Rhanee Jane Tsetsakos is an Adnyamathanha woman currently living in Port Augusta, SA. She attends the Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Christian Congress (UAICC). Rhannee’s ministries center on working with youth and young adults and her ministries model connecting with other young adults in “genuine relationships in order to seek God together, to know their own stories and be part of each other’s stories.” For 12 months Rhanee has been a school chaplain in the Logan area of Queensland, but has recently moved back to her home town of Port Augusta, SA. Rhanee really enjoyed seeing the young adult ministry of the Uniting Church, Next Gen Arise, grow into a healthy and thriving community.
Rhanee is passionate about Covenanting Relationships within the Uniting Church seeking to understand how Indigenous and non-Indigenous Christians can work together effectively to break down walls and barriers to bring everyone closer together.
Rhanee’s ministry is shaped by her experiences of losing her younger brother to suicide. Rhanee explains that she experienced healing from this tragic loss through the support of her faith community and family. Health has also been a struggle as Rhanee has also been diagnosed with renal failure at only 18 years of age. As a result, Rhanee received and eventually lost a kidney to rejection and is now, at age 31, on home dialysis. Both experiences revealed to her the importance of strong supportive networks. Because of these experiences, she is motivated to “light the path for others” who have been affected by suicide, depression, and ill health. Rhanee also knows how important it is for non-Indigenous people to connect meaningfully with the Aboriginal community so that they can recognise their brothers and sisters as human beings and not just another “statistic.”
Rhanee’s dream for her ministry is to create supportive networks for Aboriginal young people so that they can have hope in their own futures.