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Tim Matton Johnson – first and foremost

A life devoted to bringing together Indigenous heritage and Christian faith.

Rev Tim Matton Johnson has retired after more than 30 years of ordained ministry during which he played a prominent leadership role in helping the Uniting Church live out a Covenant relationship between First and Second Peoples.

Tim first became involved with the Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Christian Congress (UAICC) in 2003 was serving as regional chairperson in Northern Tasmania when he retired in January.

In the years following his 1985 ordination Tim ministered in placements across Victoria and Tasmania and also served on the Board of UnitingCare Tasmania from its inception until its amalgamation into Uniting.

He also served twice on the national UAICC board, including a term as deputy chairperson and was a part of the Moderator’s walking together group.

“I am proud of being able to give some leadership to UAICC (both national and locally) in some of its more challenging moments,” Tim said.

“The bits I enjoyed most were those parts where there was a theological conversation between the Aboriginal heritage side of things and the fundamentals of our Christian faith.”

Jennifer Byrnes, executive director of the equipping Leadership for Mission unit, said Tim made a significant impact within the life of the Synod.

“Over many years Tim’s voice has brought a gentle yet persistent calling of the Church back to the essentials of walking together with the First Peoples,” she said.

“Through stories and deep theology Tim has educated, invited, and reminded us of the wisdom found in Indigenous theology and the precious gift which the UCA Constitution’s Preamble leads us to recognise in our covenanting commitment.”

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