THE Governor-General, Her Excellency Ms Quentin Bryce AC CVO, congratulated award recipients in The Queen's Birthday 2012 Honours List on Monday 11 June.
The diversity of service across all fields of endeavour was recognised with a range of awards within the Australian Honours System. These awards include the contributions from the community as well as Defence, Police, Fire and Emergency Services personnel.
"These awards recognise shining examples of men and women who display the finest community values of respect and giving, dedication and commitment," Ms Bryce said.
Among the 540 recipients were a number of Uniting Church members, including Aspley Uniting Church member Peter Waltisbuhl (OAM) who was awarded the Medal (OAM) of The Order of Australia for service to the community through executive roles with church and service organisations.
Mr Waltisbuhl is a longstanding Aspley Uniting Church member and has held numerous positions within the congregation, including choirmaster for 20 years.
Mr Waltisbuhl isn't relaxing on his laurels, though. As chair of the management committee of the Aspley Early Childhood Education Centre, run by Aspley Uniting Church in Brisbane, he and the team are preparing for the opening of a school-aged care program.
"This was all in the vision we had back in 2005 when we started working on this idea of a Christian-based childcare centre that would provide a service to the parents and children in the area."
Mr Waltisbuhl said he was very surprised to be awarded such an honour.
"It makes you feel very humble because you think of all the people that you know who probably deserve it as much or more than you do," he said.
"The biggest surprise I got was the strong reaction from our family; they were so excited about it.
"It is a big thing really. I'm just excited that the work we have done has been recognised.
It's not me, it is all the people who work with me that make it tick. We have nine or ten people on the management committee who have all worked very hard over the last seven or eight years.
"We have wonderful staff who work very hard; they spread God's love through the district in what they do and that is the important thing."
Mr Waltisbuhl, who will attend a ceremony later in the year to accept his medal, said that until earlier this year Aspley was the only Christian-based childcare centre in Brisbane's north side.
The centre will celebrate its fourth birthday on 8 July and Mr Waltisbuhl said they hope to open the school-aged care also in early July.
Victorian Uniting Church member Simon McKeon (AO) was appointed an Officer (AO) of The Order of Australia for distinguished service to business and commerce through leadership and advisory roles, and to the community as a supporter of national and international charitable, educational and sporting organisations, including his position as Director of World Vision Australia from 1994 to 2005.
For a full Queen's Birthday 2012 Honours list visit www.itsanhonour.gov.au