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IN CONVERSATION Legendary tennis champion Margaret Court talks about how her Christian faith impacted her career in tennis and ministry. PAGE 12 >>


“Something about learning the same language.” SIMON ELLIOTT PAGE 13>>

3 Bus driving pastor

Photo: Emmanuel Christian Community School

Book details experiences of Pastor Darrell McKerlie >>

5 Fees down at Alkimos Secondary tuition fees are no longer required >>

Emmanuel Christian Community School Principal Pedro Cruz with Kindergarten students Freida Marol, Max Dragon, Annalisa Busan, Sterling Cruz and Cherry Lung Um at their new site.

New campus opens Emmanuel Christian Community School’s student body is set to grow to 412 students in 2017 – an increase of over a 160 students since receiving approval to build a new primary school campus in 2015. For many years parents have been keen to see the School expand to secondary and the dream of a Kindergarten to Year 12 school has quickly taken shape with prompt approvals, successful applications, a land grant, funding and growth in the area. Principal Pedro Cruz said that the school community is delighted with the prospect of

occupying its new campus, only 300 metres from the existing site in Girrawheen. The new campus will allow the school to expand from its current primary classes to Year 12 in 2020. “We are thankful for the assistance and support from the Commonwealth Government grant and State Government low interest loan, all working together to result in our new primary school being established to support high school,” Mr Cruz said. Construction of Stage One was completed in November 2016 and the 2017 school year will begin with 180 students in the new Early Childhood Centre, with two Kindergarten classes, two Pre-Primary classes, two Year 1 classes and one Year 2 class. “We have chosen ‘Koorlangka Warbiny’ as the

Noongar Aboriginal name for the Centre, meaning children at play,” Mr Cruz said. A ministry of Girrawheen Baptist Church, the School is located in a low socio-economic area in the northern suburbs of Perth with 42 staff and more than 75 percent of students originate from an English as a Second Language (ESL) background. “Emmanuel has experienced all the highs and lows involved in accepting and catering for the needs of each wave of immigration to Australia as it has impacted directly on our school community,” Mr Cruz explained. “From the early 1980s with the arrival of Vietnamese children, then Burmese, followed by Romanian and South American children fleeing political persecution, up to the most recent arrivals from Africa.”

8 Seniors needs An ageing population means growing needs >>

“There are many schools in the same situation as we are – schools that make it their mission to serve those in disadvantage and believing education to be of fundamental importance in providing the means by which such disadvantaged families make a better place in the world for their children.” The new school campus can accommodate 490 students from Kindergarten to Year 6 and boasts innovative design and materials, environmental sustainability, and a nature playground. Work will begin on Stage Two, the administration and library resource building, in about April 2017. “We give thanks to God for the vision and reality of our new school, for which we have prayed for many years,” Mr Cruz concluded.

We are stronger when we work together. BAPTIST CHURCHES WESTERN AUSTRALIA


my view FEBRUARY 2017

I have two coffee cups I have two coffee cups. One of them is a double walled coffee cup which is made for coffee. It has a serviceable handle but more importantly is designed so the heat from the coffee does not scald your hand. The other is a simple glass cup – strong, but not insulated.

Mark Edwards Mark Edwards is the Senior Pastor at Inglewood Community Church.

I wonder which you would prefer. Surely the idea of being free from the pain of the heat coming through to our hand is appealing. However, the more important aspect of coffee drinking is that it tastes good and is served at the optimum temperature for taste. A cursory reading of a number of coffee snob style websites will confirm that a scalding hot coffee will not be the best tasting one. So in fact, the need for a double walled glass is

superfluous. If you have a wellmade coffee, you don’t need it. That leaves us with preference. In terms of enjoyment, I want to feel the warmth from the glass as I sip on my double shot macchiato or whatever I’m drinking. I wonder how we feel about our faith. How important the senses are to us. In years gone by, a more traditional church may include many of our senses in a worship time. Smell, sound and beauty are all part of the

experience when the faith community gathers. In our quest to be rational, to have a faith grounded upon good apologetics and sound theology, have we lost something of the mystique of Christianity in years gone by? For myself, I want to feel what is happening. David the psalmist expressed the full gamut of emotion. John the Apostle draws wonderful pictures of the emotion of worship in heaven. Those who argue for a purely

rational faith, based entirely on the mind, are ignoring the reality of how God has made us. With emotion. With senses. With emotion. With heart. Perhaps AW Tozer puts it best when he says, “To have found God and still to pursue Him is the soul’s paradox of love, scorned indeed by the too easily satisfied religionist, but justified in happy experience by the children of the burning heart.”

My ‘to do’ list … What’s a day without a ‘to do’ list? Pretty unproductive. Or that’s the theory I’ve always operated from, and so I faithfully start each morning by constructing a list of the things that must be achieved in the following 24 hours.

Dr Brian Harris Dr Brian Harris is the Principal of Vose Seminary and Pastor at Large for the Carey Group.

It starts with yesterday’s uncompleted items, and then adds an unrealistic number of new tasks, most of which reappear over the next few days or weeks (and occasionally, years). Having just been on holiday, I’ve had a period where the list has been mercifully short. On the better days it has been made up of three instructions: 1. Wake up shortly before noon. 2. Have an afternoon nap. 3. Get to bed early.

While it was too much of an effort to tick those off the list, I often managed them. Life … it’s made up of the things we accomplish from one sunrise to the next. Or is it? Take my holiday and its seriously short list of accomplishments (actually, between sleeps it did include a trip to Japan). It achieved … well not all that much. Except that it did. Rest, renewal, revived

relationships. There was reading and conversation … the latter, often about nothing, yet strangely about everything. It even included time for prayer. Not the hurried “God bless the next seven things I am about to do” but relaxed alertness in the presence of God. Time to actually sense God’s presence and goodness. Time to ponder God’s Word. Time to experience the deep joy of knowing that God is real, is with us, is shepherding us.

It’s the old dilemma. To do or to be? Seems to me that if we start with doing, being often takes a very long back seat. And the cost is enormous. What if we heeded the creation narrative, where the Bible instructs us that ‘there was evening, and there was morning – the first day’ … a day that started with night … with rest and reflection before action. Sounds profound … but don’t have time for it now. There are still another 23 items on my ‘to do’ list …

Roots and all About ten years ago I sat in church and listened to a sermon about making sure you don’t set your roots too deep into the comforts of this world. The warning being that if your roots were deep then you might not be willing to follow God’s calling on your life.

Liz Black Liz Black is a Global Interaction candidate.

As my family prepare to serve as cross-cultural workers in Thailand we could say it feels a bit like we’re out in the dirt with our shovels, digging up our roots. Some of these roots are shallow and easy to dig up but others are deeper, harder and more painful to get loose. A few weeks ago I took a boot full of belongings to the Salvo’s bin. I drove up beside it so I could leave our one year old strapped

in his car seat while I unloaded. When I jumped back into the car I found him screaming, “meeeee!” with his arms stretched out towards the bin. I had thrown away a teddy who had seen better days and he was devastated. After seeing his reaction, I panicked. I stuck my head into the bin wondering if maybe I could reach my arm in and pull it out. There have been several times that I have had these moments of

panic and the sacrifice has felt too great. The comfort of being in our own home, close to family and friends, feels like a root that’s too deep to remove. We need roots don’t we? We need to be connected to each other, our community and our family. These things are good, but let’s not set our roots too deeply into the comforts of this world. It’s safer for us to sit in our homes than to sit in the homes of

the broken. It’s more comfortable for us to build up our savings then to be generous to our church. It takes courage to live sacrificially. Let’s set our roots deeply into our relationship with Jesus. Trusting His promises to provide for all our needs even when the sacrifice seems too great. Let’s be listening to his prompting in our lives, ready, willing and able to offer it up, roots and all.

letters to the editor send us your letters The Advocate welcomes your letters to the editor on topics of concern to you and the community. Send your letters of no more than 100 words to by the 10th of each month.




A bus driving pastor As his own words reveal, Darrell was never going to be a scholar nor a famous preacher. However, he presents a remarkable story of a man who offered all his gifts and energy to the service of Christ through a succession of Baptist churches in three Australian states while also working as a bus driver. During Darrell’s last pastoral position at Broome Baptist Church, he was sought out by a succession of asylum seekers in Australia. While strictly respecting and observing all necessary protocols, Darrell led a number of former Muslims to faith in Christ, baptised them and helped them grow in their faith. In his book, Darrell states he simply did what he believed his calling required him to do. He

became a friend to people whose sad experiences had brought them to Australia in quest of a new and safe life. Darrell helped some of them find a deeper understanding of the new life that is found only in Jesus Christ. Few would have picked Darrell as the one to serve in this unique way in the popular tourist centre of Broome. Darrell himself did not anticipate this, and he is in the true apostolic succession of those who, like the Apostle Paul, have found the confidence that Christ has given them, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, my power is made perfect in weakness’. [2 Corinthians 12:9] Australian Baptist ministers come in all shapes and sizes. Some become leaders in their communities, some lead very large congregations and a small

Photo: Lexie-Jane Tang Wei

Walking on Water: Following Jesus through Fear and Faith is a book recently written by Pastor Darrell McKerlie, detailing his experiences as a contemporary Australian Baptist pastor.

Pastor Darrell McKerlie baptising Jason Marchioni.

number achieve academic recognition. Most Baptist ministers are largely unknown to the broader society, but many are respected and loved by

their churches for their faithful teaching, gentle leadership and loving care of people. This is a modern story of the grace of Christ changing

lives through the ministry of an otherwise ordinary bloke. For more information, visit www.

Photo: Matt Birch

Youth in unity

Rachel Bailey and Maddison La Praik enjoying a UNIFY event at Living Waters Lutheran College, Warnbro.

Youth ministries from nine Rockingham churches, spanning seven denominations or movements came together as one in various ways during 2016. “We join together in unity, for one reason to lift the name of Jesus high,” said Rockingham Baptist Church Youth Pastor Matt Birch. These churches believe that God is honoured through unity, but acknowledge this is easy to say, even easy to pray, but can be quite challenging to do. Rockingham youth pastors and leaders have been meeting together as they feel called by God to support one another and work together for the sake of the gospel. As a result, they formed an event called UNIFY with a heart for evangelism and unity.

In June 2016 the event saw 68 gospel responses out of the 192 students who attended UNIFY and their November event had 84 responses from the 238 attendees. Matt said seeing young people say ‘yes’ to the offer of relationship with God is a high priority for Christians. “I love this event, this feels to me what heaven will be like, brothers and sisters who love Jesus putting aside our differences for the sake of the gospel, it’s just awesome.”

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news FEBRUARY 2017

Big birthday for Bible Society There wasn’t a Big Mac in sight when community leaders, the Governor and Lady Macquarie created the Bible Society in 1817. Ahead of its bicentenary on 7 March, Bible Society remains the oldest continually operating organisation in the nation’s history. The only change has been the name. In 2010, the Bible Societies in each state merged into a single organisation, Bible Society Australia (BSA). The organisation is still involved in the translation, publishing, and distribution of the Christian Bible. BSA also aims to engage people with what it calls the good book, using both traditional and the latest media. Bible Society Australia CEO Greg Clarke said they are not content to simply hand out Bibles. “We want to help people engage with the Bible and answer their questions about it,” Greg said. “We’re celebrating our 200 years of sharing the Bible by doing more of what supporters want us to do – championing the Bible worldwide, from prisons in Australia to churches in China.” In our increasingly secular society, the Bible remains the world’s bestselling book with more than five billion copies printed. But, is the Bible still relevant to Australians? Bible Society claims the good book is foundational to human rights and the legal system. According to human rights barrister Geoffrey Robertson QC, the philosophic basis of the right to human dignity is the parable of the good Samaritan.

Australian charities also reflect the well-known parable. Of the 30 largest charities in Australia, 26 are faith based. They argue that Bible readers are more likely to volunteer to help others. The values that Australians cherish also stem from the Bible. A common Anzac statement is from John 15:13: ‘Greater love has no one than this – to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.’ Bible Society believe this is a verse that captures the national vision for humility, sacrifice and friendship between equals. ‘Eternity’ is a word many Australians may associate with

For more information, visit

Photo: International Bible Society

The identity of Australia’s oldest running organisation might surprise many. It’s not Houghton Wines, Westpac or the Australian Agricultural Company and it’s certainly not McDonald’s.

Christianity. Christians believe it is the message of God’s love for people in Jesus Christ and a love that will last forever. Eternity is also the title of Bible Society’s news service which reaches hundreds of thousands of people via a printed newspaper and digitally. To mark its 200th birthday, Bible Society Australia is staging a national celebration service on Sunday 5 March. Bible Society Australia wants this celebration to be more about elevating the place of the Bible rather than about Bible Society itself. The event will be held at Hillsong’s main auditorium in Sydney. Church groups of every denomination are encouraged to stream the event.

A Noongar image portraying a story in the gospel of Luke.

Bible basics – by the numbers The Bible contains 1,189 chapters.

The Bible is available in 2,454 languages.

The Old Testament has 929 chapters and the New Testament has 260 chapters.

China is the world’s largest supplier of Bibles.

The longest chapter in the Bible is Psalm 119 and the shortest is Psalm 117. The longest verse is Esther 8:9, and the shortest is John 11:35. The Bible is widely considered to be the bestselling book of all time, with estimated total sales of over five billion copies.

• The Bible was written: • over a 1,500 year span (from 1400 BC to AD 100) • over 40 generations • by over 40 authors from many walks of life, including kings, peasants, philosophers, fishermen, poets, statesmen and scholars

• •

in different places, including the wilderness, dungeons, and palaces at different times, during war and times of peace in different moods, for example, the heights of joy or the depths of despair on three continents – Asia, Africa and Europe in three languages – Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek

The Bible is the most shoplifted book in the world. The Bible was Isaac Newton’s greatest passion, as he wrote more about religion than science and mathematics.

digital church 01/01/17




16/01/17 Whether our earthly tent is fit and svelte, or saggy and cellulitey, we will all one day leave this tent, this home, and that’s the removal day that really matters. And it’s on that day that we will need a new home, a true home, an eternal home. Jesus, the perfect image of God, demonstrates for us what it means to be truly human: to love God and to live in service of one another. God works through availability, not ability. He doesn’t need your ability, your money, or your talents. He calls only for your complete and total obedience. We do not interpret the goodness of God through our circumstances. We interpret our circumstances through the goodness of God. True spiritual maturity is all about learning to love like Jesus, and you can’t practice being like Jesus without being in relationship with other people.

Kyle Idleman


12/01/17 The ultimate measure of man isn’t where he stands in moments of comfort/ convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy. Martin Luther King, Jr The faith that really holds on to Christ as Saviour and Lord and treasure and hope and joy is the faith that makes us long for Christ to come. And that is the faith that saves.

Stephen McAlpine


Brian Croft Push your congregation to grow, but not at the expense of exasperating them by trying to make them something they are not.

Kory Plockmeyer


Stephen Altrogge It will take love, a heart for the truth, and the courage of one prepared for battle to reform a church whether it be the church universal or the church local – just as it did during the Reformation.

JD Greear

Todd Rhoades The people God entrusts to you have a lot more outside influence. This makes your role even more important to provide truth, care and love.

Craig Groeschel

Rick Warren


John Piper




Free of fees at Alkimos The co-educational private College located in the northern corridor of Perth has a strong ethos of sharing the word of God to students and families in an exciting and relevant way. Under the direction of Principal Kieran Graham the College has introduced a number of initiatives to attract students and families, including specialist programs such as the Robotics Engineering Program and Fashion and Design Academy. The next key initiative the College will undertake is to assess the cost of private education in Perth in comparison to public schooling options. This will determine whether Alkimos Baptist College can target a new market of families who cannot afford private education but feel the public system is not suitable for their children. “There are a number of families who are currently in the public education system who feel that their children are not achieving to their potential and would love the opportunity to be involved in private education, especially a Baptist college,” Kieran said.

These students and families cannot often afford the price of private education and miss out. “Alkimos Baptist College is now priced in a category that allows these students to enjoy a private education and receive all the benefits of our College without having the massive price tag.” Secondary students will be charged subjects levies and in 2017 these will not exceed $2,000. “The cost of private education at our College will be roughly one third the price of other private Colleges in the area.” “This will mean attending Alkimos Baptist College for six years, Years 7 to 12, will be the same cost as attending only Year 7 and 8 anywhere else,” Kieran explained. There was a huge movement in enrolments just after the announcement was made in October 2016, with over 50 students enrolled in seven weeks. “It is fantastic to see so many people coming from the public system into our College – great students and great families who are desperate for something different, something that will help their children move forward

Photo: Kapture Photography

Parents will no longer need to pay secondary student tuition fees at Alkimos Baptist College commencing this year .

Alkimos Baptist College student Christain Petera looks forward to being a recipient of no tuition fees.

in their academic careers,” Kieran said. “The staff are particularly excited about the prospect of sharing the word of God with a brand new bunch of students.”

Having only Christian teachers at the College means students of a diverse faith background will be able to hear the good news of Jesus, some for the first time in their life.

Morley’s sacred space

Frosty support for Wagin

Within the busyness of life it can sometimes be hard to find the space and time to be still. It is a struggle many people share.

Photo: metriognome/Shutterstock

With frost and fires affecting harvest yields in the Wheatbelt, Wagin Baptist Church have taken a proactive approach to supporting their local community. A heavy frost event affected large portions of the Great Southern and Wheatbelt regions in September last year. With many crops at a vulnerable stage of their development, farmers woke to a disheartening scene. Wagin Baptist Church Community Initiatives Coordinator Tracey Kippen said it was at this point that their Church began to investigate options for supporting their local farmers. With damage so widespread it became apparent that it wasn’t only farmers who were going to be affected, so a plan to support local businesses was formed. “We decided to engage with those who are supporting farmers,” Tracey said.

“The College’s contemporary Christian education program Connect, is a fantastic place for students to hear about Jesus,” Kieran said.

“Hairdressers, agronomists, banks, merchandising firms, even the local butcher, these are the people who have contact with locals every day and may not have the support they need as they hear the stories of harvesting woes. We created a list of support services to give to these businesses and let them know that we’re here to help if they come across someone they think is struggling.” As harvest began it became apparent that another

challenge was looming with dust becoming a major problem entering machinery and igniting. Usually there are three or four fires each harvest due to lightning strikes or header fires. In 2016 volunteer firefighters had attended six fires before December, adding to the stress farmers were already facing. If you or someone you know is struggling, help is available 24/7 by calling Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Beyond Blue on 1300 224 636.

In response to this challenge the leadership team at Morley Baptist Church have developed an event titled Sacred Space. “At Sacred Space we will seek to carve out the best part of a day and remove protective distractions, to allow participants to hear God’s voice through His Word by using a gently guided format,” Morley Baptist Church Pastor Ann Clews said. According to Ann encounters with the presence of God can be experienced in many different circumstances, places and at different times and at Morley they appreciate that there is much to learn from the rich ecumenical history and diversity within God’s universal church. “As individuals meeting in the context of

community, we will learn how to be with God for receiving His guidance through listening, waiting and opening our hearts to Him while focusing on His beauty,” Ann said. “Jesus says in Matthew 6:6; ‘Find a quiet, secluded place so you won’t be tempted to role-play before God. Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God and you will begin to sense His grace.’” Sacred Space is being held on Saturday 25 March, 9.30am to 3pm, and is open for women who would like to share in this experience. Registrations can be made at For more information, phone Morley Baptist Church on 9377 3413.


news FEBRUARY 2017

Early mornings ahead at Quinns A new out of school hours care service has been launched by Quinns Baptist Church in February. the regular connections and growing relationships with families. A designated space also offers further opportunity for support groups such as a playgroup and marriage course to be conducted. “The not-for-profit venture means that a genuine need will be met whilst being able to offer further support to the whole community,” Janet said. The Church and College communities have both contributed to the project, offering donations of toys and games, and cleaning, decorating and organising the space. “Quinns Kids has been well received by the families of the College and many seem just as excited as we are,” Janet said. “God has provided a team of people who are enthusiastic about being part of the ministry and as the enrolments grow we can develop the Kingdom culture that is at the heart of this venture.” “We are very much looking forward to this next chapter and our ongoing partnership with Quinns Baptist College, when we open the doors to the kids, even very early in the morning!”, Janet concluded. For more information, visit

Photo: Heinrich Krause

The program, called Quinns Kids, aims to provide a range of support for families and the wider community of Quinns Baptist College through provision of out of school hours care – a vision shared by both the Church and College. At the end of 2015, Quinns Baptist Church members dared to imagine and pray, ‘what would it look like if 2016 was our best year yet?’ “We longed to hear God’s will for our church family and surrounding community and of course God surprised us completely,” Quinns Baptist Church Pastor Janet Cassidy said. During 2016 the 20th anniversary of the church establishing Quinns Baptist College was celebrated. During the year the College approached the Church asking for the Church’s help to support families who increasingly need out of school hours care. After much prayer, it was agreed that there is a growing need to serve the local community in this way. “What better way to show God’s love to someone than at six thirty in the morning from a person who genuinely cares,” Janet said. According to Janet there is much excitement in the Church about the missional opportunities that present themselves through

Emmanuelle Davis having fun at Quinns Baptist College after-school care.

Plenty for next generations in 2017

Childrens’ pastors recently met together and agreed to unify energies for children across WA in 2017. Children At Prayer will be the first initiative, to be held on 18 February.

... aim to connect Baptist young adults from across Perth. Baptist Churches Western Australia (BCWA) Youth and Young Adults Consultant, Ed Devine said high-school aged youth will again enjoy exciting combined

events, with Mount Pleasant Baptist Church hosting Ravi Zacharias International Ministries (RZIM) speaker Dan Patterson on Friday 17 March. The next day, the RZIM Apologetics Team will be equipping youth to answer the tough questions of life and faith during Reboot youth training. “Serpentine Camping Centre has just hosted a great run of summer camps for Juniors, Inters and Seniors which were enjoyed by all,” Ed said. Winter camps for these age groups will be held in the July school holidays. Young Adults Easter Camp will be held from 14 April to 17 April at Busselton Camping Centre. The ever-popular SportsFest will again roar to life on 22 September and conclude on

Photo: Ed Devine

There is plenty on the horizon in 2017 for the next generations of children, youth and young adults in Baptist churches in Western Australia.

Childrens’ pastors from across Perth met in December to plan for 2017.

25 September. Added to this will be new cross-church hangout events, combined with prayer and training, which will occur quarterly and aim to connect Baptist young adults from across Perth.

To keep up with this growth, Ed’s role with BCWA will be evolving to Next Generations Consultant and broadening to three days per week during 2017. “I am excited to support the Childrens’, Youth and

Young Adult Pastors who serve the next generation of Baptists in WA so faithfully,” Ed said. For more information, email




The zookeeper is coming

Jill Birt

The allegorical story of a faithful, loving zookeeper saving his animals from the power of darkness has been written to capture the imagination and hearts of young children. More than three years ago, the story began as a musical puppet show for country churches in New South Wales. “A number of people asked me for a gospel show that was easily accessible,” Naomi said. Naomi performed the drama with live music and puppets in several churches in NSW but quickly realised there was nothing for people to take home after the performance to relive the story. “People kept asking for something they could take home and we had nothing!” Naomi said. So Naomi reshaped the material into a 64 page book aimed at primary school children aged five to ten. Naomi’s 21 year old son Stephen, who recently graduated with a Bachelor of Visual Art from Ballarat’s Federation University, drew the 21 whimsical black and

white illustrations that bring insight to some of the characters in the book. The animals in the story slip into serious trouble and can’t get out using their own skills so the zookeeper acts to save them. “The story is a hook back to the Bible. There’s a strong link to God’s incredible plan through Jesus Christ,” Naomi said. Naomi saw the potential for The Zookeeper to be used in schools, so she has developed a ten part lesson plan. An audio book is also in development. This is Naomi’s first published children’s book. Her other books include the award-winning My Seventh Monsoon, about her years working in Nepal and her most recent, The Plum Tree in the Desert which relates the stories of ten inspiring people of faith working with Interserve in Asia and the Middle East. She is currently working on a new project, related to The Zookeeper. Naomi will visit Western Australia in July 2017, bringing

Photo: Naomi Reed

Award-winning Australian author Naomi Reed launched a new children’s book called The Zookeeper in October.

Stephen Reed drew the illustrations for the new book written by his mum, author Naomi Reed.


The Zookeeper to schools and churches. “I’m excited about returning to Perth and bringing The Zookeeper with me,” Naomi said.

New church plants The Aboriginal Baptist Church in Armadale and the Ethiopian Full Gospel Believers’ Church in Maylands have been accepted as new church plants with Baptist Churches Western Australia.

For more information, visit

Power to change

Pastoral and staffing changes

Over a two-week period they spent time learning to ‘crack the code’ of reaching young adults with the gospel in beaches, parks and pubs with the SummerSalt inititiative. “Exploring evangelism has been a boost to my walk, enabling me to trust God more than I ever have before,” Ebony said. Curtin University students Ebony and James heard about SummerSalt through Power to Change, a university Christian group helping students to grow and multiply their faith. Previously known as Campus Crusade for Christ, they have enjoyed seeing God working through the lives of WA students.

Photo: Ebony Chang

Woodvale Baptist Church’s Ebony Chang and James Robinson from Rockingham Baptist Church joined with other university students from Baptist churches in Western Australia to take part in a an evangelism project at some of Sydney’s beaches.

Ebony Chang and James Robinson spent some of their summer break on Sydney beaches, parks and pubs sharing the gospel.

“Being a Christian at uni is tough, but Power to Change has been a real oasis, helping me connect with others on a similar wavelength,” Ebony said. “The group has helped me develop in learning to trust God in everything, and in warmly communicating my faith,” James said. With a fresh university year around the corner, James’ advice to

new students is “to make the most of the opportunities, prioritising God, even amidst the chaos of exams.” “I hope to introduce more students to Power to Change, seeing it transform lives just as it has mine,” James said. For more information, email john.mayne@powertochange.

After 23 years, Pastor Colin Lituri is concluding ministry at Woodvale Baptist Church. Woodvale will be holding a celebration service and morning tea on 26 February at 9.30am to express their appreciation and give thanks for Colin’s faithful service in ministry. Youth Pastor Andy Price has concluded at East Fremantle Baptist Church and will be taking on a full-time role as Director of Biblical Christian Studies at South Coast Baptist College. Senior Pastor Michael Bullard has concluded at Riverton Baptist Community Church. Clinton Plumley has been appointed as the new Youth Pastor at Australind Baptist Church. Pastor Malcolm Good has concluded at Katanning Baptist Church and commenced as the Pastor of Casuarina Baptist Church, Darwin. Jessica Ford commenced as the new Baptist Churches Western Australia Events Coordinator on 30 January.

Baptisms Cornerstone Community Baptist Church have celebrated

four baptisms, with the following people baptised: Jennifer Campbell, Irene Fox, Nathan Harcourt and Andy Ritchie. Inglewood Community Church celebrated ten baptisms on Sunday 20 November, with the following people baptised: Patrick Catley, Ben Humphreys, Giuliana Inga, Oscar Kennedy-Grabbie, Chloe Mihic, Thomas Mihic, Tammy Pinkerton, Kurtis Polume, Tileah Prestwidge and Angus Sobey.

Baptist World Alliance General Secretary to retire Neville Callam has given notice of his intention to retire as General Secretary of the Baptist World Alliance (BWA) on 31 December 2017. Callam, a Jamaican, made history when he was elected to the position in July 2007 during the BWA Annual Gathering in Accra, Ghana, as the first black person to hold the position. Since its founding in 1905, all previous general secretaries were American or European.

Vose Seminary Commencement and Conferral Service Vose Seminary is holding its Commencement and Conferral Service on Monday 13 March at Mount Pleasant Baptist Church. All are warmly invited to attend and enjoy the evening, with supper provided afterwards.


feature FEBRUARY 2017

As people get older, their health and lifestyle requirements change. Australia’s population is increasingly ageing, with the number of people aged over 65 expected to reach 25 percent of the total population by 2042. The average life expectancy continues to rise, currently at 84 years for females and 80 years for males.

Meeting the nee of our seniors

Linda Lee

With an increased number of elderly people in local communities comes the growing need for accommodation tailored to meet their specific health care and lifestyle needs. While moving into a new home at a later stage in life can be a daunting prospect, many people are benefitting from living arrangements designed for seniors, such as residential aged care and retirement living. Richard and Janet Belke, aged 85 and 80 respectively, made the decision two years ago to move to Baptistcare Gracewood in Salter Point, one of Baptistcare’s 14 residential aged care facilities located throughout Perth and regional Western Australia. For the Belke’s, residential aged care was the best option for their family as living independently at home had become challenging. Janet explained they weren’t coping well in their own home as their health was declining and they required 24 hour care. “We’ve got two great children and in-laws, but it was a bit much, especially as Richard and I were not well,” Janet said. “While we had help at home, a cleaning lady came once a fortnight and a gardener came once a month, it wasn’t enough and we needed more assistance. It was getting a bit out of hand.” “Your body tells you it’s time to move. Our family were 100 percent supportive of our decision,” Richard said. The 24 hour clinical care, access to allied health and chaplaincy services, social activities, and freshly cooked meals provided through residential aged care have enabled Richard and Janet to receive the wellbeing support they need. It also ensures peace of mind for their family to know they are being taken care of. Applying to enter residential aged care starts with an assessment of the elderly person’s health and lifestyle needs by an Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT) to determine eligibility, after which the family chooses a residential aged care provider. Richard and Janet’s daughter looked at various residential aged care facilities before making their final decision. The process was smoother and faster than they expected. “We looked at 25 residential aged care facilities, the place we’re at now has what we were looking for, which is important,” Richard said.

Since transitioning to residential aged care, Richard and Janet have been enjoying their new home and are able to maintain close relationships with their family. “We’re extremely happy here. The staff are beautiful. We like to be treated how we try to treat people. There are lots of wonderful people here. We haven’t had any problems in the two years we’ve been here. Our family lives about five minutes away and visit us every week,” Richard said. When it came to choosing a residential aged care provider, one with a Christian ethos and chaplaincy care was essential for the couple. “We’ve been linked to a church for 50 years. What made us decide on Baptistcare was that it’s a Christian place, rather than one that’s against our beliefs. Our son, daughter-in-law and nephew go to Mount Pleasant Baptist Church. That played a role in us choosing Baptistcare,” Richard explained. “The chaplaincy care is very valuable. The chaplain is very open to everyone, you can go talk to him anytime. He’s been encouraging and so helpful,” Janet said. Richard and Janet attend Baptistcare Gracewood’s Sunday church services with speakers from Mount Pleasant Baptist Church, as well as bible studies during the week. “For us, chaplaincy services are extremely essential because the time will come when we may not be able to get transport to bible study and church,” Richard said. For 88 year old Jim Laurenson, a resident at Baptistcare David Buttfield Centre in Gwelup, moving into residential aged care has enabled him to stay connected to his Presbyterian church community and receive the assistance he requires for daily living. “I’d been living with my son for nearly eight years. When I turned 88, I no longer had my driver’s licence. My son and daughter-in-law couldn’t drive me as they are often away with work,” Jim said. Jim’s pastor lives close to Baptistcare David Buttfield Centre and provides transport assistance to the church. “With all the help I’d be getting here and my pastor agreeing to help with transport, we all decided it was a good option to move here. It all happened just like that, pretty smoothly and quickly. I think God’s providential hand was upon us,” Jim said. In the six months since moving to a residential aged care facility, Jim has settled in well. “I’d recommend this place to anybody, it’s really excellent. The rooms are quite roomy, meals are excellent, the care is good. Many people look after you and ask how you are,” he said.

Jim continues to keep active socially. His son, daughter-in-law and two grandsons live only ten minutes away and visit regularly, while friends from church take him out for coffee. He also enjoys pursuing his hobbies, including gardening and reading. “I usually take part in all the activities here, except bingo and movies which I’m not a fan of! I also do a bit of gardening. I was brought up with gardens. Here I’ve planted a lot of petunias, fertilised and watered roses, that sort of thing,” Jim shared. Financially Jim found moving into residential aged care an affordable option, with the aged care facility he chose providing good value for money. “The cost of coming here is affordable compared to a lot of other places. My sister has just gone into aged care somewhere else and she’s paying a lot more than what it costs here. People think residential aged care takes everything and you’ll have nothing to live on, but I’ve still got my bank savings accounts. Financially things are fine.” Baptistcare General Manager Aged Care Services Judith Don explained that moving into residential aged care is often regarded as a stressful process, but staff are dedicated to making the transition smooth and comfortable for residents and their families. “Having their best interests in mind is very important. We do our best to provide high quality care to each person and enable them to live the best life possible during their time with us,” she said. For people aged over 60 looking to downsize their homes and live independently, retirement living is another option available to seniors. Some benefits include the convenience of receiving assistance with home maintenance and being part of a community with others in a similar life stage. Baptistcare’s retirement villages are co-located with Baptistcare residential aged care facilities. Residents may choose to access Baptistcare’s Services for Seniors, which offer practical support enabling them to live independently at home, including cleaning, meals, transport and personal or nursing care. Baptistcare Retirement Living Manager Lidia Dawkins said that people looking for a retirement village lifestyle often don’t realise there’s a range of choices available to suit their particular budget and preferences. “It’s more affordable than is widely perceived. Each of our villages offers something unique and our residents enjoy a good balance between relaxation, community and convenience,” she said. Derek and Margaret Lickfold have been enjoying life at Baptistcare Yallambee Village in Mundaring for the

feature FEBRUARY 2017

eds past two years. Their retirement village home features both tranquillity and convenience, with close proximity to shops, library, medical centre and other facilities. “We love our secure surroundings away from the traffic and bustle of our previous home and we’re pleased to be away from the risk of house break-ins, as older people we would become increasingly vulnerable,” Derek said. “Now we have the sounds of the bush and birdlife. We considered that as we grew older, at this location we would still be able to access shops.” Derek and Margaret feel part of a welcoming community and have become friends with their fellow retirement village residents. “The residents are cheerful and friendly. The village staff are friendly, approachable and consistent in looking after the residents’ wellbeing, nothing is too much trouble. We’re very pleased we chose to live here,” Derek said. They are freed from the stress of organising house maintenance and repairs, and now have the time and finances to enjoy the things that are important to them, such as spending time with their grandchildren and travelling. “We no longer have the worry and expense of maintaining a house and garden too large for our lifestyle – lawn mowing and major gardening are a thing of the past. The lease terms and fortnightly service charges are affordable and financially we’re better off than before. Living here is more relaxing,” Derek explained. Baptistcare has residential aged care facilities and retirement villages in a number of locations across WA including Albany, Busselton, Lesmurdie, Margaret River, Mundaring, Rockingham and Salter Point. For more information, visit

Top: Janet and Richard Belke have been living in residential aged care for the past two years. Bottom left: Aged care resident Jim Laurenson keeps active socially and enjoys his hobbies of reading and gardening. Bottom right: Margaret and Derek Lickford enjoy a good balance between relaxation and convenience in their retirement village.


10 news FEBRUARY 2017

Christmas memories inspire

Jill Birt

Forty-five years ago in 1971, the village celebrated Christmas for the first time. Pastor Ko’Ong (71) returned from his work as pastor at large for the GAPPIN denominational centre in Sanggau where he now lives, to attend the service in his home village. Much has changed over the years. In August 1971 he was one of the first Dayak people in Gok’Nala to become a follower of Jesus. “I remember so clearly the Holy Spirit challenging me to give up all my amulets and charms and to trust Jesus completely,” Ko’Ong said. “I had taken all my idols and amulets and thrown them into the basket to be destroyed, all except one.” Standing in line with more than 100 other potential followers of Jesus a battle raged in Ko’Ong’s heart. He shared that he was challenged by the Holy Spirit about the one amulet he had left at home. “I felt that I needed that one to be the best at soccer, but the Spirit kept nudging me about trusting Jesus completely,” Ko’Ong said. “Heart pounding, sweat coursing down my face I defended my decision as the Holy Spirit challenged me to put my whole trust in Jesus.”

Ko’Ong finally changed his mind and ran away from the long line of people dropping their amulets and idols into the basket to be destroyed. They were making serious decisions to follow Jesus, throwing out the paraphernalia they had collected over many years. The basket filled with leaves, small bowls, stones, pieces of wood, fabric tied with red cotton – things these people believed had power to protect them, to bring them success, to make them fertile and virile. Ko’Ong went back to his simple timber home to retrieve his prized amulet from its hiding place – a small piece of wood, about the size of a matchbox, wrapped in yellow cloth and tied with grimy string. Ko’Ong said he had bought it from a man who said it would protect him on the soccer field. According to the man, the amulet would make him strong and give him amazing endurance. His calf muscles would never be injured. He would be the best on the team, the best on the field. And Ko’Ong believed it was working. He was known as an exceptional player with stamina and skill and he carried the amulet in his pocket when he played or tucked it into his sock. “Just holding it made me feel warm,” Ko’Ong said. The evangelist Sedi said that Jesus’ power was all he needed to

Photo: Jill Birt

Almost 300 people gathered in Indonesia’s Gereja Persekutuan Pengabar Injil (GAPPIN) Church located in Gok’Nala village, Kalimantan Barat to celebrate Christmas in December.

Pastor Ko’Ong returned to his home village Gok’Nala, West Kalimantan, for Christmas 2016 and visited the place where he gave up his amulets and charms to follow Jesus in 1971.

live a powerful life. He said Jesus was more powerful than all the spirits in the universe. Ko’Ong picked up the tiny yellow parcel, turned and walked back to the group. He recalls he was shaking and his heart was racing. Re-joining the line of those who were choosing to follow Jesus, he tossed the little package onto the pile of idols and charms in the basket. It was done. He believed. He was baptised that day, 24 August 1971. One of the 124

international briefs Win for evangelists in Nepal Nepal’s first religious freedom court case, charging seven men and one woman with proselytising after handing out pamphlets about Jesus in a Christian school, has been dropped. It is the first case since the country’s new constitution was implemented in 2015, under which anything perceived as evangelism is forbidden. The Christians had been called into the school as counsellors after Nepal’s heavy earthquakes in 2015 and were arrested soon after.

American pastor jailed in Turkey A web petition has been launched to advocate for American Pastor Andrew Brunson’s release from a Turkish

prison. Pastor Brunson has led a small congregation in Turkey for 23 years and was jailed under the allegation of “membership in an armed terrorist organisation” on 9 December. Following a failed coup on 15 July, the Turkish government has arrested numerous teachers, government officials, pastors and others, based on allegations of ties to the Gülen movement who it deems to be the driving force behind the coup. The US government has refused to hand over Pennsylvania-based movement leader Fethullah Gülen to Turkish authorities, seemingly triggering an increased targeting of Turkeybased Americans by Turkish authorities. The web petition demanding Pastor Bronson’s release has been signed by more than 147,000 supporters to date.

Study reveals UK struggle with youth UK churches are losing confidence in their ability to deliver youth work, a study by Youthscape found. In a survey of 2,054 churches, common answers to the question “What’s going well in your youth work?” were “not a lot”, “nothing”, and “it does not do so well”. The report also suggests a gap between topics that the church talks about and topics that young people actually want to know about. More than half of the churches say they never discuss mental health and two thirds report they never discuss pornography or sexuality, despite previous research suggesting that these are topics of high interest to UK youth.

people who started their journey living as followers of Jesus. They were part of a powerful movement of God’s Spirit among the animistic Dayak people when the church was birthed. Veteran missionary Bob (Opa) Williams had watched Ko’Ong’s struggle to trust Jesus. He appointed Ko’Ong the leader of the new church. “I really knew nothing, but I guess Bob Williams could see potential and he told me later he was impressed with how I

struggled to obey Jesus that day,” Ko’Ong said. During the 2016 Christmas celebrations he thought back on the early days when Gok’Nala was so isolated yet God came to them and brought them the Good News about Jesus. “I like to come home and catch up with my extended family and friends at Christmas time. For me it all started here in my village,” Ko’Ong said.

To find your local Baptist church visit

feature 11 FEBRUARY 2017

500 years of reformation

Ramona Ötting

In 1517, German cleric Martin Luther nailed 95 theses to a church door in the German town of Wittenberg, proclaiming the importance of grace and speaking up against corruption and abuse of power in the church. His actions are considered to be the start of reformation and most anniversary activities in Europe strongly focus on his life’s work. Luther is celebrated as a historical figure whose convictions and actions had a strong impact on the church and society as a whole. German protestant Bishop Heinrich Bedford-Strohm accidentally, but fittingly, referred to the Reformation anniversary as the “revolution anniversary”. The Reformation is considered to have smoothed the path for the age of Enlightenment helped spread education to the public and left its marks on music history. Luther was the first to translate the Bible from Latin to German and was strongly

involved in the creation of the first printing press. His theses challenged church practices driven by fear and selfish gain, and sought to take power away from the individual and give it back to God’s Word. While Luther was of particular historical importance to Germany, other countries underline the equally important impact of Reformation leaders such as John Calvin and Huldrych Zwingli. Despite the noticeable Luther focus, the 500th anniversary is planned to be an international celebration, reaching Christians and nonbelievers alike. As part of this celebration, a ‘reformation truck’ is travelling through 19 European countries, encouraging the public to learn more about the revolutionary impact the Reformation has had on society. Participating churches can upload stories and historical material onto the truck’s computer database, furthering the understanding of this important time in history. The celebration activities have not been without

Photo: neftali/Shutterstock

Protestant churches in Europe and around the world are celebrating the 500th anniversary of the Reformation.

A stamp printed in Germany portrays the reformist Martin Luther.

criticism. Some have called for the church to consider the dark chapters of the Reformation as well as the good ones, referring to the reformists’ involvement in witch trials and anti-Semitism.

Despite all good educational intentions, the Reformation anniversary is also a merchandising machine, producing Luther fan-merchandise such as fridge magnets, Luther quote

socks and Luther shaped pasta. Once the anniversary euphoria has passed, it will have to be seen if the Protestant church in Europe will be able to build on its newly gained attention.

No funds for Compassion in India

Ramona Ötting

Compassion International has asked that sponsors speak up after the Indian government denied approval for the non-profit’s operations in India.

The changes have affected more than 130,000 children as many of the centres have run out of money ...

profits were unable to renew their funding licences. Compassion is asking sponsors to advocate and pray for the organisation as it has been unable to come to an agreement with the Indian government to date.

Photo: Compassion International

The termination of Compassion’s funding for operations in India was caused by recent changes of the regulation which controls non-profits’ funding from foreign sources. Sixty-three of Compassion’s development centres were denied approval without explanation. In addition, the organisation was unable to send funds to the remaining 517 development centres despite these having previous approval. The changes have affected more than 130,000 children as many of the centres have run out of money and are struggling to continue their work without further funding. According to Compassion International President Jimmy Mellado, at least 24 other non-

One of Compassion’s child development centres in India.

12 growth FEBRUARY 2017

Margaret Court is renowned for her international tennis career, in which she won a record 64 major grand slam titles. Today she serves as the Senior Pastor at Victory Life Centre in Osborne Park, the Pentecostal church she founded in 1995. The Advocate recently caught up with Margaret to discuss how her Christian faith impacted her career in tennis and ministry.

Courtside faith and beyond

How did you develop a faith in Christ? I was number one in the world in tennis and I used to go to mass every Sunday and it was a part of my life. The press used to ask me, “Why are you so good [at tennis]?” and I’d say “It’s a gift from God.” I was brought up as a little girl knowing that. I knew about it, but I remember in 1971 going to church in France one Sunday – I used to go whether I was in the French or Wimbledon final or wherever because it meant a lot to me – and I was sitting thinking “God, where are you? There must be a closer relationship that I can have.” I always felt He was in the sky or around me, but didn’t know the reality of Him within me. When my husband and I went to America that year, we stayed with a family and she [the mother] gave me a little book. She was always going to meetings and I remember saying to my husband “I think she’s become a religious nut.” I threw most of the books she gave me in the bin, but I kept one and came home and sort of read it, but it didn’t mean a lot to me. A friend visited and I thought she had been going through some marriage problems, and I said “something has happened to you, hasn’t it?” She replied “yeah, I went along to a meeting and gave my heart to Christ”, and I said, “That’s funny, I’ve been reading about that, I’d like to come.” I went to a meeting and that is when I gave my heart to Christ. I knew the day I did that, that to

be absent from the body was to be present with the Lord. It was so real to me and it has been ever since. It says in Romans 9: 10 that when you believe in your heart that God raised Jesus from the dead and that you confess with your mouth you will be saved. Most of us know about it, but we haven’t actually given our heart to Him. When I did that I had a real encounter with the Lord. I became born again, spirit-filled. As a professional tennis player, how did your Christian faith impact your career? I always knew that my gift was from God. Sometimes I would be in place and think “oh, I can’t, I haven’t got the strength, I can’t go on.” I used to say to God “please help me” and at different times it was like a strength that came and I knew that it was far greater than me. When I did go back into tournament after being born again, I wanted everybody to know Him. So, I just talked about it, that I’d given my heart to Christ. People would say, “there is something wrong with her”, but it was so real to me. I wanted everybody to have it so I was never ashamed to speak about it. You must have some extraordinary memories from your Christian journey, which have impacted you the most? From my Christian side, seeing people get healed, their lives changing, people getting saved, people coming to know Christ, and seeing people who have been through depression have their lives restored. Pastoring a church today, which I’ve done for 21 years now, you see a lot of things. You see people’s lives get stronger, and you’re helping and encouraging people – that is what impacts me. You just want everybody to come and know Jesus. How did you transition from being a professional tennis player to a life of ministry? After becoming a Christian, I went back into the tennis world. I had a child [Daniel] and my husband and I took Daniel overseas with us and probably had one of my best years after that. I won 23 out of 24 tournaments. I then had another child thinking I’d go back to tennis, but when we

Photo: Frances Andrijich

You grew up in Albury, New South Wales, what brought you to Western Australia? When I was much younger I used to visit Perth and play in the State tennis championships and stayed with a family in Perth. I always loved Perth, it was like an overgrown country town. Having been a country girl, in 1965 when I was number one in the world and had won everything a couple of times I decided to return. It was in the amateur days and we would go overseas for ten months of the year. There wasn’t the money in tennis like there is today, so I decided I needed to have a break. I thought that was it and I’d probably never go back. During 1965/66 I met my husband [Barry Court] and got married in 1967.

went back a second time I said to my husband “my heart is not here”. After tennis we had another two children and in 1978 I got quite sick and ended up with a torn valve of the heart, depression and insomnia. I was advised I’d be on medication for the rest of my life and I couldn’t see any way out of the pit I sort of got into. I knew Jesus healed today and I didn’t want to be on medication for the rest of my life. In 1981 there was a Bible training centre that opened in Perth and somebody encouraged me to go. I thought well there is no other way – I was desperate at the time. I went to Bible school in 1982 and 1983 and found my life started to change. In the second year of Bible school my heart was totally healed, and depression and insomnia went. It changed my life completely. I didn’t fall into ministry right after that. It wasn’t until 1991 because the children were all still quite young. In 1991 I had Margaret Court Ministries out around the city and community centres helping people to overcome depression, helping them with marriage and all sorts of things. Then in 1996 I felt I was called. People were asking “Where can we go to hear what you are teaching?” I was praying to God to send somebody to start a church who was teaching a similar message and one night, while getting dinner ready, I really had a sensing that somehow that pastor was going to be me. I then got a picture of two men who I went through Bible school with who had churches in Albany and Bunbury and they were doing very well in

their churches. I felt the need to phone them and ask them if they would come into this work with me. I said don’t rush on it, pray about it and they both came back and said ‘yes’. So, in 1996 we started Victory Life Centre. As a ministry leader, how do you maintain your personal spiritual vitality? That is something you always have to watch because you can be helping others so much, teaching and giving messages. You have to take time for yourself. You need to prioritise your time and be disciplined – no different to an athlete. The wonderful things that you are taught from your sporting days are the discipline, commitment and focus. It is no different in ministry. You have to put yourself away, you have also got to pace yourself. I think over the years I have done it pretty well, but sometimes I haven’t and I did pay the price for it. You have to take God’s Word as medicine for yourself also. What are the biggest challenges in your Christian walk? Having come from my sporting days, I had to know when to break and take time out because I was somebody who had to keep working until I knew that confidence was there, that I was playing well. It is very similar in ministry, I could go, go, go, probably longer than most, but you still have to take a break. There are always decisions to be made and big decisions because we are now in 22 nations, have an international

Bible training centre and also put out 25 tonne of food a week into the community. You have to watch that you stay refreshed. You recently completed your autobiography, what prompted you to write it? I hadn’t done any since I played tennis. I did The Margaret Smith Story back then and then Court on Court and when the Rod Laver book came out, the man who looks after Rod when he visits Australia mentioned to me “perhaps you should do one too”. So they went to Macmillian who did Rod’s and they said ‘yes, they would love to do that’. The same man who wrote Rod Laver wrote mine, Larry Writer. At the end I thought it’s good because it goes from my early beginnings right through until today, my Christian walk and what I do and what I’ve done when I finished playing tennis. What are your future ambitions/ plans? With our church we have fulfilled a lot of our vision with our community services, Bible school, missions and in a whole lot of areas. Over the next five years or so I’d like to see us build a bigger auditorium in Perth, reaching out to our city and nation more and more, and sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ because there is a heaven and a hell and I want everybody to go to heaven. There is such need in the world today that we need to be able to share the gospel. I came out of religion into Christianity and I know the difference.

growth 13 FEBRUARY 2017

Simon Elliott

After three weeks remaining silent as a treatment for vocal nodules, my wife, Fiona, has begun talking again. All the same words, many of them spoken quite differently. I must have missed the ‘reintroduction to vocalisation’ tutorial but our daughter, Molly, was certainly there. Based on recent form, despite professing a desire to be a teacher, speech pathology may be her sweet spot. With each reformed phrase, she affirms Fi’s projection or pulls her up and models the way in which she should be vocalising those sounds. Much of this relearning comes from how she produces the fundamental, foundational vowel sounds. Reforming the language of a native tongue is a curious thing. To discover that you’ve spent a life speaking the right words in the wrong way is confronting. It’s not a switch that’s easily flicked. These words have been formed from a lifetime of impulse, osmosis and learned behaviours. To establish a new language is to return to the foundations and learn a new way altogether. Not the language of dysfunction, but a strenuously learned language of unforced rhythm. It’s hard. When you’ve spent a lifetime in one language, a new tongue is foreign – even when it’s producing the same words. This is the essence of soulcraft. Jesus adopts us into a new humanity – a spacious place where He reigns, where freedom reigns, where His Kingdom is ruled by love, where grace abounds, and where we live, move and have our being. But it’s slow work. We’ve limped around for years having built a kingdom of our construction. One that worked for us. We placed ourselves at the centre of this kingdom. We propped it up with the things that we said and did, and we finished it with all the luxuries that we deemed essential for happiness. For a while, it held together just fine. So long as the wind didn’t blow. When it did, we’d do a bunch more things. Maybe buy more stuff, escape to new places, work harder. Yet the cracks got larger, and there were more of them. Some tried religion – an extension to our little kingdom intended to bring a measure of peace and order to our land. But it was no use. In a kingdom where we rule and where we author new

rituals, rules and regulations, we’re always struck with the same ruler. When Jesus invites us into His family, He doesn’t intend occupying a space in our back shed; He wants the full run of the house. It’s how He does His best work in us, and it’s the relationship He always intended for us to have with Him. The work He undertakes in us is complete reformation. New foundations (in Christ) and a new building formed by the work of the Holy Spirit. Sometimes we are reluctant workers. As a much as our old building was a ramshackle hut, we knew the lay of the land. This new land is foreign. It’s because we’re learning our first nature in the wake and intermittent waves of our second nature. Our first nature is grace, yet it’s foreign currency to our second nature. We know it’s good – it smells good, tastes good, feels good, looks good and sounds good – but it’s still peculiar to us. It calls us to light and spacious places yet we twitch to resort to the familiarity of a straightjacket we once struggled to wear. Jesus makes a glorious invitation: “Give me the full run of the house”. Give me plenty of room to do my work in you. Let every detail of your life – words, actions, whatever – be done in the name of the Master, Jesus, thanking God the Father every step of the way. [Colossians 3:15-17] Fi mentioned that it’s one thing to read about what you’re meant to be doing with your voice, it’s another altogether to have it modelled for you. To have someone demonstrate what perfect vocal technique looks and sounds like. God doesn’t only point us to grace and say ‘there, a bit like that’, He incarnates grace. He knows what we most need is Himself, so He gives us Himself. Then He leaves His Holy Spirit to continue to point to Jesus and gift us to reflect and enjoy this grace for life and more life. The curious thing, just like Fi learning to articulate vowel sounds again, is that we find ourselves saying the same words yet altogether differently. Grace does that. It redefines, repositions, repurposes and realigns us. And it keeps on doing it as we continue towards grace incarnate. You don’t walk away from grace unchanged. Sure, you can walk away from grace, but to have a genuine encounter with the God of grace and leave that land is to wander away from paradise. Recently we visited the seemingly deserted Ancient Theatre of Taormina in

Photo: Simon Elliott

Something about learning the same language

northern Sicily. A spectacular amphitheatre built in 300BC with a capacity of 5400, the structure is acoustically superb. Like ones we visited in Greece some years back, though, these things need to be independently verified. While Fi hadn’t sung a note in a month, she took to the centre stage in the empty amphitheatre and sang, as I stood in the back row. As she finished, there was applause from people scattered over the archaeological site and cries for ‘more, more’. The song: Amazing Grace. Grace does that. Who doesn’t want more of it? Used with permission from Simon Elliott,

14 news FEBRUARY 2017

Experience paradise

98five Music Director Chela Williams

Editor: Managing Editor: Subeditor: Production: Creative: Advertising: Distribution: Editorial deadline:

Matt Chapman Andrew Sculthorpe Maclain Bruce Vanessa Klomp Peter Ion Sally Phu Sally Phu 5th of each month

peoples’ lives but we wanted to focus mainly on the positive things life can give you,” Branimir explained. “Love, life, environment and blessings were the backbone of our lyrical writing. We wanted to take people on a journey and feel inspired when listening to our songs.” Part of the journey is the exceptional creative chemistry within the team stemming from the duo’s relationship. “We definitely work well together and the synergy is good. Branimir would produce the music and come up with the concepts and then we would explore the vocals and melodies together,” Janelle said. “When we’re alone, we both have different types of skills so we kind of need each other to make it work.”

A different sound

For more information, visit

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PUBLISHERS GENERAL DISCLAIMER All the articles, comments, advice and other material contained in this publication are by way of general comment or advice only and are not intended, nor do they purport to be the correct advice on any particular matter of subject referred to. No reader or any other person who obtains this publication should act on the basis of any matter, comment or advice contained in this publication without first considering and if necessary taking appropriate professional advice upon the applicability of any matter, advice or comment herein to their own particular circumstances. Accordingly, no responsibility is accepted or taken by the authors, editors or publishers of this publication for any loss or damage suffered by any party acting in reliance on any matter, comment or advice contained herein. The Advocate is published on behalf of Baptist Churches Western Australia by imageseven. Tel: (08) 9221 9777 Email: imageseven bcw J2842

Supanova Project’s debut EP is available now through iTunes.

Photo: Craig Chiswell

Comprising of husband and wife team Branimir and Janelle Mikulic, the entirely WA recorded and produced album was fittingly released on Australia Day. “We wanted to release the EP Paradise around Australia Day as it is a significant period for us and it was written as an Australian summer album,” Branimir said. “The beauty about being independent is that you can write and produce when you want.” “There was no rush in the process and we wrote the tracks when we felt inspired and nothing felt forced. We really took a lot of pride on how we presented things.” Absorbing the Australian theme entirely, the video for lead single Take It Over was recorded in WA. “We shot a music video for this in Broome and infused ourselves in Australia’s beautiful landscapes,” Janelle said. “The song is about finding the energy and stamina to overcome adversity and conquer life’s storms. We were really proud of how the song’s sense of warmth and honesty was evoked through the music video.” Paradise reflects Australian summer vibes mixed with positive pop energy but the band confess the project was a reflective process. “There are a lot of undercurrents that go through

Photo: The Supanova Project

Home-grown electronic-pop duo The Supanova Project have been quietly perfecting their debut EP Paradise since 2013.

Cate Williams knew from the moment she sang her first song in worship that she had found her calling in life.

David Williams

Cate Williams has chosen Pursue as the title of her new EP. Pursue sums up this whole project for her. “Musically, I wanted to create a song that people could sing corporately for worship and that you could also hear on the radio,” Cate said. “I wanted to write something that had a different sound than most contemporary Christian music. I also wanted it to reflect the journey that I was on at the time. A journey where I was

desperately seeking the heart of God.” Cate and co-writer Daniel Klenner wanted the EP to take on a message of God’s love, with a combination of a cutting-edge sound and a reflection of someone’s personal spiritual journey. Pursue has recently been voted in by listeners in the Top

300 Aussie songs for 2016/2017 on Rhema FM Newcastle. Cate has written and performed on a number of worship albums, including her first full length solo album, Dance of Life. She has also collaborated on an album for Christ for the Nations in America and has sung on numerous other albums and at worship festivals.

intermission 15 FEBRUARY 2017


A minute with ...

In My Defense

Photo: Roderick Gillis

Leigh Ann Bryant A gripping read and brilliantly written by Leigh Ann Bryant, In My Defense not only tells her story but takes readers with her on the journey. From the depths of despair believing that no one cared about her, to the understanding that there is a God in heaven that loves all people and in such a way that mere words cannot begin to describe. So often those who have never experienced abuse cannot understand why ‘they don’t just leave’ but Leigh Ann opens the reader’s eyes and awareness to the depth of terror and isolation that these people live in. But the darkness she shares only makes the light of Jesus shine all the brighter, as it shows that noone is beyond the love, mercy and grace of God’s salvation and no matter what has been taken from a person, God is the mighty restorer.

Boundaries With Kids Henry Cloud and John Townsend The common thought in parenting is let them make their own choices and that we need to reason with children and treat them like little adults, but this is not what the Bible teaches. ‘Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it’ [Proverbs 22:6, ESV] and ‘Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to disciplines him.’ [Proverbs 13:24, ESV] Both these verses go against current popular belief but are Godly wisdom for parents in any time period. In Boundaries With Kids, Cloud and Townsend give practical, biblical teaching on how to raise children to best prepare them for adult life and to help them make Godly choices as they become independent of their parents. It will also release parents to fulfil the Godgiven role of parenting in such a way that they will not feel burdened by the role but privileged to take care of the children that God has entrusted into their care.

Mel Gillis – Carey Baptist Church Administrator and Personal Assistant to the Executive Director and Director of Business of the Carey Group What is your church known for in its community? Carey Baptist Church is commonly known for our missional platforms: Carey Baptist College, Timber Café and Jump Carey Early Development. These platforms help us build relationships with the people in our community and share the love of God with them. Tell us about the pieces of technology, apps and software that help you the most. I find the apps within the G Suite from Google Cloud such as Google Drive and Calendar to be helpful in my role. These apps help make sharing and storing documents and arranging meetings easy. How do you separate yourself effectively from work to rest? I have found two practises helpful in separating myself from work to rest. Firstly, I don’t take my work laptop home as an attempt to leave work at work. Secondly, I identify two activities each week that I really enjoy and intentionally carve out time on the weekend to find rest and enjoy them. What is one characteristic that you believe every leader should possess? I believe that every leader should be able to see something good in all situations, encourage their peers to be the best versions of themselves and enjoy laughing. What advice would you give someone going into a leadership position for the first time? I would advise anyone going into a leadership position to always ask questions. Knowledge will bring wisdom, clarity and empowerment to you and to others.

This voucher entitles you to 15% off your next purchase in store at Mount Lawley The Advocate – February 2017

Reviews by Koorong Mount Lawley Assistant Manager Dorothy Waddingham Website: Address: 434 Lord Street, Mount Lawley Phone: 08 9427 9777

watch Ben-Hur As a huge fan of the orginal movie of Ben-Hur I approached this version with mixed feelings. Would it live up to the original Charlton Heston film? However, I chose to watch it with an open mind and I am happy to say I was not disappointed. Though the basic storyline remains, there are enough differences to be able to watch this as its own movie, they have not tried to compete with the original. The story is one of betrayal, revenge and fogiveness, highlighted by the portrayal of Jesus during His ministry and crucifixion. So often the lie sold by the world is that wealth, competition and even emotions like revenge are what can fulfill a person or keep them going, but all of these are empty promises. Only the love brought by Jesus and knowing Him as Lord are what brings true fulfilment and real peace.

16 news FEBRUARY 2017

Photo: Christian Bertrand/Shutterstock

Coach living out his faith

Ramona Ötting

Well-known world-class soccer coach and Manager of Liverpool Football Club, Jürgen Klopp does not hide his faith in God whom he trusts and thanks “minute by minute”. “I would describe him as an energy giver. He brings a positive energy and he expects the same from everyone else,” Liverpool’s chief executive Ian Ayre described Jürgen Klopp in an interview with The Guardian. The former coach of German Bundesliga club Borussia Dortmund has received attention in Premier League circles, not only for his team’s successes (Liverpool currently ranks among the top clubs in the Premier League), but for the change of atmosphere that Klopp’s management style has brought to the English club. His professional career started in 1990 as a player for Mainz 05, a small club in Germany’s second class league, where he became coach in 2001. Klopp oversaw a successful period for the club as they were promoted up to the first class league (Bundesliga) in 2004. After becoming manager of Bundesliga club Borussia Dortmund, more success followed with the club twice winning Bundesliga and in-turn entered the Union of European Football Associations Champions League final. In 2015, he became manager at Liverpool.

These tangible successes however are not what make people such as Ian Ayre rave about Klopp. It is his character and open nature that make him unique. A common thread that emerges about Klopp is that his management style is driven by passion, honesty and a focus on the team instead of individual talent. His determination to build up a team as a collective was attributed to the success he had with Mainz 05, a club which could not afford to buy expensive individual players in the same fashion as other soccer clubs. As Klopp shares openly when asked by the media, he regards God as his “faithful companion” who helps him push through tough times, but Klopp is not known to give long speeches about his faith. He has shared that the way he acts and treats people says more than he could ever put into words. Klopp believes he has enough reasons to thank God every minute of every day and tries to make a habit of praying together with his wife every night. At Liverpool, Klopp holds the players, their families and the fan community as a whole in high

regard. He invited the players‘ families to a training camp on the Canary Island Tenerife and strives to draw fans and players closer together. “We have had differences of opinion but you always feel you can have an honest conversation with Jürgen and it wouldn’t change the relationship in any way. He’s straightforward, honest and a pleasure to work with. That’s how it should be when you are all striving for the same thing, success for the football club on and off the pitch,” Ayre concluded.

Photo: Jaggat Rashidi/Shutterstock

Jürgen Klopp at the Europa League semifinal match between Villarreal CF and Liverpool Football Club in April 2016.

Jürgen Klopp has contributed to the loyal following of Liverpool Football Club.

Pastor Pingelly Baptist Church  House Provided  Great Lifestyle  Only 2 hours from Perth CBD

Pingelly Baptist Church is made up of a congregation ranging from young families to grandparents and is based around a farming community. We are located south east of Perth with the Perth CBD being only 2 hours away. The primary duties and responsibilities of our role are:  To create an environment where the Spirit of God can flourish so that people will come to know Jesus as their Saviour and existing Christians will grow and mature in their relationship with God  To develop the gifts within each member of the congregation  To encourage each person to use their gifts for the benefit of all  To build relationships with local community leaders  To provide spiritual leadership and support to the local community Our pastor needs to be someone who:

 Walks closely with God and is sensitive to the leading of His Spirit  Loves people and is able to fit in and be part of a farming community  Sees themself as not only the team leader but very much part of a team  Is a really good communicator  Has a proven track record as a pastor

If you believe that God is calling you to fulfil this pastoral position then please email your application and CV to the Pastoral Selection Committee (Noreen Lange) at If you require additional information, please call Noreen on 0427 871 135.

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The Advocate February 2017  

The Advocate February 2017

The Advocate February 2017  

The Advocate February 2017

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