Closure of The Centre for Progressive Religious Thought, Canberra

We have received advice (25/08/2021) that CPRT Canberra has been wound up after a number of years of inactivity and after the achievement of its goals of advancing new thinking in spirituality.

The CPRT was established in 2002 with a small grant of seed funding from the Uniting Church in Australia.  It was an initiative of St James Uniting Church Curtin, led by Rev Rex Hunt.  Over the next twelve years or so, the Centre offered a rich and diverse program of speaker and other events and members participated in the Common Dreams Conferences – the direct outcome of CPRT initiative – and related ‘On the Road’ seminars.

There were many presentations by Australian and overseas theologians, biblical scholars and progressive theologians and many people will have fond memories of being challenged and fascinated by new thinking in spirituality.  Of special mention is the support given by both St James and other churches /individuals to a small team of local organizers when they managed the Common Dreams Conference 3 in Canberra in 2013.  On that occasion they welcomed Professor Marcus Borg to Australia!

The Centre enabled and empowered its members to explore spirituality beyond their locale.  There are now so many progressive resources available in print and online either via membership of broader groups, podcasts, and blogs etc. that people are no longer limited in their spiritual journeys.  Many of course, remain as members of local churches or faith organizations.

CPRT Canberra has done its job.  Locally.  Nationally.  Internationally.

CPRT Canberra had a large number of books and other resources held jointly in the St James Uniting Church Library. These resources will remain with the Library to be managed as the congregation (now part of Woden Valley Uniting Church) wishes.

Secondly, funds held in account totaling approximately $7,358.58 will be transferred to Common Dreams Inc, to be used to facilitate progressive spirituality events as the management board of that organization determines. More information on Common Dreams Inc can be found at: including links to like-minded progressive websites.

This information was provided by the CPRT Canberra Team-

David Slater, Linda Pure
Rev Rex Hunt


2 thoughts on “Closure of The Centre for Progressive Religious Thought, Canberra

  1. John EVERALL

    CPRT Canberra and Rex Hunt are remembered by quite a number of Caloundra Explorers members. It has always surprised me as to how many of our Caloundra Explorers members have come from Canberra with their interest in CPRT’s activities and subsequently found a new place to develop their progressive Christianity/Spirituality interests here at Caloundra Uniting Church.
    Well done Rex, and Linda. We were introduced to Bishop Spong and many of the Common Dreams on the Road guests through your efforts. Several of us actually remember the first Canberra visit by Jack Spong and some involvement in that effort. We had quite a few come down to the Canberra Common Dreams that Rex and Linda delivered so well.
    CPRT has definitely fed the wider progressive field very well and now deserves its “retirement” into a respected place in the Australian Progressive Christianity narrative.
    John Everall – Caloundra Explorers

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