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Dubbo Photo News May 23-29, 2019


Around the world and back home again Rev Carl Palmer, centre, at the official ordination ceremony on April 13 with priest Natalie Quince and deacon Liesel Walters.

By NATALIE HOLMES AS a former teacher, newly-ordained deacon Carl Palmer has a sound understanding of extending good values and leadership to others. And while his career has changed, Rev Palmer’s life has come full circle with his inception into the Anglican Parish of Wellington. “In 1993, I was a high school maths and science teacher and principal of Wellington Christian School,” he explains. Rev Palmer left Wellington six years later and spent the first decade of the 2000s at Trinity Christian School in Canberra. He then took on a community-based role on a much larger scale. “I became a regional director in a missionary position in the Asia Pacific region, associated with Christian schools internationally, training teachers in schools in China, Indonesia, Philippines and Cambodia. “After three years, my wife and I felt that there was a calling and we needed to relinquish what we were doing. Within a short time and with much encouragement, we returned to Wellington and found there was a mission in our own backyard.” It wasn’t long before Rev Palm-


er was leading parishioners as the licenced lay minister for St John’s Anglican Church as part of the Bathurst Diocese. “I joined the Parish Council as soon as we arrived. We’d always been churchgoers and we had Anglican roots,” he explained. After leading services and fulfilling most of the duties of an ordained deacon, Rev Palmer was approached by Bishop Ian Palmer

who believed he would be a good candidate for ordination. Following the official ceremony in April this year, Rev Palmer said his daily duties have not really altered but he feels there is now greater strength and purpose. “My role has not changed that much but there was a difference in the community. There’s been a real sense of belonging. “I am deeply honoured, I believe

the community have accepted me. People here feel the parish now has a sense of direction,” he told Dubbo Photo News. Of the ordination, Rev Palmer said it was a lovely occasion. “It was an amazing ceremony that was over two hours long. The church was packed and there was so much colour with all the clerical garments. “There was a sense of joy ringing


through the place. The Eucharist, that was the most beautiful time.” Through his role, Rev Palmer hopes that Christianity can still have a place in modern society. “The relevance has not changed. The message has not changed. The message is still relevant. It’s not about the church, it’s not even about God or Jesus. We become judges of people and we have forgotten the source of faith. “But it is still a meeting of spiritual, social, like-minded people. The message of the church is still their gospel.” And while his classroom may not be the same, Rev Palmer will continue the journey of learning, through further studies in theology. “Life is a classroom of learning,” he said. “Every time you open a book, you learn and change. If you do a course of study and you don’t come out different, you have wasted your time. It has to make a difference.” Rev Palmer aims to make that difference himself and one day hopes to become a parish priest. “I now have this ability to move around the community and talk to people,” he said. “I’m so thankful for the authority I’ve been given. It gives you credibility to do these things.”



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