Listen to the voices of our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Christian Leaders speaking on Voice and justice. We are thankful for the wonderful opportunity to listen deeply to each of these leaders, and their gift of sharing wisdom and Voice, refined by years of experience in Aboriginal ministry and community work, deep thinkers and acting as key leaders in their own communities.
Uncle Dr Pastor Ray Minniecon is a descendant of the Kabi Kabi and Gurang Gurang nations of South-East Queensland, and a descendant of the South Sea Islander people. He is a founding board member of the
Australian expression of NAIITS - a global Indigenous theological community - and leads the Scarred Tree Indigenous Ministries at St John’s in Glebe, Sydney.
Aunty Jean Phillips is one of Australia’s most senior Aboriginal Christian Leaders. Born on Cherbourg mission over 85 years ago, Aunty Jean started out in ministry with the AIM (Aborigines Inland Mission) and for over 60 years has faithfully followed Jesus, focussing on justice, and serving those living in poverty. She has served many Aboriginal communities, churches of all denominations, raised up the next generations of Aboriginal Christian leaders, and has called non-Aboriginal Christians to come on the journey of reconciliation for decades.
Uncle Vince Ross was born at Balranald NSW on the banks of the Murrumbidgee river and his clan group is the Madi-Madi/Wamba-Wamba people. He has had extensive experience in various workplaces and ministries, including twenty years with the Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Christian Congress as State Director during which time he established Narana Creations in Geelong. Uncle Vince has also been the Chairperson of The Salvation Army National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Reference Group. Uncle Vince was awarded National NAIDOC Elder of the Year in 2006.
Aunty Dr Doseena Fergie is a proud Wuthathi and Mabuiag Islander woman and Aboriginal Christian Leader. As a midwife, missionary, activist, manager, and university lecturer, Aunty Doseena has been a change-agent, catalyst and inspiration for many people, Indigenous and non-indigenous alike. This has only been enhanced in recent years through the completion of Ph.D. studies (ACU); an inductee into the Victorian Women’s Roll of Honour; and as a recipient of a prestigious Churchill Fellowship in 2017.
Aunty Sue Hodges is a Wiradjuri woman from the Central Western Slopes and Plains of Wellington in NSW. She is part of the Salvation Army’s Indigenous Ministry team working as the Divisional Indigenous Engagement Coordinator for NSW/ACT. She works in many areas including providing prison ministry, advocacy, and providing guidance to the denomination around Indigenous cultural and social justice issues.
Aunty Ravina Waldren is a Gubbi Gubbi and Kamilaroi woman based in Brisbane and leads the Murri Catholic Ministry. She coordinates and takes part in numerous practical ministries including work in prisons and schools, providing food assistance, and coordinating funerals. She is also involved in advocacy for Aboriginal justice including Aboriginal deaths in custody. Aunty Ravina’s leadership in Brisbane and throughout Australia supports and encourages Aboriginal peoples, as well as educates non-Indigenous peoples. Aunty Ravina also works ecumenically and coordinates combined church services for National Reconciliation Week and other nationally significant dates.
Adam Gowen is a Wiradjuri man and Aboriginal Christian Leader. He currently lives on the land of the Murramarang people of the Yuin nation (South Coast NSW) with his family. Passionate about relatedness, he seeks to understand all things in the context of their relationships. He is a Christian minister and holds a post-graduate qualification in theology and a first-class honours degree in Indigenous studies. The thesis component of his honours degree examines concepts of Aboriginal identity, settler colonialism, and sovereignty. Adam is passionate about social justice and committed to working at a grass-roots level to see large scale change.
Rev Uncle Mark Kickett is a Noongar man from the south west of Western Australia. He was ordained into the ministry of the Baptist Church in the early 1990s and has ministered churches in Brisbane, Perth, Broken Hill, and Kalparrin. He has worked in Government, Community Services, and Churches and has recently served as the State Development Officer for the Uniting Aboriginal & Islander Christian Congress (UAICC) in South Australia and is the UAICC National Interim Chair. Uncle Mark is father to five adult children and is passionate about sharing the gospel story, Reconciliation, and empowering young Aboriginal people to grow in their faith and leadership skills. This video was produced by Tearfund as part of their work with the First Peoples of Australia. Find out more at Tearfund Australia.
Uncle Gabriel Bani is Wagedagam Koey Buway, from Lag Mabuyag, Torres Strait. He is a direct descendent of the Bari, and the Kuyku garka (Head man) of the Major Tribe of Wagadagam. Uncle Gabriel is a councillor in the Torres Shire Council and an Elder at the Full Gospel Church on Thursday Island. Uncle Gabriel attended the National Constitutional Convention at Uluru and is one of the signatories of the Uluru Statement from the Heart. This video is from a recording from the Scarred Tree Indigenous Ministries’ event ‘Voice and the Church’ in October 2022 in Glebe, Sydney. This video was produced by Tearfund as part of their work with the First Peoples of Australia. Find out more at Tearfund Australia.
Scott Wilson is a Gooniyandi man from Muladja community and a Gajerrong man from Kununurra. His parents moved to Broome which allowed him to grow up on Yawuru country, Western Australia. In 2006, Scott was sent to Hale boarding school in Perth to complete his secondary education. In 2010, he was awarded Indigenous Youth of the Year, and went on to study at the University of Western Australia. After graduating with his bachelor’s degree majoring in Anthropology, he returned home to work within community. In 2016, Scott helped implement an early childhood program called “Our Mob as First Educators Program,” designing the logo and the creation of their fathers’ program. In 2017, he became an operator and explosives technician for Fortescue Metals Group (FMG). In 2018, he was awarded a graduate program with the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet and worked with the Behavioural Economics Team of the Australian Government. Scott has always had a large support network, and with a dream he felt that it was time to do what he had always wanted to do, which was to share with the world his creativity and his culture. Scott is now the co-founder, director and managing director of three companies developing content in Film, Television, Publications and events, while working with a team of passionate and driven human beings to deliver environmental and social change with Australia’s first Majority Aboriginal owned green hydrogen and renewable energy company.
Talicia Minniecon-Bolea is a Gubbi Gubbi, Gurang Gurang, Zenadth Kes and Oceania women living on the lands of the Yirriganydji and Gimuy Wallubarra Yidinji peoples. Talicia is a wife and mother, full time home schooler, First Nations Business owner and artist, and active grassroots community member. Talicia’s life work aims to deconstruct and decolonise being a First Nations Blak woman, marriage, mothering, sisterhood, education, processing trauma, holistic health, sexuality, spirituality, entrepreneurship and everything that lands in between. She works towards equipping, empowering, inspiring and mobilising people on their transformative journeys whilst she also journeys through hers.