Pastors eNews - December 2018 - No 2

Hi, fellow pastors and leaders,

I was reminded again this week through the words of Zechariah, father of John the Baptist, of the beauty of what God was bringing to pass in the events of the incarnation. Zechariah’s prophecy in Luke 1 finishes with some wonderful words:

“Because of God’s tender mercy,
the morning light from heaven is about to break upon us,
To give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death,
and to guide us to the path of peace.”

What a great promise for us as we seek to share the Christ of Christmas with our wider communities… and as we evangelise ourselves again with the story of his coming and all it means.

With Christmas just around the corner, I want to take the opportunity to thank you for all you do in leading and ministering among our churches. I pray that over this season you may sense a closeness to Jesus and refreshment in your service for Him. And for those who are taking holidays may you know a renewal of energy for the ministry God has called you to.

From everyone at the Baptist Association, have a wonderful Christmas.

Steve Bartlett | Director of Ministries

The Gathering - Our New Event - 2nd May 2019

‘The Gathering’ is your Association’s new major event building on the incredible feedback received from the 2018 ‘Celebrate 150’ event. The Gathering is an opportunity to gather together and celebrate our movement of churches.

We want ‘The Gathering’ to grow you. To grow your heart for God and all He has called you to. To grow your passion for your local ministry and mission. To grow your connection to our tribe and what we can achieve together.

The Gathering is your opportunity to be connected, inspired, equipped and sent back to the local church, community and family, blessing them out of what you have received.

The Gathering will be held on the 2nd of May at Le Montage in Lilyfield and follow on from our annual assembly on the evening of the 1st of May. The Gathering is for all the people in your church and is a great platform to inspire your people.

Don’t miss this exciting new format – make sure you put this event in your church calendar and be a part of something new.

More information will be sent in the new year and you can keep updated on The Gathering website www.thegathering.com.au

Baptist Ministry Centre - Christmas Office Hours

Please be advised that the Baptist Ministry centre will be closed from Monday 24th December 2018 and will reopen Wednesday 2nd January 2019.

For urgent insurance needs or issues during this time, please contact Tim Williams on 0403 615 033 and leave a detailed message.

For Standards issues or reporting please use the 1300 647 780 standards hotline or visit https://nswactbaptists.org.au/help-support-confidential-reporting/ for more information. 

Pastors Survey - Reminder

Thanks to all pastors who have so far completed the third wave of the National Baptist Pastors’ Health Survey. We have almost reached the numbers we need for State-specific feedback. If you have not yet done so, please complete this important survey via this link: baptistleadersurvey.ncls.org.au

Children & Family Ministry Connect - 2nd March 2019

Children & Family Ministry Connect is a morning of community, input, resource sharing, ideas and refreshment!

When: Saturday, March 2nd in 11 locations across NSW and ACT.

Where: Alstonville, Berry, Canberra, Dubbo, Epping, Gymea, Narrabeen, Narara Valley, Minchinbury, Taree and Wagga Wagga.

Children & Family Ministry Connect is for everyone who works with children in our churches, both paid and volunteer, through Sunday kids programs, mid-week Kids’ Clubs, Playgroups, Holiday Programs or intergenerational ministries.  

The theme for the morning is “Welcome”, and we are excited to welcome back Richard Black, the founder and Managing Director of Strength to Strength as our main speaker.  There will also be practical workshops and resource sharing, as well as time for personal and team reflection.  We will connect for part of the morning via live video link, while other parts will be facilitated locally. 

The cost is only $10 for everyone who registers before Feb 18, 2019.  What a great opportunity to invest into the volunteers who serve in these significant ministries at your church by enabling them to attend this training together.  We believe that it will be a wonderful opportunity for your team to connect, learn, evaluate and be refreshed.

Registrations are now open at www.baptistcfm.org.au.  If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email: kidsmin@nswactbaptists.org.au or call us on 9868 9200.  We can’t wait to connect with your kids’ ministry team on 2 March!

Sydney Alliance - Public Engagement on Affordable Housing

As you are aware, Baptist Churches throughout the country have spent time during 2018 advocating for more affordable and social housing so that women, children and men leaving violent homes have a safe place to live.  We now have a chance to join in an event to ask our politicians to make concrete commitments in this area. You are invited to attend a Housing Assembly in Town Hall on March 14, 2019.  March 14 is nine days before the next NSW election.  Join 2500 leaders and citizens to stand together for the common good. Together we will be seeking clearconcrete commitments on affordable housinghousehold energy and fair rental laws from both state and federal politicians seeking your vote.

As you may know, the Baptist Association NSW & ACT partners with the Sydney Alliance on several initiatives to help make Sydney a more welcoming and liveable city for all.  Sydney Alliance, Vinnies NSW and the Everybody’s Home Campaign are jointly hosting the Assembly.  This is a wonderful chance to be involved in civic practice and to advocate in a very public way for a cause that we have already put a lot of effort into.  We are hoping to have at least 100 Baptists attend.

If you are interested in attending, could you please register by December 30 at https://register.eventarc.com/41575/march-2019-assembly?  Registration is free.  The event will run from 6:30pm to 8:45pm but we are hoping to hold a brief pre-event at Central Baptist to pray and reflect on the asks of the Assembly.

Can you also share this invite with your Baptist friends?  Could you ask some people from your church to join you in attending this Assembly or even commit to getting 5-10 people from your church to attend?

Please contact Kelly Crawford at kcrawford@nswactbaptists.org.au if you have any questions.

It’s been wonderful to see the engagement with the PRAY@1102 initiative over the last year, as people from churches all across NSW & ACT have engaged with a rhythm of prayer each day for God’s Kingdom to come. Literally thousands of people have used the PRAY@1102 tools to focus prayers around renewal and revival in our lives, across our churches and our movement. Several hundred people have been receiving daily reminders on their phone or email.

As we come to the end of 2018 we will be wrapping up this organised aspect of PRAY@1102 and look forward to further new initiatives in prayer in 2019 (stay tuned!). But that doesn’t mean you can’t still ‘Pray at 11:02am’ next year. Some of the flyers and bookmarks are still available from the Ministry Centre and you can adapt for your personal or church needs as desired.

Thanks to all who have been part of PRAY@1102. Let’s keep praying!

Crossover Christmas Video - The Other Story

The Other Story (Crossover Christmas Video 2018)  

‘The Other Story’ is a powerful and moving 3 minute spoken word poem illustrated through video. It contrasts the ‘other’ story of Christmas with the usual hustle and bustle of a commercialised Christmas.

This video is designed for people who do not follow to Jesus, to help them discover the real meaning behind Christmas, and it has a strong call to action. It is available for you to download, with or without subtitles, from our Crossover vimeo page for you to play in your church service, add to your website and social media platforms.

We have created a unique website for the video at www.otherstory.com.au  . This will be the website for you to share with people, and encourage your church to share with their friends and family. It contains the video, a bio and testimony from the writer, how to find out more about Jesus and how to find your local Aussie Baptist church.

More information for Pastors and Churches about how to use the video, accompanying resources and how to download it from vimeo can be found at www.crossover.org.au/christmas-resources

Pastoral Care Volunteer Newsletter Issue 4 2018

Intentional Interim Ministry 2019 Training

Click Here for the 2019 Training Dates for Intentional Interim Ministry (IIM)

Youth Pastors and Emerging Leaders Conference

The Youth Pastors and Emerging Leaders Conference is 3 days designed to support and equip leaders in our Baptist churches across NSW and ACT. February 5-7, 2019

It is an intentional time focused on building relationships, fostering community, praying together, sharing of ideas and resources, inspiration, and refreshment, with and for, youth and young adult ministry workers and younger leaders from all over NSW & ACT.

It’s about calling leaders and emerging leaders up to all that God wants for and from us for the year ahead and into the future.

There are still spots available for February. Who have you tapped on the shoulder and encouraged to go to Youth Pasters & Emerging leaders Conference?

All details available on our website www.youthpastorsconference.org.au

Balance Ministry Services - Limited Spaces Available

Balance Ministry Services provide accounting, reporting and compliance services and advice to Baptist Churches in NSW & ACT.

Their mission is simple: They exist to provide accounting and advisory services to ministry.

The Balance Ministries team is made up of ministry specialists dedicated to making the operations requirements of your church easy. They offer fixed pricing and only work with Baptist churches and do not make a profit, so you get all the benefits of professional services at a fraction of the cost.

To find out more and to express your interest in these services please visit http://www.balanceservices.org.au

Balance Ministry Services is a ministry of the Baptist Association in NSW & ACT.