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The newsletter of Whitley College Issue 7 - June 2012

Rev Dr Frank Rees imagination John Lennon’s song Imagine has become timeless. Every succeeding generation knows it and loves it. Imagination is what we are all about. Recently I read a very provocative sentence in an article by one of my favourite scholars and teachers Walter Brueggmann:

alumni news The College was pleased to receive a visit from former residents Mike Churcher, Bruce Ham, Charles Rodger and Geoff Kroker (below) when they had a small reunion in Melbourne. The current students particularly enjoyed the stories they shared from their time in College.

Imagination is the hosting of ‘otherwise’, and every serious teacher or preacher invites to ‘otherwise’ beyond the evident given, or we have nothing to say. It’s an unusual idea, making a verb from the word ‘otherwise’; but it does very clearly indicate our mission as a College. Education is about an invitation to that space created by and for the ‘otherwise’. It is about seeing and living into a different world. It is about responding differently to the ‘evident given’ in our culture, our politics and our traditions. One of the ways in which this is evident at Whitley is the growth of artistic expression. Many professions and disciplines are not only sciences, they are also arts. My physiotherapist talks to me about the ‘art’ as well as the science involved in what she is doing to me. The separation of arts and sciences has impoverished both. Whitley graduate Jason Goroncy, who is both an artist and a theologian, wrote recently: ‘… what art encourages is the opening up of hermeneutical space wherein our questions are taken seriously, where we can feel safer to explore them with God and with God’s people.’ We can generalize this idea: art in all its forms is an invitation to study, to think and to express ourselves in a new and creative way. Not only in writing and painting, in teaching and storytelling, in music and theatre, but also in building computer systems or managing a patient’s therapy, we are seeking that ‘otherwise’, beyond the obvious and the evident. In so many ways, Whitley College life is about responding with imagination.

We also received a visit from Alex Eagleton, an exchange student in 1995, who popped in while recently in Melbourne. The College has also learned of the following happy events: Katie Holdsworth (2006 - 2007) is engaged to James Teague Anna Trebilcock (2008-2009) is engaged to Josh Cowan (2008 - 2010)

WHITLEY COLLEGE LIFE ISSUE 7, June 2012 Editor: Sivonne Binks, Community Relations Manager Photography: Photos in this edition taken by the editor along with student photographers Will Stanley and Rosie Gregersen. If you have any news or submissions for future issues, please send them to: Whitley College 271 Royal Parade Parkville VIC 3052 T: 03 9340 8000

COVER: Whitley College student Libby Byrne with a display of some of her artwork during the Art Prize launch week

Libby Byrne during the Religious Art Prize launch week

Discovering the art of healing Libby Byrne is an artist, an art therapist and a theologian, which is a mix she is exploring in her research, begun this year at Whitley College. Her PhD, which is supervised by Frank Rees, is titled, ‘Healing Art and the Art of Healing’. Libby, who is an Associate Lecturer in Art Therapy at La Trobe University, is drawn to exploring healing as a theological concept: ‘We think about healing often as cure, but I am interested in the idea of expanding our understanding of what healing may look like’. As an art therapist she has seen the power of the spirit at work and is looking forward to exploring how art can be used as ministry. Libby’s PhD will be exhibition based and she is currently excited by the planning and exploring of ideas and that will contribute to the creation of the final art. Some of Libby’s existing artwork was recently displayed at the College as part of the launch of the Religious Art Prize. The Whitley College Religious Art Prize has been established to encourage students to explore their understanding through a creative platform. We hope they will extend their ways of interpreting how faith and ministry interact, acknowledging the diversity of ways we experience and understand God expressed in the world. The Art Prize is open to all students and entries will be displayed in the College Library from 15 October - 22 November. To find out more, please visit: You can see more about Libby and her work at:

supporting whitley students In 2012, as part of our role of equipping leaders for a different world, we have continued to ensure that each student has access to the opportunities for enrichment that come from tertiary education and a College experience. With the help of our donors and community this year we have provided significant financial support to our students through bursaries and scholarships. In 2012 the Rural Disadvantaged Students Program provided around $90,000 in financial support to students from Victorian rural areas and we’ve also provided over $70,000 in support through the leadership and working bursary programs. One of the students to receive support is Cameron Marriott (right). A First Year science student from Traralgon, he has been awarded the Ian Tatterson Scholarship for 2012. The Tatterson Scholarship was established at Whitley College by Ian’s family and friends to honour his good name and the great community service he contributed during his lifetime. Cameron was surprised and pleased to receive the award, saying, ‘It’s humbling to know that there are people out there in the community who want to help me and other students while we are here at College’. The College’s focus now is to increase our scholarship funds to allow us to help more students from rural areas to realise their potential in the future.

Scholarship recipient Cameron Marriott

Margie Welsford

‘Lord of the Donut: Fellowship of the Fresher’ was the Transition and Orientation Week theme for 2012. All the usual fun was had and in addition there was a new tradition begun involving a very large ball and a game involving the same played with International House. Swordcraft was also added to the activities: involving creative flair and physical prowess, it was a winner. Looking back as exams begin it is good to remember the fun and gratifying to see how our new students have now become part of the Whitley Community. Having a cohort of six graduate students has added to our diversity and enriched our student body. Awards were given out at Commencement Dinner to honour residents who have excelled in Academic Life last year. Shyam Kumar achieved First Class Honours in all subjects. Louise Larcombe, Joses Nathaniel and Cody Shannon were highly commended for their results. New students were also awarded scholarships for their exceptional Year 12 results. They were Abu Bhartia, Hong Trang Pham, Max Champreeda and Clare Brown. We are pleased to see tutor Belal Khan looking more relaxed after submitting his PhD. Our new chemistry tutor Jess Holmes has got off to a great start, despite barracking for the wrong football team! Cultural activities have been enthusiastically supported, including public speaking, Fresher Dance-off and Theatre Sports. Sporting pursuits and achievements have been numerous. The Swimming Carnival held at MSAC was a huge success with many Whitleans in the finals. Rowing was another highlight, not so much for the skill of the rowers, though their efforts were stupendous, but for the beautiful sunshine Melbourne turned on for the day. A host of other sports - hockey, soccer, squash, softball and cricket - have also been played. A popular addition to the Sporting Calendar has been SWEATs, a regular social function to celebrate Whitley’s achievements in each sport. The Whitley Ball in April had the theme of Cabaret this year. Glamour was very much in evidence and befitting the San Remo Ballroom. Adding to our register of special events, we were privileged to have world-class pianist Raymond Yong with Rodrey Clark playing Beethoven’s 5TH Symphony in our Chapel. Students continue to make time to involve themselves in the community through volunteering. Helping theological students with their English, making pancakes for World Vision, assisting with the Good Friday Appeal and surviving for a week on $2 per day for “Live Below the Line”, a Global Poverty Project, are just some of the ways in which Whitley students give back to society. Christmas in May marks the last hoorah for the semester. We dressed in Christmas colours and Christmas costumes, farewelled the American exchange students, sang Christmas carols, ate too much and had fun before the serious business of exams.

Students Julia van der Linden and Akin Aliu volunteering in the media team at the Royal Children’s Hospital Good Friday Appeal

Nathaniel Taylor, who is studying the Juris Doctor degree at University of Melbourne, is one of the new graduate students at Whitley

Sam La Salle in the Intercolle giate production of Anything Goes

Meg Caffrey Megan Scott, Anna Schuck and May’ spirit getting into the ‘Christmas in

Whitley sport At Whitley College great importance is placed on ‘having a go’ and this has been well demonstrated on the sports fields this semester. Left to right from top: The Girls’ Soccer team and supporters cheer during the penalty shoot out; Celeste Bussell takes a penalty during Girls’ Hockey; Sam La Salle and Katie McLennan compete in the Swimming Carnival; Brad Spinks keeps his eye on the ball in Squash; Marc Nguyen and Jeremy Warne contest the ball in Boys’ Hockey; Matt Ross, Akin Aliu and Shyam Kumar cheer on the swimmers; Etenesh Bell and Lizzie Chow cheer with the Whitley Wolf at the rowing carnival; Emily Oliver faces up to a pitch at Girls’ Softball; the Boys’ Rowing crew compete in... style, while the Girls’ Rowing crew opt for something slightly more safety conscious.

The Boys’ Rowing crew: James Steinfort, Shaun Pye, Hiro Chan, Akin Aliu, Steve Charleson, James White, Sam Wood, Lachlan Morrison and cox Marc Nguyen.

The Girls’ Rowing crew: Celeste Bussell, Georgie Upton, Monique Eddy, Rosie Gregersen, Jade Whittaker, Emily Oliver, Meg Caffrey and Kate Cochrane, with cox Marc Nguyen.

Rev Bruce Tudball This is my first ‘Whitley College Life’ since I commenced as Dean on 1 May. We acknowledge the service of Dr Ross Langmead who completed his period as Dean at the end of April. We are grateful for his excellent leadership and service. Ross will continue to serve with the College as Professor of Missiology.

We welcome Rev Bruce Tudball who has joined the Faculty four days a week from 1 May to succeed Dr Ross Langmead as Dean.

I am delighted to be back at Whitley, where I was tutor in Mathematics before I commenced theological studies here. It is a great pleasure to meet the students, and to work with the wonderful people on the staff, some of whom I have known for many years, including Ross. In the immediate past my wife and I have been serving with Global Interaction and we will continue part-time as part of the Bangladesh team. Baptists have been part of the Melbourne College of Divinity, known as the ‘MCD’, since it was granted the power to confer degrees by Act of Parliament in 1910. So it was very significant that after such a long history, the MCD University of Divinity became the first specialist university in Australia on New Year’s Day this year. The conferral ceremony on 3 May was historic because it was the first one held by the University of which we are an independent College. So the students who graduated are not only part of a long tradition but are also the first graduates of a new university. Many Whitley students were among the graduates, including the Baptist Union of Victoria’s Multicultural Minister, Rev Meewon Yang (Master of Theology), and Ash Barker, founding director of Urban Neighbours of Hope, who wrote his PhD on incarnational mission from a Bangkok slum while living among the urban poor. Rev Richard Mallaby graduated Doctor of Ministry Studies. Richard co-pastors at Box Hill Baptist Church with his wife, Rev Dr Anne Mallaby, who also lectures at Whitley in Pastoral Studies. Here at Whitley, 2012 is the year of ‘Faith and Ministry’ in our three-year cycle. It is part of our commitment to direct our teaching around faith, hope and love as we continue to equip leaders for a different world.

Rev Dr Anne Mallaby, Rev Dr Frank Rees, Rev Dr Marita Munro and Rev Alan Marr at the College Commencement Service

Commencement service At the beginning of 2012 the College welcomed Rev Dr Anne Mallaby as Lecturer in Pastoral Studies (halftime) while continuing on the pastoral team at the Box Hill church. Rev Dr Marita Munro was inducted as the foundation Professor of Baptist Studies at a packed Commencement Service on 6 March, where Marita preached a stirring sermon on Isaiah 43:18-19, a surprising theme for a historian - ‘Do not remember the former things … I am about to do a new thing’. You may read it on the Whitley website.

outback and online New Whitley College student Jono Ingrams is from Donald in rural western Victoria. He attends class in Parkville every Tuesday, but he is not a College resident. Jono has been the pastor of Granite Community Church for 18 months. He is originally from Dubbo and undertook most of his theological study at Morling College in Sydney. But when he became drawn toward the path of pastoral ministry, he found that he was missing one subject to qualify for ordination. Which is how he ended up at Whitley College, as our first student studying via online streaming. Jono is able to attend Marita Munro’s class each week through his computer. The new system, installed at the beginning of this year, allows Jono to receive live audio and video of each class, along with slideshows, lecture notes and handouts. He is able to interact with the lecturer and other students via video and chat. His has been the pilot case to test how streaming will work for other subjects. He says, ‘It’s much better than distance learning I have done in the past, because you are able to ask questions and interact’. His classmates have also found it useful when they have been unable to attend a class, as the stream is archived and available online. Meanwhile Jono and his family are relishing life as part of the Granite community, which they say has been very welcoming. ‘I think it helped when I started playing football for the local team. People would all be wondering who’s the strange young dreadlocked pastor running around on the football field. It’s a great way to start conversations and welcome new people to the church.’ While Jono will complete his current study this semester, the live streaming will become available for other rural and remote students for future subjects.

meet some of our new ministry interns Phoebe Kong Northcote Baptist Church Phoebe has a performing arts background, having studied music at the VCA. She has had several musical roles in her church, but did not feel fully equipped for leadership. ‘The internship is a good opportunity to be serious about my faith. It is giving me the skills I wanted but also taking me in new directions’. As part of her intern role in her church Phoebe leads the choir and fills in other roles where needed. ‘Service in the church is really important to me and I feel like this internship is giving me the skills to serve to the best of my ability’. Ash Rosevear Wodonga Baptist Church Ash came to the internship program following an injury at work that made him reassess his career options. The internship sees him take on responsibilities within his local church, such as organising music and youth groups, as well as attending class in Melbourne. ‘It has been really interesting coming to Melbourne and getting more sense of the diversity in the broader community’. Ash’s goal for the internship is to get a better understanding of what he should do with his life. “When I was a tradesman, you could see what you had achieved each day. Study is challenging because your achievement is less tangible. But I feel now like my direction is becoming clearer.’

Some of the Ministry Interns with coordinator Joe Pinkard

Top picture: Granite Community Church (photo supplied by Jono) Above: Jono appears in class with Marita Munro and Nathan Nettleton, via web stream.

The College got into the festive spirit for the annual Christmas in May dinner to celebrate the end of first semester. The Whitley Annual Residential Theatre Society (WARTS) held a Christmas Fete before dinner to raise funds for their 2012 production. Students and staff gathered in the decorated courtyard for festive games and to have their picture taken with Santa (who we think must be somehow related to Student Club Vice-President Cody Shannon). The 2012 WARTS production of the The Drowsy Chaperone will be performed from 16-18 August. To book tickets and find out more visit:

MCD University of divinity Conferral Many Whitley College students graduated at the first MCD University conferral on 3 May, including (clockwise from right): Richard Mallaby, with wife Anne Mallaby; Zorica Tumbas, with Ross Langmead; Bill Firth-Smith; Franklin Francis; and Meewon Yang, with Ross Langmead. (Photos by Roslyn Wright)

Whitley College Life - June 2012  

Newsletter of Whitley College - June 2012

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