Calvary Presbytery

    About the Carpentaria Presbytery

The Carpentaria Presbytery is one of six Presbyteries within the Queensland Synod of the Uniting Church in Australia. From Bowen to Thursday Island and west to the Northern Territory, the Carpenatria Presbytery serves some of the most beautiful and yet harshest parts of Australia.

 The Carpentaria Presbytery came into existance on the 29th February, 2020, when the Calvary and North Queensland Presbyteries elected to amalgamate as one. Calvary Presbytery was originally part of the North Queensland Presbytery at the time of union in 1977, but became a separate Presbytery in 1985 with the creation of the Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Christian Congresss (UAICC).

 Coming back together as one new Presbytery was seen as a new and signficant way in which the covenant between First and Second peoples could be lived out by walkoing together and sharingg the stories of faith and reconciliation.

 Serviced by the twin tropical cities of Cairns and Townsville and comprising major centers such as Mount Isa and Charters Towers, North Queensland offers a rich and vital culture that has a laid-back feel that is synonomous with tropical living.

Presbytery Zones

Because of its geographical size, the Presbytery is divided into four zones, the Northern, Southern, Cape/Gulf and Calvary zones.

 The Northern Zone covers from Mossman to Cardwell, and is dominated by Queensland's two highest mountains, the rainforest-covered Mt Bartle Frere and Mt Bellenden-Kerr. The tourism-dominated region dominated by Cairns (pop 150,000) gives visitors and locals alike unique access to the Great Barrier Reef and the cool tropical climes of the Atherton Tablelands.

 The Southern Zone, centered around Queensland's northern capital of Townsville (pop 170,000) is the industrial and business center of the north. The city is the location of a major seaport handling exports from mines in Mount Isa and cattle exports from coastal and inland areas. It's drier climate promotes the growth of both regions of rainforest and tropical hardwood forests. The town of Charters Towers, southwest of Townsville is major cattle hub servicing many communities to the west.

 The Cape/Gulf Zone, while geographically copvering the majority of the Presbytery, is numerically the smallest. Dominated by mining and cattle industries, the only community with a population over 5000 is the far western city of Mount Isa (pop 22,000) which holds the record of being the largeset geographic city in the world. The tropical islands of the Torres Straits contrast to the dusty outback of isolated communities like Boulia and the popular fishing village of Karumba near Normanton. Weipa, on the west coast is the largest bauxite mine in the world.

 The non-geographical Calvary Zone includes both urban and remote indigenous communities across North Queensland. From the remote gulf community of Mornington Island to the cape communities of Aurukun and Napranum to the costal community of Gordonvale and the urban congregation of West end in heart of Townsville, the Calvary zone is uniquely placed to serve indigenous people right across the region. As part of this commitment to reconciliation, memvers of the Calvary Zone are also member sof teh geographical zone in which they reside.

Unique and Challenging

The challenges of the cyclone dominated wet season (December to May), the resultant road conditions and the huge distances between communities provides both unique difficulties AND unique opportunies. With two Frontier Services patrols, one based in Atherton and the unique McKay Patrol aerial ministry based in Cloncurry, vast areas of the presbytery are covered by just two ministry agents. Hospital, school and prison chaplaincies provide support for the vulnerable, while street chaplains in Townsville ensure safety and support for our young people.

On the coast, the cultural diversity brought by Pacific Islander and significant Korean communities brings a vibrancy to the life of the churches in the Presbytery.

Working for Christian Unity

The Uniting Church has a particular focus of working with other churches and denominations. In many settings,particularly rural and remote communities, the Uniting church offers both its buildings and its structure in order to foster ecumenical relationships. In doing this, we believe that we proclaim the work of Christ in bringing people together in a loving and supportive community.

Together on the Way, Enriching Community

As a focus of the Queensland Synod, the Carpentaria Presbytery is committed to the core Gospel values as expression of God's reconciling action in Jesus Christ

 These core values frame the way in which the Presbytery of North Queensland works to provide a safe, just and loving community in which we live our Christian witness. By bringing these core values to mind, we bring to mind the call of Christ to love and be agents of peace.

Child-safe Church

The Uniting Church in Australia is committed to providing safe places where people are cared for, nurtured and sustained.

We commit to being a community which:

-provides and maintains a welcoming and safe environment
-offers suitable and well equipped leadership
-provides a level of resourcing that reflects the value of all people
-provides clear and appropriate guidelines for managing the safety of people and programs.

 The Queensland Synod's policies and resources apply to all people across the congregations, agencies and activities of the Uniting Church in Queensland, and reflect the requirements of the Commission for Children and Young People and Child Guardian Act 2000.

Working Together

UnitingCare Queensland is the health and community service provider of the Uniting Church and supports more than 14 000 people throughout the state every day of the year. With over 15 000 staff in more than 400 geographic locations across Queensland, UnitingCare Queensland is one of Australia's largest non-profit health and community service providers, with an annual operating budget in excess of one billion dollars.

 The Carpentaria Presbytery encourages its people to assist Uniting Care through various forms of chaplaincy and volunteer works. Working together means bringing the legacy of the history of the Uniting church, her agencies and congregations, together to provide holistic care for all North Queenslanders.

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