GLOBAL INTERACTION NSW & ACT
Rev Andrew Palmer – NSW & ACT State Director
For Global Interaction, the single most important reality of 2020 was not coronavirus, it was the increased number of gospel conversations we had in contexts where historically few have had opportunity to hear the story of Jesus in a way that makes sense to them.
Two key issues framed this –
- A global pandemic that caused deep questions to be asked around meaning, purpose and the nature of God
- Time. The longer intercultural workers spend in a given context, the more they understand and appreciate language and culture, and the more likely they are to be given a hearing by local people and therefore be effective
Recruitment slowed in 2020 as we pivoted in response to coronavirus and focused our efforts on developing online training modes and grew in our commitment to intercultural work in Australia alongside continued commitment to global intercultural mission in the contexts we have already established.
Due to the pandemic, workers were given the opportunity to stay in context or return to Australia. Approximately 50% stayed put, 25% were returning for Home Assignment and around 25% returned to Australia for health reasons. All continued to engage in Culture and Language acquisition.
Candidates continued to develop their partnership teams and adaptations were made in relation to preaching, visiting, events and support raising.
Lindsay and Jane Robertson – Hong Kong (Chatswood / Islington BC) concluded their ministry after 30 years in Hong Kong. We are humbled by their wise, effective and faithful service. They have settled in Sydney.
New opportunities in 2021
The NSW / ACT team has been re-organised in accordance with a national restructure. The Young Adult Consultant (YC) and Partnership Development Consultant (PDC) roles have been made redundant.
After 10 years in the role of YAC, Melanie Wellings concluded. Pip Miner concluded her PDC role in December and began a new half time role as a Mobilisation Specialist in late January 2021.
The 2021 goals have been adjusted accordingly and focus specifically on four areas: Partnership, Recruitment, Intercultural and Candidacy Logistics, and Pastoral Care.
Candidates Sigit and Windy (SEA) have been awarded the Tinsley Scholarship to study at Morling College in 2021. Andrew is grateful to Morling College for this gift. Sigit and Windy will arrive in Australia at the start of the second quarter having commenced study online. Offers of housing and other cost supports are invited.
Travel in 2021
All travel has been affected by coronavirus and the Australian Border Force evaluates applications on a case-by-case basis. Several workers have been able to return to ministry locations. The light of the gospel continues to shine.
NSW / ACT Intercultural Workers with Global Interaction (and sending Church)
- David and Carole – South East Asia (Thornleigh Community BC)
- Tobias and Heather Houston – Mozambique (Kariong Community BC)
- Paul and Naomi – Central Asia (Thornleigh Community BC)
- Petina Abbott – Thailand (Campbelltown City BC)
- Paul – Special Assignment (Campsie BC)
- Peter and Julie-Ann – South East Asia (NewHope Kellyville BC)
- Mat and Shannon Anderson – Outback Australia (Petersham BC)
- Jit and Jan Yawan – Thailand (Windsor District BC)
- Milard and Joyce Sleiman – Lebanon (Narwee BC)
- Gary and Shirley Moore – Malawi (Wellington BC)
- Mark and Ngoc – Vietnam (Baulkham Hills BC)
- Alice – South East Asia (Macquarie Park BC)
- Margaret Holahan – Thailand (Toongabbie BC)
- Mel – Silk Road Area (Thornleigh Community BC)
- Sigit and Windy – South East Asia (TBD)
Finances (total giving of NSW / ACT Baptist Churches to Global Interaction)
An exceptionally pleasing end of year saw NSW / ACT Church support close to pre-COVID numbers as per the following:
- 2019 (Jan – Nov) $774,757
- 2020 (Jan – Nov) $772,390
- Variance ($2,366)
Percentage Variance (0.31%)
Andrew is deeply grateful to the wise leadership of the Global Interaction NSW / ACT Taskforce during what was a turbulent year as the group met initially online and then in hybrid formats.
- Arthur Rickersey – Member and Chair (4/4)
- Carol Stewart – Member and Chairperson, Friends of Global Interaction (3/4)
- Shaddy Hanna – Member (2/4)
- Beth Jackson – Member and National Board Representative (3/4)
- Mel d’Archy – Member (3/4)
- Bu Kareng – Executive Administrator (4/4)
- Andrew Palmer – State Director and Global Mission Team Leader (4/4)
- Pip Miner – Partnership Development Consultant (2/4)