The voice of Queensland Baptists August 2010
Jesus waits Africa captures a heart Open and intentional Print post approved ISSN: 11323-7829 The Queensland Baptist - first published in 1890. This series Vol 8 Issue 4.
MISSION AVIATION FELLOWSHIP
MAF invites you to our QLD fundraising event
on 11 September 2010
LIKE TO TAKE TO THE OPEN ROAD ON YOUR BIKE?
MAF QLD is hosting an all day motorcycle ride fundraising event, to raise money for flights to assist isolated people.
ARCHERFIELD - WATTS BRIDGE - CABOOLTURE
Every 6 minutes, a MAF aircraft is taking off or landing, bringing help to people living in remote and isolated communities in Christâ€™s name For more information or to REGISTER for the ride: www.maf.org.au or call 07 5427 0130
In this issue 05 06 09 12 14 25 38 40 44 46 47
Comment: David Loder Speaking out: John Sweetman Around the regions Milestones Baptisms Called home Persecution brief Reviews Fun zone Quotable quotes Classifieds
QB ministries 16 18 20 21 22 24
Open and intentional (QB Kids) Our God who works (QB Youth) Finding your familyâ€™s secrets (QB Archives) Dreaming big dreams (QB Women) A melting pot (QCCC) Funds for kingdom work (Gift Foundation)
QB partners 26 28
A brighter future for Joseph (BWAA) New partners in the purposes of God (Global Interaction)
Articles 29 30 32 33 34 36 41 42
Jesus waits! 2000km journeys Africa captures a heart Balancing old with new There goes the mob Going gaga An update from Wendy The Bible and the environment
Our cover: As you can see by their smiling faces, when this group from Sandgate Baptist was baptised recently, it was a joyful occasion full of praise to God.
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News, views and issues
From the Editor Most of us are ‘time poor’ and we struggle to balance everything that competes for a share of our precious hours. With this in mind, I wonder how you approach your copy of The qb. Do you take time to sit and read it from cover to cover? Do you read a few pages then put it aside to finish later? Or, do you skim through it and read only those stories that grab your attention? I’d love to hear your responses! Whether you absorb, dip or skim the contents in this issue, please don’t miss Billy’s story (Jesus waits). It will encourage everyone, but especially those who are, or have been, involved in children’s ministry. It’s a story that spans nearly 30 years; a story that demonstrates the value, in Kingdom terms, of telling children about Jesus and his love for them. I had little difficulty picturing that small child, in that small town, miles from most places, and I could easily imagine that same child treasuring his keepsake. I know you’ll appreciate Billy’s story. Debbie Brennocks (Africa captures a heart) is achieving great things for God including raising four little girls who might otherwise have been dumped on rubbish tips or left out in the bush to die, and things are looking up for Joseph (A brighter future for Joseph) because of the ministry of Baptist World Aid Australia in Uganda. Trish Lane (Open and intentional) offers thoughtful suggestions about children’s ministry and the importance of including children in our church activities. She helps us to think ‘outside the square’. There are other articles about children and youth in this issue, plus much more. Enjoy! Robynne Milne
The qb is a member of the Australasian Religious Press Association, published bi-monthly by Queensland Baptist Services Group in February, April, June, August, October and December. Editor: Robynne Milne Advertising contact: Robynne Milne Design: Shell Graphix Print: Fergies Print & Mail This magazine is printed with soy based inks and paper from sustainable forest plantations. We welcome reader feedback and opinions about our articles. Remember to include your full name and postal address. Articles and advertising in The qb express the opinions of the authors, not necessarily the editor or publishers. Every effort is made to ensure the correctness of facts and information however we cannot accept responsibility for errors. The publishers reserve the right to accept or decline any advertising. Deadline for advertisement and copy: 10th of the month prior to publication. PO Box 6166 Mitchelton Qld 4053 firstname.lastname@example.org Ph: (07) 3354 5633 Fax: (07) 3354 5646 Advertising rates are listed at www.qb.com.au - follow the links to qb magazine. Prices are also available on enquiry and advertising packages can be tailored to suit your budget. Reduced contract rates apply to three bookings within a 12 month period. Please contact us for details. A limited number of inserts are also accepted. Copyright © 2003 by Queensland Baptist Services Group. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means without written permission from the publisher. ISSN: 11323-7829
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? e r e h w o G ‘But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth’ (Acts 1:8). We like the idea of receiving power and we dream about being great evangelists, but for many, enthusiasm diminishes as they contemplate the possibility of moving beyond their Jerusalem, their comfort zone. How pleased we are that there are those who are obedient to the call of God and are willing to re-locate to isolated and remote areas, separated from family and forced to make new friends in the place where the Lord of the Church has deployed them! Every three years, Baptist ministers and their families who serve in some of these places in Australia gather at Batchelor in the Northern Territory for the Remote Area Conference. It is underway as I write this article. These men and women are heroes of the faith as they step away from familiarity, good resources, family networks, access to facilities, cheaper living and the like to serve the Lord Jesus. These issues are secondary in their consideration as they contemplate the Lord’s call. Primary is the question of the Holy Spirit’s word to them about location, location, location. And so periodically they take time out to network, encourage and learn from each other. We salute these men and women and thank them for their ministry in the more remote areas of Queensland - places like Goondiwindi, Longreach, Mt Isa and Cooktown and a range of other places in-between. Ministry is not restricted to pastors, of course. There are numerous others who, in a variety of settings and ways, are serving the Lord in obedience in remote areas. Fantastic!
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Here are some considerations: • Is God calling you to some of these areas? You may be a pastor, teacher, public servant, a professional or anything! God calls us all to ministry. • How will we minister in the more remote areas of our State? Traditional neighbourhood Baptist Church models won’t work. Can we be creative? • How many ‘unreached people groups’ are in our State? These may be smaller towns or communities or isolated settlements or a subculture or group. Is it possible for you and your church to adopt one of these groups for prayer and ministry? Ministry Matters Towards the end of July the Baptist World Alliance will hold their Congress in Honolulu, Hawaii. A Congress is held every five years when Baptists from around the world gather together. I will be attending this event along with several other people from Queensland. I recently visited the Solomon Islands and met with the leaders of the South Seas Evangelical Church. They are keen to explore partnerships with churches beyond the Solomons and we would value prayer as we explore whether Queensland Baptists may be a part of this. Encountering God Encountering God has been our focus over this last year or so. What a great God we have! He is deserving of everything we are and have. He is too good to keep to ourselves. Everyone needs to hear the message – even in the remote areas of Queensland! David Loder General Superintendent, Queensland Baptists email@example.com
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Church Trends Church life is constantly changing. In this series I discuss some diverse trends that I have noticed in evangelical churches in Queensland over recent years. These comments are purely personal observations. They come from my interaction with pastors, students and churches as well as my reading, but they are only personal impressions and are not necessarily supported by objective evidence. So feel free to disagree. Your experience will be different from mine. While I have opinions on many of these trends, in this article and those in future issues of The qb, I am attempting to observe, not critique. 1. Churches and pastors are beginning to think ‘kingdom’ more than ‘church’. Two recent, influential Christian movements have been the church growth movement and the church health movement. The church growth movement researched the factors that caused churches to grow numerically and offered them as principles for growing the local church. The church health movement (that followed) argued that health, not growth, was the important issue for churches, but the thinking was that good health would almost inevitably produce growth. Both of these movements suggested ways in which the church could more effectively minister and grow. They viewed the strength of the church as being the measure of our effectiveness for God. Everything revolved around the local church. This fixation on the local church is beginning to diminish. Many church leaders are now thinking ‘kingdom’ more than ‘church’. The kingdom is about the movement of God to assert his rule in this world. It involves loving and serving the community, standing for justice, doing what is
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good in the workplace, and caring for our world, as well as growing in Christ and evangelising our friends. In other words, kingdom effectiveness goes well beyond what is helpful for the local church. A church could be heavily involved in kingdom ministry without necessarily seeing growth or even health. The ministry of Jesus could be seen as an example of effective kingdom ministry (sharing the good news, caring for the needy, bringing healing, loving and serving, standing up for right in the face of injustice) without seeing any great institutional or conversion success. There are many signs of this emphasis on the kingdom. Some churches are becoming more involved in their communities e.g. helping in schools, meetings needs, taking stands on community issues, working with community organisations. Some churches are building stronger links with the work of overseas missions. They are not so much supporting missionaries as becoming personally involved in meeting the needs of actual overseas communities. The kingdom movement is certainly gaining momentum. It has many strengths. It takes us beyond the idea that the work of God stands or falls on the growth of the local church. We have a big God who is working in the world as well as in the church. Our narrow focus on church growth and health has tended to cause us to view our community merely as potential converts who could become Christians and join our church. It has also produced unhealthy competition and comparison between churches. A kingdom emphasis puts us all on the same page with the same goal.
2. The American influencers of the Western church are changing. Most Queensland evangelical churches have been heavily influenced by Bill Hybels and Rick Warren over the last 20 years. In the 1990s and early 2000s, Hybels’ emphasis on reaching the lost, seeker sensitive services, and relevant ministry, and Warren’s focus on intentional ministry (purpose-driven), outreach, strong management, and effective, accountable ministries became the priority for many churches striving for growth.
However, these new guys (and they are still mostly all male) are not so much touting structures and systems to improve the church, but are mainly calling Christians to live biblically (within their own particular theological nuances and directions). It’s not that they don’t care about systems and structures (e.g. Driscoll has his successful Acts 29 church planting movement), but their first priority appears to be thinking, biblically-informed, kingdom-minded Christians.
‘The kingdom is about the movement of God to assert his rule in this world. It involves loving and serving the community, standing for justice, doing what is good in the workplace, and caring for our world, as well as growing in Christ and evangelising our friends.’
These two authors and practitioners became household names among pastors and many church leaders. Many churches tried seeker services or completed the purpose driven life series. We were seeking intentional, growing, mission-oriented churches like Willow Creek and Saddleback. While the old firms of Hybels and Warren continue to influence, there are newcomers on the block to whom many pastors and church members are now more likely to listen. Names like Rob Bell, Mark Driscoll, Andy Stanley and Erwin McManus are respected, especially among younger generations.
By lumping these influencers together, I’m not saying that they would agree on priorities and theology. They are actually quite diverse and all have their own emphases and followings. These new influencers write books and produce video series (who can forget Rob Bell’s Nooma), but their main impact is through their sermon podcasts, that are possibly being imbibed more by younger Christian leaders than pastors. This is producing a generation of Christians who think independently of their own churches and teachers, and who may not look to church attendance for spiritual nourishment.
It is worth noting that quite a few of the most commonly downloaded podcasters (e.g. Mark Driscoll, Tim Keller, John Piper) come from a Reformed perspective. Some are gentler and others more strident in their approach, but I think that they appeal to thinking Christian leaders because they teach Scripture at depth. There are signs that their teaching is bringing a resurgence in Reformed influence (with a contemporary edge). John Sweetman Principal, Malyon College firstname.lastname@example.org
But will it damage the church? Here are a few things I think we will need to watch. We need to be careful not to water down the demands of the gospel for conversion. We need to hold on to our emphasis on grace above works (the kingdom tends to be about doing). We need to ensure that we are biblically discipling Christians. We need to continue to nurture a love for the local church (with all its flaws) and not see it as a limiting institution.
Monday nights @ Malyon Traditionally, not much happens on Monday nights – even most restaurants are closed! But thankfully, tradition does not ‘rule the roost’ on the Malyon College campus. In 2010, Malyon Leadership started holding monthly leadership network evenings on Monday nights with instant success. Here are brief comments from some of the 80 participants: ‘an invaluable opportunity and experience,’ ‘the sessions were a significant input in my ability to understand and apply,’ ‘an opportunity to discuss things we don’t often get a chance to talk about,’ ‘I was really empowered in my leadership,’ ‘an opportunity to be real and encouraged in ministry,’ ‘very practical and helpful’. So, what is a Monday night Leadership Network meeting? It’s an evening designed to develop emerging Christian leaders; to come as a team from a church and receive input, support and fellowship, all focussed around leadership issues. Time is spent getting to know other
leaders, praying for each other, learning about Christian leadership from experienced practitioners, and talking about leadership issues. The evening consists of 2½ hours broken down into an input and challenge session, prayer, team time and a choice of four electives. Because of its popularity, Monday@Malyon is happening again this semester. The electives offered are leadership (focussing on developing vision, organisation, equipping and leading others), leading small groups, leading worship, and prayer in leadership. The commitment is three Monday nights (Aug 2, Sept 13, Oct 10) and the cost is $20 per person. Churches like South Pine, Ashgrove, City Life and Bridgeman have used this program to develop and equip their leaders and emerging leaders. You are welcome to do the same. If you are interested in bringing a group for this semester or just want to know more, then contact Lindie at email@example.com.
Queensland Baptist Care We Care For The elderley; the homeless; the disadvantaged; the sick and the depressed
Because Jesus told us to “Love God and love others”. Please help us to continue to offer hope, care and compassion to a needy society. Tax deductible donations can be made
celebrating QUEENSLAND BAPTIST CARE
years EST 1949
A Service Group of Queensland Baptists
Ph 07 3550 3737 or online www.qbc.com.au
Around the regions
Dr Claire Smith (left) and Tara Thornley.
Women of Purpose City North Baptist’s annual Bible teaching conference continues to grow. The 300 women who attended the 7th event received helpful Bible teaching from Dr Claire Smith who taught powerfully from the letter of Jude on the topic, ‘Loved and kept safe’. Tara Thornley, who works with female Bible College students, spoke encouragingly on ‘Discipleship principles and practicalities’. Carly Stumer (City North) shared her experiences as an external Bible College student and young mum. Feedback was positive. ‘Loved Claire’s focussed Bible teaching. Warm and welcoming environment.’ ‘Godly teaching for Christian women.’ ‘Very well organised and speakers with good biblical messages.’ Sessions are available for download at www.citynorthbaptist.com.au. The organising team’s hope is that women will be spurred on in their
faith, encouraged in Jesus, inspired by God’s Word and eager to keep growing and persevering until the end.
Pastor Sarblair and Haybuth
The next conference will be held Saturday 12 March 2011. Mark it in your calendar now and bring a group.
‘Master chefs in the making’ Around 55 active seniors met at Maryborough Baptist Church for ‘Master chefs in the making’. Sharon Berry (Pastor Stephen’s wife) gave a devotional message, encouraging all to follow the Master, God, in living their lives. A highlight of the day was the all male contestant ‘cook-off’, results of which were varied! The group meets monthly and an energetic committee keeps busy dreaming up interesting activities including a bus trip to the Gold Coast later in the year to visit The Outback Spectacular and to take a boat cruise on the Nerang River.
Combined congregation praises God A Multi-cultural combined service was held at Logan City Baptist Church recently. The service brought together the English, Karen and Sudanese congregations who meet regularly at the church. There were some logistical challenges, e.g. trying to transport everyone to the service (a large number are refugees with no transport) but some teething problems were expected as the congregations were combined for only the second time. The service ran in conjunction with Refugee Week. Pastor Kennedy (Sudanese congregation) helped those present to understand the plight of refugees and gave great insights into the book of Jeremiah from a refugee’s perspective. Pastor Sarblair’s 12 year old daughter Haybluth (Koren congregation) and Betty Young (English
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Around the regions
Bracken Ridge mentors in training.
congregation) performed individual items before God, and Andrew Appleton (English congregation) led attendees in singing praises, ably supported by a worship team drawn from all congregations. A delicious smorgasbord of foods from around the world followed the service, giving everyone an excellent opportunity for more fellowship. Pastor Mark Redman writes: ‘I would like thank Stephen Ball, Regional Consultant and representative of the Baptist Union of Queensland, for his attendance. The next Multi-cultural combined service is scheduled for Sunday morning 12 September at Logan City Baptist Church, 229 Chambers Flat Road, Crestmead. Pastor James Komech from the African congregation will be guest speaker and everyone is welcome to join us.’
God’s grace in action Pastor Wah and Mr Hien Jhuong Hoang conducted a ‘Pray for Vietnamese evangelism’ at Rockhampton Baptist Tabernacle in June. Many local Vietnamese people responded to the
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claims of Jesus on their lives and the church is praying that their faith will grow stronger every day (please pray with them). To launch them on their individual faith journeys, Mr Hoang will conduct home groups where they can learn more about Jesus and how to put their faith into action. The group is pictured under a banner that reads: ‘Evangelism…Grace of God… Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest (Matthew 11:28).’
Building bridges COACH has been introduced to Brisbane and the team from Bracken Ridge Baptists recently enjoyed a weekend of training as they prepare for their mentoring role. The COACH Community Mentoring program is proving to be a bridge of positive engagement between the Church and disadvantaged families across Australia. It works by assisting families to set one or two life goals while mentors (Christians with life experience and wisdom) support them to achieve those goals.
The program tackles problems like a lack of general life skills, unemployment, early school leaving, and managing emotional and mental health issues. Christians are seeing Christ working through them and God’s kingdom extended as families are connected with a supportive community and learn what God offers. Contact Mark Matthews, ph 03 5973 8888.
Thank you! More than 120 people gathered for the Nanango based National Day of Thanksgiving in May. The day started with a picnic organised by the local Ministers’ Fellowship. It was a great event, reminiscent of Sunday School picnics in days gone by. Competitors lined up for gum boot throwing, sack races, egg and spoon race, foot races and it was great to see how many young people joined in. Community Service Certificates were presented to organisations including the State Emergency Service, Police Service, Rural Fire Brigades, Ambulance, School Chaplains and
Around the regions
Church Treasurer, Peter Brewerton, ran second in the seniors’ foot race.
the South Burnett Regional Council. These groups play a critical role in keeping the community safe and well. MLA Dorothy Pratt said that while most people were aware of the host of community service organisations, few get an opportunity to say ‘thank you’, especially to those organisations which help in times of disaster. South Burnett Regional Council Mayor, David Carter also addressed the crowd. Comments heard on the day included: ‘It was certainly great to be here and see so many people in the community thanked for the way they serve us’ (Jenny Jensen, Nanango State High School). ‘It is terrific that we have so many organisations represented here and it is equally great to have a day set aside to recognise those organisations,’ (Cr Damien Tessmann). ‘Overall, it has been a very good day. We had our prayers answered with the good weather and we had a whole heap of fun. Next year will be bigger and better,’ (Pastor Don Niebling). Church Treasurer, Peter Brewerton, ran second in the seniors’ foot race.
Saturday, 28 August
This month, Missions Interlink Queensland and NeoLeader are promoting cross-cultural mission and missional leadership with events at Ashgrove Baptist Church, including:
(9.00am–1.00pm) Mission Focus - for church leaders who have an interest or involvement in either local or global mission. The event features two experienced and gifted speakers, Dr Peter Law (Cross Over Communications International, Principal Designate Mueller College) and Dr Richard Hibbert (WEC missionary, Director School of Cross-Cultural Mission, SMBC). $25 registration includes lunch. (Register at 8.30am)
Friday, 27 August (9.00am–3.00pm) Missions Representatives’ Retreat - an opportunity for people who are actively involved in mission promotion and recruitment to meet. $40 registration (Reps’ Retreat) or $50 (Reps’ Retreat and Mission Focus) lunch included. (Register at 8.30am.) Contact Andrew Prince firstname.lastname@example.org (7.00pm-9.30pm) RISK: Gospel to the Globe - a combined youth rally for high school aged youth and youth leaders that will provide relevant exposure to a wide range of mission needs and opportunities. $5 at the door (No registration). Contact Dan Paterson email@example.com
Contact John Anderson firstname.lastname@example.org (1.00pm–8.30pm) NeoLeader Conference - for Leadership Development , aimed at young adults. Themed ‘Missional leadership’, the event features Richard Hibbert and Mark Broadbent (Pastor, City Life Baptist Church). $30 registration. (Register at 1pm.) Contact John Sweetman email@example.com
On the move • • • • •
Rev Dr Alan Bartlem has retired. Pastor Paul Butler has been appointed as Senior Pastor at Rochedale. Rev Tim Hanna has concluded at Willow Creek to accept the role of CEO, Compassion. Pastor Steve Meharg has been appointed as Senior Pastor at South Pine. Rev Don McLellan has accepted a (part time) call to Keperra.
Correction (last issue): Rev David Daniels has concluded an Interim at Minden and commenced an Intentional Interim Ministry (IIM) at Sunnybank Church of Christ. www.qb.com.au The qb AUGUST 10
Bayside turns 40!
Kalbar gears up for 135th anniversary Kalbar Community Baptist Church will celebrate its 135th Anniversary from 25 – 29 August (Wednesday – Sunday). The special guest speaker will be previous pastor, Ralph Legge. The church is looking for photos, archival material and memories and everyone is welcome to join in their celebrations. For an invitation, please phone 5463 9770, 5463 7262, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Seeking God’s Kingdom first
Later that year, Rosemary Kennedy became the church’s first missionary with OMF International in Thailand where she met her husband, Peter Farrington and together they ministered at Manorom Christian Hospital for the next 20 years. When the buildings became too small, the Manly-Lota property was sold and the current property in Wondall Rd was purchased. In the early days, the house served as the manse and the congregation met at Wondall Heights State School. The church auditorium was built and officially opened in 1977 and extended in 1992.
‘For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ’ (1 Corinthians 3:11). Bayside Baptist Church commenced on the 18 January, 1970 as ‘The Baptist Church of Manly-Lota in Association with Wynnum West’. The late Rev. Reg Jarrott constituted the church and the Rev. Kevin Clarke was inducted as its first pastor. There were 43 foundation members, seven of whom still attend.
Some of the foundation members.
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Pastor & Family (Ross & Michelle Blunden, Jonathan & Tessa)
In 1994, Mark and Susan Chapman were commissioned by the Church as missionaries with OMF to the Philippines. Recently Mark was appointed Field director of OMF Philippines and Susan works in administration in Manila. Members of the congregation have supported them on short term mission trips, to assist in evangelism and children’s ministries. Bayside missionaries have also served in China, India, Nigeria and Sudan and at present, missionaries are serving in Bangladesh, Tanzania and Vanuatu. The church also supports Liberty Baptist Church in Fiji.
Over the years the church has been blessed by faithful leaders who sought to encourage and equip the body of believers at Bayside. Pastor Ross Blunden says, ‘Our goal at Bayside Baptist Church is to “seek first God’s Kingdom and his righteousness” (Matthew 6:33) so we actively seek to reach our community with the gospel through a number of different ministries. One ministry that has continued for many years is the living nativity scene which is depicted each Christmas at the front of the property, creating a visible witness to neighbours and the local community. Other ministries such as “Dynamite” for primary school age children and “Impact” for high school students, minister to young people from both within and outside of the church. We have much to thank God for as he transforms the lives of those who go to these ministries and others among our church,’ he said. ‘The auditorium has recently been re-furbished and we are looking forward to what God will do among us in the future.’ Pastors’ roll call Rev Kevin Clarke, Dorothy Charles Robinson, Elizabeth (Interim) Rev Errol Hosie, Margaret Rev Matt Smith, Jean (Interim and Associate) Pastor Jim Gibbon, Aurelia Pastor Jim Winkley, Merilyn (Student, Associate and Pastor) Rev Ken Conwell, Karen Mark Chapman, Susan (Associate) Pastor Brett Wallace, Jenny (Student, Associate and Pastor)
Church building under construction; Official opening 1970; 40th Anniversary 2010
Rev Graham Semple, Joanne Rev Drew Kelso, Lil Rev John Renaud, Mary Pastor Andrew Prince, Susan Pastor Ross Blunden, Michelle (Associate and Pastor)
Looking back… looking forward When Stafford Heights Baptist Church celebrated its 40th Anniversary in June, more than 200 people attended a Saturday evening dinner followed by a program themed ‘Looking back… looking forward’. Looking Back… Wonderful memories were shared by people including Rev. Dr. Stan Nickerson who was called as the first pastor. Rev. John Edmonstone and his wife Olive travelled from New South Wales to be a part of the celebrations. John was pastor at Nundah Baptist in the late 1960s and with others was instrumental in planting the Stafford church in what was a new and growing suburb. Many past members returned to celebrate the milestone. The allmale singing group ‘Amen’ and Casey Rogers provided entertainment. Looking Forward… An architectural consultant presented conceptual drawings which included options to improve the church’s facilities to better cope with the large numbers of people who attend various ministries every week. On Sunday morning, Foundation Members served the bread and a
group of the youth served the wine for communion. The Stafford Heights Children’s Choir presented a number of songs and two men who were recently baptised were welcomed into church membership. Stan Nickerson was the guest preacher. In the evening a ‘Loaves and Fishes’ dinner was served followed by a time of sharing and testimony to God for his goodness to the church as it has served the local community.
Like a lighthouse Close to 100 faithful regulars, supporters, dignitaries and those who were around at the very beginning joined in praising God when the Stanley River Valley Community Church held its Constitution Service on 20 June. Administrator, writes:
The morning was filled with praise and acknowledgement of what God has done in our community. The band provided the backdrop to our lively celebration and we had the privilege of witnessing two of our new members being baptized. Our Senior Pastor Rev Stephen Thomas delivered the message about ‘The power of our King over traditions’. He reminded us that as a church we are not about a dead religion, but are a people committed to a living relationship with Jesus. He emphasized that we all have better things to do with our lives than to waste them on meaningless religious rituals. We are to dedicate our lives
Ref: Brian Doerksen, ‘Come now is the time to worship’ Vineyard Songs, 2004.
to something real, something worth pursuing. And that is what God means to our church. From one man’s vision in 2002, Stephen and Toni Thomas and Ken and Janette Rutherford, along with their children and the help of Liz Coghill and Dorothy Holmans, saw the church take its first steps in 2004. The church continues to grow and not just in numbers. With the Holy Spirit’s leading we are also growing from the inside out’ Janette said. ‘Our worship has become more personal; because of what we have seen, our hearts are more open to change and challenges. Our lives are becoming more enriched as we choose to serve a God who has a storehouse of treasures for all those who will confess him as their Lord and bend their knee to him in worship. The picture God laid on Pastor Toni’s heart was that of a lighthouse. The light that this church is to be for the surrounding area is getting brighter and brighter and there will come a time when the light will not be able to be hidden. It will reach out like a lighthouse to direct people into a safe harbour where worship is all that can be heard. So ‘come, now is the time to worship’. Worship services are held every Sunday at 9:30am, and monthly evening services, ‘Saturdays @ SRVCC’ are held on the 3rd Saturday of every month starting at 6pm. Location: 115 Archer Street Woodford (next to the Post Office).
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Never too old Eadred Bryans (Pastor, Hertford Street Baptist Church) writes: It was just a bit unusual when Alan and Heather Miles stepped into the baptistry earlier this year to be greeted by myself, and Darryn Windolf, a previous pastor. Of course this was not the first time a married couple had been baptised together but what made this baptism special was that Alan (almost 80) and Heather (not far behind) have pacemakers. Despite some health problems, they have attended Hertford Street regularly over many years. Their decision to be baptised was a pleasant surprise to everyone. As the baptisms were conducted in a careful and fitting way for people of their age, there were no after-effects and a sense of real joy and achievement was experienced by the whole church. A special morning tea was held after the service as the newly baptised couple were congratulated by their church family and members of their own family. Maybe this baptism could be included in the ‘Guinness Book of Baptismal Records’ (if one existed!) Husband and wife, both with pacemakers, close to 80, baptized on the same day. We are never too old to follow God in the next step of obedience – whatever that may be. We praise God for these newly baptised believers: Biloela: Albion: Jacqueline Marshall Sue Toua City Tabernacle: Mr Vahid Fazel Cleveland: Jim Bentham Carol Bentham Emily Bissett Jessica Butler Jadee Carins Jessica Cooper Ben Dunstan Nikki Ferguson Rebecca Hurst Daniel Leishman Melinda MacCormack Deb Mole Eli Mole Jasmin Moss Sean Tiernan
Cleveland: Caleb Turnbull Leah Turnbull Lisa Underhill Emma Vincent Sam Zubevich Coolum Beach: Gracie Stark-Reidy Coral Coast: Geoff Oakes Glor-Ann Pascoe Fairfield: john holmes ki ki tse wai wai tse Gateway: Kate Barham Zac Barham Michael Brown Chelsea Burns
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Gateway: Freya Crocker Brittany Dale Vernita Dale Jaques Jaubert Joshua Mills Miranda Powell Imogen Salisbury Olivia Salisbury Sunet van der Merwe Jesse Wood Gladstone: Peter Davis Yippy Pam and Sharon Sondergeld Juanita Thomson Hertford Street: Alan Miles Heather Miles Jimboomba: Calam Niebling Tiffany Poole Thomas Poole
Kruger Parade: Kirsty Gale Moore Park: Kate Springall Sandgate: Bethy Henley Sam Henley Dan James Lee Nicholls Katy Paroz Micah Wood Tyras Wood Stanley River Valley: Courtney Rutherford Alexander van Nunen Sunnybank District: Stephanie Bangay Sheridan Keevers Josh Sippel Sunnybank District: Stephanie Bangay Sheridan Keevers Josh Sippel
High tide at Brighton Dave Paroz (Senior Minister at Sandgate Baptist) writes: One of the great things about being part of a Church is that we get to share experiences and build into the lives of others in our faith community. That is how we felt when we conducted a baptismal service recently and a group of our young people testified to their love and devotion for Jesus.
that there may be some who were ready to be baptised. But he had bigger plans than we realised which is usually the case. Seven young people wanted to be baptised! Some have grown up in the Church, while others have come to Christ only within the last year, but they all want to put Jesus first in their lives.
God is doing some amazing things among our youth and we are seeing youth ministry grow. Kids are coming to Christ as other kids pray for them and God moves.
Currently we meet at Bracken Ridge High School so we do not have a baptismal. Being close to the ocean has its advantages and baptising in public is one of them. So, at around the high tide mark all seven were baptised in waters off Decker Park in Brighton.
At one of our evening services last May, God impressed on us
What a wonderful day!
Front L-R: Lindsay & Katie Rooke (Youth Leaders), Micah Wood, Tyras Wood. Back L-R: Lee Nicholls, Dan James, Sam Henley, Bethy Henley, Katy Paroz, Dave Paroz
‘Baptism and the Lord’s Supper are the only two ceremonies given by Jesus Christ through Scripture to be observed by the church for all ages. We call them ‘ordinances’ as they have been ordained by Christ. We do not call them ‘sacraments’ because they do not convey Christ’s salvation which is conveyed directly by the Holy Spirit in response to the individual’s faith. Baptism is the immersion of believers upon their repentance and profession of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Baptism pictures the connecting of the believer with Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection’ (Queensland Baptists Guidelines for Belief and Practice, Statement of Belief, 2004). www.qb.com.au The qb AUGUST 10
QB kids & their families
Open and intentional Trish Lane, pastor at Bridgeman Baptist, oversees Christian Growth and Discipleship, and Children’s ministry. At Convention 2010, she led an excellent elective on ‘Helping Children Encounter God’. It was challenging and inspiring, giving all who attended a chance to reflect on how they can encourage the children in their care to explore prayer and grow in their relationship with Jesus. There were lots of practical ideas for strategic discipleship of the next generation. Here’s a taste of Trish’s presentation… God loves children and he is deeply committed to working in their lives just as much as he is in the lives of adults. There are so many wonderful programs running in churches and so many efforts being made to teach children the truths of the Bible. Helping children to encounter God in real and
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meaningful ways does not mean removing all of the hard work and current practice, it just requires a fresh look at what we’re already doing and how we can intentionally build on the wonderful foundation that exists. For us, (at Bridgeman) it began with just two questions. What do we do to help adults explore relationship with Christ and grow as his disciple? How can we develop that, so that children too, can be involved? What follows are just a few ideas that have begun to form. It’s not the whole answer. We are still in the discovering phase, but some wonderful blessings have flowed and we’re excited about what God can do now and in the generations to come as we strategically begin to disciple our kids.
QB kids & their families
Children’s prayer meetings Kids love to pray. If you’re holding a corporate prayer meeting for adults, why not include one for the children too? • Worship together – there are great DVD resources available or if you want, have a live band. Intersperse worship songs with little snippets of prayer in partners or small groups. • Prayer Stations – a simple Google search will give you more ideas than you will ever be able to filter. They don’t have to be huge to be effective. A ‘Praise Possie’ can simply be a colourful mat, some Bibles, kid’s praise CDs and a CD player. Allow children the freedom to spend time reading God’s word, listening to music and praising him. Hearing from God – A training seminar Short seminars are great. They help people deal with some of the core issues of discipleship in a quick and interactive format. We held a seminar for adults and then thought about how to adapt that for kids. Some of the topics we dealt with included: • • • • • • •
Got any questions? God speaks – a look at some Biblical examples How does God talk to us? Knowing God’s voice What stops us from hearing from God? What helps us hear God? Some Bible study examples
Church-wide series It takes a bit of work, but it’s great to include the children in special series’ at church. We recently held a church-wide Connect Group study and sermon series and adapted our Sunday school material so that the children and youth were covering the same content. A church-wide approach like this provides a wonderful opportunity for families to discuss what God is saying to them.
What is wonderful about developing spirituality in children is that it isn’t dependent on having loads of resources or even a big pool of children attending. It’s about being open and being intentional. Discipleship camp This is a very new idea for us...in fact our first one is being held in August. Imagine a time of intentional mentoring and instruction with a group of children in grades 3 – 7 who are keen to dig a little deeper and expand their relationship with God. We want to harness an opportunity to spend time in fellowship, reflection and prayer with children. Who knows the impact that can flow out of a time like this? These are simple ideas, but God can work powerfully through the simple. What is wonderful about developing spirituality in children is that it isn’t dependent on having loads of resources or even a big pool of children attending. It’s about being open and being intentional. Like many of our churches around the State, Bridgeman Baptist Community Church held a Kids’ Holiday Program, ‘Holiday Buzz: The Great Jungle Bungle’ during last school break. 57 leaders and a support team of kitchen helpers, registration people and prayer teams helped to share the truth of God’s Word with 166 kids. Pictures ARE worth 1000 words! www.qb.com.au The qb AUGUST 10
Our God who works God is always up to something. He is always at work wooing people to himself, encountering people with his love and calling them back to him. Let me, well I should say let us, tell you about one of these encounters. It’s the story of Amity Walton, a grade eighter from Enoggera Baptist brigades and youth who has recently come into a saving relationship with Christ. I want to look at her story from three different angles, through her eyes, through the eyes of her youth leader Tam, and through my eyes as her youth pastor. Amity’s Story I haven’t been a Christian for very long, but I had wanted to become a Christian for a long time and I didn’t know how. I had heard of God, but I didn’t know him. When people talked about God, I didn’t understand, or I’d get bored. But when I started going to brigades and youth at Enoggera Baptist it slowly started to make sense. Westy (Mark) and Tam helped me to understand and taught me about God. They did their best to show me who he was and what he did for me. One life changing Monday night, I became a Christian. I was by myself; I felt it had to be just between me and God. If it were just us, it would be a stronger bond and a bigger step for me. Before I was a Christian, I knew about God, but it didn’t really seem like I needed him. But I was wrong, and I was going against him. I did some stupid things, but I know I am forgiven for my sins. After I became a Christian, I let God in. It wasn’t my way anymore, it’s his way. Somewhere deep down, I didn’t know where, there was a hole. I never used to know why. And God filled it somehow. Jesus died for me, he loves me and I am forgiven. 18
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Tam, Amity’s Youth Leader I haven’t been a youth leader for very long, but so soon have I experienced God’s magnificence and power. It was amazing to have the opportunity to get to know Amity and, even better, to play a part in sharing the gospel with her: to see her searching for God and needing his unfailing love and grace; to be able to reflect some of that love; and to be there as she came to the realisation that she had a Saviour and didn’t have to go through life alone. I’m not the greatest teacher, but God chose to use me anyway and show that it’s not how good we are, but how great he is. I was so happy when I found Amity had made the commitment to follow Christ. Then hearing that she wished to be baptised was wonderful. I had the privilege of guiding Amity through ‘Baptism Explained’ and to pray with her. God’s presence is so evident in this testimony and I’m so grateful that he chose me to be a part of it. I look forward to watching her relationship with God grow. What a privilege! Mark, Amity’s Youth Pastor One youth night, I walked past Amity who was leaning on a wall and staring at the wall of the girls’ toilet. I stopped and said, ‘What are you doing Amity?’ She replied, ‘Just staring at this wall’. I asked if I could lean and stare for a while with her and she said ‘yes’. We starting chatting and after a while I asked what she thought about this whole ‘Jesus thing’ because she had been around since the start of the year when we decided to make our way the gospel of Mark. We just wanted to talk about Jesus. She said it was good, and then after a pause said, ‘I do have one question though. How do you know it’s all real?’ I explained that
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Jesus was a real person and we have historical evidence and all the rest. I told her that the real issue is not whether he is real or not, but what we do about it. He is either a liar, a lunatic or he is Lord. At that moment her friends walked past and she said, ‘see ya’ and ran off. That night after our program finished, our leaders got together to talk the night over and I shared about my conversation with Amity. We prayed and went home, but God was still at work. A couple of days later we were training some youth leaders and one of the things we looked at was how to explain the gospel in a way that makes sense to a teenager. The next week at youth, Tam was with her small group of year eight girls when Amity asked, ‘How does someone become a Christian?’ Tam used her new training to explain the Gospel message in a way that Amity and her friends could understand. During small group time, I floated around and visited all the small groups. When I poked my head into Tam’s group, Amity’s friends urged her to ask me the same question. I also shared the gospel with Amity and her friends, we gave them a magazine bible each and ate some junk food. That night after our youth program Tam and I shared our experience with Amity and how awesome it was that we had just done training on how to share the gospel. We realised that God was up to something. We committed to pray for every student, every day for the next week. We also thought it would be a good idea to do a gospel talk the following week
and ask our young people to respond. We prayed and went home, but God was still at work. At the next youth night, Amity said to Tam, ‘I have something to tell you. I went home last week and read the entire New Testament in the Bible that you gave me, and on Monday night, at home by myself I became a Christian!’ Wow! Two minutes later Tam and Amity told me the good news. Amity asked if she could tell the entire group, she did and everyone cheered. The next thing that happened was that I shared the gospel with the group and four more students responded. You know, during those three weeks God was working and we were responding. We didn’t make it happen; it wasn’t our brilliant and cutting edge program. All we did was read the Bible together and talk about who Jesus is. We just stared at a brick wall and asked, ‘What do you think about Jesus?’ We just prayed and gave out Bibles. We just did some simple training on a Sunday afternoon and committed to pray for a week. We just thought we would preach the gospel. As I look back on what God has done, I can’t help but be amazed at our God who works! ‘Jesus said to them, “My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I, too, am working”’ (John 5:17). Mark Westhuyzen QB Youth Ministries’ Team Leader & Associate Pastor, Enoggera Baptist Church www.qb.com.au The qb AUGUST 10
Finding your Family’s Secrets
In the early 1920s, a father told his 16 year old son that England in the post-war period held no future for a young man like him. So he was shipped off to Australia with other lads as part of a scheme to build up the colony (and so the Empire) by recruiting suitable youths to work on the land. After a few months basic training near Sydney, our young man was out on assignment at a dairy farm in southern Queensland where he met up with the caring family across the road. The next stop was jackerooing on a Darling Downs cattle property owned by a well known pastoral and political family. It was here that our young man celebrated his 21st birthday.
This is a true story of faith and fortitude. The details have come from the family’s records, church archives and various public sources. It is typical of many that could be told.
Baptist Heritage Queensland (BHQ) would like to see other families discover and share their stories and testimonies. From its extensive experience, BHQ can help with ideas, advice and suggestions about the best procedures and sources of information to find your family’s history. The resources of the Baptist Archives, located at the QB Centre in Mitchelton, are also available. BHQ has many other projects it would like to develop so volunteers are invited to contact the Archives at On one of his trips back to the dairy farming district in his email@example.com or phone 0404 083 108 or 3256 8897. Model T Ford, mutual friends introduced him to a young lady who was there on a short visit from her home north of David Parker Brisbane. Her family were devout Baptists, well known for QB Archives their witness and service. Having eyes for others at first, these two soon became more than friends, married and settled on Dear Editor, a local farm. I appreciated the article by Bill Hughes, ‘Don’t throw it out’ (The qb, June 2010) however, I was alarmed at the typical conversation recorded by Bill between himself and a church representative who telephones for information, having been given the task of writing a church history covering 50 years in two weeks! I hope this is not usually the case. It would be impossible, I’m sure, to do justice to such a task! At present I am writing (on and off) a history of Wondai Baptist Church for their centenary in 2012. I began in 2008. The research needed for such a project is very great indeed. Church historians, please take note and give yourselves plenty of time!
About this time, an itinerant Scottish evangelist, whose first trip to Queensland thirty years earlier was organised by the Presbyterian Church, was making one of his regular visits. Our young Englishman had never been personally interested in the gospel, but the down-to-earth style of the evangelist moved him to make a decisive response. The local church which nurtured him was Presbyterian in name but interdenominational in character, having been established years earlier by Baptist, Brethren and other families. In fact, the minister who was instrumental in getting the church building erected had been with the Churches of Christ but later became a Baptist – and some of his sons became pastors and missionaries. Finally, it was good to see the photograph of the Now a father, our Englishman went to war in the Pacific, and afterwards resumed his successful, if laborious, farming business. He supported many Christian and local community projects, and became involved in the Baptist fellowship when it eventually started in his district (and also in the nearby town where he and his wife finally retired). His children and their families have maintained their own witness in various parts of the country.
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old Dodge Gospel Waggon which I recall seeing in my boyhood when it was driven by the late Rev. A.J. Maxwell Howard as State Evangelist. I recall also the late Rev. Reg Jarrott, an evangelistic stalwart among Queensland Baptists who was pictured, and Beaudesert church building where I preached about three years ago. Thanks for the memories! Rev Dr John Lane Glen Innes NSW
Once upon a time there was a young girl who dreamed big dreams. She spent her days imagining herself as an astronaut, a ballerina or, maybe, a world changer. She had big dreams and believed anything was possible. By the age of fourteen her childhood dreams had been replaced by the opinions imposed on her by others. ‘You could never be a ballerina,’ they said. ‘You are much too fat! An astronaut? Well, you’re just not smart enough…A world changer? As if!’ Slowly but surely, her dreams were replaced by doubts. Her ‘possibles’ became ‘impossibles’ and her world grew smaller and darker. Her life grew mundane and she just went through the motions. She hoped for very little, in fact, she had no hope at all. But in that hopelessness she heard a distant voice. A voice telling her she was worthy and significant; a voice telling her that even in her hopelessness, she was deeply loved. This voice offered life, love and hope; would she believe or not? A decision was needed with ‘happily ever after’ hanging in the balance. She clung to that voice and began to look to a new hero. Her hero loved her unconditionally and changed her world forever. It took some time until she completely understood all her hero had rescued her from and all the purposes for which she was rescued. He replaced her doubts with assurance and her ‘impossibles’ became ‘possibles’ again. Her world opened and she rejoiced in her newness. Her hero loved her like no other and she found peace with him.
Dreaming big dreams ‘The Lord your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delights in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing’ (Zephaniah 3:17). Sue Peters State Director, Qld Baptist Women Contact Sue at sue@qbwm. org or 0438287638. Join the Qld Baptist Women group on facebook to keep up to date with the latest news or email Sue to receive the newest edition of The Link – keeping Qld Baptist Women connected.
QB Conferences It’s not too late! Don’t miss out on the She is… conferences planned for Qld Baptist Women for 2010. She is..conference, Brisbane (QB Centre, Gaythorne) 21 August . Contact firstname.lastname@example.org She is… conference, Townsville, 2 October. Contact email@example.com She is… conference, Hervey Bay, 23 October. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org
She dusted off the dreams of her childhood and together with her hero she dreamed even bigger. ‘Can you be a world changer?’ he asked. ‘Of course you can.’ www.qb.com.au The qb AUGUST 10
A melting pot Queensland Baptists’ QCCC Ministry caters to around 35,000 guests each year, many of them under 18. To reach people in camping we think it’s important for us to remain aware of their passions and the major influences on them. Modern society is a complex web of interlinked sub-cultures. Information technology and the rise of social media have increased the size and scope of sub-cultures by allowing fringe and niche groups to connect with others of like mind in the virtual world. When people gather around a set of common interests, forming a subculture, it’s inevitable that their interaction will be partly, sometimes greatly, influenced by their interests which then impacts their activities, their language and their priorities. In modern life we have the ability to move seamlessly between our various sub-cultures. Stop and think about your day and the sub-conscious changes you make in language and persona to fit different circumstances.
Here’s an obvious (and maybe unlikely) example: a Harley Davidson riding, church-going, soccer father, corporate lawyer who makes dramatic changes in his appearance, conversation and even language as he progresses from Friday mornings to Sunday nights. And this is entirely appropriate. Would he last long in his riding group if he turned up in his Armani suit and dominated bar-room conversation with the intricacies of the latest change to the tax laws? Would speaking ‘Christianese’ be useful in engaging the other fathers at rugby on Saturday mornings? Have you ever reflected on and identified your sub-cultures? What circles do you move in? What impact do your social networks and interest groups have on your priorities, your language, appearance and even your commitment to the Great Commission (making Jesus known)? The Great Commission does raise some interesting questions with respect to our sub-cultures:
Queensland Conference and Camping Centres. A ministry of the Queensland Baptists, QCCC operates some of South East Queensland’s most sought after camping and conference centres. Breathtaking scenery, modern facilities and dedicated staff will make your next event easy and memorable.
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1. Do our sub-cultures allow us to pursue the ‘share the gospel’ part of the Great Commission? Do we have interests and friends outside church circles and are we pro-active about our responsibility to share the importance of allegiance to the Kingdom with them in natural and constructive ways? 2. Do we effectively blend the language, passions and ideology of our sub-cultures with our proclamation of the gospel and training in the Way? Camping ministry is a melting pot. Each week we host groups from vastly different sub-cultures (and world views) and within each group there are variations. If camping is to capably fulfill its roles of hospitality, preaching, teaching and building into the lives of our guests, we, the staff, must be attuned to the sub-cultures of those we host. I believe that we will have a greater impact if our style and strategy makes the message of the Kingdom plain to our guests in their own settings, using their language (within reason) and by drawing analogies and object lessons from their own areas of interest. It’s probably why I think it’s important for us as Christians to be aware of modern cultural personalities (like Lady Gaga) and the influence their message has on those who deserve our best efforts in obedience to the Great Commission. In doing so, we follow in the footsteps of the Apostle Paul, who wrote: ‘I have, in short, been all things to all sorts of men that by every possible means I might win some to God. I do all this for the sake of the Gospel; I want to play my part in it properly.’ (1 Corinthians 9:22) Andrew Grant Director of QCCC Andrew.email@example.com
Joseph’s story is one of poverty... Read Joseph’s story in the brochure included, and see how you can make a difference.
Term Deposits 6 months 24 months 36 months
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Current interest rates and terms effective 01 JUNE 2010
To sponsor a child, call 1300 789 991 or visit www.shareanopportunity.org
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Funds for Kingdom Work Brochures about the Queensland Baptist Gift Foundation were sent to all our churches recently for distribution to congregations. The accompanying letter highlighted the tremendous potential of the Foundation to provide additional funds for our churches and other important Baptist ministries. This potential was demonstrated by the Foundation’s recent distributions to Ashgrove Baptist Church, Malyon College, Queensland Baptist Care and Baptist World Aid. The distributions were possible because a generous benefactor provided a gift to the Foundation to be invested with Baplink, thereby enabling $20,000 to be shared equally between the ministries every year, over a number of years.
To clarify these options, non-specific gifts or any other information, please contact Phillip McCallum, Director of QB Administrative Services, ph 3354 5600 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Trevor Owens Co-ordinator, Gift Foundation Cheque presentation: L-R: Phillip McCallum, Jon Campbell (QBC), John Sweetman (Malyon), Kevin Bird (ABC), Andy Coller (BWA)
Gifts of this nature during one’s lifetime, after tithes and offerings to the local church, are an excellent way of providing additional funding for Kingdom Work. Of course, not everyone is in a position to contribute to the Foundation in this life but most people can leave a lasting legacy from their estate when they go to be with the Lord. The Foundation’s website www.qb.com.au/ giftfoundation shows various options for making a gift now or as a bequest in a Will or in a letter to beneficiaries under a Will. Non-specific gifts are also vital to the effective operation of the Foundation.
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KEITH GEORGE DENHAM (1930-2010)
PASTOR HUGH JOSEPH (MAC) WATTS (1918-2010)
On 7 June 2010, Keith Denham left this earthly life for his eternal home but the legacy of his infectious smile and passionate Christian life lives on in the hearts and minds of all those who had the privilege of knowing him.
Mac Watts was born in Roma, Queensland and grew up in Yangan on the Darling Downs. After leaving school, he worked for his father in the family’s blacksmith shop and subsequently on many local farming properties.
Keith married Mable Cunningham in 1953 and together they faithfully served the Lord Jesus in church and many areas of community life. Keith spent 25 years in the Scouting movement including a time as Manager of the Scout Shop in Fortitude Valley. His lay ministry with Queensland Baptists began at the Albion Baptist Church and he devoted 22 years of his life to Queensland Baptist Care in various roles including Assistant Director, Paymaster and Workplace, Health and Safety Officer. Keith was a gifted evangelist, well versed in Biblical truth and a man of God who bathed everything in prayer. For example, he and QBC staff member and prayer warrior, Audrey Thomson, visited the newly acquired land where QB Wishart Village now stands, to claim the land and the proposed development for God’s purposes. God mightily used Keith in presenting the Good News of Jesus as Saviour and Lord to his family and countless others. He was a quiet achiever and a wonderful encourager who displayed a constant joy in the Lord. His life was a marvellous example of Christ-like servanthood. Keith lived wholeheartedly, yet humbly, to bring glory to God. Trevor Owens Former Director, QBC
Mac became a Christian at age 17 and commenced as a Presbyterian lay preacher. He served in the army during WW2 and in 1945, married Lorna Hallas. After the war, the couple ran a dairy and small crop farm and were members at Warwick Baptist Church. Mac and Lorna served in the Qld Baptist Home Mission, commencing full time ministry at Mt Morgan in 1956 followed by Cooroy, West Cooroy, Eumundi and Noosaville. From 1963-1971, Mac pastored the Park Avenue and Mt Morgan Baptist Churches, then finally Hervey Bay Baptist Church. Mac was also involved in inter-denominational ministries including Christian Endeavour, The British and Foreign Bible Society (The Bible Society) and Ministers’ Fraternals. In retirement, Mac was on the preaching roster for local Uniting Churches and appointed as ‘Minister to Isolated Baptists ‘ by The Baptist Union of Queensland. With the formation of the Fraser Coast Baptist church, Mac and Lorna were among the original members with Mac being one of the founding Pastors. With Lorna’s passing in 1999, Mac remained a member of the Fraser Coast Baptist Church until his death. In his latter years, Mac compiled books of his writings which included poems and hymns and he had a column in the local paper titled ‘Food for Thought’ which was keenly read. He lived a long life and the family is grateful that he did not go through an extended time of suffering before his death. Well done, good and faithful servant Alan Watts (On behalf of The Watts Family) www.qb.com.au The qb AUGUST 10
A brighter future for Joseph For many children, growing up in rural Uganda means a life of poverty. This poverty often means constant hunger, with most families only able to provide one or two meals a day. It can mean being enrolled in primary school but not going to classes. Although schooling is now free in Uganda, parents must pay for items like books and uniforms, and often the need for income means that children are sent out to work rather than sent to class. For Joseph (pictured), poverty meant being orphaned at just four years of age. In Uganda, it is estimated that there are over 2.5 million children who have lost at least one parent, over half of these due to AIDS. Joseph and his younger sister were able to move in with their grandparents and stay in their village, but this household was already stretched to provide even the most basic needs. Growing up in this kind of poverty, Josephâ€™s future looks bleak. Without good healthcare it is possible that childhood diseases and malnutrition could have long term effects on his ability to develop and learn. Without education it is unlikely he will be able to secure a job with decent wages. With few opportunities in his area for work, increasing demands of population growth on the land and increasingly unreliable weather conditions,
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This transformation is only possible because of funding from Australians who faithfully care for the poor by sponsoring children.
children like Joseph look set to live out their adult lives in the same poverty into which they were born. Poverty like this is not the life God intends. God has a particular concern for marginalised and poor children, and he urges his people constantly to look out for orphans or vulnerable children. For this reason, Baptist World Aid Australia’s SAO Children is centred on the needs of children and improving their well-being. About two years ago Joseph’s community started working with SAO Children in the hope that the poverty cycle could be broken and their children given a brighter future. Together they assessed the needs and developed a plan to address them. For Joseph, this program has already begun to have a positive effect. His grandmother joined a self help group with others from their village. Each week they meet to learn more about caring for their children, including what to grow to make sure their nutritional needs are met, simple health care and agricultural techniques. At each meeting, members contribute a small amount of money to the group’s savings. When these savings had built up, Joseph’s grandmother was able to take a loan which allowed her husband to open a small general store in their community. This small shop is helping provide extra income for the family and is enough to cover the costs of Joseph’s schooling and to gradually repay the loan. SAO Children is making a difference in Joseph’s life and in the lives of many other children in the community. By working alongside the community and enabling them to develop their own strategies, these improvements will continue for many years, even after the project has moved on to help another group of children living in poverty. This transformation is only possible because of funding from Australians who faithfully care for the poor by sponsoring children. You can be a part of this powerful partnership between Australians and Ugandans. Visit www.shareanopportunity.org or phone 1300 789 991. Baptist World Aid Australia Sources: SAO Uganda survey of target communities 2009; http://www.unicef.org/infobycountry/uganda_statistics.html
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New partners in the purposes of God What prompts a young married couple to leave their roles as supervising minister and qualified linguist to travel to Australia? They talk about God’s call and their response to go wherever he wants them to go. Maz and Esther have had a few surprises since moving to Australia. ‘It was hard for Ruatpuia, our eight month old son, when we arrived at Brisbane International Airport. He had to sit in a special child seat in Geoff Cramb’s car. He has never been separated from his mother before. He was not happy. Maybe he is a bit more used to that now.’ Another very surprising thing was to see people smoking in public. People smoke in Mizoram but not in public. It has also been hard for them to adjust to a lifestyle where people make appointments to visit. They are used to lots of people ‘dropping in’ on each other all the time. Nonetheless, they have found Australians to be very friendly. They have also discovered that Australians love to shorten people’s names. ‘Maz’ and ‘Puia’ are suggestions to help us out! The family is in Brisbane to prepare to go to South East Asia with Global Interaction, the Baptist cross-cultural agency. The City Tabernacle Baptist Church has provided a local church home and an inner city apartment for them.
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Their home area is Mizoram a province in North East India. There is a high Christian population there with a concern to share the good news of Jesus with those who have not heard. The Australian Government has approved the family’s residence here for no longer than 12 months. During this time they need to raise partners to assist them to go to South East Asia where they will join a team of Australians. Partnering with Indians in the purposes of God in South East Asia is a new venture for Queensland Baptists. I encourage Queensland Baptists, local churches and individuals, to take a new step in cross-cultural work by hearing their story and partnering with them. Our goal is to have their partnership team in place by the end of November; so far they have about 20% of what is needed. For further information and to invite Maz and Esther to local groups, contact the Global Interaction Queensland office, ph 3354 5603, email email@example.com. Geoff Cramb Global Interaction State Director
Jesus waits! Earlier this year, I preached at North-East Baptist Church for the first time. I commenced by telling the congregation a little about myself, including that I was originally from Collarenebri, a small town in North-West NSW. After the service, the Senior Pastor, Ian Hussey, came over and told me that in the early 1980s when he was living in Armidale NSW (400km away from Collarenebri), he and some other students had travelled there to conduct a kids’ holiday program. I asked, ‘Did it have a frog in it?’ to which he replied, ‘I think so’. We both cautiously agreed that I may have been a participant because there wasn’t much to do in Colly during holidays and one of my Aunties was part of the Anglican church at that time and I remember going to a program when I was about 10 years old. I remembered that I had kept a memento from the program (why is only apparent now!). It was a folded A4 sheet of paper with encouraging notes from the leaders of ‘The adventures
of Ernie the frog’. So, when I got home, I dug among some old papers and found it. My mum, who is staying with us for a while, heard me ‘cooee’ and wondered what was going on. There on the front page was this message, ‘Dear William, good luck in the future. Remember that Jesus is always there waiting for you... Ian Hussey’. How true those words from 1984 proved to be, truer perhaps than Ian, and certainly I, could have imagined because 15 years later I came to faith in a Baptist church in Townsville (1410km away from Collarenebri) and 26 years later I came to preach in Ian’s church in Nundah (645km away from Collarenebri). Billy Williams Associate Pastor Bridgeman Baptist Community Church Coordinator djaywunti, http://djaywunti.org.au/
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2000km journeys The 2000 Walk Three Aussie men, including Andrew Carnell from City North Baptist Church, will walk from Cairns to Stanthorpe to raise awareness that there are still 2000 languages - representing 350 million people - that need the Bible translated. David Carnell, Andrew Carnell and Andrew Sav (Dave, Carnsey and Sav) will walk 2000km over 81 days. Starting in Cairns on 25 August, the trio will walk south through Townsville, Mackay, Rockhampton, Bundaberg and Toowoomba. If all goes to plan, they will arrive safely in Stanthorpe on 11 November, Remembrance Day. Carnsey grew up on a farm just south of Stanthorpe. When he was 21, he came to know Christ personally and became heavily involved in youth work at Stanthorpe Baptist Church. Now studying at Malyon College, he is also the State Director for Operation Mobilisation. ‘I have experienced the love of God and the eternal security that comes through the gospel,’ says Carnsey. ‘My life was changed forever, but what about the millions who don’t have anything of God’s Word in their language? I want to invest my life in such a way that they too might experience the love, joy, peace, freedom and eternal hope that God has given me.’ God laid the idea for The 2000 Walk on Sav’s heart a couple of years ago and the concept grew steadily. As well as walking, PE teacher Dave is also responsible for logistics – such as coordinating accommodation and meetings en route. On average, the trio will hold an evening meeting at local churches and town halls every second day. The 2000 Walk will be long and hard, just like the task of translating the Bible into an additional 2000 languages. It’s too big a task to tackle alone, so Dave, Carnsey and Sav will work alongside Operation Mobilisation and Wycliffe Bible Translators. ‘Our aim is that this need will no longer be hidden,’ says Carnsey. ‘We want the Australian church to become aware. It’s sad that 2000 years after Jesus gave us the Great Commission, there are still 2000 language groups who don’t have access to the Bible. When we know the reality and fullness of who Jesus is and what he has done for us, this is a great injustice.’ For more information, visit www.the2000walk.com.
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The Great Aussie Rickshaw Ride Aussie aid organisation Symbiosis International is helping thousands of people in Bangladesh to overcome poverty, and they have taken the message of global poverty to Australian streets in a new way. The Great Aussie Rickshaw Ride commenced at Eumundi in mid July. The rickshaw – complete with a support team featuring Bangladeshi development workers – embarked on a 2000km journey down the east coast of Australia through Brisbane, Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne. The ride will end in Evandale, Tasmania on 19 September. As the Ride passed through Brisbane, visitors from Bangladesh spoke to groups at Cleveland and Gateway Baptist Churches and Hillcrest Christian College (a ministry of Reedy Creek Baptist Church). Attendees heard about life in Bangladesh, what Symbiosis is doing there the UN’s Millennium Development Goals to alleviate poverty. Symbiosis focuses on empowering people to help themselves rise above poverty and works with the poorest people in Bangladesh. The organisation has been praised by the Australian High Commissioner to Bangladesh for its work to empower women and help people learn skills to start their own businesses. The rickshaw will be welcomed at public gatherings in around 40 cities and towns along the route, where local sportspeople and celebrities will give rickshaw rides. There will also be visits to schools and community groups. Ride coordinator Jeff McClintock said the rickshaws were chosen as a symbol of the hard-working poor and to show that alleviating global poverty is achievable through peoplepowered change. ‘We are ordinary people, and change comes when people like us decide to take action,’ he said. Follow the ride at www.aussierickshaw.org and on Facebook and Twitter.
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Africa captures a heart Now 52, Debbie has four children under the age of eight years. She relishes her role as a ‘Mom’ more than anything else. Debbie with her adopted girls, Rebecca, Christy, Maddie and Stefi
When Debbie Brennocks left Townsville District Baptist Church to work for a year with Zimbabwe Youth for Christ (YFC), she defiantly stated that she would never become a missionary. She had some misconceptions about female missionaries and they didn’t fit her idea of fun! But Debbie did not understand the power Africa has to capture a heart. More than 20 years later, Debbie is the National Director of YFC and has adopted four beautiful girls who were either orphaned or abandoned. Debbie grew up attending Majestic Park Baptist Church with her family. In her late 20s she went to the North Queensland College of Ministries and was one of the first college students to live at Willow’s Lodge where she met Hamish and Sheila Grant. Hamish left his position as National Director, YFC Bulawayo, to accept a call to Townsville District Baptist Church as Youth Pastor and Sheila was House Mother at Willow’s Lodge. Meeting the Grants helped Debbie find her future direction. In those days the work of YFC was mainly evangelical but as circumstances changed in Zimbabwe, YFC also changed to meet the growing, differing needs of the youth. Much of this groundbreaking work has been 32
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due to Debbie’s vision and faith in God. She developed a deep friendship with local woman, Sandra Jones, who had been in foster care and sexually abused. They developed ‘Kids Kan’, a program which teaches children strategies to help them stand against sexual abuse. Over the next 12 years they visited hundreds of schools to share the program and counsel children. Debbie realised that many girls who were pregnant as a result of rape or sexual abuse were being ostracised by their families so YFC opened the Pregnancy Crisis Centre. Girls who report sexual abuse to the authorities often live in fear of their lives. In a country with high rates of HIV and an average lifespan of 37 years for men, often the abuser is the only breadwinner; with him in prison, the family starves. These girls needed a safe place to stay. YFC had been given Willow Park, a camp site on 180 acres of land. The girls moved in and soon a school was opened to meet their desperate need for education. During this time of tumultuous growth, Sandra was battling ovarian cancer. She died in September 2007, leaving a husband, four children and a devastated Debbie. To cope, she thrust herself even more into her work.
Now 52, Debbie has four children under the age of eight years. She relishes her role as a ‘Mom’ more than anything else. YFC now have more than 80 children in their care and staff have found safe homes for many more. Debbie says there is no point in telling a starving, cold, homeless, abused girl that God loves her. ‘First we must give them a safe place to stay, clothes to wear and food to eat. Then the love of God is evident through our actions,’ she says. That fact is evidenced when visitors watch the girls sing songs of praise to God. These girls have nothing, but spiritually they are abundantly rich. Last month, the Sandra Jones Children’s Village was opened at Willow Park but God has miraculously opened the door for them to purchase a fully furnished hotel which will provide a comfortable home for 100 children. Debbie is relying on God to supply the US$1 million needed to purchase this property. For more information contact Morag Roy, ph 4725 3797, email firstname.lastname@example.org or Kerri Taylor email@example.com.
Balancing old and new
News headlines began to hint at babies being dumped on rubbish tips or left out in the bush to die. Debbie’s connections with the Social Welfare Department made her aware of the opportunity to adopt one of these children. Stefi was adopted, followed a year later by Maddie who was left in a paper packet at a busy bus terminal. Debbie realised that girls, driven by desperation to dump their precious babies, needed an alternative. So the Window of Love opened in 2008 and YFC was fulfilling James 1:27, ‘Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this - to look after orphans and widows in their distress’.
It is my observation that the current fashion in scholarly circles is to cite, and refer to, only those scholars who have written during recent times. However, I believe that this modern trend of ignoring, to a large extent, the views of expositors of past ages is a great loss to the church. One principle of hermeneutics is that the Holy Spirit (the author of scripture), must interpret his writings to the church. This he has done throughout church history by enlightening the minds of those teachers whom he has raised up to instruct his people. He has furnished these expositors with learning, understanding and insight to enable them to interpret the Scriptures. These authors were as intellectually capable as we are, they studied the original languages, and they were equally able to read words in context. Furthermore, it would be arrogant to assert that they were less endued with the Holy Spirit than we are today.
Let us never forget that the text itself on which we base our beliefs is ancient. However, it is rendered timeless and authoritative because its author is the Holy Spirit. Similarly, the Holy Spirit’s work in enlightening teachers and commentators throughout the ages renders their works relevant and instructive to succeeding ages. We acknowledge that, with respect to the doctrines of the Trinity, the deity of Christ, his dual nature, justification by faith, and so on, the Holy Spirit guided Christians of long ago into unassailable truth. Therefore, should we not treat their other biblical insights with similar respect? Of course, I am not suggesting that church tradition is equal in authority to the Scriptures. It is not. However, to ignore the work of these gifted authors is to ignore a deposit of wisdom and knowledge which God has bequeathed to the church. Not only are their works a source of instruction to the modern church, they also serve as a preservative from error. As custom changes, so too authors, under the influence of cultural changes, propose new ideas. Others take these up, with the result that new interpretations of scripture sometimes receive greater emphasis than do the traditional views. The result is that, if only modern authors are cited, accepted interpretations of scripture passages can undergo change over a period of time. If we ignore the work of older authors and refer only to modern exegetes, we neglect one of the restraints against error which the Spirit has provided for the church. In our interpretations, then, I believe we should make use of the best of ancient and modern writings. The Lord taught his disciples: ‘Therefore every scribe who has been trained for the kingdom of heaven is like a master of a house, who brings out of his treasure what is new and what is old’ (Matthew 13:52, ESV). Therefore, including the work of older authors in our scriptural analysis has a twofold benefit: we access that accumulation of wisdom and instruction which the Spirit has imparted to the church, and we are encouraged to eschew cultural bias. Jim Greenbury firstname.lastname@example.org
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‘There goes the mob! ... I am their leader – I must follow them!’ French revolutionary leader (in cafe), circa 1848
On Saturday morning, we were in a breakfast for leaders of ministry areas in our church. Even though it started at 8:00 am, I was glad I was there. Some Saturday mornings it can take bit to wake me up, yet by the time Bill Mills was speaking I was all ears. The theme of the talk was Followership. He started by taking us to a scripture I hadn’t thought of for a while, at least in the way he was highlighting, and certainly not in my leader-like thoughts! Sheep was the topic, that we are called sheep by Jesus. Not lions, eagles or other smart and strong animals (in this passage), but sheep. So what is it about sheep that we need to know? We need to know that sheep, at least in Jesus’ times, knew the voice of their shepherd. They were followers. If the shepherd called they responded. It seems that sheep were not occupied with too much strategy and planning. Mostly they were eating, standing around, having a rest, making noises, breeding and generally being together. The shepherd set the direction. He would look for the safe places and the areas with rich food and water for the sheep so that they could continue to live and grow. If the shepherd decided they should move on, he would lead them out of the old place and into the new. If there was an attack, the shepherd would defend them. Inside me there is a sheep. I don’t know how clever you think you are, but many, many days I do not feel clever. Many days I do not feel strong or powerful. How about you? Sometimes I see a number of choices ahead and I feel the weight of making decisions. Some days there are challenges and dangers in the responsibilities I have as a wife, mum, daughter, friend and minister - somewhat sheepish really. Jesus called the twelve to come and be with him. The call was to come and be with him before it was a call to go into all the world. Certainly he said to Peter to come and follow him and that he would make Peter into something unusual. The making of us, that crafting and developing which God does in our character, our hearts, our activities, our capacities all comes after we go to him and follow him.
So how did this reminder of sheep-likeness affect me on Saturday morning? I realised afresh that I am in good care and that I can relax. If I concentrate on listening, hanging with the sheep, staying or moving when called, then the matters which feel like they require some kind of lion or eagle like performance will come from following the shepherd. His strength, care and wisdom are always at work, whether I am lionish or sheepish. This feels very different from feeling I must make smart choices, outperform, outlast even myself, out-wit the enemies I face, perform some magnificent feat whilst looking like an eagle soaring on the wind. Sheeplikeness doesn’t make us passive. We will run when the shepherd calls and for as long as he wants us to. We will live in the contexts he sets us in and become the people he is making us to be.
... then come follow me ... Jesus
Bill Mills talked about an aggressive response to the master’s voice. It seems too easy to be aggressive about other things, such as someone blocking both lanes of traffic or double parked in a crowded carpark. Or perhaps we get aggressive in the pursuit of success, or in the defence of our possessions or careers. The call is not to be a sluglike creature, but to be an energetic responder. Somehow, being a follower of Jesus offers more challenge, more peace and possibly some wilder pastures than we might have chosen. It may also mean more rest times and less burden shouldered on our own. Our work is what he calls us into, our rest is snoozing he calls us into, our grazing ground is the grazing ground he has provided. So I am going to nurture my ‘inner sheep’, grazing, being with my fellow sheep, moving around as the shepherd directs and keeping my ear attuned to him so that I can relax about all the dangers, toils and snares that are in my environment. Do you want to join me in being a follower?
Monica O’Neil Director, VOSE leadership Reprinted with kind permission, The Advocate (July 2010)
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Going rGaga s d a e h r i e in th
e t s n o m e th
Something that hasn’t changed in a long while (if my father whistling Ella Fitzgerald tunes is any guide) is the soundtrack to young life provided by popular music. You only need to look at the creepy nostalgia for 80s music among my Generation X peers to understand the impact that music has on teenage identity. In the past year a new, particularly bright star shot across the music stratosphere. Lady Gaga, a moniker drawn from Queen’s 80s hit ‘Radio Gaga’, is a 24 year old native of New York. It’s been a while since we’ve seen a pop icon achieve such rapid prominence and influence. Her break-out single was less than 18 months old in March 2010 when Time Magazine named her as the most influential artist/performer in the world. In recent weeks she became the first celebrity to gather 10,000,000 ‘friends’ on Facebook; a number that would beat most of the highest selling albums of all time. Yet in my travels it seems that most over 30s (particularly in Baptist circles) recognise the name but know little of the Gaga message. What is Gaga’s message to today’s generation? What is being lyrically hard-wired into their brains with catchy tunes? How can we understand the Gaga worldview and put that knowledge to good use in reaching a needy world? Just dance: Gaga’s first hit single didn’t set the world alight on release. It gathered momentum after it became an Australian nightclub favourite and Australia initially drove its worldwide chart success. It’s little wonder because the song reads as a laudatory commentary on the nightclub, binge drinking culture so prevalent in Australia. The heroine staggers from misadventure to misadventure, increasingly ‘hosed’, to the driving refrain that everything will be alright if you ‘Just dance’ (2008). I suggest that this four minute pop frenzy enjoys significantly more space in the average teen’s mind than the federal government’s alcohol education program which cost millions of dollars.
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She’s got to love nobody: It’s hard to believe it has been a quarter of a century since a firm parental hand directed my prying ‘tween’ eyes away from a poster for Madonna’s ‘Like a Virgin’ album (1984). Some social commentators refer to Gaga as a Madonna clone and/or wannabee. There are certainly similarities because Madonna is probably the last pop personality to rise to such a position of prominence through a combination of catchy tunes, outlandish fashion and media notoriety. However, I think that there are subtle differences between the images of female sexuality peddled by Madonna and Gaga. Madonna’s was an assertive, brassy femininity. As a woman out and proud about her sexuality and her promiscuousness she gave lyrical voice to the 60s sexual revolution. But Madonna still demonstrated some feminine allure whereas Gaga’s femininity and sexuality might best be described as her reaping what Madonna sowed.
‘What does the slavish and loyal devotion of Gaga’s fans to her message tell us…and how can we use this knowledge to reach a hurting generation?’ Gaga doesn’t waste time asserting her sexuality or even her dominance. She assumes it. She portrays herself as predatory, callous and dismissive. Boys are a commodity to be chased, used for entertainment and discarded. Yet she also vents her pain at abandonment and neglect by former boyfriends. It reads a little like someone who’ll dish out a casual attitude to relationships, but doesn’t like living with the consequences. Is her dismissive attitude towards commitment and true intimacy really a calloused veneer put up to protect her from further pain and disappointment?
In the past year a new, particularly bright star shot across the music stratosphere. Lady Gaga, a moniker drawn from Queen’s 80s hit ‘Radio Gaga’, is a 24 year old native of New York. Monster: It is inevitable that most under 25s are exposed to Lady Gaga’s music and message. The tunes are irresistibly catchy so it’s fair to say that (to coin a Gaga-ism) she’s become the ‘monster in their heads’. Take her next likely single, ‘Monster’ (2009). As Christians we could tut-tut at the content and consider prohibition to try to protect our teens from it. But to do so might cut us off from hearing and understanding the screams of desperation in our society as families break down and social mores become increasingly rubbery. Instead, we need to be aware of the Gaga phenomenon and ask the question: ‘What does the slavish and loyal devotion of Gaga’s fans to her message tell us about the state of the
next generation of young life and love and how can we use this knowledge to reach a hurting generation?’ Edited excerpt from a series of blogs on the topic of Lady Gaga, her music and message available at www.andrewgrant.me Andrew Grant
References: Lady Gaga. ‘Just Dance’, The Fame (2008) Interscope Records. Lady Gaga. ‘Poker Face’, The Fame (2008) Interscope Records. Lady Gaga. ‘Monster’, The Fame Monster (2009) Interscope Records. Madonna. Like a Virgin (1984) Sire, Warner Bros.
Christian Cruising Join Christian groups on cruises. Cruising is a great holiday option that offers quality time away for singles, couples and families. You unpack once, all meals, activities and entertainments are provided and you get to visit new places. Cruising also provides wonderful opportunities for Christian witness as people meet others and develop friendships. NEWS! Join a small group to cruise the Antarctic in November 2011. Fly to/from Buenos Aires. Cruise to the Falkland Islands, South Georgia and the Antarctic continent. Landings in all places to meet local people. To register your interest in this cruise, or to receive regular information on cruising throughout the world, specials as they are released, on board credit for cruises booked, go to email@example.com. Christian Cruising will match or better any published cruise offer.
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Please Pray AFGHANISTAN: CALL FOR EXECUTION OF CONVERTS TO CHRISTIANITY Afghan believers – all converts from Islam – are living in fear following calls from Afghan media and politicians for the execution of converts from Islam, in line with Islamic sharia law. Many homes in Kabul have been searched; dozens of Afghan Christians have fled their towns, and some have even left the country. On 27 May, two-year-old television footage was broadcast purporting to show Afghan Muslim converts to Christianity, including scenes of baptisms. The footage triggered a frenzied anti-Christian response, including a protest by a group of Kabul University students who shouted death threats and demanded the expulsion of foreigners accused of trying to convert Afghans from Islam. Two of the Afghan Christians who appeared in the broadcast were arrested and shown again on national TV on 30 May. One was pressured on the TV program to return to Islam, and the other was shown repeating the Islamic creed and asking forgiveness for having left Islam. The TV presenters urged viewers to find more Afghans who had left Islam and report them to the police. On 31 May the Deputy Secretary of the Afghan Lower House of Parliament called in Parliament for the public execution of the Afghan Christians shown in the TV program. Some members of the House strongly condemned the activities of foreign organisations involved in preaching Christianity in Afghanistan and called for groups seeking the conversion of Muslims to be expelled from the country. That same day two Western NGOs with the word ‘church’ in their name were suspended, accused of promoting Christianity, while other groups were put on a list for further investigation. On 1 June, a spokesman for President Hamid Karzai said that the president was taking a personal interest in the situation and had ordered immediate and serious action to prevent any more conversions.
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On 5 June, Interior Minister Hanif Atmar announced in parliament that the government had a list of 23 people, Afghans and foreigners, whom they were seeking to arrest. Subsequent reports indicate that there have been further arrests of Afghan Christians. A letter of 9 June from the Afghan Christian community in New Delhi, India, said, ‘We do not know how the whole world and especially the Global Church is silent and closing their eyes while thousands of their brothers and sisters (Body of Christ) are in pain, facing life danger and death penalty and are tortured, persecuted and called criminals.’ Source: Barnabas Fund
The Islamisation of the West The Barnabus Fund reports that since the 1960s large numbers of Muslims have been migrating to the West. Muslim migration is unusual because of radicals within the community who are deliberately seeking to create dramatic changes in their host societies: they want Islam to gain social, cultural, economic and political power. It is important that democratic Western societies do not give up their hard-won heritage of equality before the law, freedom of expression and freedom of religion. For Christians, the growing Islamisation of the West can be seen as both a challenge and an opportunity to sharpen our thinking and renew our evangelism. As we Christians see Muslim zeal, commitment, and willingness to sacrifice, we should be driven to repent, to pray for revival and act boldly for God in this generation. We need to stand firm on our Biblical foundations, beware of compromises and reach out in love to Muslims, offering them the Gospel of salvation in Christ. Full article is available at http://barnabasfund. org/AU/News/Articles-research/
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A message to Ugandans after the bomb blasts of 11 July I learned, with great shock, of the bomb blasts that went off at Kyadondo Rugby Club and Ethiopian Restaurant in Kabalagala, killing and injuring many innocent people who had converged to watch the World Cup Final on Sunday night. As a result, there is a spirit of gloom and doom over the city of Kampala and the people of Uganda. Many people are bereaved; parents and children have been separated; brothers and sisters, lovers and friends are all feeling a great sense of loss and there is great pain. This act of malice and hatred towards mankind is completely ungodly, especially towards innocent and unsuspecting persons. I condemn this act in the strongest terms possible and hope to see the perpetrators of this hideous crime brought to justice. In the mean time, I call upon each one of us to desist from anger and revenge; this will only perpetuate the pain we already feel. Revenge is not a solution and neither is a sectarian approach to this problem helpful. Let us instead now focus our energies on being a part of the fight against terrorism in our country. Each one of you can use your eyes as a great weapon to fight this evil. Even as we do so, let us not breed unnecessary suspicion against one another but instead seek for the common goal of a peaceful and just society. Remember a peaceful society is the right of every one regardless of their age, race, gender or religious inclination. It may cost this nation a lot to try and be a good neighbour to the Somalis who are struggling to have a governable nation.
To the bereaved, I extend my sincere condolences. We share in your pain and wish you God’s comfort during this difficult time. And to the entire nation, I ask you to fix your eyes on the cross of Jesus. The cross is a reminder of human cruelty to an innocent person; the agony of pain He went through enables Him to share in our pain as well. He had to pay a price for us to receive our freedom. The blood of the Ugandans spilled on Sunday will bring to Ugandans peace. Perpetrators may not know what they are doing but Jesus prayed a powerful prayer, “Father forgive them for they do not know what they are doing.” Yet with this blood on their hands, the Righteous God will be the one to avenge our cause while human justice will also take its course. For indeed our help comes from the Lord as Psalm 46:1 says, “God is our refuge and strength, an everpresent help in trouble.” I pray for the President, his Cabinet, the Members of Parliament, the Police and all Security Agencies as they address this challenge. May God’s wisdom direct you and give you victory over the enemies of our people. And may Ugandans remain united during such a trying time. The Peace of God be over this nation now and forever. For God and my country! The Most Rev. Henry Luke Orombi, Archbishop of the Church of Uganda and Bishop of Kampala Diocese. www.churchofuganda.org The qb AUGUST 10
BOOKS . DVDS . MUSIC BOOK: ‘Making Sense of the Book of Revelation’ Laurie Guy The Book of Revelation has been a puzzle to many readers of Scriptures. How are we to understand its graphic language and fantastic imagery? Is it describing a picture of the end of human civilization and the world or was it written more as a pastoral word to the church which was living in perilous times near the end of the first century? Laurie Guy is Vice-Principal and lecturer in New Testament Studies at Carey Baptist College (Auckland, NZ). His latest book offers a helpful and readable overview of the book of Revelation for the serious scholar and the interested student of the Scriptures. It’s not the kind of book one might read like a novel or for relaxation. It’s more something to be read with an open Bible alongside, referencing the chapters and verses it seeks to explain, and perhaps re-reading certain sections. The Book of Revelation stirs powerful emotions, fascinates, inspires and mystifies. In the opening chapters Laurie Guy deals helpfully with the different ways people approach Revelation. Some have viewed it as futuristic road map for the end of the age and a description of the final victories yet to be won by Christ. Others read John’s Revelation as a more contemporary plea for justice for oppressed Christians in the first century. Still others view the imagery of Revelation as more symbolic and typical of apocalyptic writings of the time. Guy discusses these various approaches with simple clarity and sheds helpful light on how much of the imagery John employed made particular sense to those who first received it. Many may have assumed John wrote the book of Revelation in response to a dramatic vision, perhaps not himself understanding all that he was writing. More probably John wrote with an appeal to literary styles and apocalyptic genre that was not uncommon in his day, and in the process displays a sense of brilliance as a communicator – all of which was orchestrated and inspired by the Holy Buy 1 Coffee Spirit.
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to redeem this voucher and check out the wide range of books, music and resources available. 442-444 Enoggera Road, Alderley
“Making Sense of the Book of Revelation” is not for every Christian reader. It will certainly make you think and may at times confront some of the popular views of eschatology that are widely held but poorly grounded in biblical scholarship. But for the person who loves God’s Word and is willing to wrestle with a complex and mysterious text, it is a compelling read. Available from Koorong Books, http:// orders.koorong.com/search/product/ view.jhtml?code=9781573125437 Brian Winslade, National Director, Baptist union of Australia.
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BOOK: What’s in the Bible? Phil Vischer (Veggie Tales) Everyone owns one. What’s in it? Enter VeggieTales legend Phil Vischer and WHAT’S IN THE BIBLE? (WITB) his new 13-DVD series. Led by puppet Buck Denver - WITB will stir laughter and love of the Bible for anyone with a sense of humor and a half hour, but it’s aimed at children ages 5-11. From Chicago-based Jellyfish Labs, Vischer and team open the Bible, Genesis to Revelation, to new generations: how the Bible formed, its major themes and leading figures, even terms such as Vulgate, Septuagint, Canon, and Apocrypha. ‘I picture the kid in the back of Sunday school class - with the questions teachers dread. I know that honest answers now help solidify faith long-term,’ Vischer said. Select theologians comb every script to accurately present the Bible on ground common to the broadest number of believers. ‘We work hard to show respect all around,’ Vischer said. VeggieTales has sold more than 50 million DVDs and produced two theatrical films around Bible stories. WITB plugs in the entire Bible. This comes in a groundswell of new concern for Bible literacy and because today’s kids learn visually. Bestselling author Randy Alcorn emailed Vischer: ‘[My grandson and I] watched together and again the next day and the next, bonus features and all, until we had to leave. Matthew is now a devoted fan of Buck Denver and the other characters.’ Alcorn also liked, ‘the depth of biblical background and commentary on God’s great drama of redemption.’ ‘We must learn the language of our audience,’ said C.S. Lewis, who connected children to God. ‘For this generation, visual is fundamental to learning,’ Cambridge scientist, Alister McGrath said. ‘By the time kids see the final DVD,’ said Phil, ‘they’ll know the entire Bible.’ www.WhatsintheBible.com WORD bookstores stock the first two DVDs in this new series (at $14.95 each). A third DVD will be released soon.
An update from Wendy Time really does fly when you’re having fun! It’s a year since I concluded my role at Queensland Baptists but it’s been good to keep in touch with some of The qb readers and to share in your life stories. Now, a year later and a year older, here is a quick update on how the next leg of my life journey is unfolding. I am running for a Senate seat at this Federal election for Family First. But there is so much behind that short sentence! I have a passion that I am confident we all share – to protect our children and to stand against all legislation that negatively affects them both physically and spiritually. One critical issue that needs addressing has led me to launch ‘Outdoor Advertising should be G Rated’, a national campaign aimed at protecting the precious innocence of our children and giving back to parents the authority to make the choices they believe are best for their family viewing. Our children inhabit our public spaces but images and messages that are not allowed on TV during general viewing time are forced upon us in the outdoors. The involuntary nature of exposure to these images undermines the authority of parents to determine what their children see. Experts agree that the sexualisation of our culture is having a negative impact on our children, but the Advertising Standards Bureau does not consult child development professionals when deliberating on complaints about children being exposed to sexualised imagery or text. I believe that they contravene their own code of ethics every time a sexually explicit billboard is displayed. Sexual imagery is undoubtedly in contravention of prevailing community standards for children’s viewing.
Billboards do not discriminate in terms of audience or time zones. Billboards are not vetted before they appear in the public arena. Even if an ad is eventually deemed unsuitable, the damage has been done and the desired marketing goal has been achieved. Many images in outdoor advertising would be deemed sexual harassment if they were in an office/work space. The shocking irony of this is that when I sought to put up a billboard with the slogan ‘OUTDOOR ADVERTISING SHOULD BE G RATED’, the artwork was rejected by major billboard companies in Brisbane because it was bad for their businesses. Although my advertisement did not breach any advertising standards, it did not fit the ideology of the media companies. After significant lobbying and support from community groups the billboard finally went up in Carina. Response was immediate and the petition webpage crashed as people logged on to sign up. The self-regulatory nature of the Advertising Standards Bureau is clearly not working. All complaints received regarding the three most controversial advertisements last year were dismissed. How can the Advertising Standards Bureau seriously claim to be representing prevailing community standards? Will you sign the Petition to the Senate for them to address this issue? You can do this electronically at www.wendy4senate.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org for the petition which can be circulated at your church/life group. Wendy Francis was previously Editor of The qb. www.qb.com.au The qb AUGUST 10
THE BIBLE AND THE ENVIRONMENT
What does the Bible say about the environment? It would be wrong to try to make the Bible an environmental text book. It isn’t. Its purposes are much wider and especially concern the salvation of human beings. Yet it does speak on environmental issues.
Yet Genesis also tells us, God said, ‘Let us make man in our image, in our likeness; and let them rule [have dominion] over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground’ (Genesis 1:26-28).
The Bible’s first environmental statement is ‘In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth’ (Genesis 1:1). If God has created this world, do we have the right to spoil or destroy it? Indeed, environmental care is actually taught in Genesis. Adam and Eve were given the task of tending the Garden of Eden. God’s plan for them was ‘to work’ and ‘take care of’ the garden (Genesis 2:15), not wreck it.
This passage teaches first that human beings, men and women, are made in the image of God. That clearly separates us from all other creation, animate or inanimate. It is particularly important to accept this in our age, because some today are attempting to erode the distinction between human beings and other creatures. Secondly, it teaches that we have ‘dominion’ over all these other creatures. Some
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regard the idea of human beings having dominion over creatures as an excuse for pillaging nature, so dominion teaching always needs to be presented alongside the principle that we are put here to care for creation, not to destroy it. Having dominion does not give us the right to destroy anything and everything. Psalm 104 makes it very clear that God specifically provides for all Earth’s creatures, not just us. It says, He makes springs pour water into the ravines, It flows between the mountains. 11 They give water to all the beasts of the field; The wild donkeys quench their thirst…. 13 He waters the mountains from his upper chambers; the earth is satisfied by the fruit of his work. 14 He makes grass grow for the cattle, and plants for man to cultivate – bringing forth food from the earth…. 10
In Job 38 and 39 God glories in his creation, including wild animals. Yet human beings are above all other earthly creatures. Jesus said, ‘Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?’ (Matthew 6:26). Extreme environmentalists either totally reject God or see him as part of creation. This ‘dark green’ option is not open to us who believe that the Bible is the word of the creator God. To the ‘dark green’, the earth or the universe calls the shots. To the Christian, God through his word calls the shots, which leads to what one might call a ‘light green’ approach to the environment. Many extreme environmentalists seem to regard any animal, insect or fish as being as important as a human being with the same right to life, and they seem to regard plants almost as highly (but one has to eat something). It is this ‘dark green’ perspective that had people protesting when President Obama swatted a fly during a 2009 TV interview. While flies continue to spread disease (not their created purpose, I suspect), I say, ‘Keep swatting, Mr President!’ The Apostle Paul said,
as we n o i t a f it is o k Salv n i lly th lone, norma an beings a m on for hu ’s redempti d but Go race all b will em , because on creati creation. is it is h
‘Creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed. For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope, that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God. We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time’ (Romans 8:19-22). Clearly, God has planned the redemption of the whole universe; a new heavens and a new earth. Salvation as we normally think of it is for human beings alone, but God’s redemption will embrace all creation, because it is his creation. David Malcolm Bennett
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LIKE A CHALLENGE? WELCOME TO THE FUN ZONE! COMPLETE THESE TO WIN PRIZES!
Sudoku rules: Each row, column and block must contain one of the numbers from 1 to 9. No number may appear more than once in any row, column or block. When you’ve filled the entire grid, the puzzle is solved. Sukodu solutions to: QB Magazine, PO Box 6166 Mitchelton Qld 4053 Two correct entries will be chosen to receive a $30 Word bookstore voucher. Don’t forget to include your full name and contact details. Name Address
Sudoku puzzle provided by www.sudokuoftheday.com visit them and get a new Sudoku every day!
In God’s Image Try this at home. You will need: a mirror (possibly two), signs with verses from Psalm 139, paper, pens, and a place to hang up your drawing. Steps: 1. Read Psalm 139 and write some of the verses out and place them around your mirror. Do you know just how wonderful you are? Have you ever really understood that God put you together, every part of you known and understood before you were even a dream in your parents’ hearts? 2. Have a good look in the mirror – read some of the verses around it and thank God for making you just who you are. 3. Using your paper and pens, draw a portrait of yourself and tell God ‘thanks for making me just as I am’. Ask God to keep showing you what he wants you to do with all of the great gifts and talents he has given you. 4. Send your drawing (don’t forget to add your name, address and age!) to The qb, PO Box 6166 Mitchelton Q 4053.
The qb AUGUST 10 www.qb.com.au
Well done, Channah (7) and Talitha (5) who sent in their drawings about what makes them happy. Channah loves ballet while Talitha loves playing at the park.
Send completed entries to qb magazine, PO Box 6166 Mitchelton Q 4053.
Creative Captions Win a Word Bookstores Gift Voucher Submit your creative caption for the photo shown to the right via email: email@example.com or post to PO Box 6166 Mitchelton Q 4053
‘This is not what I expected when I heard God’s call to preach to the masses!’ Congratulations to Maxine Brasch.
Phillip McCallum at the door of one of our churches (and yes, that is tumbleweed!)
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Pastor Sandy Bay Baptist Church (Hobart, Tasmania) is seeking to call a full-time Pastor. Full job details, contacts and application information can be viewed at http://sbbc.net/pastorsearch.
Rockhampton Baptist Tabernacle is seeking to appoint an ASSOCIATE PASTOR-CHURCH DISCIPLESHIP Full-time Is God calling you to an exciting ministry of whole of church discipleship? Are you passionate about helping people to grow in Christ? Are you a team player who wants to work with a great team? Could you live in the relaxed but developing regional city of Rockhampton? Rockhampton Baptist Tabernacle is located on 10.5 hectares in a booming city of over 60,000 people. We seek an energetic proactive team player to lead our church into intergenerational discipleship. We are a strong missions’ based church. Our children and youth ministries are healthy with good leadership in place. The person appointed will provide spiritual guidance to these thriving ministries. The appointee will be someone who: -has some ‘runs on the board’ -is in touch with children and youth -can see the bigger picture of intergenerational discipleship -relates well with adults. Being able to leap tall buildings in a single bound will also be helpful! The appointee will inspire, recruit and develop new and existing leaders, and help our youth and children to follow Jesus.
Accommodation - AROUND THE STATE CALOUNDRA: Seafarer Chase luxury 2 b/r holiday apartments on the Sunshine Coast. Ocean views, heated pool, BBQ, security parking, close to beaches, shops, cinema and bowling club. Contact Marianne/Martin Burton Phone/Fax 5491 7155.
CALOUNDRA: GOLDEN BEACH - Highset three bedroom holiday home. Weekends or weekly. Pets OK. Close to beach. Phone 0402 077 822 or email@example.com. CALOUNDRA: KINGS BEACH - Holiday unit, modern, pool, 100m from Kings Beach. From $360 pw. Phone Ray 0427 990 161. COOLUM: 3 brm beach unit, new facilities, ocean views $250 w/e, $470 week *excludes holiday periods. Phone 0411 222 787, email firstname.lastname@example.org. MALENY: Self catering fsc cottage, sleeps 4. Quiet. Walk to town. Phone 5462 2645 or email email@example.com.
FOR HIRE Large Auditorium FOR HIRE: Seats 290. Qld Baptists Centre at Gaythorne. Phone Helen 07 3354 5600 for more information or visit www.qb.com.au – venue hire.
FOR SALE SOUND: Yamaha GA24/12 desk. 24 input/10 output channels - $1500.00 Lexicon MX200 2 channel FX unit with custom patch and insert leads - $150.00. Phonic PLC3200 dual compressor limiter with gate - $100.00. Pair of EV SH1502ER 200W 2 way 15” Speakers - $400.00. Phone John, 0412 718 829 BOOKS, VIDEOS, DVDS: Christian materials, $5 -$10 ea. fiction/non-fiction, Macarthur, Lucado, Bullock, comedians, Israel. Five DVD set on Israel military history. For further information phone 4974 7428.
Please contact Rockhampton Baptist Tabernacle phone 4926 9669 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for an information pack. www.rockybaptist.org.au
INTEGRITY TRAVEL Make your travel/holiday bookings with Integrity Travel and assist missions. Join escorted tours in 2010 and 2011 to Europe, south Africa, Phone Norman 07 3863 1007 or visit www.integritytravel.com.au
News! Cruise specialist agency, Integrity Travel, is about to commence a Christian cruising program.
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