17 June 2016

The lifeblood of School Chaplaincy

Posted in Chaplaincy / Supporter


20 years is a long time ago… The internet had only just been made available to the general public and eBay was launched. Toy Story was an exciting new release in cinemas. And Michael Knight joined The Gap Local Chaplaincy Committee.

Made up of a number of 20+ year chaplaincy service veterans including Treasurer, Jan Packer, The Gap LCC has become a rock for the schools it supports.

But showing that all good things have to come to an end, Michael announced he was standing down from his LCC Chairperson role at the end of last year.

“I’ve been involved in the LCC as the Chair for just over 20 years. But I’ve been involved in The Gap State High School since January ’88. I’m staying involved as a volunteer at the High School in the weekly spirituality program.”

Despite this change of formal title, Michael believes there won’t be any change in his presence and passion for school chaplaincy.

“Because I’m staying involved as a volunteer in the school and still going to be connected with the chaplain, the students and the teachers, there’s no change there. And because I’m still connected personally with those on the committee, I’ll still be relationally connected.”

Reflecting on his almost 30 year involvement with The Gap district school community, Michael believes there has been a shift in the way society is structured and that this creates even more of an impetus on school chaplaincy to fulfil its function within the community.

“There was an idiom, a long time ago, that the church used to be the centre of the village. Architecturally, visionally and metaphorically, that’s what it was like… And now I think it’s moved to the shopping centre as the centre of the village.

“But following the idea that most suburbs have multiple churches and a school nearby, your chaplain should be the go-to person.

“I think the link, between the chaplain in the school and the churches in the area, is really important. It’s like a lifeline and I think the more we connect the two, the better.”

Like all of the LCC committee members throughout Queensland, Michael has a passion for school chaplaincy and seeing it grow to be a caring presence for as many young people as possible.

“It was probably my view that we are meant to be in community and we’re meant to be influential in that community. I think it was just a natural out working of just doing that.”

LCC members, throughout Queensland, are the lifeblood of school chaplaincy. Without them, chaplains would have to perform all the necessary administration, promotion and fundraising tasks all by themselves, leaving very little time for them to actually provide care and support to young people.

LCC’s are made up entirely of volunteers – people who are passionate about ensuring the future of Queensland school chaplaincy. They are all amazing individuals and we are so very appreciative of all that they do!

Local Chaplaincy Committee members are needed near you! If you would like to support chaplaincy by performing crucial tasks that it relies upon to survive, then an LCC role is for you. Email info@suqld.org.au today or call 1300 478 753.



Simeon Lawson

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