Becoming a member of the Uniting Church
Membership of the Uniting Church is open to "all who are baptised into the Holy Catholic Church in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit". The church baptises those who confess the Christian faith and children for whose instruction and nourishment in the faith the church takes responsibility.
Membership is not seen as a status or privilege but rather as a commission to take responsible action in the life and mission of the church. The church's call is "to be a fellowship of reconciliation, a body within which the diverse gifts of its members are used for the building up of the whole, an instrument through which Christ may work and bear witness to himself".
To find out about becoming a member of the Uniting Church, talk to the minister of your local congregation: churches near me.
Participating in the Uniting Church
According to the church's foundational document, The Basis of Union, members of the church are responsible for running the church using the gifts and tasks which God has laid upon them. Your local congregation should encourage the use of your gifts in the church's administration, ministry or worship life. Similarly, the Uniting Church is organised locally, regionally and nationally so government is entrusted to representatives, women and men, bearing the gifts and graces with which God has endowed them for the building up of the church.
The Uniting Church is very democratic but does not consider itself a democracy. A democracy is a form of government in which people as a whole rule; the church, however, acknowledges that Christ alone is supreme and that he may speak to the church through any of its councils. It is the task of every council to "wait upon God's Word, and to obey God's will in the matters allocated to its oversight".
The Uniting Church, therefore, seeks the will of God in prayer and by people consulting together in the light of the Word of God - not to represent the will of the people on any given issue. The church's representatives on any council are not separate from the people, nor are they chosen simply to represent the majority view on each issue. They are to be God's stewards.
Adherence to the church's Basis of Union allows for difference of opinion in matters which do not enter into "the substance of the faith". But members are expected to accept the form of the church which the Basis describes, which includes, for instance, the discipline of the presbytery and the authority of the Assembly in matters of doctrine.