Pillar of church and community: remembering Lindsay Corby
Lindsay Tjapaltjarri Corby was born on 1 May 1954 at Haasts Bluff and ordained as a Lutheran pastor on 22 June 2008. He passed away on 4 February 2022 at Kintore.
He was a custodian and strong upholder of Aboriginal law, concerned for its continuation into the next generation. Hence, he was disappointed with the government’s emergency response in mid-2007.
He was also strong on the word of God and unflinching in his concern for the church. So, for instance, confirmation teaching was a big thing for him. He appreciated the stories of Jesus and the New Testament epistles. It was in hearing these stories that he had become a convinced believer.
In his younger years, when he had first heard the biblical descriptions of human sin, he had looked around, thinking that someone was gossiping about him. He then realised that the Holy Spirit was speaking to him and that sin was a universal human problem, resolved only by the shedding of Christ’s blood. Besides the New Testament, he also loved the stories of creation, the fall and the patriarchs in Genesis.
Overall, he was a tireless worker, a motivator of people and a man of strong principles.
He was very saddened by the death of his daughter Marie, not all that long after his ordination. Some years later, he stepped down from the ministry when he realised he could not easily be a custodian of Aboriginal law and community leader as well as a pastor. Doing both jobs properly was just too much for him.
In later years, he went on kidney dialysis. His health problems increased further in the last year or two of his life.
The last time he took holy communion was at his home, one month before his death. At that time, the local FRM field worker spoke on John 1:5 (‘The Light shines in the darkness’) about how Christ has conquered all dark powers, even though we rarely see it clearly. We need to take God at his word.
His funeral was held at Kintore on 27 May. It was conducted by pastors Simon Dixon and Stanley Roberts. It was well attended. Visitors, including several dignitaries, came from far and wide.
The booklet handed out at his funeral summed up much of his life well: ‘Kintore is the place it is today because of all his hard work and leadership. Kumanjayi loved and cared about Kintore and everyone who lived here and committed his life to building a strong and successful community.’
He will be sorely missed by his wife Rosie Pollard, his brother Brian, his surviving children Jennifer and Justin, his 13 grandchildren and his five great-grandchildren.
Pastor Paul Traeger is FRM Support Worker for the Pintupi–Luritja Language Area.