As a police officer on general patrol, Josh Scherer was used to responding to calls. But a call from Rev Naomi Duke, Minister of the Word at the Parafield Gardens Uniting Church, set his life on a different course. Naomi told Josh that Parafield Gardens had recently created a position of Discipleship Pastor and that they would love him to apply for the role.

Josh, who had been a regular attendee at Tea Tree Gully Uniting Church and Chair of the South Australian Youth Camp Out, describes the call from Naomi as surprising and humbling.

“I felt a call to leadership, but I wasn’t sure in what capacity”, he says.

After praying and discerning his future, he believed he felt a clear call to ministry. In the six weeks that followed he resigned from SA Police, took up his new role, undertook a Period of Discernment and commenced studying towards a Bachelor of Ministry.

Josh says that while things moved quickly, his decision to work in ministry gave him a sense of peace.

“I feel I made the right decision and I am very happy”, he says.

Five years on, Josh has been ordained as a Minister of the Word and has been placed at Gawler Uniting Church.

“It is an incredible privilege to be trusted to communicate and share the Gospel”, he says.

Josh Scherer

Susan studied a B Min as part of the requirements for a Candidate for Minister of the Word within the Uniting Church of South Australia. She was a full time student, having resigned from nursing and moving to Adelaide from Port Lincoln.

“I have experienced friendship, caring and nurturing at the College that gave me life. Students, lecturers and staff from varied backgrounds and ages shared together experiences, thoughts and opinions. This sharing broadened my learning, sometimes confirming and other times challenging my opinions in a way that was safe and enabled me to be whole,” she says.

“Study and change are not easy, the faculty and staff are there to help. If they can’t they will find some one who will. As soon as I commenced at Uniting College over six years ago, I felt like I was “home”.”

Today, Susan is an ordained Minister of the Word and in her first placement at Adare Uniting Church, Victor Harbour.

Susan Doughty

Uniting College increased my passion for ministry and stretched my thoughts in ways that have enlarged my desire to learn. As a leader, I have enjoyed the practical ministry programs which the College offers.

All truth is God’s truth and to investigate leadership lessons from different cultures and environments has been refreshing. The College has also cared about how I am on the inside, my development and formation as a person.

All ministry practice does something within us and Uniting College has always been committed to being the place where learning and life overlap. Thanks to my studies and the support from my lecturers, today I am an ordained Minister of the Word at Salisbury Uniting Church.

Nick PatselisYoung Adults Pastor, Hope Valley Uniting Church, Christian Pastoral Support Worker, Highbury Primary School