In memory of a Wiradjuri elder

17 APRIL 2008

The lasting legacy of the late Pastor Cec Grant, OAM, also known as the Wiradjuri elder Wongamar, will be honoured with an annual lecture to be held in his memory at the Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture in Canberra.

The lasting legacy of the late Pastor Cec Grant, OAM, also known as the Wiradjuri elder Wongamar, will be honoured with an annual lecture to be held in his memory at the Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture (ACC&C) in Canberra.
 
Hosted by the ACC&C, which is part of Charles Sturt University (CSU), the inaugural Pastor Cec Grant Memorial Lecture will be delivered on Friday 18 April by the Reverend Ray Minniecon from the Anglican Diocese of Sydney, where he works as Pastor and the Director of Crossroads Aboriginal Ministries.
 
The annual lecture will reflect on Colonisation, Christianity and Aboriginal Peoples, the Word of God and Traditional Culture in Australia.
 
“CSU is pleased to be able to work with the Wiradjuri Council of Elders to recognise Pastor Grant’s contributions to his community, to the University and to the dialogue between Christianity and Indigenous cultures,” said CSU Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) and ACC&C board chairman, Professor Ross Chambers.
 
A proud member of the Wiradjuri tribe, Pastor Cec was born in Condobolin in central western NSW and died aged 71 at Albury in 2005. He was a founding member of the Wiradjuri Christian Development Ministries as well as the Wiradjuri Council of Elders.
 
Pastor Cec made important contributions to Indigenous education at CSU as well as to local government in NSW. The Welcome to Wiradjuri Country sign, now erected across the region at the entrance of many towns, was an initiative of Pastor Cec.
 
He was also responsible for the development of Wiradjuri language educational programs in the Riverina and Albury-Wodonga areas.
 
The ACC&C focuses on ecumenism, interfaith dialogue, and reconciliation with Indigenous people, youth concerns, academic research and the relationship of theology to social issues and is headed by the Reverend Professor James Haire, AM.
 
“Reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians is at the heart of the mission of the ACC&C,” said Professor Haire.
 
“Now, at this point in our history, we can begin to go forward together as a united nation.  
 
“This annual lecture is central to that process.  It reflects on our past, and the important relationship between Indigenous people and Christianity, and also looks forward to the future.”
 
The Reverend Ray Minniecon is Chair of the Sydney Anglican Indigenous Peoples Committee and a Board member of Saint Andrews Cathedral School in Sydney. A descendent of the Kabi Kabi people of southeast Queensland, he belongs to the Douwaburra tribe. He is a “Vision Keeper” of the World Christian Gathering of Indigenous Peoples and a council member of the Global Indigenous Dialogue.

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