Emily Payne is new columnist at Orbisology


The Rev’d. Emily Payne is an Anglican priest in Melbourne, Australia.

She was born in apartheid-era South Africa, and migrated with her family at a young age, in search of a more just society and a better future.  Issues of justice remain close to her heart.

She has a Bachelor of Science (majoring in immunology), and while no longer working in a related field, has learned from that experience the value and importance of integrating the best insights of the various secular disciplines with whatever spiritual convictions one holds.  Truth is not something that can be divided up into different cognitive boxes if it is to be life-giving.

Having discerned a call to serve others in ministry, she lives that out in the context of an institutional church, while being aware that the institution is only ever a (deeply flawed) means to an end.  The end is summed up in a quote from St. Irenaeus of Lyons: “The glory of God is a human person fully alive.”  All of the resources that the institutional church holds ought to be directed to that end; bringing opportunities for the fulness of life to as many as possible.

Which is part of why opportunities such as this are so exciting, because it’s an opportunity to be part of a wider conversation, contributing from a particular perspective but open to the wisdom of all.

Emily is married with one young daughter, who happens to be autistic.  This has brought her into contact with the disability community in various ways, and advocacy for people with disabilities has become a repeated theme in her work.  Questions of disability and spirituality are an area of deepening interest.

Most of her work is focussed on local community, but she is very much looking forward to being part of this wider community as well.

Emily will be writing a regular article for Orbisology starting from next week.


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