Rev Sharon Hollis was installed as Moderator on 3 June 2016 at a joyful worship service in Wesley Church, Lonsdale Street Melbourne
Sharon is the sixth woman in Victoria and fourth in Tasmania to be appointed to the position since the formation of the Uniting Church in 1977.
As the spiritual leader of the Church across two states, Sharon is well placed to understand the needs of regional and metropolitan communities. She spent her childhood living in country towns in Victoria, Tasmania and NSW and she now resides in the northern suburbs of Melbourne.
Sharon believes that leadership in a Christian context has never been more important. "I have enormous respect for those who have the courage to challenge religion in the twenty-first century. Transparency and honesty are essential in the life of any church and I see the growth of trust as key to my role, so that everyone can experience a compelling call to live for justice, mercy, beauty and peace. That is what God's love should reflect."
A lifelong member of the Uniting Church, Sharon decided to be a minister at the age of twenty-one. "Being called is a mystery you can't manufacture, but now I can't imagine any other way to live my life. When you have an encounter with God, it is utterly transforming".
Sharon's passions come from the diversity of her own life experiences. She has worked in a local supermarket, been a university student, served as a housing officer in inner Melbourne and as an adult educator at the Centre for Theology and Ministry.
"My work experiences make me driven to address issues of social justice," Sharon observed. "In my role as Moderator I am committed to not only having a voice, but also the actions to support the rights of refugees, our reconciliation with Australia's first peoples and the elimination of the terrible impact of domestic violence."
Sharon's greatest joy is raising her two daughters, Esther and Ingrid..
Together with her strong faith, Sharon is known for her humour, warmth and love of art and books. "If you can't find me, I'm probably inside an art gallery or debating what we're reading in my book club. It's important to stay curious in a busy life."
Media - Sharon is available to speak on a number of social justice and theological issues to share the voice of the Uniting Church. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to request an interview with Sharon.
Installation of Rev Sharon Hollis as Moderator, Wesley Uniting Church, 3rd June 2016 from Uniting Church VIC/TAS on Vimeo.