Memorial to Congress founder

The Uniting Church will establish a memorial to Aboriginal activist and Uniting Church Minister Rev. Charles Harris

In the early 1980s, Charles Harris and other Aboriginal leaders invited national and state church leaders to a meeting at Crystal Creek just north of Townsville.

His goal was to develop an Australian theology related to indigenous issues; challenge the churches to take action; and develop a Christian commitment to the struggle of the oppressed people of Australia. He believed God was leading him to do this.

Attendees decided to set up a national organisation that would be a completely autonomous, indigenous body within the Uniting Church.

In 1985, the 4th Assembly of the Uniting Church unanimously welcomed and agreed to officially support what Aboriginal and Islander people were seeking. And so the Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Christian Congress was born.

This year the Uniting Church has been celebrating the anniversary of the recognition of the 30th anniversary of Congress.