Sydney’s newest Metropolitan Community Church congregation is breaking new ground again by ordaining a female pastor, Penny Davis, in July this year.

CRAVE, founded in Paddington in 2009, will be the only MCC congregation in Sydney with a female pastor.

When ordained, Davis will be one of only three female MCC clergy in the Australia/New Zealand region, an area that historically has had predominantly male leadership.

Davis’ ordainment comes as the culmination of a spiritual journey which started 10 years ago, when she was a Hillsong employee undergoing so-called ex-gay therapies.

“My journey has led to this moment, where I stand as a confident woman who is being ordained and happens to be a lesbian,” Davis said.

Current pastor Karl Hand will work with  Davis, which will also make CRAVE the only Metropolitan Community Church in Sydney with more than one pastor.

“I enjoy working with Penny. We’re a great team,” Hand said.

Hand said CRAVE is unique among inclusive churches in Australia because of its charismatic and contemporary style, its progressive evangelical theology and its informal, dynamic worship services.

“We want to move away from hierarchies of leadership, from corporate models and from bureaucracy, because Jesus didn’t work that way and we don’t believe the Spirit works that way,” he said.

“We believe in a spirituality of communion and shared leadership.”

CRAVE Metropolitan Community Church invites ministers from all denominations and any interested person to attend a special Sunday worship for Davis’ ordainment on July 25 at 3pm.

info: CRAVE holds its services at the Paddington Uniting Church, 395 Oxford St.

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