytery (see below).
In practice, the Church Council makes decisions about money, property and the life of the church. As a ‘sub-group’ of the Council, the Elders share, with the Minister, the oversight of the spiritual life of the church and pastoral care of people.
This is the regional body we are part of. The Presbytery ordains and appoints Ministers and has oversight of the life of the congregations.
All property is owned by the Property Trust of the State body of the church. The Synod is the legal entity of the church under an Act of the NSW Parliament, so has final authority on issues of property, employment regulations and church discipline procedures. It also oversees the church’s welfare arm, UnitingCare.
This is the decision making body on issues of doctrine and church practice.