Ms Kara Martin

Ms Kara Martin

Associate Lecturer Business

Author

I have written two books on faith and work integration which address a gap in the market: between good theologies of work without practical experience, or good practical books without deep theological foundations. Drawing on 30 years of experience in corporate and not-for-profit roles in TV journalism, human resources, business analysis, lecturing, policy formation and advocacy, and my theological studies, leadership and lecturing, I have written books which provide a biblical foundation, practical wisdom and advise churches on how to equip workplace Christians.

Both books were shortlisted for Australian Christian Book of the Year:

·       Workship: How to Use your Work to Worship God (Singapore: Graceworks, 2017)

·       Workship 2: How to Flourish at Work (Singapore: Graceworks, 2018)

I am currently writing the third in the series: Workship 3: How to Shape Christians for the Workplace, addressing the issue of spiritual formation of Christians for the workplace.

This third book will be the core of my PhD by publication, and I am currently enrolled with Alphacrucis College, Parramatta. My goal is to define the skills, knowledge and values that are essential for Christians to effectively integrate their faith with their work. I am using a Repertory Grid Technique to interview groups from three vocations: doctors, teachers and tradespeople.

Lecturer

I lecture in the business faculty at Alphacrucis in Advanced Leadership and Faith and Vocation. I also lecture at Mary Andrews College on Finding your Purpose, Theology for Everyday Life, and Practical Discipleship and Mentoring. Other units I have taught are: Theology of Work, Christian Spirituality, Bridging the Sunday / Monday Divide, Equipping Workplace Christians.

I was previously Associate Dean of the Marketplace Institute at Ridley College in Melbourne, and worked with Robert Banks, Gordon Preece and Greg Clarke at the Macquarie Christian Studies Institute.

Speaker

I have had growing opportunities to speak, preach, teach and consult in Australia and internationally. In October, 2018, I was honoured to speak at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Boston during their Missions Week, on Business as Mission.

In 2019 I will speak, preach and run workshops in Melbourne, Sydney, Perth, Toowoomba, Brisbane, Penang, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Seattle, and Wellington (NZ).

Influencer

I also have a role in consulting with churches on building faith and work ministries, and advising theological colleges about integrating faith and work into their curriculum and activities. I have worked in that capacity with Wesley Methodist Singapore, St Jude’s Anglican Church Melbourne and Redemption Hill Church Singapore.

In Australia I was awarded a Karam Forum Scholarship for my work influencing the Faith and Work movement, and have been an integral member of the Faith and Work Strategy Network headed by Lindsay McMillan of Reventure.

I was part of the team organising the strategic Mark Greene tour of Australia (Putting your Faith to Work), including a three-day faith and work research conference in Sydney (Transforming Vocation), the first such conference in Australia.

I also mentor social entrepreneurs with Seed (seed.org.au).

Qualifications

M.A.(Christian Studies) (Australian College of Theology) 2006

M.Commerce (University of Wollongong) 1993

B.A.(Communication) (University of Technology Sydney) 1986

Current Research

In the conversation about the integration of faith and work, little attention has been paid to what a faithful workplace Christian would look like: what knowledge, skills, and attitudes or values are required for a Christian to effectively navigate the modern workplace? These questions of formation are critical to Christian schools, theological colleges, professional Christian fellowships and university groups seeking to prepare workers of faith who will be able to influence society and culture.

Spiritual formation has focused on the traditional discipling tools of Bible reading and prayer, sometimes augmented by exegesis and evangelistic skills. However, being a workplace Christian requires the ability to translate the biblical story into the workplace, interpret cultural context, be conversant in biblical ethics and have a robust biblical theology of work. Empirical field research on this issue remains scant.

From pilot interviews it appears that the training required is in areas not covered by Christian schools, theological colleges, professional Christian fellowships and university groups including spiritual disciplines, servant leadership, building authentic relationship, and growing Christian character.

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