Authentically Indigenous, authentically Christian. Discovering what it is to be joyful in our culture, our heritage and Jesus
This is how The Scarred Tree describes itself, located at The St John’s Centre, 132 St John’s Rd Glebe, and serving the wider Sydney area.
The Scarred Tree project enables Indigenous culture and its contribution to society to be recognised and respected. Friendships are nurtured with non Indigenous families and individuals. Within the project Indigenous families and individuals are supported and resourced for parenting and school participation. Personal counselling and financial assistance through the No Interest Loans Scheme (NILS) is offered. Families caught up in the justice system, particularly juvenile justice, are supported. Individuals are trained in leadership and advocacy. Members of the stolen generation are encouraged to meet and to share their stories. People are invited to eat together and to learn from one another as friends and family within a Christian context, which respects Indigenous culture, acknowledges elders and recognises past traditions).
Aunty Sharon Minniecon serves with St John's where she is Indigenous Ministry Coordinator with Scarred Tree Indigenous Ministries said, “Indigenous Christians can be supported, trained and equipped, to take their place in leadership, in their communities and in other places. They can go out into the world to encourage and give the good news of Jesus.”
A challenging history
St John’s traces its history back to the first fleet, the designation of the land for church use and thus to the dispossession of the Gadigal people, the first custodians of the land now known as Glebe. Within the church grounds there is an actual scarred tree, which is thought to be the oldest tree in Sydney outside the Botanical Gardens, predating British occupation.
Research, observation and practical community experiences has revealed that Indigenous Australians in the Glebe and surrounding communities continue to be impacted by discrimination, social exclusion, poverty and the forced removal of children.
Within Glebe there are 1800 public housing tenancies, with an estimated population of 4,000 people. The majority of tenants are Indigenous families, as well as people with low-incomes and high needs like mental illness, social isolation and substance abuse.
All donations are tax deductible.
ABN 28 525 237 517
- Lord God, you are our creator and sustainer. Enable The Scarred Tree to be an instrument of your grace. May all those who come under its influence, be affirmed and equipped to live with purpose and dignity. May past and present injustices be corrected. May repentance and forgiveness be expressed and experienced. May Indigenous Australians be given sure hope and genuine opportunity. We ask in the name of Jesus, your Son and our Lord. Amen