MCD July 2009 eNews
The Dean Writes
The Winter solstice has just passed, which is good to keep in mind as we face several more months of cold and occasionally gloomy weather before the glory of Spring graces our lives. As a Queenslander whose ageing bones find each successive winter a little more challenging to endure, I must admit that a very different part of me, my soul, actually embraces Winter and the beauty that it brings. I love the bracing mornings when I perform a daily ritual of wiping the frost off the car's windows, allowing them to reflect a hint of rose dawn light. My favourite time is mid-evening, when I undertake a brief pilgrimage to the back yard and look directly up at the Southern Cross. The Cross seems to sparkle more brightly in a Winter sky, and is a deeply comforting sight for a person who has spent 20 years living under the stars of the Northern Hemisphere. I treasure these reflective morning and evening moments when I feel, even briefly, fully and joyously alive. I wonder what senses, feelings, memories and longings nudge one towards such harmony of soul and earth and sky? Perhaps it has to do with being located in a secure space, ‘my place', a place with links to childhood memories, where I am truly at home and at peace in a sacred space.
Several weeks ago we celebrated refugee week in Australia. As I write this missive I glance above my desk at a magnificent fresco/icon of Mary, Joseph and the baby Jesus as they arrive as refugees in Egypt. I look up at it frequently during the day, and in some indefinable way, I am moved by the same feeling of connectedness I experience when looking at the reflection of dawn in the car window, or at the stars of the Southern Cross. Yet the fact is, I do very little if anything with or for the refugees living in our midst as they struggle to acclimatize and adapt to ‘our' way of life, or live in fear for theirs and for their children's future as they exist uncertainly from day to day in a limbo of unrecognition.
Even though I do very little for or with these people living on the margins of society, I can't help wondering, as we celebrate their presence among us, what they feel and think and remember when they look at the dawn and the night sky of their adopted land. I really have no idea. Yet in trying to imagine or to understand these feelings and thoughts and memories, it is possible that we will be able to adapt, even in small ways, to their way of life, and to honour and celebrate the memories of their sacred spaces. Such imagining may even lead us to embrace in a middle space that is a creation of our shared memories and longings-a first step perhaps to our truly be-longing.
Prof Paul Beirne
Notes from The Registrar
Welcome to all those who have been away during the midyear break, and are looking forward to the excitement of Semester 2.
The launch of the MCD Repository at the Faculty Research Day was a highlight not only for the College but for the international community of theological education, given the MCD Repository is the only dedicated theological repository in the world. It is a wonderful opportunity for the all MCD scholars and students to develop even wider global connections and a higher research profile throughout the world. The next event in the development of the MCD will be the launch of the new MCD website at the next meeting of the Heads of Colleges in August.
To ensure the MCD Centenary Celebrations are professionally managed, the MCD is seeking to employ an event manager for one year starting in the immediate future. This part time position will need someone who has the skills and experience to work with diverse organisations and people from many different groups who will be participating and attending the wide range of events designed to celebrate an historical occasion not only for the College but for the Churches and the greater Australian community. For details on this position please feel free to contact Elizabeth Anderson on 9853 3177 or firstname.lastname@example.org
The MCD Administration Office is open from 9am to 5pm; however, to ensure we offer the high quality service we aim to deliver, please contact the Office Manager on 98533177 to accommodate any special meetings outside those hours.
- The Principal Position, Churches of Christ Theological College, Mulgrave, Victoria
The Dean, Prof Paul L Beirne MA MDiv DMin PhD