47. MINUTE OF APPRECIATION FOR REV DR ELIZABETH NOLAN (Christian Education Reference Committee)

Monday, 09 July 2012

That the Assembly resolve to


place on record its appreciation for the contribution of Rev Dr Elizabeth Nolan during her term as Chairperson of the Assembly Christian Education Reference Committee (CERC) (2006 -2012) Elizabeth is passionate about Christian Education.  It is her life’s work. Elizabeth’s commitment to Christian Education is ably expressed in her own words. “Our Christian growth in faith and witness throughout our lives depends on the very process of Christian Education as we study the scriptures, explore new and old church doctrines and learn to communicate with God in richer ways.”

Elizabeth began her commitment to Christian Education with the Assembly with the National Education Committee (ANEC) in 1991 as a member. She worked for the Joint Board of Christian Education (JBCE) from 1991 -1996; and went onto to be a member of the Uniting Education Reference Committee. She took up the role of Chairperson of the Christian Education Reference Committee (CERC) in the latter part of 2006.


Whilst serving as a Minister of the Word in various congregations, Elizabeth has continued her broader Christian Education commitments. Elizabeth is a life member of the Australian Religious Education Association (AREA). She has been a board member of the international body, the Association of Professors and Practitioners of Religious Educators (APRE) and continues that commitment by presenting various workshop papers to international conferences.  Elizabeth has up to 2011 been the Synod of Victoria and Tasmania’s representative to the Victorian Council of Christian Education (VCCE) that concluded in 2011 with her appointment in 2012 as a Minister of the Word to the Indooropilly congregation in the Queensland Synod. Elizabeth has brought this rich experience of education to the role of Chairperson of the Christian Education Reference Committee. (CERC)


There have been many changes in Christian Education over the last twenty years and as such,  recognition that within the Uniting Church Christian Education has changed markedly. There continues to be a growing diversity of language concerning Christian Education including formation, discipleship, spiritual growth and faith development. These changes have led to their own demands upon the Christian Education Reference Committee (CERC) during the period of Elizabeth being Chairperson. In 2010 the Assembly Standing Committee (ASC) assisted by the Christian Education Reference Committee (CERC) gave approval for a two year Christian Education Research fellowship for the purposes of undertaking research regarding the future role and priorities of the Assembly in Christian Education. The Christian Education Reference Committee(CERC)  prepared a research proposal which was approved by the Assembly Standing Committee. The Assembly gives thanks to Elizabeth for working with the committee in the formation of this proposal especially from her expertise in Christian Education theory and practice.


Elizabeth has brought a long and rich experience in Christian Education to the life of the Assembly as the Chairperson of the Christian Education Reference Committee. (CERC)  Her commitment to the body of knowledge known as Christian Education is marked her sustained contribution to the various committees in the life of the Assembly over a long period of time. We give thanks for the commitment, expertise and passion for Christian Education that Elizabeth has brought to her role as Chairperson of the Assembly’s Christian Education Committee (CERC) and her ongoing commitment as a Minister of the Word to enrich the educational life of the Uniting Church.