Feature “Never forget the trauma involved in saying goodbye, and the way it impacts every area of a person’s life, including their spirituality.” JENNI ASHTON PAGE 8>>
“How do you become a successful failure?” JOHN MAXWELL PAGE 13>>
4 Marriage debated Prime Minister challenged on meaning of marriage >>
7 Riverton celebrate 14 young people baptised at Riverton Baptist Community Church >>
The new $2 billion Fiona Stanley Hospital has recently opened its contemplation room.
Faith in hospital Western Australia’s brand new state-of-the-art health care facility, Fiona Stanley Hospital, has unveiled its contemplation room and its key finishing touch, a new cross that adorns the alter of this important hospital facility. The Hospital’s Pastoral Care Coordinator Sheldrin D’Rozario commissioned Pastor Alastair Bain and the Canning Community Men’s Shed to craft the cross for the altar in the contemplation room after receiving a recommendation from someone in his church network. “I was searching for a suitable cross, but the only ones I could find looked commercial and not suitable for a hospital,” Sheldrin said. “I put the feelers out and someone suggested I talk to Alastair.” Made of Swan River Blackbutt, the cross is a beautifully made piece that
is also quintessentially West Australian. Traditionally known as a chapel, the purpose of the contemplation room is to be a dedicated space available as a place of prayer and meditation for people of all faiths. The contemplation room has daily services that are streamed into every patient’s room in the hospital and is used by many people during the day. “At the moment we conduct services from Monday to Thursday … I also hope that in the future we’ll be able to provide denominationspecific services,” Sheldrin said.
He is already in discussion with the heads of the 12 biggest denominational churches in WA. “Their support is really crucial,” he said. Sheldrin, with the help of his small team, facilitates the range of pastoral care services that are available to everyone that visits, stays in, and works at the hospital. Through his work, Sheldrin wants to help to establish an integrated culture of pastoral care throughout the new health campus. “What I’m hoping to do is to establish firm links within the community to provide resources on the ground,” Sheldrin said. “I’m particularly interested in music ministry.” He is also working hard at establishing links with other religious communities that could assist in providing necessary pastoral care services in the hospital. “For other religions – Hindu, Buddhism, Islam – hospitals have not traditionally been part of religious practices,” Sheldrin said.
11 Boxer helps mission
“Particularly in death – there are specific needs that cannot be met by the chaplaincy team here (already), we have to call on resources outside.”
Champion boxer hosts Kalgoorlie mission team in Vanuatu >>
For more information about pastoral care services available at Fiona Stanley Hospital, or resources required by the team, email sheldrin.d’rozario@health. wa.gov.au
We are stronger when we work together.
BAPTIST CHURCHES WESTERN AUSTRALIA Photo: Matt Chapman
Canning Community Men’s Shed have created a lasting impression at Fiona Stanley Hospital.
my view AUGUST 2015
The problem with change I’ve been pastoring the same church for around 20 years. I don’t know if that entitles me to a certificate or certification.
Mark Edwards Mark Edwards is the Senior Pastor at Inglewood Community Church.
Either way there is not much that looks or feels the same about our church from when my wife and I started there all those years ago. Change has been a constant in our church life. As we finally approach moving into our newly refurbished facility, perhaps the biggest change is ahead of us. Albert Einstein suggested that insanity was doing the same thing the same way and expecting different results. Experience and pain has taught us that excellence and growth is not found within the box drawn
in the past. Sometimes it’s easy to see how other people need to change or begin to believe ‘If only my church would ...’ then we will see change take place. Denial can feel like our only option when we are presented with information that suggests deep personal change is needed within our own soul. This may be the change our church, family or work situation needs. Pain may result from peering deep within ourselves and allowing the Holy Spirit to reveal what needs to change in us.
If we desire growth in every area of our life we may need to confront that which the Holy Spirit seeks to change in us. Facing the possibility that it is us that needs to change may be painful. So often we can fall into the trap of seeing our circumstances needing to change, the co-worker needing to change, even subconsciously thinking God needs to change. When in fact the change that needs to occur first is that which the Holy Spirit illuminates in us.
If we desire growth in every area of our life we may need to confront that which the Holy Spirit seeks to change in us.
On active peace … I was speaking at a camp a few weeks back. The theme assigned to me was ‘active peace’. Isn’t that a bit of a contradiction? After all, don’t you think of peace as the absence of activity? It’s a horizontal hour after a large lunch – the rare bliss of an afternoon nap.
Dr Brian Harris Dr Brian Harris is the Principal of Vose Seminary and Pastor at Large for the Carey Group.
Or is it? Is peace really a few snatched moments of escape, a little retreat from reality before we dive back into the frenzy of ‘unpeace’? For the Hebrew scholars among our readers (both of you), your thinking probably darts to shalom – that lovely Jewish concept of peace, which is about life made whole. Plenty of activity in that whole life.
In the shalom realm there is time for family and neighbours, vineyards and sheep, joking and laughter, prayer and praise. Add Jesus to the mix, and there is even a spot for the enemy, suddenly made friend. Suddenly – well, perhaps not. Befriending enemies takes a bit of time. First, you have to care enough to have made some foes. In our ‘whatever’ world, we can’t assume we will have
any. Indifference is the new norm. It is every bit as cruel, and ever so lonely. It traps us in a world where nothing really matters. Life quickly becomes a despairing ‘whatever’, ‘whatever’, ‘whatever’. You do your thing, I’ll do mine – our world’s need never meet – our destiny, uninterrupted loneliness. I saw it on a plane last week. Safely landed, we were told we could switch our phones on. With
one accord, we all obeyed. Three hundred passengers and not a word to say to each other as we frantically checked to see who had texted whilst we flew across the continent. Urgent replies were returned as we departed in silence. We had arrived as strangers, and left the same. Active peace – it’s about breaking through the bonds of indifference, and reaching into someone else’s world. Sounds like Christmas. Now who would do that?
How do you choose? I work in the community services sector and at a Leadership Team meeting last week, someone asked “How do we choose? We have limited resources, huge demands, and we are constantly needing to make tough decisions. How do we choose?”
Sue Ash AO Sue Ash AO is a member of Riverton Community Baptist Church and will be speaking at the Fresh Conference in September.
Many of us face the same challenge in making choices whether at work, in our families or even our churches. Over the years I have had to make some tough decisions as I faced choices about career, bringing up my children or just wanting to make sure that my efforts make a difference. As a follower of Jesus, I try always to go back to Jesus. What I can learn from His character, His motivations, His way of thinking, His wisdom?
Jesus knew even His contribution on earth was for a limited time. This meant that He was strategic in His relationships and the way He went about His tasks. He prepared well, He listened to His Father and His teachers, He spent time considering the people He was mixing with but once He was working, He was intentional and balanced in His approach to His task. And always, He was preparing those
who would come after Him to continue His work. Jesus didn’t try to do everything. Jesus always worked as part of a team. No task was too little to not be valued by Jesus – find a room, prepare a donkey, come with me and watch and learn, prepare food, anoint my feet. I’m sure everyone who connected with Jesus came away knowing that they had been part of His work.
Jesus kept a focus on His purpose. Jesus’ purpose was earthly changing and Kingdom forming. But His choice of activities was always strategic: the widow’s mite, the statement about the importance of children, the role of women, and the importance of Jew and Gentile. In the world of leadership and tough choices, Jesus’ example is a powerful guide in how I make these choices.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org by the 10th of each month.
Churches step out in faith Tahlia Storms
The final service of Coolbellup Charismatic Baptist Church was held on 28 June, with its eight faithful members in attendance. Mount Pleasant Baptist Church (MPBC) Senior Pastor Nick Scott and Chairman John So joined the service, with Nick given the honour of preaching the final message.
We know it’s the Lord, and we have a right sense of enthusiasm and anticipation. Mark Wilson and Philip Bryant from Baptist Churches Western Australia approached Nick in late 2014, asking if MPBC would consider coming alongside a struggling church
and establish a new presence that would be effective in reaching out to the local area. After six months of seeking the Lord for His wisdom, MPBC decided to accept. “We know it’s the Lord, and we have a right sense of enthusiasm and anticipation. It’s not something we thought up that we’re going to do, it’s all about what God is going to do in that area,” Nick said. “We wanted to honour the Coolbellup member’s faithfulness, and include them into the new church. In order for there to be a resurrection, there needs to be a death.” “What’s been here has come to an end, and we are starting something new.” It was announced at the final service that Peter Christofides would be the pastor for Coolbellup. “When Nick approached me, we both agreed if God was not in it, we didn’t want to be part of it,” Peter said.
Photo: Peter Christofides
Mount Pleasant Baptist Church will launch a new campus in August after Coolbellup Charismatic Baptist Church closed its doors in June.
Coolbellup Charismatic Baptist Church and Mount Pleasant Baptist Church members gather in prayer to seek God’s guidance for their churches.
“After praying and fasting, it was unbelievable how God opened the doors.” “I asked God to reveal an answer, and the more we met, the more we felt yes.” The church plant will follow a campus model where the Coolbellup church
Photo: Susan Clow
A century of service celebrated
will be part of MPBC in an ongoing way. “Peter comes into the role as a pastor at Mount Pleasant with responsibility for oversight of the work in Coolbellup,” Nick said. “We’re not just sending a small group down there; the whole church is part of it. Young adults might meet down there, or playgroup, or courses.” “One of the hard things of a typical church plant is that the infrastructure needed to do finance, administration, human resources, websites and graphic design are hard to start up from scratch.” “But we have all of that and can share that; Peter won’t have to think about any of that. He can focus on pastorally caring for the community.” Peter shared that his main goal was to be a very present
light in the community of Coolbellup. Alistair Baine has been working on fixing up the building, while prayer teams have been meeting to pray for the campus church. The church will reopen on Sunday 23 August with the inaugural service commencing at 9am. Nick and Peter both commented that they feel some fear about the change, but they also have an immense sense of God’s peace that this is the time to step out in faith. “It’s all a bit tough at the moment, the budget is a bit tight, there’s some staff leaving, so this is ideal circumstances to step out in faith”, one MPBC member commented. “A little bit of fear, but let’s go forward anyway” was Nick’s final comment.
POSITION VACANT - Senior Pastor Gladstone Baptist Church, QLD
Three generations celebrate Don Clow’s milestone birthday: from left, Paul (Son), Don and David (Grandson).
Terry Hicks A major milestone was celebrated in June as family and friends sent cards and visited Don Clow to mark his 100th birthday.
Don is now the third oldest resident at Gracewood in Salter Point, a Baptistcare aged care community. Don served at Maylands Baptist Church as secretary for many years, was a member of the WA Baptist Hospital and Homes Trust (Baptistcare) and helped in the Vose Seminary Library for many years.
Don’s son Paul and wife, Susan, attend Albany Baptist Church. Two of his grandchildren were unable to be at the celebration as they were overseas at the time. Don continues to enjoy reading and keeping up with what is happening in Baptist churches. We wish Don God’s richest blessings.
Gladstone Baptist Church is seeking a Senior Pastor to facilitate, direct and develop the ministries of the church. The successful applicant will lead a ministry team including an Associate Pastor, Pastoral Assistants, office staff and a team of ministry volunteers. GBC is a vibrant, growing and contemporary congregation of 400+ people. Our vision is to “Be the family of God and Bring Others into the Family of God” in our local community, nation and world through the ministries we operate or support. Trinity College is a growing and thriving Christian school and is a major ministry of the church. Trinity College provides a quality education for kindergarten to Year 12 students and presently has 330 students. Gladstone is a major Central Queensland export hub creating unique opportunities to witness and share the power of God to a wide variety of people. If you: ● are a proven leader, able to motivate and develop teams to meet the vision and mission of a large regional church ● are eligible for pastoral registration by Qld Baptists believe God is calling you to this ministry opportunity Please contact the Pastoral Search Team, Louise or Karen on phone (07) 4979 2260 or email email@example.com for an information pack.
news AUGUST 2015
Meaning of marriage debated
Australian Baptist Ministries joined 37 other religious leaders, representing major religious traditions and a broad diversity of faiths and cultures, to provide a formal response on the attempts in Federal Parliament to redefine the meaning of marriage. As a result a public letter was delivered to the Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, which stated “As leaders of Australia’s major religions we write to express the grave concerns that we, and those who share our various faiths, share regarding Bills that have or will be introduced into the Federal Parliament to change the definition of marriage in Australian law.” “The definition of marriage enshrined in the
Commonwealth Marriage Act 1961 – ‘the union of a man and a woman, to the exclusion of all others, voluntarily entered into for life’ – reflects a truth deeply embedded across diverse communities, faiths and cultures.” The Anglican and Catholic Archbishops of Sydney, Christian pastors representing major Protestant denominations including Baptist, a Lutheran Church bishop, bishops from various Eastern and Orthodox Churches, senior rabbis from the Jewish community and leaders from both the Sunni and Shia Islamic communities were among the 38 signatories in the letter. While suffering and injustice faced by people with same-sex attraction was to be ‘deplored’,
Photo: Drop of Light / Shutterstock.com
The Church is facing many challenges and one of the current issues surrounds the Definition of Marriage in the Commonwealth Marriage Act.
Religious leaders urge the Prime Minister to uphold the true meaning of marriage.
“this does not require the further deconstruction of marriage as traditionally understood”, the leaders said. The religious leaders pointed out that Australia’s definition of marriage as a union of a man and a woman is shared by the vast majority of nations and cultures, who represent over 91 percent of the global population. They emphasised the need to uphold traditional marriage for
the good of children: “as a couple, two persons of the same sex are not able to provide a child with the experience of both mothering and fathering. Only the institution of marriage between a man and a woman has this inherent capacity to provide children with both of these relationships that are so foundational to our human identity and development.” The statement pointed out that redefining marriage would have
consequences for everyone: “In overseas jurisdictions where the definition of marriage has been changed, the public manifestation of this belief has resulted in vilification and legal punishment of individuals and institutions. This violates not only freedom of religion, but also the rights of conscience, belief and association, and the right of parents to educate their children according to their own beliefs.”
Powerlines cause delays at Vose Seminary Jacqueline Outred
Construction of the Vose Seminary building has been delayed due to the complexity of the main overhead powerlines currently crossing through the building zone. Finding a solution has drawn on the expertise of design and engineering specialists, as well as service providers.
As a result, major maintenance issues have been identified, particularly for the main distribution board and sub-boards, and upgrades will be required before construction work can continue. Project Manager Ross Daniels said that the delays are due to the design of the new Western Power connection, and the design and fabrication of the new switch boards, taking longer than anticipated. “We are pleased to now have a date for the power change over in late-September,” Ross said. “At this stage the builder’s fencing will go up and site works
will commence when the overhead lines are removed.” Earthmoving equipment is currently on-site in the safe zone, away from the powerlines, preparing for the installation of the new power cables. IT for the new buildings and some upgrades of the current infrastructure are currently being designed and costed to ensure the Seminary will have effective wireless and computing facilities. People can still make tax deductible donations to the Vose Building Fund through Baptist Churches Western Australia. All funds will go towards construction of the new building.
Heavy construction work begins at Vose Seminary.
Photo: Marcus Passauer
digital church 06/07/15
twitter.com/stevendilla ‘Something of God … flows into us from the blue of the sky, the taste of honey, the delicious embrace of water whether cold or hot, and even from sleep itself.’ CS Lewis
twitter.com/EugeneCho Be especially faithful in the small and ordinary things. We may not get noticed but so what. God notices and delights in us. That’s enough.
twitter.com/ToddAdkins When life is tough, pray. When life is great, pray.
twitter.com/NilsSmith ‘Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.’ [Romans 12:9]
rickwarren.org/devotional God’s good news is that He loves you on your good days as much as He loves you on your bad days. He loves you when you can feel His love, and He loves you when you can’t seem to feel His love. He loves you regardless of whether or not you think you deserve His love. There is nothing you can do that will make God stop loving you.
Kyle Idleman twitter.com/KyleIdleman Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. [Ephesians 4:32]
Jasmine Holmes desiringgod.org … friends are the people who fully know me and love me when I’m unlovely and difficult. Friends are like family because my friends are my family – we are members of one another.
Donald Miller twitter.com/donaldmiller Thank God for failures. Without them, we’d never change. Ignore the lessons and you’ll repeat the third grade over and over.
Kevin DeYoung thegospelcoalition.org ‘Guide me, O thou great Jehovah, pilgrim through this barren land; I am weak, but Thou art mighty, hold me with Thy pow’rful hand. Bread of heaven, Bread of heaven, feed me till I want no more; feed me till I want no more.’ William Williams
Compiled by Breege McKiernan
What to do with refugees?
A Just Cause was launched in 2014 to provide education, advocacy, and service in four areas: refugees and asylum seekers; environment; disadvantage; and indigenous wellbeing. Joondalup and Mount Pleasant Baptist Churches were among the congregations Scott visited. He also attended an event for a group of Perth pastors and church planters at the Baptist Ministry Centre. Scott explained the reasons for the 16 million refugees in the world today. Many fled persecution in their home country and cannot return. More than eight in ten refugees are hosted by non-industrialised countries. Many of these are unable to provide basic services due to the sheer numbers of refuges they host. Refugees live with hardship, uncertainty about their future, and heightened danger. “We can see three solutions for refugees: Return home – and that is what the majority
of refugees want to do but it is not safe for them to do this,” Scott said. “A second option is for refugees to integrate but many of the host countries have too many refugees to do this while other countries are unwilling to share the load.” Currently there are 2.8 million refugees in Jordan, 1.6 million in Pakistan and Lebanon, more than half a million in Syria, Ethiopia and Kenya and more than 800,000 in Turkey. In any year less than 1 percent of the world’s refugees will be offered a place to resettle. According to Scott countries with small refugee flows and decent standards of living can agree to substantially increase the number of refugees they resettle. A key issue is the gulf between the need for solutions and the provision of solutions. “As long as this (gulf) exists refugees will spend decades in uncertain and dangerous
Photo: Jill Birt
Scott Higgins, founder and Director of the Australian Baptist ministry, A Just Cause, conducted information events and training seminars at Perth churches during July.
Lloyd Porter and Teresa Lee discuss Scott Higgins’ (centre) seminar during his recent visit to Perth.
situations and a number will make the dangerous journey to places they hope to find safety.” “Countries that turn away asylum seekers do not solve the problem, they simply push asylum seekers to make dangerous journeys somewhere else,” Scott said. A Just Cause has outlined a way forward for a reasonable
Christianity in the workplace
and compassionate engagement with refugees. “In the short-term Australia can lift our intake to 32,000 people each year,” Scott said. “If Australia would share the processing of asylum seekers with Indonesia and each country settle half those found to be refugees that would be a start.”
In the medium term nations can treat asylum seekers with decency and share responsibility for integrating or resettling those found to be refugees. In the longterm Australia can lobby the international community for a resolution of the gap between demand for protection and its supply.
Homeless left dry
Photo: Dani Bentley
Ben Donaldson sees God’s hand in his work life.
Jacqueline Outred Ben Donaldson’s main business focus is Information Technology. But, like most entrepreneurs, he says that his interests are broad and he’s involved in many different industries in some capacity. “Being an entrepreneur is something that is in your DNA – for me that was certainly the case. You tend to look at life and risk differently when you have the mind of an entrepreneur,” Ben said.
With a father who was also a businessman, Ben said it felt like a natural progression to venture into business himself. But while he has enjoyed great success, Ben says it can be a double-edged sword.
“Being in business has huge rewards, but it also comes at a great personal and health cost,” he said. “Without God being the centre of your life and purpose, and without constantly seeking His will for your life and business, it’s easy to get lost in a world driven by money, success and greed.” “I believe that being an entrepreneur is a gift and ministry in itself. God has given me gifts and opportunities in business that are to be used for Him and His glory,” Ben said. He wants to encourage others to see business opportunities the same way. “It is a particular passion of mine to see Christian businesspeople enable ministries, and to invest into the Kingdom, with what we have been blessed with,” Ben said. Ben welcomes anyone who wants to discuss or share that passion to reach out to him via email at ben.donaldson@ psqgroup.com.au
In less than two days in early July, more than 14,000 people signed a petition calling for Western Australia’s Department of Culture and the Arts to remove a water sprinkling system installed to drive those sleeping rough away from Perth’s King Street Arts Centre. The petition was begun by the Christian based not-for-profit organisation Common Grace. In part the petition read: ‘Those the water hoses target are some of the most vulnerable people in Australia. People fleeing domestic violence, sufferers of mental illness or sexual abuse, and war veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder are just some of the people sleeping rough in Perth tonight. This callous water soaking system is an attack on the dignity of those already struggling in our community.’ Channel 9 News interviewed Salvation Army Lieutenant Kris Halliday about the situation. “Instead of moving the homeless on, we need to be
moving them in, to homes,” Kris said. Common Grace National Director Jarrod McKenna was asked by Nine News about housing the homeless. “In just two years our little family and friends at First Home Project have supported families moving from homelessness to having developing a rental history with us, to renting their own place, to now owning their own home,” Jarrod said. “Imagine what could happen if instead of ‘moving people on’ we invested serious resources in ‘moving people in’ to a home,” he said. The water system was removed less than two weeks after it was installed.
news AUGUST 2015
Vose goes the distance At a recent meeting of the board of directors of the Australian College of Theology, it was agreed to authorise Perth’s Vose Seminary to offer its degrees in theology in any of face-to-face, blended or distance modes. Up until now the Seminary has only had permission to offer degrees to students who attend lectures at the Bentley campus. When asked about the decision, Vose Seminary Principal Dr Brian Harris said, “This is a really positive development. The educational landscape is changing rapidly, and increasingly students are looking for flexibility in their study options.” “Distance learning is not what it used to be. In the past, it was the mode of last resort, when you really couldn’t study any other way. But
technology has transformed this. Skype links, chat rooms, electronic download of library material, and video links make it possible for distance students to have a rich learning experience.” “I am especially delighted for what this decision will mean for those who live in the country. Study at Vose is now a real option for them,” Dr Harris said. Advocates of distance learning note that it is often a preferred mode for more introverted students. While extroverted students do well in the classroom, enjoying participating in lively classroom debates, quieter students sometimes prefer more time to think about their contribution to a discussion. Having a chat room where comments can be posted at leisure often sees all students participate more fully. Distance units at Vose will be available from the start of the 2016 academic year. For more information, visit www.vose.edu.au
To find your local Baptist church visit www.baptistwa.asn.au Get life-changing help to deal with conflict in 2015
Three PeaceWise courses will run consecutively from Monday 24 to Friday 28 August this year at Woodvale Baptist Church. A one day course on Personal Peacemaking, and two day courses on Conflict Coaching and Mediation.
For more information, visit www.mychurchapp.com.au
Go to www.peacewise.org.au for more information or to register online or call us on 1300 173 223
Pastor Pingelly Baptist Church House Provided
Find a church, read The Advocate, check event calendars and more by downloading the free My Church App.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org. If you require additional information, please call Noreen on 0427 871 135.
Power of prayer
Baptists are encouraged to join together in prayer on 22 August at Morley Baptist Church, 33 Hanwell Way, Bassendean, from 10am to noon.
John Randell has taken up the role of interim Senior Pastor at Albany Baptist Church for up to six months. He commenced the role 19 July 2015. Chris Boland is interim pastor at Broome Baptist Church for the next few months, while the church is searching for a new pastor. Steve Ingram is interim pastor at Ellenbrook while Aashish Palmer is on long service leave.
New pastor for Geraldton Craig Palmer and his family are relocating to Geraldton, with Craig having accepted the position of Pastor. He is being inducted to the role in August. Craig leaves the role as Youth Pastor at Riverton Baptist Community Church and as Youth and Young Adults Consultant with Baptist Churches Western Australia.
Riverton celebrates 14 baptisms
The night was organised after a large amount of Riverton youth decided that they wanted to be baptised at the Combined Baptist Youth event, which was hosted by Riverton Baptist Community Church on 5 June. “We decided that rather than getting the youth to come to the church on a Sunday morning, the church would come to them”, Senior Pastor Mike Bullard said. Over 200 family members, friends, and church members attended the night to witness the 14 young people be baptised. Riverton has not seen such a large amount of baptisms in one service for many years. “There was a buzz about the night, it was extremely positive. As soon as each person was baptised, there was a clapping and cheering,” Mike said. After all of the baptisms, anyone who wanted to was invited to come and pray for those who had been baptised.
Those who were baptised came from a range of backgrounds. Some were youth leaders, some came from Christian families, while others had committed their lives to Christ for the first time. “Baptism does raise an issue for others who haven’t been baptised, and causes them to ask the question ‘what’s going on there?’,” Mike said. “It helps the church centre on baptism as a significant moment.” “The act itself is dramatic, as it’s a symbolic burial. Those who get baptised want new life, and it’s constantly reminding the church what they have also done.” “It’s also one of the things that unifies the churches together.” “A leader from Mount Pleasant Baptist Church came to baptise one of the girls whose family goes to Riverton. It doesn’t matter where you come from, we can all come together through baptism,” Mike said.
The Kingdom built
God’s Kingdom is here and is yet to come. This was the theme of The Kingdom camp that was held at the Nanga Bush Camp by Mount Pleasant Baptist Church’s Amp Youth Group. With 127 youth from school years 7 to 12, and 50 young adult volunteers, the camp site was buzzing from 4 to 8 July. Amp Youth runs two camps a year, but this was the biggest one they have hosted yet. The camp was led by new Youth Pastor, Michael Yoo. “We had a lot of young ones who actually felt God move in them and open them up to a relationship with Him, and others have a renewed passion,” Michael said. “During praise and worship, God spoke to one girl and gave her a sign that He loved her.” “Another group of boys who went into camp seemingly distant from Christianity wanted to take their relationship with God to a new level.” “One youth shared that he wanted to change his part in a broken relationship with his family.” Michael also ran an optional daily devotional at 7am each day,
and surprisingly many teenagers woke up to attend. The devotions taught practical tools of how to spend time with God and how to identify with God’s Word in a personal way. “I received feedback that those who attended are continuing with their devotions post-camp. They need their own relationship with God,” Michael said. The messages and the activities of the camp all centred on the theme of The Kingdom. The messages spoke of The Cost, The Culture, The Hope, The Reward and The Celebration of God’s Kingdom. The camp ended with a baptism and testimony that spoke powerfully to the rest of the youth. Others responded by also being interested in getting baptised. On a final note Yoo said “now our challenge is learning how we keep them focused on building their relationship with God. This is what the Kingdom is all about; it doesn’t finish here”.
Photo: Craig Palmer
Riverton Baptist Community Church held a baptism service on Friday 26 June to celebrate 14 young people who had committed their lives to following Jesus.
Over 200 people celebrated the baptism of 14 young people at Riverton Baptist Community Church.
feature AUGUST 2015
Pastoral care for fam in palliative care ‘My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.’ [Matthew 26:38]
I recently received a text from a friend, saying her auntie has only days to live. The family have been called, and the painful process of saying goodbye for the last time has begun. It is not the peaceful, sanitised picture portrayed in the movies though: Mary is in a lot of pain and has now gone blind, unable to see the husband she has loved for so long and the children she has nurtured to adulthood. As her family hold vigil at her bedside, the reality of her impending death is both confronting and strangely surreal. I am reminded that the most important truth for those who provide pastoral care to those supporting the dying, is to understand the unfathomable depth and breadth of love that is lived between people. When we know and understand what this love means, we know how to respect and honour it with great reverence and integrity. Those who work in palliative care, often refer to this loving in terms of the privilege of caring, but to minister out of divine respect, rather than privilege, actually calls us to be completely focussed on the other person, not ourselves. This frees us up to not only honour the person God has created and loved into being, but honour the life they have shared with those they loved, and honour the uniqueness of their final journey. In my early days of chaplaincy, I visited Sandra at her mother’s beside. In my naivety, I tried to convince her to go home and subsequently learnt some valuable lessons about providing patient centred pastoral care. I drew my chair up beside Sandra, made some polite small talk and suggested that she might like to go home for some rest while I sat with her mother. She looked at me horrified and reminded me in no uncertain terms, that in a few weeks she would have all the time in the world to sleep, eat, shower and
‘look after herself’, but she would not in fact have her mother! All she wanted was for people like me to let her love her Mum the way she wanted. I tried to find my voice and promised that I would respect her wishes. I didn’t feel it was appropriate to leave this now distraught women on her own, so I took a deep breath and suggested I make her a hot cup of tea and find some sandwiches. She snapped that she would prefer fruit and coffee, so I sheepishly left with my professional pastoral persona askew and found what I needed. But I had not finished offering help. While she ate, I went and found a bowl and hand towel, thinking that it might be nice to give her a hand wash, as she sat at the bedside. She took one look at me and my bowl, shook her head in that ‘you have got be joking’ kind of way and stood up. “For God’s sake, you sit with Mum while I have a shower here.” By now I was running out of ideas to help, so when she came out of the shower, I moved my chair aside and headed for the door. “You don’t have to leave,” she said, before she gradually and quietly began to tell of her love for her Mum. Sometimes when we care pastorally for others in the context of palliative care, we need to be able to hold whatever emotions and words are
expressed outwardly, in order to find what is really happening inwardly. Our role as pastoral carers is to be internally brave, and comfortable enough in our own life story to hold strong emotions in such a way as to offer them to be explored if requested, but equally, to carry them for a time if they are too heavy or painful. Our role is to respectfully earn our place at the bedside, and never assume that just because a person is vulnerable and sad, and we are competent and willing, that we can enter into their experience uninvited. Divine respect requires us to be alert to the difference between pastoral privilege and arrogance. In a church or community environment, when we care for families in a palliative setting, it can feel respectful to ask a person what it is they need pastorally, but it can be far more effective to offer some concrete suggestions they can choose from. Grieving people are often in the midst of so much upheaval, stress, and chaos, that they actually have no idea what it is that would be helpful to them. When we say “Let me know if there’s anything you need?”, we are effectively saying to a person who is probably having trouble remembering if they put matching shoes on, “You have a think about yourself in the midst of all this emotion and uncertainty, work out what
would help you feel better able to cope, think about whether there is something I can do, then find a way to contact me and ask me for what you want.” How many of us at the best of times know what we need, let alone at the worst of times? Perhaps the conversation is better phrased as “I am not working Friday morning so can I come and run my vacuum cleaner over your floors?” or “How about I pick up your kids from school on Tuesday and Thursday this week and drop them home to you at 6pm, fed and bathed?” When I have most needed support, the easier people made it for me, the more likely I was to accept their offer of help. Never forget the trauma involved in saying goodbye, and the way it impacts every area of a person’s life, including their spirituality. In the midst of sadness and trauma people are often drawn to more frequent praying, but it can also be the case that exhaustion and fatigue, make even the briefest prayers a challenge. Offering to pray on someone else’s behalf or for someone in particular is a very supportive gesture. It is easy to say to someone, “I’ll pray for you”, but imagine how it would feel for a person battling to pray at all to hear you say, “I’m going to pray that your mum knows how deeply your dad loves her, what would you like me to pray for you?”
feature AUGUST 2015
Pat was a strong robust country woman who was watching her equally strong robust husband slowly die. In an ironic twist, the pacemaker that had given her husband Jim so much life and vitality was still working perfectly, despite the rest of his diseased and aged body shutting down. Jim was ready to die. And despite the sadness and grief, Pat was ready for Jim to die too. Now they had to wait. When I entered the room this day, Pat quietly implored, tears streaming down her face, “How many more? How many more prayers do I need to pray before God answers and takes him home? Why isn’t he listening?”
In my most pastorally caring voice I said nothing. I shrugged my shoulders, pulled my chair closer and allowed my hand to be taken by hers. In the face of this love, I was lost. I wanted to tell her that God was not deliberately making this harder for her and that she and Jim were in safe loving arms. I wanted her to know that Jesus too, had felt isolated from God on occasion. I wanted her to feel that Jim’s life and his commitment to her and her family had meaning and value, and that one day she would see this time so very differently. I never answered Pat’s questions because we both knew she wasn’t asking them to hear a reply.
Sometimes, there are no words for situations we know are beyond us. Our only pastoral response is silence and reverence. Words often make carers feel good, but they seldom make anyone else feel good. If in doubt, far better to tell someone you have no words to offer. When people are caring for dying relatives they can be extremely fragile, vulnerable and indeed scared. They can respond in ways that are out of character or unusual. People can be highly anxious, often desperately awaiting forgiveness or reconciliation. People can be relieved that a loved one’s suffering is soon to end, but feel guilty because this means they will die. People
can feel isolated and even abandoned by beliefs that have often held solace. Providing pastoral care to families in these circumstances, regardless of whether it is in a hospital, a hospice, at home or an aged care facility, requires us to be open hearted and emotionally stable. Sometimes it means being creative, adaptive and trusting in God’s ability to use us to do what needs to be done. It demands honesty and integrity as we enter places of uncertainty and risk being out of our depth. It requires us to look beyond the obvious and see the inherent truth or beauty of what is before us. In providing pastoral care to those saying goodbye to loved
ones, we need to be people of faith, who can honour the love of others in a way that conveys acceptance and grace, while offering hope, healing and dignity. And if we are gentle, thoughtful and divinely respectful with our pastoral care, we will have the opportunity to see the unfathomable depth and breadth of love that is lived between people, and know with certainty that these three things do remain – faith, hope and love, but the greatest of these is love. * Names have been changed to protect privacy. Jenni Ashton is the Manager Pastoral Services, St John of God Murdoch Hospital.
10 news AUGUST 2015
Vose Seminary student Sally Pim’s life has been transformed and she wants to be part of helping other people have their lives transformed also. During her teenage years Sally suffered with severe anxiety that truncated life and learning. Meeting Jesus in 2007 changed Sally – for now and for eternity. Sally, 26, has been accepted as a worker with Global Interaction and expects to join the team in Mozambique by mid-2017. She is currently completing a degree course at Vose Seminary and has returned to Perth after completing some further training with Global Interaction in Melbourne. “I want to be someone who shares the freedom Christ has given me with others, here in Australia and in Africa,” Sally said. “I’ve got a deep desire to see others know the same freedom that Christ can bring.” During a short-term Global Exposure visit to Mozambique and Malawi with a team from Riverton Baptist Church in 2012, Sally saw firsthand how many of the Yao people the Global Interaction teams work with in both countries struggle with fear and a lack of peace in their lives. “I was really surprised to see how much my life experience fitted with the Yao’s life experience,” Sally said. “God has given me a story that resonates with other people’s stories. He has a bigger and deeper purpose than just changing my life.” During that short visit and the nine months she spent caring for the children of the Global Interaction team in Mozambique during May 2012, Sally sensed God’s call to change direction from her job in administration at Curtin University to join the team in Mozambique.
“I developed a deep love for the Yao as I learnt more about culture and language during those months.” “I’m not saying that I’ve got all of life sorted. I still get anxious at times and have to work through stuff, but Jesus makes such a difference.” Sally will be leading a shortterm Global Exposure team
to Mozambique with fellow Global Interaction worker Alan McGrechan in January 2016. As yet the team is not complete. “These short-term teams are really valuable for people who sense God is asking them to ‘step out of the boat’ and test their courage and faith,” Sally said. As well as studying at Vose Seminary Sally has begun the process of building a team of prayer and financial supporters in preparation to join the Mozambique team permanently in 2017. Readers can follow Sally’s progress through her blog The Follower at sallypim.blogspot.com
Sally Pim is working towards moving to Mozambique in 2017.
Medical ship brings hope
Youth With A Mission’s new medical ship MV YWAM PNG delivered medical care and training to 12,012 patients in 81 villages during a nine week tour to the southern and Huon Gulf region of Papua New Guinea. A team of 45 North Queensland volunteers served onboard the ship alongside 196 volunteers from 15 different countries. The team delivered primary health care, dentistry, eye health and capacity building initiative to remote villages in PNG. MV YWAM PNG was commissioned by the PNG Prime Minister, Honourable Peter O’Neill, in April following a successful public awareness and fundraising campaign. YWAM Medical Ships – Australia’s (YWAM MSA) Field Operations Manager, Hannah Peart, said that one of the most memorable patients the team
treated was 29 year old Alfred who had suffered from leprosy for more than 20 years. “Alfred had the most severe case of leprosy we had ever seen – he had extensive nerve damage that led to the loss of his finger, toes and his right foot.” “We were able to share with him that there was hope.” “While his deformities are irreversible, treatment would stop the progression of the disease – he could be cured,” Hannah said. Alfred’s case will now be used to help strengthen training amongst health workers in Morobe Province.
Photo: YWAM Medical Ships – Australia
Photo: Janelle Palmer
Looking to Africa
MV YWAM PNG at anchor in Milne Bay on her maiden voyage to Papua New Guinea.
The ship returned to her home port of Townsville in early July for the second stage of a medical refit which will include construction of an operating
theatre, new dentistry clinic and the addition of patrol tenders that will significantly expand YWAM MSA’s healthcare and training capacity.
international briefs Elisabeth Elliot Elisabeth Elliot, one of the heroes of mission during the 20th century died in June aged 88, almost 60 years after her husband Jim Elliot was brutally murdered in January 1956 by members of the unreached Huaorani tribe in Ecuador. They were so fearsome that they were nicknamed ‘Auca’, a local word meaning savage. Elisabeth remained in Ecuador with her ten month old daughter and was a crucial part of the team that established the church among the Auca. In later years Elisabeth was a significant writer and broadcaster. Her first two books, Shadow of the Almighty and Through Gates of Splendour influenced successive generations.
Be Love Sponsorship Sunday On Sunday 9 August Baptist churches around the country will come together to support children living in poverty. Be Love Sponsorship Sunday is a national day to pray as a church for how to be God’s love for children who are suffering in this broken world. The day is all about child sponsorship. Sponsoring just one child will help to share God’s love, life and hope. Baptist World Aid Australia is asking people to pray that God will continue to inspire people to respond with generosity and prayers for those most vulnerable – the children. For more information, visit www.baptistworldaid.org.au
The Asia Pacific Baptist Federation (APBF) recently announced the Baptist Pacific Forum will be held in Fiji from 1 to 3 February 2016. President of APBF Dr Ross Clifford said the theme of the Forum will be strengthening the Pacific Church and motivating the churches to participate in God’s mission. Combined learning streams include Mission and Evangelism, Theological Education, and Pastors/Church Leadership. Some interest group topics are: ministry to university students; prison ministry; child rights and Christian ministry; men’s ministry; and domestic violence. For more information, visit www.apbf.info/PacificForum2016
Iranian Christians Bijan Farokhpour Haghighi and Eskandar Rezaie have been recalled from bail to serve prison sentences they received in 2013. The two men were originally sentenced in July 2013 for security related charges. Bijan Farokhpour Haghighi was sentenced to three years in prison, while Eskandar Rezaie was sentenced to one year. Sources close to Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) state that Eskandar Rezaie has been imprisoned at Adelabad Prison, while Bijan Farokhpour Haghighi is likely to be imprisoned soon. The men were part of a group that was arrested in Shiraz on 12 October 2012, when security forces raided a prayer meeting.
Specialising in: Commercial cleaning
Industrial cleaning Offices general cleaning School general cleaning Window cleaning Carpet steam cleaning High-pressure cleaning Post-construction cleaning End of lease, move in, move out or bond cleaning * Special discount for brothers and sisters in Christ within Baptist Churches WA Community For a free quote, contact Chris Phone: 0455 331 957 Email: email@example.com Web: http://www.mtdcleaning.com.au Armadale area, Perth, WA
news 11 AUGUST 2015
Kalgoorlie Baptist Church Pastor Eliot Vlatko was hosted by Kali Jacobus, aka the Malekula Kid, the current Universal Boxing Organisation World Middleweight Champion during a short-term mission trip to Vanuatu in June. Eliot and his daughter Leah stayed with Kali and Anise Jacobus during their visit to the village of Lembinwen in South West Bay on Vanuatu’s Malekula Island. “This amazing couple, their five fantastic kids and their village showed us so much love, care and kindness ... they are an inspiration and we’ll never forget what they have taught us,” Eliot said. Eliot and Leah Vlatko, Dr Sean George and his wife Sherry, Steve and Caleb McKenny, Kerryn Perry, Awie, Annie, Guardiol and Jandre Viviers, all from Kalgoorlie Baptist Church were part of this year’s team ministering in Vanuatu. For the past ten years Kalgoorlie’s Dr Sean George has been involved with Healthcare Christian Fellowship Oceania’s clinics in Vanuatu. Each year clinics are held in a different village in the more remote regions of the archipelago. Dr Chelliah Gnanaharan from Crossway Baptist Church in Melbourne led the 2015 team. The clinics minister to the people’s physical, emotional and spiritual health. After seeing the doctors, the people were then directed to see the counselling
team, where four of the team from Kalgoorlie were involved. The clinic team saw 1,500 people over five days. During the one on one counselling sessions, with local interpreters helping the team with the Bislama national language, many people responded to Jesus’ invitation to experience new life that is found in Him. More than 100 people gave their lives to Jesus during the team’s seven days in the village, while over 400 people recommitted their lives to Jesus. “We lived in the village for that week, experiencing their lifestyle first-hand, yet it was clear that these wonderful people were giving us the very best they had to offer,” Eliot said. “The musical talent of the people from the local villages was formidable – it was so exciting to be welcomed into their powerful, passionate and life-changing times of worship.” Each evening the local churches took turns to lead revival meetings where the presence and power of the Holy
More than 100 people gave their lives to Jesus during the team’s seven days in the village ... Spirit was electric. Dr Sean George preached at five of these meetings. In March 2015 many areas of Vanuatu were devastated by Cyclone Pam. “The way the people of Vanuatu have bounced back from the devastation of Cyclone Pam is remarkable,” Eliot said.
Photo: Sean George
Boxing champ assists mission
The Kalgoorlie Baptist Church mission team experienced care and kindness in Vanuatu.
day of prayer Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction and faithful in prayer — Romans 12:12
Baptist Churches Western Australia invite you to a day of prayer. Date:
Saturday 22 August 2015
Venue: Morley Baptist Church 33 Hanwell Way, Bassendean
Churches from around the nation have rallied to support the work of Baptist World Aid Australia. “The response to our annual Matching Grant Appeal was a real answer to prayer,” Baptist World Aid CEO John Hickey said. “The outpouring of generosity is a real witness
to our Government, which continues to invest in our work.” “The response from our supporters shows that our faith community has a heart for people living in poverty all around the world – a message which is being heard in Canberra.” Baptist World Aid Australia were recently informed that they will receive an additional $850,000 in government funding to deliver health, education and gender-based violence prevention programs in Papua New Guinea.
Not just an answer to prayers for the region, this is also confirmation of the impact Australian Baptists are having in the aid and development sector and a strong endorsement of their work with their partner, the Baptist Union of Papua New Guinea.
Children in Papua New Guinea will benefit from the Australian government’s matching funds through Baptist World Aid Australia’s partnerships in PNG.
Photo: Baptist World Aid Australia
More funds for aid
12 feature AUGUST 2015
Finding religion in foxholes?
On 7 May 1915, during the second week of the Gallipoli campaign, Lance Corporal Elvas Jenkins was working alongside the other men of the 2nd Field Company Australian Engineers when a Turkish shell exploded nearby. The 27 year old Elvas was hit directly over the heart, but not killed. Instead, the lead shrapnel bullet that struck him lodged in a French volume of the New Testament plus Psalms that he had picked up while on training in Alexandria and was carrying in his breast pocket. It entered the back of the book, passing through the whole book of Psalms, the letters of Paul and John and Peter, and the Acts of the Apostles. It stopped just short of the gospels. There are, proverbially, no atheists in foxholes, and anecdotes like that of Elvas and his bullet-pierced Bible are the stuff of which battlefield superstitions are made. Research conducted recently at Cornell University deduced, from surveys of 949 World War II infantrymen, that the soldiers’ reliance on prayer increased dramatically – from 42 percent to 72 percent – as combat intensified. Of course, few would equate desperate deals offered to a half-believed-in deity under circumstances of extreme stress with anything approaching genuine faith. (Not that such appeals have always proven hollow: Martin Luther, famously, became a monk on the strength of a vow made while caught in a fierce storm.) Yet, interestingly, followup surveys of a different group of veterans 50 years after the war continued to show links – though not straightforward ones – between soldiers’ experience of combat and their religious behaviour. Those who described their war experience as negative attended church 21 percent more often; those who described it positively attended 26 percent less often. Whether the trauma of war made soldiers more religious, or whether already religious soldiers responded differently to combat, the researchers could not say. That there are in fact atheists in foxholes, metaphorical or literal, goes without saying. Indeed, no doubt some atheists are made under the trauma of combat. The Military Association of Atheists and Freethinkers even maintains a roster they explicitly call Atheists in Foxholes (as well as in cockpits and on ships) in order to highlight the honourable service of nonreligious military personnel. On the flip side, how much meaning might we reasonably concede to a statistically
significant increase – or decrease – in religious belief under the conditions of armed conflict? American writer James Morrow is quoted as saying that, “There are no atheists in foxholes’ isn’t an argument against atheism, it’s an argument against foxholes.” In other words, is there any reason why the instinctive response of a frightened person in an intense, life-threatening situation might be more reliable than their perceptions of reality under ‘normal’ circumstances? Well, perhaps, yes. In a lecture CS Lewis gave to undergraduates at Oxford just weeks after the outbreak of World War II, he spoke of one of war’s (potentially salutary) side effects as its capacity to bring home to us realities we can otherwise mostly ignore: ‘What does war do to death? It certainly does not make it more frequent; 100 percent of us die, and the percentage cannot be increased ... Yet war does do something to death. It forces us to remember it. The only reason why the cancer at 60 or the paralysis at 75 do not bother us is that we forget them. War makes death real to us ...’ Lewis, in line with a long tradition of Christian and other philosophical thought, interpreted the immediacy that war lends to life and death as corresponding, in some way, to a reality often obscured by the hum of our daily lives when not in crisis. “We see unmistakably the sort of universe in which we have all along been living,” he suggests, “and must come to terms with it.” It may, after all, be worth heeding the instincts of those in foxholes. British Army chaplain John Lewis Bryan wrote about his experience of Japanese POW camps in Malaya during World War II that the ‘one request of all ranks’ was for a Bible. Those few copies available had to be loaned out for short periods; at Chungkai camp (one of the hellish death camps on the Thai-Burma railway), demand was so high that Bibles were lent and returned on an hourly basis. By 1944, more than a hundred Protestant services alone were being held every week in Changi, and chaplains even established a theological college in Malaya for prisoners wanting to prepare for ordination. Bryan wrote afterwards: ‘How many officers and men openly stated that it was their
Religion plays a huge part in war – whether genuinely held or muttered as an insurance policy. For some it might be the immediacy of war makes them realise something they missed in ‘normal’ circumstances, writes Natasha Moore.
religion ... which kept them sane, when everything men hold dear, was lost. For many, it was their first experience of the saving and keeping power of a living Christ ... For all it was a knowledge deep and abiding that Christianity works. No mere theory could have survived the experience of those years of captivity.’ Elvas Jenkins, by the way – the Anzac whose Bible saved his life – survived the whole 1915 Gallipoli campaign only to be killed by a German sniper the following year. He was among the first Australian to die at the Somme; possibly the first Anzac killed on the Western Front. Before the war, he had been in training for the Methodist ministry; after the war, he hoped to become a local preacher. As for many Anzacs – and for many Australian servicemen and women since – his faith was not a mere cry for protection, a kind of insurance policy. It was no mere theory; it ‘worked’. Not because it spared him from death (as Lewis points out, none of us are spared from death); but because it was for him a wellspring of comfort, fortitude, and solid hope amid the darkness, horror – and, yes, the reality of war.
For more about Elvas Jenkins, chaplains from World War I onwards, and many other stories of Australian soldiers and their experiences in war, visit the Bible Society’s Their Sacrifice campaign website, www.theirsacrifice.com. You can see Elvas’ Bible – with bullet still intact – at the Their Sacrifice exhibition, touring Australia over the coming year.
Youth Worker Person is sought to lead a Christ-centred High School ministry. Position would likely suit a Bible College student who loves working with young people. The position is estimated to be 1-2 days per week. For more information, contact Warick on 08 9385 2607 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Natasha Moore is a research fellow at the Centre for Public Christianity. She has a PhD in English Literature from the University of Cambridge. This article first appeared at ABC The Drum. Re‑printed with permission from the Centre for Public Christianity.
Busselton Baptist Camping Centre Looking for a ministry project? This might be for you!
WE HAVE A NEW SHED TO BUILD and many other projects Calling for the handy Men and Women Fellowship groups, retirees, social groups, ministry teams A possible camp for building and bonding as a team For enquires please call
leadership 13 AUGUST 2015
How do you become a successful failure?
John C Maxwell
Nobody likes to fail. But if we’re honest, we understand that failure is a part of life. There is no success without some amount of failure. Great inventors like Thomas Edison experienced a lot of failures on the way to a successful invention. Even the best baseball players strike out much more often than they hit a home run.
1. Optimism. Find the benefit in every bad experience. Thomas Edison redefined the failures in his experiments as ‘10,000 ways that won’t work’. He expected failure and counted it as one of the costs of finding a way that would work. By finding the benefit in the failure, he was able to keep attempting something great. Optimism is not limited to a few people as a personality trait. Optimism is a choice. And while it doesn’t guarantee immediate positive results, it does result in higher motivation and stronger character. 2. Responsibility. Change your response to failure by accepting responsibility. When we fail at something, it’s easy to blame someone or something else. Perhaps the circumstances or the people that we worked with. But failure is a learning opportunity. If I blame someone else, I’m just cheating myself out of that lesson. Responsibility is more important than reputation. And it tends to lead to reward, which can lead to more responsibility. Your willingness to take responsibility marks you as someone who’s mature and can be trusted to learn from the failure and keep trying. 3. Resilience. Say goodbye to yesterday. The ability to move on from failure is key to continuing to attempt great things. The mind can only focus on so much, so if we’re still too focused on what we did wrong, we can’t give all of our attention to attempting to do things right. Here are five behaviours of people who haven’t gotten over past difficulties: • Comparison. Either measuring your failures
against those of others, or convincing yourself that your circumstances were harder than theirs. Rationalisation. Telling yourself and others that you have good reasons for not getting over past hurts and mistakes. Believing that those who encourage you ‘just don’t understand’. Isolation. Pulling back and keeping yourself separate from others, either to avoid dealing with the issues, or to continue to feel sorry for yourself. Regret. Getting stuck lamenting or trying to fix things that cannot be changed. Bitterness. Feeling like a victim and blaming others for negative outcomes.
4. Initiative. Take action and face your fear. When we make mistakes and then consider trying again, we all feel some measure of fear. Facing the unknown, we easily come up with a list of things to worry about. But the act of worrying doesn’t help us at all in accomplishing our goals. As Corrie ten Boom said, “Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow. It empties today of its strength. Just believing that failure can be good isn’t enough to help us succeed. We need to act on that belief and take a step forward again in pursuit of our dream. Only then do we learn from our mistakes and make progress.” A successful failure is a failure that we respond to correctly: by finding the good, taking responsibility, moving on, and taking action. How do you respond to failure? Which of the above characteristics would you benefit from adopting? Used with permission from The John Maxwell Company, www.johnmaxwell.com
‘I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.’ Thomas A Edison
Pull down the walls Philip Bryant A couple of weeks ago I took my grandson to the local park to play in the late afternoon. This was the first time that I had been to the park at this time of day and I was astonished. There were hundreds of children, young people and adults training for their football matches. This happens most of the year for different sporting codes at this park. Recently I visited a pastor who has commenced his ministry in a small country town where he is the only full-time minister. When I asked where he went if he wanted to take his wife and family out for a meal, he said “to the sporting club up the road on Thursday nights”. The town’s sporting facilities were magnificent. The pastor mentioned that he had been in the town for six months and was looking to find ways to connect himself and the church to the town and district. So I asked him, “Have you ever thought of offering your services to the sports club as their chaplain?” We talked about how the ‘town well’ is now the sporting clubs – the place where people gather and find community. In days gone by people found their community in a local church, but today, the church has been replaced by a sporting club. Too often the church bemoans the fact that people play
sport. When I was growing up my family did not allow us to play sport on Sundays and some older church members frowned on a person who played sport muttering phrases like, ‘idol worship’. Sport is a major part of our Australian culture. Remember the outpouring of grief at the deaths of Phillip Hughes (cricket) and Phil Walsh (football). Both these men died tragically. There are many other people each year who die or are injured playing sport. Many people connected with the sporting clubs experience tragedy and difficulty. A cultural shift has occurred. Now people look to the local sporting club to meet their needs for community and support. But an increasing number of club officials are admitting that they are not equipped to meet those needs. The church now has a great opportunity to move out from behind their walls and into the sporting community where they can play sport, volunteer and offer their services as chaplains to the clubs. Many sporting clubs are also now approaching
Sports Chaplaincy Australia (SCA) requesting a chaplain. Sports Chaplaincy Australia’s vision is to see a chaplain in every sporting club at every level of sport in the country. To achieve this, SCA provides training and accreditation for chaplains. SCA also aims to assist churches to see that this as a valid ministry in their community. It is time for the church to move out from ‘behind their walls’ and grasp this ministry of serving the local sports club, offering love and compassion in the name of Jesus. For further information about sports chaplaincy training and accreditation, contact Ron Hunt WA Sports Chaplaincy Australia Coordinator at email@example.com
Photo: Matt Chapman
Anyone pursuing a goal of value will make mistakes and wrong decisions. So the key is to expect failure, to prepare for it, to be ready to turn it into a lesson and a stepping stone to success. There is such a thing as a successful failure. These are some of the traits of such a person:
Philip Bryant is Church Health Consultant with Baptist Churches Western Australia.
14 feature AUGUST 2015
Serving God creatively
Joby Harris The questions “Why do we create? And what for?” weren’t even a blip on my radar screen growing up. As a child of an art teacher, creating was about dreaming, playing and having fun, not changing the world.
In 1996 I moved to Los Angeles and after lots of hard work and God-given open doors, I was working at some of the most incredible creativity machines on the planet: Walt Disney Imagineering, Universal Studios, Warner Brothers, various television shows and films like Alias, Bruce Almighty and Solaris. I’ve been blessed with every opportunity that an artist could ever dream of, but still my purpose for creating was unclear. Outwardly I needed to please my directors, producers, performers and fans. But it bothered me that while sculpting a space suit for Star Trek: Enterprise, a dream job for many effects artists, I was only concerned about how soon I could take my break. I believe the most important aspect of being creative is being a great observer. Observing describes the very essence of an artist who follows Christ. Observing takes listening, watching and absorbing. I also believe that one of the most important aspects of being a follower of Christ is serving others in love. Serving takes humility, courage and sacrifice. Observing and serving together are the true traits of creativity. I started working for Mosaic church in Los Angeles as Art Director. There I saw God having conversations with people constantly. We tend to believe that God is only speaking to Christians and He tells us Christians what to do and say to people who don’t know Him and who are searching.
But what I’ve observed is that God is already speaking to and moving around people who are seeking but who don’t know Him. He’s inviting us to be a part of the conversation that is already happening. But are we listening? Are we ready to observe and serve? I was having lunch with my friend who serves in Indonesia and he told incredible stories of Muslim friends following Jesus through dreams and visions without having a conversation with Christians. My friend asked me to design a logo for his new business in Indonesia. He didn’t ask “Joby, could you design a logo
that people would find appealing and be attracted to my business?” He was asked, “Would you pray and ask God to show you an image that he has already placed in the minds and hearts of the people here, so that when they see this logo, they will say, ‘I have to go there. I’ve seen that before. This means something.’” This level of creativity goes far beyond just fear of failure or rejection. This is a level of creativity that tests our faith, trusting that our work will mean something to someone who is already in a conversation with Him.
So I am praying about that logo. I am praying about that play I have to write. I’m praying about some song lyrics. I’m praying about that graphic series. “God, not only what do you want to say but what are you already saying to people? Give me a glimpse of what it is you’re already doing in them.” The more I observe and serve with my art, the more my faith is increased. And the more my faith is increased, the more I see God’s hand in the opportunities and reasons for creating. But what has never left me and what should never go away from you in your creativity, is the God-
given joy and pleasure of simply dreaming, playing, and just plain old having fun. Joby Harris has over 20 years of experience as an artist in the film, television, music, print, fashion and theme park industries in Los Angeles. He started his career with Walt Disney Imagineering then working as a freelance artist and prop designer on movies, and television shows. He worked as Artistic Director for Mosaic church for five years before taking up his current position at NASA as a visual strategist.
Opportunities to Serve Accommodation Coordinators
If you enjoy interacting with people and are a good communicator, you would be perfect for this important ministry role. This role is best suited to a married couple who will act as representatives of the Leavers Green Team volunteers to the accommodation.
23-26 November 2015
The Green Team volunteers all stay together at a resort and you would liaise between the Green Team volunteers and the resort as required. Additionally, you will be the first point of contact for the volunteers when they arrive at the accommodation and will be responsible for distributing Green Team uniforms and accessories to them. Accommodation and meals are provided and the role is only required during the day, so the nights are yours.
Volunteer Tent Coordinators
Are you a night owl with a heart to serve? We are looking for couples or teams of two people to oversee the Volunteer Tent each night at the Leavers Entertainment Zone. The Volunteer Tent is the place where volunteers from many different volunteer agencies, as well as the WA Police, security, and medical staff, go to have a break and grab something to eat or drink. In this role, you would be required to oversee the tent, manage the food distribution, make sure the urns are topped up and hot, and ensure the coffee is brewing continually. There will be a few volunteers who are assigned each night to assist you with these duties. The role also requires you to pick up the supper from a local bakery in Dunsborough daily, and purchase milk and other perishables as required throughout the week for use at the Zone. Access to a large vehicle is preferable, as there can be a large amount of room needed to transport the food items. Accommodation and meals are provided.
Zone Set Up Assistant
Are you available for a week’s work and are pretty handy with tools? We are looking for someone to help set up the infrastructure at the Leavers Entertainment Zone just outside of Dunsborough in the week before Leavers. This role will be assisting the Zone Infrastructure Manager with putting up fencing, fitting out some of the marquees, putting up signage, and general labouring as required. There is an honorarium offered in relation to this position. The dates for this role are Monday 16 November to Monday 23 November, but you are welcome to stay and volunteer for the Green Team during Leavers Week as well. All accommodation and meals are provided. If any of these positions are of interest to you, please contact Michelle Smoker at the Baptist Ministry Centre on 08 6313 6300 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
intermission 15 AUGUST 2015
A minute with ...
read The Supernatural Power of a Transformed Mind
Photo: Jill Birt
Bill Johnson The Supernatural Power of a Transformed Mind is a great interactive study designed to help people transform their minds and faith to be open and accessible to walk in a life of mircales. Written by Bill Johnson, author of serval books and fifth generation pastor of Bethel Church in California, this is a life-changing study. The Supernatural Power of a Transformed Mind comes in three different components: a book, a DVD of eight sessions and study guide to follow. Small groups or individuals are encouraged to go through all three. After watching the video there is a daily reading in the study guide to help readers change daily, expecting God to move through and interact in their life. If unsure on how to renew your mind [Romans 12:2] this study is a great place to start.
Western Australia Chin Christian Church Assistant Pastor Van Cung Ling
The Shack WM Paul Young The Shack is a touching, insightful look at a tragic circumstance and one man’s search for peace and comfort. It will take readers on a journey of emotion and bring revelation of how God works with us on a level we are ready for, bringing us into a greater understanding of His character and love for us. The author has studied theology at a tertiary level and uses this knowledge to bring the everyday person to see God outside of the usual ‘box’. Open your mind to new ideas and be prepared for nice surprises as WM Paul Young takes you on this fantastic journey.
What led you to this role? The need of the church led me to this role. I believe that that is the call of God. The church is in need of a pastor in amidst of confusions and divisions. Where is the church located? It is located at Girrawheen Baptist Church and they have always made us feel at home since our church commenced in 2001. What time are services held? Our church services are held at 2.30pm each Sunday and youth group worship services start at 6pm. How and when did the church start? A group of Chin refugees/migrants came together to start the church. At first, they worshipped in members’ houses. They named it Western Australia Chin Christian Fellowship with the belief to embrace denominational differences and diversity among Chin refugees/migrants.
listen Majestic Kari Jobe Kari Jobe brings the majesty of our God into full focus with this album. She leads live worship with reverence and passion leading listeners to bring glory and honour to our Lord. Available as a full worship experience on DVD or CD so people can pop it on in the car and leave the worries of this world behind knowing Jesus is right there through it all. On the DVD there is a powerful prose piece dramatically delivered within the song ‘Forever’ which arrests listeners and demands they remember the greatness, glory and majesty of the God who has delivered us, and the uselessness of words to fully describe Him and what He has done for us. A songbook is also available.
Who makes up the ministry team? We have four full-time pastors and 12 deacons involved in the ministry team, for around 560 church members. What is a feature of your church or ministry you’d like to share? Our church is a cultural and ethnic-based church. All worship services are held in Chin. Going deeper into wider society, rather than maintaining a status quo should be our vision. We think that we are okay, but in reality we need to reclaim our biblical identity. A final thought … To be in ministry is not easy, but I love it very much because we are dealing with lives. So, let Christ be our centre in doing His ministry so that it transforms lives.
Reviews by Koorong Mount Lawley Assistant Manager Dorothy Waddingham.
Editor: Managing Editor: Subeditor: Production: Creative: Advertising: Distribution: Editorial deadline:
Terry Hicks Andrew Sculthorpe Maclain Bruce Vanessa Klomp Peter Ion Catherine Bartlett Sally Phu Sally Phu 5th of each month
EDITORIAL AND ADVERTISING: Email: email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org Mail: Baptist Churches Western Australia PO Box 57, Burswood WA 6100 Tel: (08) 6313 6300 Fax: (08) 9470 1713
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.
This voucher entitles you to 15% off your next purchase in store at Mount Lawley The Advocate – August 2015
imageseven bcw J2009
The Advocate is published on behalf of Baptist Churches Western Australia by imageseven. Tel: (08) 9221 9777 Email: email@example.com
Reviews are kindly supplied by Koorong. Website: www.koorong.com Address: 434 Lord Street, Mount Lawley Phone: 08 9427 9777
16 news AUGUST 2015
Serving the seasons of sport James Parker Newly appointed National Director to Sports Chaplaincy UK, Warren Evans, recently visited Lakeside Baptist Church, who meet in the Lakeside Recreation Centre in North Lake. Chaplains generally go under the radar much of the time until a crisis happens, Warren pointed out. “Crisis brings opportunity to chaplaincy, but we’re not there merely for crises. We’re also there for the celebrations.” “But the reality of the situation is that when people have crises very few know how to deal with them, certainly when it comes to bereavement and the corresponding emotions.” “Sports people know how to deal with the physical and the mental but they are not always great with the emotions. That’s where a chaplain’s role can be crucial.” Three years ago, Sports Chaplaincy UK had around 150 chaplains and today has more than 350. Warren’s vision is to increase this to over 1,000 members. “My heart is for the Church, both in the UK and here in Australia, to take greater responsibility for sports teams and not to see them as competition but rather as an opportunity to show the love of Christ,” he expressed. “We don’t get involved because of the kudos, or because we’re fans. We’re not even involved to evangelise. We’re involved because we have the compassion of Christ for all of those integral to the sporting industry,” he concluded. For more information, visit sportschaplaincy.com.au
Photo: James Parker
Evans was visiting Perth to meet with a wide cross-section of Western Australia’s sports chaplains while en route to Sports Chaplaincy Australia’s upcoming national summit in Melbourne. “Our vision in the UK is to mirror sports chaplaincy here in Australia, which is about initiating, nurturing and resourcing high quality spiritual and pastoral care to the worlds of professional and amateur sport,” Warren said. He shared the importance of having a chaplain in a sports club. “People go through trauma in everyday life, and sports people are no different.” “Actually, they are sometimes even more isolated than other people because every time someone engages with them it’s like taking from them. This can leave them with very few people they can really trust.” “The chaplain is there just to serve and to meet people where they are at.” “Another of the key roles of the chaplain is to listen,” he said. “We can also offer a word of encouragement and strength and, as there are loads of opportunities in the world of sport where people are vulnerable, we can speak life over them.” As the AFL community grieves the untimely death of Phil Walsh, coach to the Adelaide Crows, the role of the team chaplain has again been highlighted.
Sports Chaplaincy UK’s CEO, Warren Evans, at Lakeside Baptist Church.
Kennedy & Mandurah Baptist Colleges
Board Minutes Secretary
Are you an experienced secretary who would enjoy providing administrative support to the governance of our Baptist Colleges ministry? We are seeking a part-time (approx. 12 hours per month) Board Minute Secretary to receive, prepare and email Board Papers, record the minutes of Board meetings, and distribute post meeting documentation in a timely manner. This role also involves providing administrative support to the Board Chairman with matters such as the preparation of reports and correspondence and other services to the Board as directed. To be successful in this role you must possess high level secretarial skills, including extensive minute taking experience and previous exposure to working with management. A high degree of computer literacy is essential (MS Word Advanced level), as is exceptional prioritisation, organisational and written communication skills. As a committed Christian, you will also be able to demonstrate a personal faith and possess a desire to support Christian education.
The role will be undertaken as a contract for service basis and based at your home office with attendance at meetings as required. The majority of Board meetings are currently scheduled monthly in Murdoch on a Thursday night and some Saturday morning meetings occur throughout the year of which two are held in Mandurah. A copy of the job description for the position can be down loaded from the following Kennedy Baptist College website link: http://www.kennedy.wa.edu.au/view/home/employment-college-board
If you would like to be considered for this opportunity, please forward your resume with covering letter addressed to: Application for Minute Secretary (Confidential) c/- Chairman of the Board Kennedy Baptist College PO Box 26
All applications must be received by 4:00pm Monday 17 August 2015
The Advocate August 2015