Introducing Randall Kent
Originally a Central Queenslander, Randall has long been a resident of St Kilda, where he and Desleigh have raised four children. They now have three grandchildren and three foster grandchildren. Both Randall and Desleigh continue to be active in their local community. Randall likes to keep active through tennis, swimming, lawn bowls and gardening. He enjoys occasional camping trips, bushwalks and travelling as well as reading, films and theatre. Now retired, Randall has been an industrial chemist, an administrator of a community health centre and a corporate services executive of a statutory organisation in the health sector. He has undertaken a number of consulting assignments with not for profit community services organisations and also for WHO in Mongolia and Tonga and for the Tonga Health Promotion Foundation.
What is your involvement with St Kilda Uniting Church?
I have been actively involved with St Kilda Uniting Church (and before that St Kilda Methodist Church) for about 50 years. To begin with, this was at the Methodist church in Fitzroy St. After its closure in 1978 I joined the Uniting church at Balaclava where I attend Sunday services. I had a lengthy term as treasurer and member of the Property Committee. I am at present a member of the Church Council. More broadly I have had various appointments and office bearer positions with Boards and Committees of Uniting Church community service organisations and with the Synod.
What does having faith mean for you?
My faith is based on an understanding of our essential inter-connectedness and inter-dependency with other people and with all living things. I see this as the basis of our humanity, or the ground of our being. I understand the fundamental driver to be love, as exemplified by Jesus in the gospel stories. I believe we are social beings and are programmed to live in community. I think of the divinity as a mysterious unknown which calls us and prods us towards the fulfilment of these relationships and the realisation of their potential. I also think it can extend to our relationship with and response to art, music and the beauty and power of the natural world.
What is something that you’re looking forward to?
I am optimistic that the world is slowly, albeit erratically, is on a trajectory of becoming a better place as we learn from the lessons of history and gain new knowledge through research. Admittedly it often it seems like things are slipping backwards and that we never learn but, overall, I think the trend is one of betterment. At least I like to think so. The big test facing the world is to put in place sufficient measures to avoid catastrophic climate change this century. I am optimistic that the countries of the world are mobilising to do so. I am looking forward to seeing this becoming unstoppable. Also to see my grandchildren grow up to be as happy and productive as they can be.