ACC EMAG #1 2022

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#1 2022


quarterly publication for acc leaders















WINNING SOULS Prepare for a great harvest in 2022. Let’s not look at the things that have worn us down over the past year, but instead do what Jesus told us to do and “lift up our eyes and look at the fields, because they are already white for harvest”

Cover photo: Aerial Bondi Beach (istock)

WINNING SOULS by Wayne Alcorn




NEWS Alpha | David Hall | Catherine Thambiratnum | 1800Chaplain | Julia A’Bell |




FROM ACCI FIELD WORKERS... Jenny & Russell Barton | Kelvin & Rebekah Windsor


COMMUNITY: KINDNESS OPENS DOORS Bins to support Mental Health with Sebastian Foundation








REST FOR WEARY SOULS by Dr Rebecca Loundar








HOTLINE TO HELP Q&A with Moling Chun and Janette Conroy


EMERGING YOUTH LEADERSHIP Q& A with Isabel Coleman and Sandy Collins


EMOTIONALLY HEALTHY SPIRITUALITY Andy Kirk interviews Peter Scazzero





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© 2021 Australian Christian Churches. The ACC EMag is published quarterly by the ACC. Editor: Daryl-Anne Le Roux Contact: Graphic Design & Editorial Assistant: Amelia Dales


Winning Souls “Lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest!” – Jesus We’ve all set our sights on 2022 with faith and hope for a different experience than the past two years. There is a great cry for revival as so many finished 2021 feeling weary and desperate for God to do something new. It would be easy to just keep talking about what happened during the pandemic over the last two years, but now is the time to change our conversation. Yes, there has been a shift in church life, yet the main game for anyone in ministry hasn’t changed. Our call to preach the Gospel is still the same – to tell people about the magnificent love of our great God for a lost and dying world. Let’s not be looking at the things that have worn us down. Instead, let us do what Jesus told us to do – to “lift up our eyes and look at the fields, because they are already white for harvest” (John 4:35) I am praying for a burning passion all across our Movement, to see lost souls won for Jesus, disciples made with strong foundations in the Word, families strengthened and the next generation raised up. Let’s embrace the challenge of an exciting 12 months ahead of us, and how can we help men and women, boys and girls, find Jesus as their Lord and Saviour. Thank you for all you do to point people to Jesus. Let’s lean in together to fulfil the Great Commission. We can do this – let’s make Jesus known across our nation and the nations of the earth. He is the answer and hope for humanity. Wayne Alcorn is the National President of the ACC. He and his wife, Lyn, are the Senior Pastors of Hope Centre with campuses across Brisbane.



IMAGES OF @lifehousechurch


GATHERING – Even with restrictions, churches found new ways to safely gather.

BAPTISMS – People were baptised in swimming pools, at beaches and in bath tubs! @eastcoast_church


PRAISE – The sound of praise and worship was heard across the country despite restrictions..

YOUTH – Young people connected, such as the pancake party by Eastcoast Church JNR YTH.



COMMUNITY – A revolution of kindness was taken into the local communities. 4

HOTLINE TO HELP – 1800CHAPLAIN (1800 24 27 52) launched with over 100 trained and experienced chaplains ready to take calls.

@parklands_cc @dessertlifechurch

PRAYER – Generations came together to worship and prayer together.

NEW CHURCH PLANTS – Desert Life Church begun hosting interest nights for their Darwin church plant.


INDIGENOUS BIBLE – Darryl Lingwoodock recording Indigenous bible translations with the Bible Society Australia.

BABY DEDICATIONS – Families dedicated their children to God in churches across Australia.



GIVING – Churches across the country prepared hampers to share the love throughout 2021.

MISSIONS – Work of ACCI across the globe impacted people in many nations, such as leadership training in Mozambique.


FOLLOW @accsnapshot for more ACC church life 5



Over 76,000 Alpha participants in 2021 Over 76,000 people participated in Alpha in Australia in 2021. Murray Averill, Executive Director of Alpha Australia commented, “Over 76,000 people across Australia explored faith this year by trying Alpha. It is a reflection of the fact that Alpha has continued to grow in strength over recent years, as highlighted by the release of the 2021 Alpha Australia Impact Report.” Released earlier this year, the 2021 Alpha Australia IMPACT Report demonstrated the demand in understanding faith or growing faith has significantly increased across the Christian denominations in recent years. Murray Averill commented, “To witness the growth of Alpha over recent years across all Christian denominations is truly inspiring and demonstrates that Alpha is an environment for anyone who wants to explore the Christian faith. Everyone is welcome and encouraged to ask questions and share their point of view. Alpha is a series of interactive sessions offering the opportunity to explore life and the meaning of faith in a friendly, open and informal environment. Alpha began at a church in London in 1977. Now all over the world millions of people have tried Alpha and it has been translated into 112 different languages. Even as times have changed, the Alpha program has continued to be used by the church as an effective tool to reach thousands of people around the world. Alpha Australia is a series of interactive sessions that create a safe and honest space, online or in person, where people can explore life, faith and meaning. Visit


Murray Averill

Announcing interim South Australian State President

David Hall

The National Executive has endorsed the recommendation and appointment of David Hall as the interim State President for South Australia., as Josh Brett embarks on a new season of ministry. “Josh & Sharon Brett have done a wonderful job of leading the ACC South Australia, and we thank them for their faithful service to our Movement,” said Wayne Alcorn. “We know God has great plans for them as they relocate to Queensland in the new year. “ David and Donna Hall are the pastors of Lifepoint Church in Adelaide, and is member of the State Executive. “I am so honoured and grateful,” said David. “I believe God’s hand is upon our state, and I can’t wait to partner with friends and family from Cooper Pedy to Ceduna to Mount Gambier and everything inbetween. I know God will do something significant in the next season ahead.”

David Hall and Josh Brett

ACCI’s new head of International Programs –

Catherine Thambiratnam ACCI has recently welcomed a new team member – Catherine Thambiratnam – who is heading up international programs. Prior to joining ACCI, Catherine spent 20 years with Hillsong Church, running its international aid and development programs, overseeing the Global Colour Sisterhood, and more recently, leading its local community development organisation, CityCare. She’s also been an ACCI board member for the past five years.

One of the things that excites me about Missions and Relief in 2022 is that the people who are now going to the field are a new generation. They are often connected – by birth or family connection – to the nations they are going to, which gives them a head start in their work in terms of language and cultural knowledge. This generation is also passionate about seeing holistic change in people’s lives – physical, emotional and spiritual – and that is where, as the program team, we can support them to ensure that their work has impact that outlasts them.

Catherine shares her passion for the new role and her excitement about missions and relief in 2022. “Our work at ACCI is all about providing coaching and support to the field workers to make sure that the work they do in the community has sustainable impact. Our focus and passion is to see the communities, in which our fieldworkers are embedded, empowered to realise their potential and active in determining their own development.

I am also excited about the number of partners and fieldworkers who have built such great local organisations that they are now able to think about moving to new fields. They are leaving a legacy of change that will continue beyond them – now owned and held by the local people of the country. And isn’t that what we all want? Something that outlives us when we are gone. Whether that be spiritual or physical seeds; all our field workers are planting for a harvest that they might not see, but that is what makes this such an exciting place to work!”

I see my job as a coach, to support the rest of the project team, as well as to provide technical support and tools to further develop our programs. I love working with partners who are looking to take the next step in their work, to push the boundaries of their impact, to really address the causes at the root of the problems they are attempting to work on.

“Isn’t this what we all want? Something that outlives us when we are gone.” 7



1800Chaplain is on the line! Every day since 15th November, we have had Chaplains ready to take calls and every day we are seeing calls come in. Over the coming months we know that more and more people are going to make use of this great service, and many are going to be supported at the most challenging moments they are facing. Our Chaplains will be there and will be ready! We want to encourage every ACC Church to explore how they can use 1800Chaplain to support the pastoral care they are extending to their communities. Imagine the benefit of having a team of Chaplains poised and ready to stand alongside everyone in your community with non-judgemental support and care. Give a gift to your community this new year and point them towards 1800Chaplain (1800 24 27 52) and let them know that we are there – caring always! – Ralph Estherby See story Hotline to Help pg 32

Ralph Estherby

Thank you

Julia A’Bell The ACC National Executive would like to honour and thank Julia A’Bell for her leadership and encouragement over the past two years as national leader of the Australian Christian Women (ACW). She and her husband Joel embarked on an exciting new season of ministry in 2021, so she decided to step down from her national leadership role. “Since 2019, it has been an absolute honour to meet, hear the stories of, and stand in awe of the magnificent things being achieved by ACC women, for the Kingdom across Australia and through mission endeavours globally,” said Julia. Heartfelt thanks to Julia for specifically gathering and inspiring ACC women over the two year season of Covid restrictions. Her final encouragement to the women of ACC was to “keep being strong, keep being wonderful and keep bringing yourSELF to ‘the table’. We all need and applaud the part you play in His Church. “

Sending financial contributions to overseas ministries

Sending financial contributions to overseas ministries is becoming more complicated. The following information is from the ACNC website. ACCI Director, John Hunt highly recommends to read it and then answer the subsequent questions if your local church supports overseas missionaries. 8

Julia A’Bell

Which charities must comply Charities that operate outside Australia are required to comply with the External Conduct Standards. Importantly, ‘operate outside Australia’ is not limited to major programs or projects. A charity is generally considered to operate outside Australia even if its overseas activities are just a minor part of its work or if it only sends a small

Equipping and empowering the Next Generation for Missions By John Hunt


veryone wants to be part of something significant – to feel that their efforts have made a difference. This is hardwired into the human condition. Every child, when asked what they want to be when they grow up, wants to make a difference in the world. It’s like we have been created to disciple the nations. The Great Commission is something we all aspire to in some way or another; each one of us feels its pull, but its cost is high. To follow its direction will require more than just a few leaps of faith. If the cost wasn’t high, the effect wouldn’t be significant. In the end, we don’t want some watered down, easy-to-apply, small-target kind of faith.

As local pastors, we sometimes see the potential in many of our best and brightest people in terms of how they could grow our church and add value to our ministry. Some of these emerging leaders actually have a call to the nations and require a Kingdom-minded leader to recognise and validate their calling and then demonstrate belief in them. We, as local pastors, have to see this not as a loss to our church but as a sowing – knowing that as we sow, we will reap. The idea here is to recalibrate our view of success from the ‘seating size’ to the ‘sending size’ of our church. Here, we will find the convergence of raising up the next generation and of discipling the nations. We, as a combined Movement, have been so profoundly blessed by God. We have been blessed to be a blessing to the nations. At ACCI, we want to partner with you and help in any way possible. You’ll find info on the website go for those who feel the call of God to cross-cultural, overseas ministry. Let us work together with His Spirit, whilst there is still time to bring Him the harvest He has paid for.

Dark forces conspire to reduce us as individuals down to personal security and self-interest, where our only goal is the latest upgrade or the next experience. At some point, dreaming of the difference we could make tomorrow becomes dreaming of a lifestyle that we can’t afford today. However, those of us in spiritual leadership have the honour of calling people to their higher selves. Of empowering and releasing them into the purpose they are called to. To go beyond making a living, to see them living their best life.

amount of money overseas. This is true even when such activities are conducted through a third party. Basic Religious Charities must comply with the External Conduct Standards if they operate outside Australia, even though they don’t have to comply with the ACNC’s Governance Standards. This leaves us with three clear questions.

John Hunt is the Director ACCI.

1. Am I aware of the level of compliance needed from any overseas ministry we send financial contributions to? 2. Do I have the capacity to train the overseas ministry in these required skills? 3. Do I have a mechanism in place to hold that ministry accountable for having implemented these requirements? 9

As failure to meet the required standard may result in the ACNC revoking your Churches charitable status many of our major Churches no longer send financial contributions directly overseas. They choose instead to use agencies such as our own ACCI so the responsibility and the risk falls to them. If we can be of help to you, please contact the ACCI office.

From ACCI Field Workers... ACC EMag asked some of our ACCI field workers about the challenges they’d faced this past year and what they were looking forward to in 2022.

‘Turning challenges into opportunities’ JENNY & RUSSELL BARTON, OPERATION UGANDA Our ministry operates in one of the slum areas in Kampala and during lockdowns and school closures, people’s challenges have been extreme. We decided during this time to turn these challenges into opportunities – opportunities for our team to be the hands and feet of Christ. Since June 2021, we’ve delivered over 30,000 kilograms of food relief to families who are struggling. Every recipient who received food support has been prayed for by our team as well. During this extremely challenging time, we have seen many people infected by Covid and many pass away because of it. Fear has gripped our communities. Our pastoral team has been instrumental in sharing faith, hope and love to thousands of people during this time and will continue to. With schools being closed, and no access to online learning, our team has also delivered over 2,000 learning from home kits to vulnerable children. When reports began emerging of high numbers of teenage pregnancies, we saw an opportunity to run our ‘Keep a Girl in School’ program which incorporates the ‘Shine’ intensive discipleship course, focusing on values and choices, and provides teenage girls with 12 months of sanitary items. In the past three months 1,500 girls have completed this program. What are we looking forward to? I would say that we look forward to more challenges, as we know our God is faithful! His heart is for the widow and the orphan. His commission for us hasn’t changed; He is still saying, ‘Go!’


‘Time to rise up and move forward’ KELVIN & REBEKAH WINDSOR, VIETNAM Like so many, the last two years have been very challenging for our team and the ministry we have been called to do. We have experienced multiple strict and protracted lockdowns, with schools and other critical services closed for close to a cumulative 18 months in our part of the nation. That said, we have been blessed to be in a position to proactively respond to the needs of people in our communities through our medical assistance and disaster response activities, providing life-saving treatment or equipment where it has been most needed. Our declaration last year was ‘In Him’. Oh my, we did not realise how timely that word was. In Him, peace. In Him, joy. In Him, favour. In Him, opportunities. Now, as we look into the year ahead and the current situation in our area, nation, and wider world around us, we are filled with a sense of expectation that it is: ‘Time to rise/stand up and time to walk/move forward’. We sense that it is time to get up off the metaphorical ground where we’ve been and to dust off the grime, the uncertainty, the challenges of the tough season that has been and to rise/stand up and walk into His promise (and the very promised land He has awaiting us), letting nothing move us – knowing that we have been called to be His witnesses (Acts 26:16).

Save the date August 2-4 2022 11


Kindness Opens Doors A simple act of kindness has opened doors and hearts of a local community in South Australia, building bridges and bringing a spirit of unity.

from our community has been overwhelmingly positive.

Amidst a year of uncertainty and restrictions, a local Catholic school in South Australia faced cancellation of their annual production. Covid restrictions meant weren’t able to seat all the families in their school hall. When the leaders of Light Church, Edithburgh heard this, they swung open the doors of their venue to host the school production.

Firstly, your presence at our rehearsals was so much appreciated and gave me a further insight to the type of leader you are for our community. The generosity of both your time and active participation in helping us make the musical sound and look fantastic was incredible. In our faith we talk about servant leadership a lot and you are clearly an example of that.

“I think the last couple of weeks have shown me a few things though:

The school principal shared, “I just wanted to pass on our thanks again for your generosity and welcome of our community over the past two weeks.

Secondly, I think us as the Catholic School holding our event in the Light Church helps to break down any of the boundaries that may exist between our two communities. There are certainly differences in faith but to me there should be no reason for our communities not to do more together.”

“By accessing your facilities, we were able to take the level of our performing arts production to a higher one than we have previously. The children loved the experience and the feedback


Bins Supporting Mental Health One square metre of space can make a change in a child’s mental health The ACC supports the Sebastian Foundation programs that aiding youth mental health. In particular, Open Parachute: an in-school program designed to promote social and emotional development in students years K– 12 that costs $30 per student per year. In partnership with EThread, the initiative will not only help tackle the social and environmental implications of Australia’s throwaway culture of used and unwanted clothing, but also help kids and the mental health issues they are facing. By using the proceeds of a recycled clothing bin to provide an innovative, in-school psychological skills building course that helps prepare Aussie kids to face life’s challenges. ACC church locations agree to providing one square metre of space on your grounds for the EThread bin. EThread supply and manage the bins, with daily collection and bins clearly marked with the bin benefit and a 24hr emergency maintenance service. It is the only nationally available mental health program that uses peer-to- peer methods, showing students other kids around their age going through the same issues they are. The Open Parachute program has complementary well being programs for both teachers and parents allowing for a great impact across the school community.

Sign up your church

For further information or to sign up your church to provide space for a bin, email

Create a modern church that people want to visit Modern, comfortable furniture is the most effective way to revitalise your church and create a welcoming environment that draws people in & keeps them coming back. Church Furniture is a division of Reed Furniture and has been supplying furniture for churches in Australia and the region for nearly 50 years. Our new National Sales Manager, Chris Shute has been working with the ACC group for over a decade. From new church builds to refurbishment projects, Chris has helped hundreds of churches to update their look. Contact Chris today for a free no-obligation quote. WWW.CHURCHFURNITURE.COM.AU 1800 337 778 F: 03 9587 7161


How to show value for our Indigenous Community Sandra Dumas shares two ways to value Indigenous people and their culture in your church. How can we create a safe church environment for Indigenous people in our community?

How can we enable our Indigenous community to feel valued, without singling them out?

SANDRA: It starts with understanding your community, where you are and your environment. For us in Tweed Heads, we acknowledge the Bundjalung country that we are on. Each church is on a different country, so start by finding out what country you’re on. Then it’s easy to acknowledge this as a ‘Welcome To Country’. Even on Instagram, you can include under your name what country Aboriginal country you’re on. There is so much you can do to be inclusive. It all starts with listening, understanding and being aware.

SANDRA: James 2 instructs us to make no distinctions because of how people dress, and I believe it is the same for cultural perspectives. Make no distinctions about people in our churches and don’t single them out. The first time I was singled out as an Indigenous woman was at a women’s conference. I was just there to be a part of it like everybody else and I felt really singled out. Let’s be mindful about singling people out because of their cultural differences.

Sandra Dumas, and her husband Will, are the Senior Pastors of Ganggalah Church, and the ACC Indigenous National Director and NSW/ACT State Reps.

Unsure what Indigenous country you are on? CLICK HERE to find out.

A MAP OF THE ABORIGINAL TRIBES OF AUSTRALIA This map indicates only the general location of larger groupings of people, which may include smaller groups such as clans, dialects, or individual languages in a group. Boundaries are not intended to be exact. For more detailed information about the groups of people in a particular region, contact the relevant land councils.

Follow @acc.indigenous on Instagram 14

ACC supports

i4give Day

A call to unified action, sharing the message of forgiveness through Christian churches in Australia.

The families of four children who were tragically killed by a drunk and drugged driver have launched an annual forgiveness day with the support of the government. Siblings Antony, Angelina and Sienna Abdallah and their cousin Veronique Sakr were killed in February 2020 when an out-of-control ute mounted the footpath. The two families have taken the extraordinary step of forgiving the man behind the wheel as an important step in their grieving process. Parents Daniel & Leila Abdallah have created i4give Day as a National Day of Forgiveness is to help others who have suffered in a similar way. “Forgiveness is the greatest gift you can give yourself and others. The more you practice, the better you become at it and it allows you to live peacefully and to heal,” said Danny & Leila Abdallah. “Forgiveness is more for the forgiver than the forgiven.” Support i4give Sunday -1st February 2022 i4give Week 2022 commences with i4give Day on 1 February and includes i4give Sunday on 6 February.

Your involvement , Christian communities are encouraged to pray for a transformational message of forgiveness to be shared with Australia to generate freedom and hope through faith in Jesus in families, in communities, and across communities.

As an initiative of the i4give Foundation, and in the spirit of Jesus prayer for unity (John 17:21), i4give Sunday serves to engage all Christian churches in a shared embrace of the Christ-centred call to forgiveness. i4give Sunday presents the opportunity to engage in conversation around forgiveness and its power to heal and restore broken relationships, starting within and among churches and going out from there into the wider community.

Forgiveness is for everyone As the final day of i4give Week 2022, i4give Sunday envisions a ripple effect starting with the Christian churches, flowing through aligned community organisations, and spreading a message of hope into the community at large; i4give Sunday is the start of something, not its end.

Role of i4give Foundation The i4give Foundation exists to increase community awareness of the power of forgiveness to transform human relationships and to provide resilience toward human flourishing. While the Foundation is Christ-centred the power of forgiveness is for all.

Partner with us ACC churches will partner with the i4give Foundation in i4give Sunday 2022. Register your local church or ministry and find resources at the website

Forgiveness has faith at its core Because deep forgiveness has faith at its core, i4give Sunday provides a wonderful opportunity for all Christian people, all Christian churches and Christian organisations of every denomination across Australia, to lead the way together in unity. and reconciliation

REGISTER YOUR CHURCH Contact the i4give Foundation at


Make nlao ns small 0p22 in 2

From Re By Corey Turner


ecently, God spoke to me about the Body of Christ being in a chrysalis stage of metamorphosis. In the natural, for a caterpillar to transition into a butterfly, it must enter the chrysalis. The chrysalis is a hard shell the caterpillar moults into to protect itself during the transformation process. If you help a butterfly out of the chrysalis before it is ready, its wings will be permanently deformed and it wont be able to fly. The struggle of the chrysalis is the very thing needed to help the caterpillar to transform into a butterfly.

The real problem for the Church in this hour isn’t Covid restrictions, but a lack of perception into what God is wanting to do in us and through us.’

As in the natural, so in the supernatural For many of us, 2020 and 2021 has been a ‘behind the scenes’ season where God has been refining our hearts in the struggle of the chrysalis and refocusing us all on what’s most important. In a season where there is very little we can control, the Holy Spirit has been changing the chess pieces on the landscape of our lives and ministries. It is essential in a season of significant upheaval and transition, that we respond God-ward and not man-ward, lest we not realise the full potential of God’s prophetic purposes for us and our generation.

– Corey Turner


estriction to Revival Transition is a time of becoming discontent with an inferior purpose Transition is when God allows a contradiction to strip away our contentment with an inferior purpose for our lives. In Acts 8, the early Church had become comfortable in their new found favour and momentum in Jerusalem and forgotten Jesus mandate to go into all the world and make disciples of all nations. A little contradiction called persecution came against the Church, restricting their ministry and scattering them across the surrounding regions. Without restriction in Jerusalem, we wouldn’t read of revival in Antioch in Acts 11. Without a move of God in Antioch (a Roman colony), Rome wouldn’t have been evangelised and without the church being established in Rome, Emperor Constantine wouldn’t have been converted and the gospel wouldn’t have travelled with such acceleration around the known world. God allows restriction to accelerate His kingdom purposes in ways we can’t always see or fully understand at the time. Transition isn’t a sign of God’s absence but confirmation of a NEW promise In Isaiah 43:18-19 God declared through

the prophet Isaiah, “Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing. Now it springs forth, do you not perceive it, I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.” (ESV) No matter how difficult the chrysalis has been, it’s important we don’t misinterpret the purpose of it. God is trying to birth something new in us and through us. Memories make for great monuments but not for new moves of God. Often your last breakthrough is your biggest obstacle to the new thing God wants to do because there is the risk of turning how God moved in the past into how God will move in the future. Revival isn’t found in a past formula but a present and active relationship with the Holy Spirit. God, not man is the author of the NEW thing in your life and ministry The real problem for the Church in this hour isn’t Covid restrictions but a lack of perception into what God is wanting to do in us and through us. Only with the eyes of faith can we perceive what God is doing now. We must cry out to God to open our spiritual eyes to see what he’s doing and open our spiritual 17

ears to hear what He is saying. We must incline our hearts to the wind of the Spirit rather than looking over the fence to see what someone else is doing in their ministry lest comparison rob us of revelation into the new thing God is wanting to do through His Church. Make no small plans in 2022 History records that pandemics, persecutions and world wars have never stopped God’s purposes for His Church and I sense the Holy Spirit leading us as a movement to make no small plans for the coming year. God is moving us from restriction to revival. People are hungrier for God than they ever have been, searching for truth and desperate for answers. We must have a reason for the hope we have in Jesus Christ and be ready to minister as God’s people as the Holy Spirit leads us to. I encourage you to make no small plans in 2022. God is moving you from restriction to revival.

Corey Turner is the Senior Pastor of Neuma Church and member of the ACC National Executive.

Rest for Weary Souls The need for self-care after ‘lockdown fatigue’ by Dr Rebecca Loundar


s lockdown dragged on in Australia’s major cities, many felt increasingly fatigued. Not just fatigued at the lockdown, but fatigued physically and emotionally as well. A recent publication by the Australian Psychological Society has described ‘lockdown fatigue’ as a state of spiritual and physical exhaustion brought about by the continued changes to our daily lives that have occurred in the two years since the pandemic began. Ironically at a time when we were all doing less— when we work from home, and no longer go to our usual places of worship, fellowship and exercise—many of us felt more tired. Associate Professor at Alphacrucis and Psychologist Dr Rebecca Lounder offers insight into how what it means to care for our ‘weary souls’ in a Christian context. She references an article by Lesley Allen from Fuller Seminary that talks about self-care in terms of the Biblical Hebrew word “shalom.” Many of us recognise this as the Hebrew word for greeting, but as Allen points out it has a much deeper meaning which encompasses ‘wholeness’ or ‘completeness.’ Saying “shalom” to someone invites both of you into a shared space of Biblical wholeness and peace. “Shalom” is a state of being that, as Dr Lounder describes, acknowledges that in the light of Christ we are all on a journey towards “well-being” and “personal maturity,” as individuals and as communities. “Shalom” recognises a Biblical need for ‘self-care’ and ‘selfkindness’ that will give rest to our weary souls.

As Dr Lounder acknowledges, self-care and self-kindness are very popular ideas right now, both in the psychological literature and in the broader culture. But Dr Lounder re-orients these ideas away from the selfishness and self-absorption that might characterise some of their secular varieties and understands them instead in terms of Biblical notions of fruitfulness in service. –According to Dr Lounder, self-care and self-kindness are critical not simply because they help take care of the “temple” God has placed us in, but because they are a prerequisite for fruitfully serving others as well. Failure to pay attention to the needs of one’s mind is not only a failure of custodianship for one’s own body, which is a gift from God, but a failure to participate in the fruitful community of service that the Gospel beckons us into. Weary souls cannot love their neighbours as they ought. Anyone who has spent time around ministers or others who devote large amounts of time to pastoral care will be familiar with the idea of ‘burnout’. Ironically and tragically, the push to serve more and more, to care for one’s flock better and better, can, if self-care and self-kindness are neglected, result in less fruitful ministry. If self-care is neglected, the reservoir from which one draws to care for others is depleted. Equally, in our families, neglect of self-care, or a lack of attention paid to one’s own spiritual and emotional needs in the service of others, can result in resentment, anger, and ultimately worse relationships with those we are trying to love. Christian communities must acknowledge the need for themselves and others to rest 18

and participate in “self-care.” Husbands and kids, let mum have that “me-time”! These contemporary insights into the importance of “self-care” have meaningful implications for the Christian Church. Dr Lounder describes several useful strategies for self-care and “self-kindness.” These range from mental strategies for “self-affirmation” to practical matters like maintaining a healthy diet and regular exercise. If we, as Dr Lounder encourages us to, no longer view self-care as synonymous with selfishness or self-absorption, but instead as a necessary part of being fruitful servants in God’s kingdom, aspects of these strategies must surely be a component of ministry training. Spiritual burnout is an all-too-familiar problem in churches, not just for paid staff but for volunteers and all others who serve as well. If we are committed to making our churches places of fruitful service in the Lord, we should pay attention to these strategies of self-care and self-kindness since they are a way of loving others as well as ourselves. Dr Lounder’s thinking on this topic also connects in important ways with broader biblical notions of rest, particularly the rest of God, and the weekly rest of the Israelites as they wandered through the wilderness, and afterwards in what has become the tradition of the sabbath. The idea of sabbath rest is so familiar to us as modern Christians that we sometimes forget the strangeness of the fact that God rests on the seventh day of creation, in the book of Genesis. What does it mean for our omnipotent God to “rest”? Is God in some way “tired”

from the work that he has done? Or perhaps the pause is simply a recognition of the goodness and importance of what he has done? These are difficult questions to answer, but they shed light on Dr Lounder’s conclusion that ultimately human beings are creatures made for rest and relationship as well as work. The need for rest and relationship is built into us, evidenced by Dr Lounder’s descriptions of the psychological research on the deleterious effect that the deprivation of these things has on human beings. God in his wisdom chose to rest on the seventh day of creation. Similarly, God in His wisdom ordained it that human beings would be made for rest; He made us with a need to rest our weary souls, and we ignore that need at our own risk. To find out more about Counselling Courses, AC has just launched six new post graduate courses including a Master of Counselling. Dr Rebecca Loundar is a Clinical Psychologist and the Head of Social Science and an Associate Professor at Alphacrucis College. References Allen, L., 2021. Shalom As Wholeness: Some Biblical Implications. [online] Fuller Studio. Australian Psychological Society, 2021. Managing lockdown fatigue. [ebook] Sydney: Australian Psychological Society. Lounder, R., 2021. AC Masterclass Webinar: Looking After a Weary Soul with Rebecca Lounder.


Image: Ellieelien (Unsplash)

CLICK HERE to watch the Masterclass video by Dr Rebecca Loundar on ‘Looking After A Weary Soul’

Stress & Servanthood By Andrew Groza



eading others has always involved stress – it simply comes with the territory. Therefore, learning to manage our own stress is vital if we want to lead over long distances. An important insight to managing stress, is to recognise that stress does not surface solely because of what goes on in the environment around us, but that it also surfaces because of the way we think about what goes on in the environment around us. Recently, I realised that one of the ways I was thinking about my responsibilities was perhaps increasing my stress levels, and that if I reframed the way that I approached them, that perhaps I would see the stress reduce. So, I tried a bit of an experiment. During the long months of lockdown in Victoria, I would often start my workday by reminding myself of certain maxims that I wanted to keep at the forefront of my mind whilst working. One of those was the following: Put aside your agenda and serve the one in front of you. The days I followed this – whether with my colleagues or my family – were often days when I was productive, and more pertinent to this discussion, I felt my stress levels decrease. The days I failed to put this into practice were the days that my heart rate increased, my mind raced, and tension built up in my body. Let me give you two short examples: Example 1: My father was diagnosed with cancer in March 2020. My wife, two girls, and I moved in with mum and dad in June. I made a deliberate choice to serve and help all the members of our family navigate this season. In the midst of lockdown, full-time work, schooling my 5-year-old in her first year of school, taking on palliative care duties, and the eventual passing of my dad in late July, putting aside my agenda and learning to be present and serve the members of my family, alleviated much stress. Example 2: Also in 2020, like tens of thousands of other parents in Melbourne, my wife and I had to help educate our child who was learning remotely from home during terms 2 and 3. While my wife took the lion’s share of the role, I wanted to help ease the burden, and so, for two days a week I sought to play teacher. Often, I would

“Perhaps leading yourself first, may mean serving yourself last.” try and speed through my daughter’s schooling and complete it in record time, so I could focus on my “more important” work. Needless to say, I was not concerned about serving her in that moment; my daughter stopped being a person to help and became a task to complete. The result of that on me and all the members of my family, was a marked increase of tension and tears. I am sure that there were multiple factors that contributed to the rising and falling of my stress levels – sleep or lack thereof, grief, the number of tasks on my plate, my awareness of God’s presence. Nevertheless, I am also acutely aware that whenever I was solely focused on my tasks, I saw others as an interruption, which raised my anxiety. The converse was also true – more service, less stress. Perhaps leading yourself first may mean serving yourself last. Fast-forward to 2021 and more lengthy lockdowns in Victoria and more remote learning for my girls. Yet, I saw this principle hold true. Learning to put aside my agenda and serve my daughter – though still hard – resulted in longer days at work, but more manageable stress levels. Of course, there needs to be balance. We do have important work to do. Neglect of that important work while

we are busy serving everyone else is a sure way to also raise anxiety and will take us out of leadership just as quickly as unmanaged stress levels. The goal of this is not to argue for an either/or dichotomy – you don’t have to choose either productivity or people. The goal here is to offer a paradigm of leadership that could make Christian leaders more effective, less stressed, and let’s be frank, more closer to Jesus’ ideal of Kingdom leadership. Whilst Jesus did not institute a particular form of governance for the church, he did speak directly to how leadership ought to be practiced amongst his followers. In his profound book, Patterns of Ministry Among the First Christians, Australian theologian Kevin Giles, states that “…for Jesus, leadership in his community will be of a distinct kind. It will be servant-like.” It is a principle that Christian leaders so passionately believe, and all too often, so rarely practice – myself included. Yet, if we reframe our perspective on our tasks and the people that are around us, if we seek to position ourselves into a posture of servanthood, then the stress that is an ever-present reality in leadership, may recede, and its presence would not be as damaging to ourselves, or the people we care about.

Andrew Groza is the Victorian and Tasmanian State Director for Alphacrucis College. He has served on staff and in various other leadership capacities at Faith Christian Church. 21


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Greta, Glasgow and God’s New Heaven and Earth:

How the full Gospel speaks to a climate change generation By Rev Prof Jacqueline Grey


he topic of climate change is continually in the news. No matter what your view on this subject or the politics attached to it, many people are passionate about environmental issues—especially our young people. So how do we communicate the gospel message to this climate change generation? First, we start with the environmental crisis. The Bible tells us this ecological crisis is human produced. That is, when God created the universe, He established humanity as His representatives to care for the earth (Gen 1:28). While the whole earth belongs to God (Ex 19:5; Ps 24:1-2), He authorised us as stewards and custodians to nurture the land (Gen 2:15). When humanity rejected God’s rulership (in the Fall: Gen 3) all that was under human authority was impacted. This included the earth (Gen 3:17-19). Human greed and sin have distorted God’s good creation. Romans 8 tells us that creation groans and suffers as it eagerly awaits the fulfilment of God’s redemption. In fact,

our greed and wasteful lifestyles continues to harm the earth. It requires us to change our lifestyles to one of simplicity and contentedness, rather than greedy consumerism. However, ultimately, we cannot solve the environmental crisis on our own. Yes, humans messed it up. But we can’t fix it by ourselves. Second, the gospel is good news to all creation. The gospel not only recognises that the environment is in crisis, but it provides the solution. The solution is the salvation found in Jesus Christ alone. However, the Bible makes clear that salvation is not just about our personal relationship with Jesus Christ. While God’s grace certainly does transform individual lives, salvation is also about the redemption of all creation (Rom 8:18-20). All those passages about the trees of the field clapping their hands (Isa 55:12. See also passages like Ezekiel 47:1-12; Rev 22:1-2) describe a creation celebrating God’s work of salvation. God’s salvation includes the world (kosmos) (2 Cor 5:19). It’s the salvation now revealed to us in 24

Jesus Christ. Third, God’s work in the whole world is moving ultimately towards a redeemed future. The confronting message of climate change scientists is that we are headed for destruction. Certainly, the mismanagement of the earth, without God’s intervention, looks to head that way. However, the narrative of the Bible points to a different future. It points to a new creation. Now, this may be a bit controversial, but as I understand it, the “new” (kainon) creation in Revelation 21:1 describes a newness previously unknown. It is not a brand-new creation because the old one was annihilated, neither is it a little renovation of the current creation. It is the current world so transformed that it is almost unrecognisable in its new form. Perhaps it is comparable to the mystery of our resurrected bodies— they are our same bodies that have become so transformed and different they are gloriously “new” (Lk 24:36-49; Jn 20:19-31; Phil 3:21; 1 Jn 3:2). So also, the new creation in Revelation: it is

the same, but not the same. It is Eden totally transformed (Rev 22:1-2). So, our current world is not disposable. In fact, Revelation 11:18 describes a judgement not only of those who reject Christ but also links it to those who “destroy the earth.” Instead, this current world will be transformed into a radically “new” creation. This gives us great hope for the future, but also cautions us to take care of our planet in the present. The gospel message to the climate generation is to have hope. However, our real hope is not just in a transformed earth, but our hope is in the transforming Creator and Saviour of the world. This is good news and joy for all the world. Image: Ivan Sanford (Unsplash)

Rev Prof Jacqueline Grey is the Dean of Theology and Professor of Biblical Studies at Alphacrucis College. 25

Batten Down The Hatches Last year the Bureau of Meteorology declared that Australia would be entering into a La Nina weather pattern over the coming few years.

of our wettest two-year periods on record and widespread damage caused by significant flooding along the east coast of Australia and five severe category tropical cyclones, including Cyclone Yasi.

Already there has been evidence of this weather phenomenon at play with significant rainfall experienced in New South Wales during March of this year, with some areas of Sydney and the Hunter Valley receiving between 400mm and 600mm of rain.

Is your organisation prepared for floods, storms, or fire? Understanding your organisation’s risks, preparing and planning for adverse events, identifying your trigger points and having a clear recovery plan will go a long way to protecting your property and aiding a swift return to your programs.

As we enter the notoriously volatile Australian storm season again, it is a timely reminder to revisit how your organisation can prepare for, respond to and recover from a significant weather event. Now is the time to take preventative action to protect your property and ensure that your church and ministry insurance is up to date.

Let’s keep the Step 1 through 4 in bullet points, maybe just box them or something in line with our styling. Less is better at this point.

Weathering the storm

Step 1 - Understand your risk

Australia’s weather can be unpredictable at the best of times often resulting in extreme weather events.

Is your property situated on a flood plain, near a water course or in a cyclone prone area?

November to March are traditionally our most volatile months with respect to severe weather activity.

Has your area been subject to flooding previously? Would this result in damage to your property or contents?

In addition, Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology have officially declared that 2020-2021 and in to 2022 will be affected by a La Nina weather event which will further compound our nations fickle weather patterns.

How would it effect your operations? Does your insurance cover you for flood damage? Does your policy cover you for business interruption costs after a loss?

As such, now is the time to consider how you will prepare for the inevitable severe weather events which seem to go hand in hand with an Australian summer.

What impact would it have on staff? Are data systems or church records at risk?

What is a La Nina Event?

Step 2 - Preparing and Planning (before a weather event happens)

La Nina is a pattern of weather which occurs when changes in easterly trade winds increase causing changes in ocean surface currents. This results in the warming of ocean temperatures in the western Pacific region.

Have you developed an emergency action plan? Do you have a business continuity plan?

As a result, Australia experiences increased rainfall, cooler daytime temperatures, warmer overnight temperatures, greater temperature extremes, greater cyclone activity, and earlier onset of monsoon season. These La Nina weather patterns can often remain for up to two years.

Are your computer systems protected and backed up?

The last time we saw a prolonged La Nina weather pattern such as this was the 2010-2012 period which resulted in one

Has your property been maintained to minimise the impact of a claim?

Are staff trained in implementing your plans? Is your insurance adequate and up to date? Do you have an emergency contact list?


Step 3 - Responding (a weather event is imminent) Have you downloaded weather/warning apps? Are additional resources able to be accessed to protect your property? Do you have access to sandbags, water pumps, hoarding, and alternate storage locations? Are key electronic records securely stored offsite? Do you have a clearly documented communication chain? Are hazardous materials safely stored or able to be removed from site? Step 4 - Recovery (after a significant weather event) Have you implemented your business continuity plan? Can you communicate your recovery plans with your members? Contact your Insurance Broker or Insurer to notify of a claim. Continue to stay informed of ongoing situation. Follow local authority advice. Review your flood and storm plan and update if necessary.

For more Tips for preparing your property for storm, flood, fire or cyclone please visit our website at


Skills for Effective Mentoring By Gary Swenson

Image: Henry Ravenscroft (Unsplash)


Developing a ministry culture of mentoring is an important initiative by the ACC National Executive to encourage and give strength to our pastors. At the core, mentoring is really facilitating and helping people discover for themselves what they ought to do. It’s about self determination.

Mentoring versus Coaching If you do some research or simply look up Google, you will find there are many definitions, (some contradictory to others) and a great deal of confusion, around the terms ‘coaching’ and ‘mentoring’.

It’s their journey… not yours! You have the privilege as a mentor to walk along side someone and help them through care, guidance, support, encouragement, and some of the specific skills listed below, to navigate their journey. What that means is that you don’t have to have particular formal qualifications, experience or skill set in a particular field.

The purpose of this article is not to unpack these issues, but to simply understand how mentoring can operate in the context of our ACC ministry family. There is some significant overlapping between the two practices of mentoring and coaching. When it comes to coaching, things such as process, structure and intent are required elements. They are, however, also elements of effective mentoring – except their application in mentoring will be different and with less rigor than in a coaching scenario.

A mentor however must be relatable, have life experience, credibility, be knowledgeable, have wisdom and understanding, empathy, and sensitivity to Holy Spirit. A mentor may share with a mentee information about his or her own journey, as well as provide motivation, emotional support, and role modeling. They may also help with exploring the future, setting goals, following through with decided upon actions, developing contacts, and identifying resources.

True mentoring is more than just a coffee and a chat; otherwise every conversation we have when we ask someone how they are, could be labelled as mentoring. Mentoring is more organic, less overt, and the application of the aforementioned elements will vary, depending even upon whether the relationship is actually acknowledged as a mentoring relationship.

An effective mentor understands that his or her role is to be dependable, engaged, authentic, and tuned in to the needs of the mentee.

At its simplest, mentoring is about helping others move forward on their journey. As mentors, we need some skills and some measure of framework, including an understanding of our intent, to be effective. In the mentoring role, we are here to help others do life, ministry and leadership well, and fulfil their God potential.

If you are a mentor or desiring to be one, it’s important at the outset to ask one question. It’s a question about motivation – your motivation – why do you want to be a mentor? Why do you want to be a mentor? In answering that question, it’s helpful to remember the following:

It may be helpful to start with by defining what Mentoring is not.

• It’s not about your need to be needed. • It’s not about you and your experience.

• Mentoring is not telling people what to do. It’s largely not directive and it’s certainly not control;

• t’s not about you feeling good. It is certainly gratifying when you see your mentee progressing, but your gratification is a byproduct, not the goal.

• It’s not counselling. (You don’t have to be a pseudopsychologist);

• It’s not the opportunity to tell all your stories although you will share about your experiences and journey.

• It’s not consulting; • it’s not even advising or telling.

To be an effective mentor, you must be motivated by a genuine desire to come alongside others and support them in their journey. If they sense that it’s more about your agenda, the opportunity for mentoring will be lost.

• It’s not the mentor’s role to prescribe a path forward for the mentee, but rather to assist them make their own considered decisions about their steps forward. 29


As a mentor, people will often ask you questions, such as “What should I do?” The temptation is to tell them, but we must avoid becoming the guru that answers all questions from our fount of knowledge. Often the best response is to return serve by asking them a question such as, “What do you think you should do?”, or “What are your options?”

SEVEN KEY CHARACTERISTICS & SKILLS REQUIRED The following is not an exhaustive list, but a brief overview of some of the qualities necessary. To be an effective mentor you must be able to: 1. Build Trust Building trust is about creating a safe place. It doesn’t matter how skilled or brilliant you may be, if you cannot be trusted, your mentoring relationship will crash before takeoff. Of course, trust primarily comes out of relationship. You need to have the ability to build rapport with people. Unless you have an established professional reputation, or relational history, it’s very difficult to become someone’s mentor. An important factor in trust is confidentiality. Apart from the rare occasion where there are issues that you are duty bound to report, you should be the place where people’s ‘secrets come to die’.

5. Value Diversity of Perspective and be Non-Judgemental People have different views and thoughts on life’s issues, and in mentoring we will often encounter that reality. The real challenge is when a mentee expresses a view that is different or perhaps even counter to our own. It is easy to be judgmental or corrective which will often lead to the person shutting down as they will feel their opinion is not valued, or they fear being judged. If their view is one that really does need to change, then it is better to take them on an exploration journey by listening and asking questions etc. so that they arrive at a self discovered place of understanding.

2. Develop Empathy Empathy is a Superpower when working with people. Empathy should not be confused with sympathy. Sympathy involves understanding from your own perspective. Empathy involves putting yourself in the other person’s shoes and understanding both how they feel, and why they may have those particular feelings. It takes time and application to develop this powerful characteristic.

6. Give Constructive and Honest Feedback This is a somewhat difficult and sensitive skill to master, that in each situation is nuanced by the personality of the mentee, and the issues being discussed. It is however a skill that is essential as a mentoring relationship builds. Encouragement and acknowledgement of achievements is essential, and being mindful that the mentor’s goal is to help move the person forward, even negative feedback, if required, should be given in a constructive framework. The level of trust established in the relationship is key to understanding the level of feedback you can give. If the feedback is weighty, you need to make sure the trust level is strong enough to carry that. Remember, you can’t drive a 5 tonne truck over a 3 tonne bridge.

3. Listen Most of us are not by nature good listeners. We do listen, but in conversation with another person we are often very focussed on what we want to say. Learning to listen is a necessary skill to be a mentor. Discipline yourself to be an intentional active listener. A secondary part of the listening skill, and also key to good communication generally, is the ability to reflect back to ensure that you have heard the person correctly. How often have we heard one party say to another, “That’s not what I said”. An example of how this works is when you go through the Drivethru at MacDonalds. You place your order and the first thing the person in the store does is repeat your order back to you to make sure they heard you correctly. In addition, by listening you can be a sounding board. Just allowing someone to talk through their issues often helps them clarify their thinking without you saying much at all. Sometimes people have a mishmash of thoughts swirling around in their head but haven’t been able to clearly articulate those thoughts. As a mentor you help them to do that.

7. Network and Find Resources One helpful quality of a good mentor is the ability to connect your mentee with other resources and people who can assist them on their journey. You therefore need to be well networked, and be knowledgeable in regard to possible resources. As a mentor we should always appreciate the privilege we have to share a part of life’s journey with someone. When we have someone else’s best interests at heart, which is what mentoring is about, never underestimate the potential effect we can have on a person by coming alongside them, and with God’s help, support them on their journey through this amazing, wonderful, and sometimes crazy thing called life.

4. Ask Questions Another skill that helps people clarify their thinking is that of asking questions. Of course, you must ask the right questions, and learning how to do that is vital. You have to ask the right questions to get the right answers. Many people do not realise the power of questions. The moment you ask someone a question you engage their thinking. For example, if I ask you what you had for breakfast today, your mind can’t help but go there.

Gary Swenson is the State Ministries Director for QLD / NT




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ACC EMAG spoke to two chaplains who help man the 1800Chaplain hotline.

MOLING CHUN Q: Tell us about your journey to become a Chaplain; including what drew you to Chaplaincy and your training.

The service of 1800Chaplain has been delivered to local Australians in different states for over a month.

Moling: Nursing has been my lifelong career for over thirty years. After finishing school, I met Jesus in the first year of my nursing training at a non-Christian, world-class hospital. I then used to join the hospital chaplaincy team to visit different patients in need during the journey of my nursing profession.

My first caller was 19 year old girl living with drugs. She was weeping during the call and shared about her financial and relational difficulties. In the call, she seemed to look for the way for financial relief, although she did not think of changing her life. She felt welcomed and happy to call back to 1800Chaplain again if needed.

One day, God reminded me of His calling in my heart to serve Him through a special prayer and prophecy from a lady missionary.

I also remember a male caller who was in a depressed mood and struggled in thought battles. He asked many questions and felt disappointed about this evil world and recent bad news. The caller felt much better and got some hope and joy in his feeling of darkness after attentive and reflective listening, conversing in the call, and a prayer that he felt God’s comfort.

After moving to Sydney in 2000, I experienced suicidal people – young and old in the Chinese community through Christian friends or neighbours. I prayed to seek His will and I found Alphacrucis College had a one year course – Certificate IV of Pastoral and Chaplaincy. The course is enough to serve Him with the basic skills and knowledge of pastoral care because I already have had nursing education and experiences.

Overall, I was so glad to hear from them feeling better after validating and acknowledging their needs and feelings through calling in to 1800Chaplain with no plan of suicide. These were my highlights when I encountered the callers in 1800Chaplain.

I enrolled in Alphacrucis College because it is a well-designed course. I felt like a fish comes back to its appropriate water territory. I truly enjoyed the study with many theoretical reflections and clinical practices.

Q: Why should churches partner with 1800Chaplain? How will it help their communities? Moling: The role of churches is the ongoing ministry of Jesus. They reflect Jesus’ love and hope for this broken world. No single church or ministry has all of the approaches or supportive aids needed to fulfil ‘The Great Commission’ that Jesus commands to His disciples. (Matthews 28:18-20).

In 2016, I was about to finish the Diploma of Ministry (Chaplaincy). Immediately, I was offered a new created Chaplaincy and Pastoral Care role in Chinese Specific facilities and homes after my practicum. At the same time, I was accredited to be a Chaplain of ACC through Chaplaincy Australia.

The value of the partnership between the churches and charity organisations, like 1800Chaplain, is boosted productivity in advance of God’s Kingdom. If there are common visions between the ministry of 1800Chaplain and churches, they can work well together to achieve these common outcomes that are mutual of benefit. Churches can achieve more through ministry partnerships than they can do in most situations.

Q: Powerful stories from 1800Chaplain so far Moling: In mid-November 2021, Chaplaincy Australia launched the1800Chaplain phone service. I had accidentally suffered a hand injury and could only work from home to participate in this ministry in my recovery period, and I called myself “a wounded listener.”

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“The caller felt much better and got some hope and joy in the midst of his feeling of darkness.” – Moling Chun


JANETTE CONROY Q: Tell us about your journey to become a Chaplain; including what drew you to Chaplaincy and your training. Janette: My Chaplaincy journey really started about three years ago, through my husband and son taking an interest in Sports Chaplaincy and did a level 1 training information session with Sports Chaplaincy Australia. I thought “I could do this”. I am trained as a Counsellor and worked with a Christian Counselling Centre for a number of years, mainly in the areas of trauma, grief, loss, spiritual issues, abuse etc. After suffering from burnout I left Counselling in 2011 and the next five years were all about stopping and allowing Jesus to begin the rebuilding phase. In July 2019, I became a Sports Chaplain with Sports Chaplaincy Australia after completing the three levels of training, when COVID hit and lockdown started. I was asked to help out taking some of the load of a fellow Chaplain who had a young child and needed to home schooled. I then took the role as Association Chaplain for a local Football League here in Melbourne where I remained for 15 months. Pastor Glenise told me about 1800 Chaplain and asked if would I consider being involved. Something was birthed inside


Half page ad for 1800Chaplain


me and I knew God was driving it. An email arrived asking for expressions of interest in the Team Leader Positions. and I was successful in being offered a position as Team Leader for 1800Chaplain.

Q: Why should churches partner with 1800Chaplain? How will it help their communities? Janette: Why wouldn’t churches partner with 1800Chaplain? As someone who has been involved in Pastoral Care and aware of the needs that can arise in a church, I am aware that there are times when people need to talk to someone they don’t know about different things as they feel more at ease to disclose their concerns.

So here I am now almost a month into it still pinching myself that its real. It has all happened so fast, yet He has been working it in me for a long time. I am so glad He knows the plans he has for me, because I sure didn’t. I am one very happy Chappy.

Partnering with 1800Chaplain helps us to continue to grow and provide over the phone Pastoral Care to anyone who calls. We are there in support and help in a way to relieve the pressure that other help lines are under. Partnering with 1800Chaplain helps build the credibility and says that the church believes and supports the work we are doing and the positive influence we are bringing. 1800Chaplain is good soil worth sowing into.

Q: What are some of your experiences from 1800Chaplain so far Janette: People are calling, people are being supported, and Chaplains are responding. 1800Chaplain is the story being fulfilled and gaining momentum. The statistics are showing that 1800Chaplain is making a difference and lives are being affected. I had one Chaplain share that the caller they had was in tears when she answered and was smiling when the call ended. That is very powerful. I know over time there will be more and more stories to share. We know as a team that Jesus is the one who is running this and we are His servants, all working together to bring His love, care and grace to a dying world.

31 MARCH - 1 APRIL 2022







The Youth Alive Academy is seeing a strong contingent of youth pastors emerge to lead the next generation in our local churches. ACC EMAG spoke to ISABEL COLEMAN and SANDY COLLINS about their passion for young people.

ISABEL COLEMAN / ADELAIDE / Q: What do you love about being a youth pastor? ISABEL: My greatest joy is seeing teenagers fall in love with Jesus and then see the Holy Spirit transform them and change their life. I love walking alongside young people and loving, discipling, growing and encouraging them to walk in the fullness God has for them. Whether my day includes going into a school lunch-time group, taking someone out for maccas, preaching, running an event or having a simple conversation with someone, I love that God’s love and power is at work within me to reach, save and disciple teenagers.

“My greatest joy is seeing teenagers fall in love with Jesus.”

Q: What prompted you to study to become a youth pastor? ISABEL: During the 2018 Youth Alive Conference, I had the honour of playing keys in the worship team and seeing a different side to youth ministry. I remember standing on stage and looking out and seeing the power of teenagers coming together, encountering Jesus and being radically transformed by Him. This birthed a new passion and burden inside of me for young people. In the free time, I was sitting with a teenage girl I’d never met and we had a conversation for hours. The whole time during our conversation, I could feel the Holy Spirit setting alight this new ‘fire’ within me and a burning hunger to see young people set on fire for God. After that conference, I met with my senior pastor and raved about this experience and new ‘fire’ within me. He then told me he had known for a while that I was the next youth pastor, and he wanted to start that transition. He encouraged me and blessed me financially to start my study at Youth Alive Academy. I was amazed at God’s faithfulness and provision, and then applied and began my journey at Youth Alive Academy. Q: What aspects of the Youth Alive Academy course did you find especially valuable that equips you for your job now? ISABEL: What grew me the most was being placed in an environment every week, surrounded by people full of faith for what God could do in and through them. Hearing testimony after testimony of how God has moved and what He has done, grew my faith and hunger for revival like nothing else. Academy grew my grit, leadership, prayer-life, love for the word, hunger, faith and expectancy in a way I could never put into words. Nothing can ever fully prepare one for ministry, but Youth Alive Academy definitely put practical tools in my belt and hunger in my heart, to then step into ministry feeling empowered and expectant for God to move in and through me. 36




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With 7 new double diplomas on offer through LCCs (in addition to our 4 Cert IVs and Diplomas), we are super excited for what God has in store for your young adults and the next generation of leaders in your church.



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“I love the opportunity to create a community where our teens know their value, know that they are loved, and have a family around them to support them.” SANDY COLLINS / BRISBANE / Q: What prompted you to study to become a youth pastor? SANDY: When I finished high school I knew exactly two things: I loved teenagers and I wanted to see the world change. I went through just about every possible job possibility that exists in trying to decide what I wanted to study. The one certainty I had was that whatever my future career, the first thing I wanted to do was study with Youth Alive. I knew that the process to step onto our youth team as a new graduate was to be a huge change and I wanted to be the best youth leader I could possibly be. I never started this journey with the intent to be where I am today but I know that everything we covered at Academy has helped shape and prepare me to be here. What inspired me most about Youth Alive Academy and really drove my decision to study with Youth Alive was watching Pastor Cameron and Renee Bennett and their team love young people (myself included) well. I knew that they have a genuine passion to see teenagers have life-changing encounters with God. I knew that Youth Alive is passionate about equipping the local church. I knew that they are passionate about developing my leadership and I wanted to put myself in a room where the calibre of leadership was continually being raised. When all I knew was two things, Youth Alive Academy helped me figure out the rest. Q: What aspects of the Youth Alive Academy course did you find especially valuable that has equipped you for your job now? SANDY: There are many valuable skills that I apply in my daily role. The skills of attentive and reflective listening are especially crucial, as well as understanding empathy. You can be at risk of being affected by vicarious trauma so it is vital to learn about and apply self-care. Learning how to “know your role, know your limits and know when to refer” are essential to my everyday experience. Q: What do you love about being a youth pastor? SANDY: I now work as the Youth Pastor at Life Church in our Brisbane South location. It’s a tremendous honour that I get to lead our team and partner with parents to help raise teenagers to have their own personal relationship with Jesus. Every week our teenagers have the opportunity to thoroughly demolish me at basketball, football, or any other kind of sporting event, but I love that I get to walk shoulder-to-shoulder with our students. I love the opportunity to create a community where our teens know their value, know that they are loved, and have a family around them that’s here to support them and help them take their next step. I am so thankful that Youth Alive helped me get here.




Emotionally Healthy Spirituality ACCKids National Director ANDY KIRK interviewed Peter Scazzero, author of Emotionally Healthy Spirituality, about one of the biggest gifts we can give to our children.

Andy Kirk: I read ‘Emotionally Healthy Spirituality’ a few years ago and it was so impacting. The heart and goal of ACCKids is to help resource families and parents, and I believe the topic of emotionally healthy spirituality in the context of family is extremely helpful. Peter, tell us a bit about your background, your family and ministry.

Andy: You explain that the biggest gift to our children is being a Godly version of ourselves. Can you explain that concept? Peter: It’s a very simple principle. You cannot give what you do not possess; you only give what you do possess. Who you are is way more important than what you say and what you do. As a parent, the most critical issue of parenting your kids is your person, because they’re in a system of your family. It’s all they know. For the first 17 to 18 years of life, they are absorbing all the unspoken messages. Therefore, the issue of your development into a mature person is the critical issue for your children. Let’s say for example, however you resolve conflict, that’s what your kids are going to learn. That’s how they’re going to do it. You can tell them what the Bible says but it doesn’t matter. Under stress, they’re going to go back to what they learned from you. So that’s gift Emotionally Spirituality is –it gives you a mechanism to work on yourself and learn some new skills so that you don’t pass on the sins of the fathers to the third and fourth generation, which is inevitable if you’re unaware.

Peter: I came to Christ in university and went on to plant a church in Queens, New York City, which blossomed into a large church. Then we planted a number of other churches, but what happened was after about year seven, we hit a wall. We just couldn’t figure out what was it. We were going way too fast. I was exhausted and our marriage wasn’t going well. My wife was tired of the recycling the same old problems. and going at breakneck speed. We had four small girls at that time, and she didn’t quit the marriage, but she quit my church and went to another church. So God finally had my full attention. We went away for a week, God met us in this crucible of pain. And that’s when you realise that you can’t be spiritually mature and be emotionally immature. And the two are inseparable, emotional and spiritual maturity. So that’s when we launched this journey in 1996, with the integration of what we call emotional health to spirituality, that it launched us on a journey that we’ve been on now for 25 years. It continues to unfold. Our mission stayed the same but it changed absolutely everything on how we do life and ministry.

ANDY: When we’re looking at parenting courses, or talking to parents, I explain that the patterns of behaviour are passed on. How do we then, as parents and adults, transform our inner life? Why is the inner life such an important parenting tool? 40

“I realised, oh, my gosh, I’m an emotional infant, pastoring a church.” – Peter Scazzero PETER: Let’s put it this way – you come from a family of origin., and you learn in that family how to do life growing up: How do I do anger? How do I do success? How do I do conflict? How do I do marriage? The list is endless. You learned a way to do life. Then when you come to Jesus, you are born into a new family. As a parent and follower of Jesus, the most important thing you can do is get serious about your discipleship, which is who you are on the inside. I’m not talking about serving the poor or using your gifts in a service - I’m talking about some deep transformation, not a veneer of Christianity on the outside because kids more than anybody else, they smell hypocrisy, and anything that is not consistent. That who you are on the outside is the same as who you are on the inside. So parents can’t run from their kids because their kids see everything. And so therefore, I would say the answer is – your inner life is the most important parenting issues. I think that the most loving thing you can do for your kids is let Jesus work on you, and if you’re married, have a great marriage. ANDY: How did you start to become self aware or start to look back at some of the patterns that were formed then? PETER: I’m Italian American. I didn’t really do feelings except for anger. I didn’t do emotions. Well, you can’t follow Jesus and not feel. In fact, you can’t love people without feeling. And so I my first task was even letting myself feel. I didn’t even know how to listen. I didn’t know how to love. My wife didn’t feel loved by me. I loved her. She didn’t feel it. I was loving the world planting churches, and my own wife was lonely in the marriage. I realised, oh, my gosh, I’m an emotional infant, pastoring a church. So we started doing Genograms, which is going back to your family, three to four generations and how it’s impacted who you are. That was a whole journey. We also slowed down our lives so that we weren’t going you know, 6070 hours a week. We call it a slow down spirituality with an emotional integration of discipleship. I call it biblical integration. There is a lot of stuff in the Bible we were ignoring that really is clearly in the Bible. When it comes to Emotionally Healthy Spirituality discipleship, you have to master these skills in your marriage, so you can give it to your kids.

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Peter Scazzero, is a best-selling author and founder of New Life Fellowship Church in Queens, New York City. 41

60 Seconds To Save Your Relationship Unrestrained Straight Talk For The Time-Poor By Richard Kobakian


After 20 years of counselling couples on the edge of a relationship breakdown, I’ve learnt a few things. In fact, every chapter of my book – 60 Seconds To SaveYour Relationship – is based on those lessons. Most importantly, I’ve learnt that most of the habits that ultimately destroy relationships could have been nipped in the bud. The people involved simply needed a quick metaphoric slap. That is, they needed someone to tell them the brutal truth about their poor behaviour and the likely outcome of it if continued.

Fear and Love can’t live together Melissa was a very attractive young woman. Her husband’s friends used to laugh that he was ‘punching way above his weight.’ After years of marriage Melissa walked into my office, told me she was leaving her husband and that there was no way she was ever going to going back. I asked why. She told me: “When I hear his car pulling into the driveway my heart shudders with fear. I know that when he opens that door, he’ll harass me. Every day he harasses me about trivial things,

like eating potato chips or keeping the house impossibly spotless.” One day while eating the potato chips Melissa enjoyed so much, she heard her husband’s car pulling into the driveway. Once again, instead of her heart beating with excitement, it was full of fear. Enough was enough. Melissa decided she was not going to live another day in fear. When her husband walked in, Melissa looked him in the eyes and said: “I’m leaving!” And she did. There was nothing I could say to make her want to go back to him. Fear and love cannot coexist in a

relationship. Although in this example, it was a male who had created an atmosphere of fear, females also have the ability to do the same. If you make your partner fear you, you will kill the love they have for you. You may not see it coming but one day, love will leave the room. Fear and love cannot live together.

Richard Kobakian and his wife Helen are the Senior Pastors of Lifehouse Global.




The Black Box & the Post-Pandemic Pastor By Paul Bartlett What can the Post-Pandemic pastor learn from Korean Air’s crash record? Re-Think It author PAUL BARTLETT asks if this is the moment to take some of those lessons on board.


n the ten-year period between 1988 and 1998, Korean Air planes crashed at a rate 17 times more than United Airlines. As Malcolm Gladwell tells the story in Outliers, the safety record was so bad that by the year 2000, the US and Canada banned Korean Air flights into their airspace, the US army base in South Korea stopped using the airline to fly personnel home for leave and international airlines severed their flying partnerships with the crash prone airline.

Korean pilots had a cultural problem where the strict social hierarchy in Korea established rules around speech that prevented junior pilots from telling the captain there was a problem. When one of the black boxes recorded a serious problem on the weather radar, the first officer hinted to the captain: ‘Don’t you think it rains more? In this area, here?’ The first engineer hints, ‘Captain, the weather radar has helped us a lot.’

Even the South Korean President switched to the nation’s newest airline, Asiana!

In a culture where it is up to the listener to work out what is being said, rather than the speaker to make themselves clear – you can see why that plane crashed! Korean Air had some serious re-thinking to do.

A leaked forty-page report into Korean Air was damning: bad company morale, poor training standards, procedural violations. What had happened? As it turns out, the lessons could be found in the black boxes at the crash sites and what they learned turned the airline around.

While a pastor is not flying a $487 million A380, there are serious questions to unpack about the next 12 months to two years as we lead our churches into the post-pandemic world. About the weather ahead; about the black box behind us; about pilot error; about the culture in our churches – and the small unlearnings that we need to make as we measure our success in the next season.

For pastor’s struggling to make sense of the post-pandemic world, what can we take from the black box of the last 18 months? It is easy to point the finger at the obvious. When Gladwell ran the stats on plane crashes, he found that weather was often poor (but planes are built for that); the planes were running behind schedule (pilots were often rushed and awake for more than 12 hours); in 44 per cent of crashes, the pilots had never flown together before and the typical plane crash involved seven small pilot errors, none alone that led to catastrophic failure, but compounded they resulted in a crash.

To find out more about how Korean Air turned it around and what lessons we can learn as we pastor in the post-pandemic world, join Paul Bartlett for The Post Pandemic Pastor on 7th March 2022. Go to re-thinkit. to grab your tickets.

Paul Bartlett is the NSW & ACT State President, and National Director of ACC Community Engagement. He is the author of Re-think It. To order:

So, neither weather nor pilot error could account for Korean Air’s safety record. Instead, the answer could be found in the culture.


“There are serious questions to unpack about the next 12 months to two years as we lead our churches into the post-pandemic world.” – Paul Bartlett

Leonardo Yip (Unsplash)



THE CASE FOR HEAVEN: A journalist Investigates Evidence for Life After Death By Lee Strobel Bestselling and award-winning author Lee Strobel interviews experts about the evidence for the afterlife and offers credible answers to the most provocative questions about what happens when we die, near-death experiences, heaven, and hell. The investigative journalist who wrote ‘The Case for Christ’, offers a lively and compelling study into one of the most provocative topics of our day. Is there any reliable evidence that there is life after death? Through fascinating conversations with respected scholars and experts – a neuroscientist from Cambridge University, a researcher who analysed a thousand accounts of near-death experiences, and an atheist-turnedChristian-philosopher – Strobel offers compelling reasons for why death is not the end of our existence but a transition to an exciting world to come. Looking at biblical accounts, Strobel unfolds what awaits us after we take our last breath and answers questions like: Strobel examines the alternative of Hell and the logic of damnation, and gives a careful look at reincarnation, universalism, the exclusivity claims of Christ, and other issues related to the topic of life after death. With vulnerability, he shares the personal experience of how he nearly died years ago and how the reality of death can shape our lives and faith.

CRAZY FAITH: It’s Only Crazy Until It Happens by Michael Todd Will you be remembered as a person who claimed to follow God but liked to play it safe? Or as a person who lived your life out on the limb and trusted God enough to live in crazy faith? Noah looked crazy when he started building the ark . . . until it started raining. It was crazy for Moses to lead a nation of people into the desert away from Egypt . . . until the Red Sea parted. It was crazy to believe that a fourteen-year-old virgin would give birth to the Son of God . . . until Mary held Jesus in her arms. Our see-it-to-believe-it generation tends to have a hard time exercising true faith - one that steps out, takes action, and sees mountain-moving results. Many of us would rather play it safe and stand on the sidelines, but it’s crazy faith that helps us see God move and reveals His promises. In Crazy Faith, Pastor Michael Todd shows us how to step out in faith and dive into the purposeful life of trusting God for the impossible. The question is, Are you crazy enough to believe it? To order:

YOU WERE MADE FOR THIS MOMENT: Courage For Today and Hope For Tomorrow by Max Lucado Are you weary from your challenges, wounded by your battles, or worried your world is spinning out of control? Have the struggles pilfered the life out of your life? If so, the book of Esther brings welcome news: Relief will come! Queen Esther had to make some tough choices. Would she remain silent or would she speak up? Would she blend in or would she stand out? It’s not hyperbole to say that her courage changed the course of history. Nor is it an overstatement to say that God can do the same with you. Like Esther, you may be staring down a seemingly impossible situation. And what’s true for Esther is true for you: deliverance will come. God will have his victory. He will rescue his people. He will right the wrongs of this world. The question is not, Will God prevail? The question is, Will you be part of the team? In You Were Made for This Moment, pastor and New York Times bestselling author Max Lucado has this message: You don’t have to be undone by turbulent times; you can be unleashed. You were made for this moment. To order:

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HOLDING ON WHEN YOU WANT TO LET GO: Clinging to Hope When Life is Falling Apart By Sheila Walsh Are you struggling today? Do you look back and long for what used to be, or are you looking ahead and have no idea what’s coming? Are you stuck in the middle of a mess because life has not turned out as you expected? When you run to God for answers, do you often feel like you aren’t getting them--or at least aren’t getting the answers you want? Are you holding on . . . but not sure how much longer you can? In times of not knowing, Sheila Walsh offers a lifeline of hope. With great compassion born of experience and hardship, Walsh comes alongside the hurting, fearful, and exhausted to remind us that we serve a God who is so much greater than our momentary troubles, no matter how insurmountable they feel. Walsh doesn’t offer a quick fix. She offers a God fix. Sharing from her own painful struggles and digging deep into biblical stories of rescue, hope, and miracles, she gives you the strength to keep going, to keep holding on to God in a world turned upside down. The accompanying study includes 10 lessons to help individuals or groups dive deeper. To order:



Published by Thomas Nelson Publishers

DVD Movie

The NIV Chronological Study Bible presents Scripture in chronological order - the order in which the events happened - with notes, articles, and fullcolour graphics that connect the reader to the history and culture of biblical times. Starting with creation and moving through God’s people in the Old Testament, the life of Jesus and the birth of the church, this Bible provides a vivid picture of God’s work throughout history. .Perfect for readers regardless of where they are in their faith journey, the Chronological Study Bible is a great study resource to not only better understand the text but to also help you experience those moments in fresh, new ways. Features include: •

NIV text with study notes arranged in chronological order

Full-color illustrations of places, artifacts, and cultural phenomena allow the reader to truly experience the stories as if they were there

Fascinating articles connect the biblical text to world history and culture

Daily Life Notes explain how people lived in biblical times

Time Panels and Charts show the flow of God’s redemptive work in the world

Clear and readable NIV Comfort Print in 9.5-point type size.

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In the fourth instalment of the God’s Not Dead film series, Reverend Dave is called to defend a group of Christian homeschooling families. He finds himself taken aback by the interference of the government, and believing that their right to educate their own children is a freedom worth fighting for, Reverend Dave and members of his congregation travel to Washington D.C. to testify in a landmark congressional hearing that will determine the future of religious freedom in America. Starring Francesca Battistelli, William Forsythe, Isaiah Washington, and Antonio Sabato Jr. God’s Not Dead: We The People is a powerful, timely film that focuses on the importance of following God. To order:



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31 MARCH - 1 APRIL 2022




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