Celebrating Yesterday

Document Sample
Celebrating Yesterday Powered By Docstoc
                                                                             su: heading
                                                         News of Scripture Union New South Wales

Autumn 2008

Shaping Tomorrow
Celebrating Yesterday

In This Edition            Postal Address
                           PO Box 728, West Ryde NSW 1685
02-03 The Latest           Office Address
                           Suite 2, Level 1, 1049 Victoria Road. West Ryde NSW 2114
04-07 Missions Special     Telephone 02 8876 1111 Facsimile 02 8876 1122
                           Email Web
08-09 School Ministries    Patron Dr Bill Andersen, Chairman Rev Simon Flinders, CEO Glenn Coombs
10-11 Around the Regions
                                        Making the Good News of Jesus known to children,
12      SU Resources
                                           young people and families – for 140 years!
     su: news

                                                           Why Visiting the Church
                                                           Youth Group Should be
                                                           Less Encouraging
          During last year I had occasion to visit one of the youth groups at my church. I came away profoundly encouraged.
          In the short time I’d been with the group I’d seen lots of kids, I’d heard kids praying, I’d watched as kids listened
          attentively to the Bible being read and explained, and I heard kids speak about God in ways that demonstrated they
          understood the gospel and that they’d been learning what God’s word says. So I was thrilled. It was exhilarating
          to see something of God’s work in these young people’s lives and my heart was deeply warmed.
          But afterwards, as I reflected on it, I came     week out. My ministry had become so             God’s power and remember his concern for
          to realise that one of the main reasons why      focused on “adults” that I’d begun to           kids, and I might come away less surprised,
          I was so excited by what I’d seen was that       think that’s where the action is as far as      and perhaps not quite so encouraged.
          I hadn’t expected it. The fact of the matter     the Kingdom is concerned. I’d forgotten         And maybe that would be a good thing!
          was that the church youth group had              how those in ministry amongst “kids” are        Scripture Union remains committed
          surprised me. It was a pleasant surprise,        encouraged week in and week out by God’s        to ministry amongst children and young
                                                           work. But I had also become theologically       people precisely because God’s word teaches
          but a surprise none the less. I’m not sure
                                                           sloppy. Because the Jesus I believe in (and     us to expect much as we teach them his
          what I had expected, but I know I wasn’t
                                                           proclaim to adults) is the Jesus who urged      Word. And we also remain committed to this
          anticipating seeing so many kids, so keen to
                                                           that the children be allowed to come to him,    ministry because our experience continues
          be there, and so obviously keen about Jesus!
                                                           and that, in fact, they have much to teach us   to be that God draws many, many kids to
          So I asked myself why that was. Why had          “grown ups”! What’s more, the God I believe     himself through this work. The stories in this
          a youth group full of kids worshipping God       in is the God who is ‘able to do immeasurable   edition of SU News will remind you of that
          undermined my expectations? As I thought         more than all we ask or imagine’ (Eph 3:20).    too- and I hope you won’t be surprised by
          about it, I realised how forgetful I’d become,   What a relief that he isn’t limited by my       what you read!
          and how theologically sloppy! I’d forgotten      paltry expectations of his work!!               Simon Flinders
          what it was like to be involved in ministry to   So I’m left wondering if next time I visit my   Chairman
          children and young people week in and            church youth group, I might remember            Scripture Union NSW

          Mission Marvels. Divine Appointments
                                                           friendly environment for folk to hear           guy’s work place and gave him a Bible after
                                                           and experience Jesus. Secondly, plans are       our discussion ended with who is Jesus?
                                                           well underway with directors appointed
                                                                                                           There was the mum who was just so taken
                                                           to plant another SUFM at Gwandalan on
                                                                                                           aback by the way the young people on
                                                           the Central Coast commencing this year.
                                                           Thirdly, experiencing first hand God at work    our team were interacting with her kids.
                                                           as he arranges what can only be described       I mentioned they were from a local church
                                                           as ‘divine appointments’ by bringing people     and maybe she would like to attend sometime
                                                           across your path to bear witness to Jesus.      soon, she was delighted to be invited and we
                                                                                                           exchanged contact details. And then there
                                                           Like the first day we were down at the park     was the teenage boy who had been coming to
                                                           playing games with a heap of kids and a         mission for years and finally said yes to Jesus.
                                                           dad said to me “Yeah I know a bit about         He’s going to start attending Friday night
          I trust that you are encouraged along            Christianity because I have Foxtel. But one     youth at a local church.
          with me by the testimonies of Scripture          question I have is, why does everyone have
          Union volunteers reaching out with the                                                           Of course these are just a few of my ‘divine
                                                           their hands in the air?” Now I’m not sure
          love of Jesus to many thousands of people                                                        appointments’, but if you multiply this by
                                                           what you would have said in the spur of
          over this summer. Personally, it was a                                                           50 teams and some 2000 volunteers then
                                                           the moment, but I said “Well maybe the
          particularly rewarding mission season                                                            you start to get an idea of the impact for
                                                           posture of these folk is just demonstrating
          for a variety of reasons.                                                                        the Gospel that happens through Scripture
                                                           that they are open to God, rather than
                                                                                                           Union Family Missions each year.
          Firstly, I visited the Tuggerah Family           closed to God with arms folded.” I then
          Mission team which we planted 3 years            went on to ask “but what about you, are         Glenn Coombs
          ago, and they have done a truly amazing          you open to God?“. This led to a lengthy        CEO
          job to create a wonderfully warm and             conversation, and I recently visited this       Scripture Union NSW

02   scripture union new south wales
                                                                                                          su: family matters

Family Matters
Rising to a New Challenge
After 10 years on staff in NSW, Glen Simpkins has decided to take a leap into the unknown and swim
with the crocodiles. Well sort of. Glen has just been appointed the new Director of Scripture Union in the
Northern Territory. Glen has been a true servant to the West and Northwest of NSW in his time as regional
coordinator, and will be missed by the volunteers and ministry workers he has partnered with over the years.
He’ll also be missed by the NSW staff team (no one leads a sing-a-long like G. Simpkins). Of course Glen is
still ‘in the family’, and will make a terrific contribution to the ministry of Scripture Union in the NT. The new
role and the move interstate is full of challenges, so please keep the Simpkins family in your prayers.

                               Home at Last
                               After many years of frontline ministry around the globe, KidsGames facilitator Carolyn Noack is heading home
                               to the Barossa Valley in South Australia to spend time with family and take up a position as a school chaplain.
                               Since joining the team three years ago Carolyn has nurtured KidsGames into a thriving outreach ministry, and
                               has served the network of volunteers with infectious energy and enthusiasm. She will be missed.

Back to the Books
Schools Ministry Trainee Alison Laird has decided she REALLY thinks schools are the place to be. So much so
that she is heading back to university this year to complete a teaching degree that will put her well and truly
inside the classroom. Alison has made a huge contribution to the Sydney School Ministries team, and we
wish her all the best as she moves into the next chapter of her ministry.

Welcome Aboard
We are really excited to welcome Carol Ramsey and Lisa Lawrence to the Scripture Union team. Carol is the new Illawarra Schools
Ministry Coordinator, building on the foundations laid by Lynette Janetzki. Lisa Lawrence is commencing a two year traineeship
in School Ministries and will work alongside Bruce Boyle and Alison opdeveigh to support, encourage and grow the ministry
of Scripture Union in Sydney. There is more information on Carol and Lisa in the pages ahead.

                         A Unique Ministry Opportunity
           Scripture Union NSW is looking for “Expressions of Interest” in an exciting
                     Staff Position in North West and/or Central West NSW.
     1 fulltime position or 2 part time positions exist for an energetic and enthusiastic self starter to establish,
             develop and support Scripture Union schools, missions, and camping ministries in the region.
             For a job description and application form, please contact Scripture Union NSW via email
                                       or phone on 02 8876 1111 Applications close 10th March

                                                                                                                                su news autumn 2008   03
     su: missions

                                                         Why do we do it?
                                                         “Do you want the good news or the bad news?” These were the opening
                                                         words of the caravan park manager. The bad news was that our main
                                                         sites were not going to be available next year. I was so knocked over
                                                         by the bad news that I can’t remember what the good news was.

          It was another speed bump that made me         going well was the team, who really took      whose lives don’t intersect with God’s
          question why I go on mission. There were       Philippians 2:14 to heart – they were such    word or his people. I was touched by the
          many times during mission preparation          a blessing!                                   family beset with many troubles that
          that I wondered why I do it. When the                                                        cherished the SUFM ministry. Seeds were
                                                         So why go on mission?                         sown and watered, Christ crucified was
          eject button on the CD player wouldn’t
          work (nine hours of listening to the same      As mission progressed, God was gracious       preached and lives have hopefully been
          CD driving to mission nearly tipped me         in demonstrating again and again that he      eternally changed by Jesus. This was the
          over the edge.)                                is God and that we were there to do the       very ministry that God wanted us to do!
                                                         ministry that HE wanted us to do. I had
          When we arrived we got hammered by                                                           God is a truly fantastic God. It was a great
                                                         made the mistake of thinking that the
          storms that lasted the duration of mission.                                                  privilege to serve Him on mission.
                                                         speed humps were a sign to turn back!
          Several team members quickly got sick,
          two needed hospitalisation. Equipment          Many people had returned so that their        Gavin Boyd
          had disappeared. A tent was partially          children could join the SUFM. We had          PS: We found another site and God willing
          eaten by rats and then there was the           great opportunities to share the gospel,      we will be returning to Lennox Head for
          snake incident! The only thing that was        the power of God for salvation, with those    2008/2009.

                                                         Speak to Me!
                                                         Hi, my name is Tracey Elliot and I am one of the directors of the
                                                         Huskisson Family Mission. This year I celebrated my tenth year of being
                                                         a Christian. What made it especially significant was that ten years ago
                                                         I became a Christian through the ministry of Huskisson Family Mission.

          This year was one of the most special          The effectiveness of shorter term missions    at Christmas time to tell people about the
          missions I have been a part of for so many     are often scrutinised, but I would like       same salvation which changes our own
          reasons, but the most impacting reason was     to say to anyone who doubts their             individual lives.
          the team God placed around me. The focus       effectiveness, come and speak to me! I am     Never underestimate the effectiveness of
          of mission is about reaching out to others     a result of a short term mission. I think
                                                                                                       these missions - remember that it is God
          and telling them about Jesus, but this isn’t   back on my journey and praise God for
                                                                                                       at work, and we all know how amazing
          the only fruit we see coming out of mission.   bringing the Huskisson Family Mission
                                                                                                       His works are!
          Having fellowship with other brothers and      team into my life! I’d then introduce you
          sisters in Christ, being challenged in your    to some of the team member’s parents
          own understanding of God and stretching        who have expressed with deep emotion
          yourself in your abilities in evangelism are   how blown away they were by the change
          just some of the personal outcomes of          they have seen in their child.
                                                         I want to say thank you to everyone who
          This year I have witnessed the Huskisson       has been a part of a Scripture Union
          SUFM team members rise up and be mature        Family Mission up and down the coast; for
          and godly models of Jesus Christ. They have    the hard work and dedication you have
          overcome illness, attacks by campers, age      placed into this ministry. It has changed
          and self consciousness to become more and      my life and I know I am just one of so
          more the men and women God has made            many. It is a privilege to know that we are
          them to be. They reflect one of the many       all united under the same banner of Jesus
          purposes of mission.                           Christ as we head off to different places

04   scripture union new south wales
                                                                                                                      su: missions

Transformation in Action
Hello, I have been on the Tuggerah Family Mission team since it
began three years ago. I just wanted to share a little of what
has been happening in mission over the last couple of years.

This year at Tuggerah Family Mission was        God. This was something that she hadn’t          overjoyed to have it! Seeing the way God
a really wonderful year. Even though the        understood before, and with genuine              has worked in these two girls has been one
mission has only been running there for         excitement said to me, “Really! You mean         of the highlights of mission for me since
three short years, God has already done         that the Father and his Son are the same         I have been going. I am looking forward
great things in the local community             person! That the two people are the same?!”      to seeing the great things that God will
through our team. It has been fantastic to      We were able to give her a children’s bible      continue to do in the lives of the people
see the same families coming back over the      she was thrilled to receive it.                  at Tuggerah.
last three years. It seems that both the kids
and their parents love coming and have          Another wonderful thing that we have             Hope Miles
really benefited from what we have been         seen over the last couple of years is how
doing at mission. Some of those families        God has been working in another little girl
are Christian and it has been awesome to        from a non-Christian family who has been
continue to teach them from God’s word          coming along to mission with other families
and spur them on in their faith. It has been    from the local church. She told us that her
particularly exciting to see a lady who isn’t   parents didn’t like to hear about God and
a Christian coming along with her three         Jesus. She has been coming to mission on
young kids each year. I was really excited      her own accord and absolutely loves it!
to see God working in the heart of the          She never misses a session! A couple of the
eldest girl, who is 7. This year she seemed     leaders on our section “Funky Monkey’s”
                                                were able to chat to her through the week

to be really responding to what we had
been teaching. I was able to have a really      and she told them that she believes in
good chat to her explaining that Jesus is       Jesus! We gave her a bible and she was

“Mission was fantastic for the second year in a row. It rained every day, but that didn’t stop us. The team were a great encouragement to
each other and there was great unity. We saw many prayers answered and a number of people saved. Around 11 older primary children
and one teenager in particular made quite serious commitments to Jesus as Lord and Saviour. The mission is trusted by the holiday
community and seen to be part of it.
Mini’s and Keenites went very well. It started with a bang – around 50 kids on the first day, but numbers dropped to 35 by the end of the
week as families went home because of the rain
Fudge went extremely well. There were fewer of the usual kids attending, but we made contact with a far greater number of kids who had
never been to SUFM before.”

“We had a large number of kids asking for and going home with Bibles. One of the local teenage girls was very encouraged and told us of
her re-commitment to follow Jesus. We had a visit from a girl who became a Christian three years ago on mission – she is keen to come
back and join our team. Our new teen events successfully reached many teens not reached before. Many people stepped up and tried new
things that they had never done before, such as giving talks, leading sections, and playing music for scooping. With rain bearing down on us
(we could actually see it coming in the distance), we paused to pray for God’s mercy and intervention, we then managed to get the Big Top,
the girls sleeping tent and the wet kitchen tent, dried and put away in the storage drums before a single drop of rain fell on us –
God is truly good!”

“I just thought I would write a quick email to say thank you to the Windang SUFM team we met this summer.
My family has been going through a difficult time, and to see the smiles on my children’s faces was an amazing feeling. It was also a good
experience to reopen my eyes to the good Lord, who I had deserted many years ago. He is helping me through this stressful time. Once
again thank you to the whole team for the fun and laughter you provided my kids, and for the adult conversation you offered me.
Also, a special thank you to the Directors for your advice, guidance and prayers.
If there is any way I can help, or ever lend a hand, just let me know, this is an amazing service to the community, that I feel I owe so much
to. It has changed my life.”

                                                                                                                                su news autumn 2008   05
     su: missions

          Born in a Tent? Almost.
          Growing up as a Team Kid on The Entrance Family Mission, I have seen many times,
          many people and many teams come and go, through God’s design and purpose. As
          a six year old on team, I loved watching the puppets and clowns in the “Aussie Tent”.
         It was our dominant marquee, with sporting         programs to match the evolving times.           Now at nineteen, a team member on the very
         colours, declaring to the school and               We have changed our section names.              team I started at, thirteen years ago, I have
         surrounding community that it was that             We have added new sections.                     become part of The Entrance community.
         time of year again, when those excessively         But of all the things that change, some         I have grown into leadership, and I have
         happy people, with the big smiles, and even        things have remained constant, despite          grown to love and respect the beautiful, but
         bigger hearts, were back for another week of       growing older:                                  broken people of the community that we see
         family fun!                                                                                        returning year after year. Some of them
                                                            Mum slaving over a stove in the canteen,        may never come to know our Awesome
         I loved being in the buzz. Listening to the        Garry ready and willing to pull trouble-
         Bible stories I’d heard so many times before,                                                      God and Saviour.
                                                            makers into line, there will always be the
         seeing how so many people around me on             encouragement for the team to be ”looking       But that will never stop me from telling
         the tent floor, had never heard what I knew        good and feeling great”, and mission grace      them the wonderful truth that is God’s love
         as Bible truths, and how they too, could be        ringing out the essence of why we are there!    for us all!
         saved by those very truths that were second
                                                            (Sung to the tune of “I feel the earth move     God has given us a voice with which to
         nature to me.
                                                            under my feet”)                                 speak, and legs on which to stand. He has
         It was in those tender years of six and seven,                                                     placed us at our missions for his purpose.
         that I really began to understand that I’d         “We thank you Lord for your goodness to us,
                                                                                                            Let us all use our great opportunities to their
         been blessed and chosen by God, but that           We thank you for your precious son,
                                                                                                            fullness, glorifying
         there are so many people that had not heard,
                                                            We thank you ‘cause you’re the risen Lord,      God with all our
         and that is why we were there. That was
                                                            Redemption has begun,                           heart, strength,
         when reality struck; although mission was
                                                                                                            talent and passion.
         fun, and a favourite time of year, it was not      And we praise you for this daily bread to
         a holiday.                                         strengthen us in every way,                     Times will change,
                                                                                                            but God will
         Over the years as I grew up on mission, our        So - oh - the good news about Jesus will
         mission grew to match the developing world.                                                        ALWAYS remain!
                                                            clearly be proclaimed
         Team members have come and gone. We                                                                Annelise Tyrrell
                                                            We’ve just got to share your name,
         have moved on from the traditional tents to                                                        The Entrance
         classrooms and halls. We have developed our        Ah-ah-ah yeah Amen! WOO!”                       Family Mission

                                                   Hang on a minute, is it a Beach Mission
                                                   or a Family Mission?
          Good question. For a ministry that                so it’s a…beach mission. But not all missions   understanding amongst stakeholders,
          is over a century old, you’d think its            take place at the beach. A growing number       including churches and the wider
          name would be, well, clear? So here               of teams are setting up in lake and urban       community. It just doesn’t make sense
                                                            settings, and even the odd country town,        to have so many names for one thing; our
          it is – a clarification in a nutshell
                                                            which is why collectively we call this          unity is a powerful but largely untapped
          if you will.                                      outreach Scripture Union Family Missions,       resource. Therefore in the 2008/09 season all
          The ministry began over 100 years ago as          or SUFM for short. Generally speaking,          teams will be known as an SUFM - Scripture
          the CSSM – Children’s Special Service             this is how we’re known and recognised          Union Family Mission. Directors will be given
          Mission. In the 1960’s it officially changed      by campers, park management, and                a comprehensive rundown on what this
          its name to SUFM – Scripture Union                supporters. Some teams call themselves          means for things like team banners, t-shirts,
          Family Mission (no…not ‘Single Until Finally      a Beach Mission, Urban Mission or Family        websites and programs, at this year’s
          Married’). The ministry has developed into        Festival, but in order to nurture and grow      Director’s Training Day.
          an outreach for families, by families, and this   this ministry into the future and ensure
                                                            sustainability, we need to have consistency     As a ‘head office’ we know that we
          name more accurately reflects mission life.
                                                            in both the frontline programs and the          can’t police the way you refer to this great
          So what about ‘Beach Mission’? Beach              marketing and administration. From that         ministry, but we hope that you’ll understand
          mission is an adopted and very popular term       marketing and administration perspective        the rationale, see the benefits, and allow
          that comes from the setting of the ministry       we cannot maintain confusing multi-names        us to serve and support you better in
          itself. The mission takes place at the beach,     and expect healthy levels of support and        your ministry.

06   scripture union new south wales
                                                                                                                    su: missions

An Eye Opening Road Trip
Missions Coordinator Steve Windsor recently journeyed
north to pay a visit to SUFM teams in the thick of
the action. Here’s a short run down.
What was the purpose of your trip?             What did you learn from the trip?
I wanted to critically analyse and             I believe that what we do is incredibly
review where we are with this SUFM             relevant. There is something very powerful
institution. How do we impact the parks        in the relationships that are built over
and communities? Are we still relevant?        many years with the campers and the
                                               community – nothing can replace it.
By actually seeing as many missions as
                                               There’s nothing better than walking out of       how the world thinks and speaks. In
possible, it would give me the overview
                                               the showers at 6 in the morning with sleep       some cases we need to open up our
and insight to assess and make plans for
                                               in your eyes and hair in the air, and saying     areas and be more inviting to campers,
the future. To know where we’re going,
                                               g’day to the people you’ve seen each day         whilst understanding the need to protect
we obviously need to know where we’re at.      out scooping or running a kid’s program.         children. The physical layout and mission
                                                                                                environment is something that I’m very
What teams did you visit?                      Teams pull together, and seeing that
                                               happen across ages, backgrounds and              keen to address and wherever possible,
I stopped at Budgewoi, Forster, Lennox                                                          improve. There’s also a lot of variety in the
                                               denominations is always inspiring. Even
Head, Brunswick Heads, Evans Head,                                                              teaching materials and resources used on
                                               in the midst of gale force winds and rain
Brooms Head, Coffs Harbour, Umina,                                                              mission, and that’s an area I’m absolutely
                                               the volunteers exhibit this godly spirit and
Urunga, Tuggerah, Toowoon Bay, Canton,                                                          committed to growing in the year ahead.
                                               togetherness. Teams are constantly talking
Scotts Head, Hawks Nest, and Port              about how to present the Gospel; they’re
Macquarie where we’ll be planting a                                                             A quick story?
                                               seasoned with evangelism - always seeking
mission this year.                                                                              A guy came up to a team as they arrived
                                               out the opportunity.
                                                                                                at mission. He and his family were on their
To all the teams I visited, thank you          On a practical level, there are definitely       way out of the park when he ran up to the
for the encouragement and the honesty.         some areas that we can improve in. For           team and encouraged them to keep doing
I very much enjoyed praying with you and       example, we’ve taken a lot of our Christian      what they’re doing because he became a
it was sad to not be able to stay longer.      jargon to mission, which can obviously           Christian through what they were doing
To the directors in particular, leadership     create barriers with the people in the           20 years ago, and now his family are all
is not an easy job and you guys are an         parks. Sometimes I think we’ve been              Christians. The message is pretty clear -
inspiration to me.                             Christian so long that we’ve forgotten           keep doing what you’re doing.

                                     The Kombi
                                     We’ve recently acquired a classic1974 VW Kombi which will hit the road
                                     as a promotional vehicle in 2008. It’s decked out in the Scripture Union
                                     colours, with all the Scripture Union vital information, and will pop up at
                                     all things – you guessed it, Scripture Union. The Kombi has been lovingly
                                     restored by Bob Coombs (pictured), who in recent years has coordinated
                                     the campsite renovations in Vanuatu – a busy and generous worker!
                                     Stay tuned for more details as the SU Kombi tour unfolds in 2008.

                                             September 20th
           If you’re involved in a Scripture Union ministry - put this date in your diary.
               The 2008 360° Training Day will be huge and worth getting along to.
                                    Rego details are on the way.

                                                                                                                               su news autumn 2008   07
     su: schools

         The Bruce Report
         As I write this we have just completed our first schools
         activity for 2008. ‘Converge 08’ was a morning for
         SUPA Club and ISCF Group leaders and helpers to come
         together to pray, listen, share, and to find out some
         of the activities planned for 2008.
          It was encouraging to meet so many people        There were many other highlights during         For SUPA Clubs
          who are passionate about the opportunities       2007 including continued growth in the          • SUPA Good News Competition
          that are available to share the gospel of        number of SRE teachers working in NSW
          Jesus to students in NSW schools; and to                                                         • 2 SUPA Saturdays
                                                           schools, many students attending regional
          hear about the way God has been working          schoolSURGE gatherings in all parts of          • ‘It’s Your Move’ afternoons for students
          in our schools over the past year.               Sydney. Leadership Conference at Merroo,          in Year 6
          I am also thankful to have had the               our first HSC Lockdown study week, and          SRE Christian Studies Programs
          opportunities over the past year to have         our Schoolies Week trip to Vanuatu.
                                                                                                           • New teachers commencing in schools
          met students, lunchtime group leaders and        I’m very excited by what is on the calendar       across NSW
          SRE teachers who are committed to sharing        for 2008. It will be a huge year!
          the truth about Jesus in their schools. By                                                       • Increased classes for existing
          December of 2007 there were 102 lunchtime        For ISCF Groups                                   SRE teachers
          groups who were part of the ISCF / SUPA          • 24 schoolSURGES in locations all              • Training and development of teachers
          network, and I’m confident that number will        around Sydney                                   and boards through GenR8 ministries
          continue to grow during 2008.
                                                           • 4 HSC Lockdowns.                              During Term One we will also be launching
          Throughout the year more than a                                                                  two new resources for lunchtime groups
          thousand students met week by week to            • ISCF Camp to be held in July                  and SRE classes. See below.
          learn from God’s word together, pray, and        • Launch of ‘Leadership 4:12’ Student
          to encourage each other to be witnesses in         leadership workshops
          their schools. Thousands more sat in SRE
                                                           • 2 Mid Year mission trips to Vanuatu
          classes and learned that God is real and
          has a desire for relationship with them.         • Schoolies week in Vanuatu

          SUPA Good News
          This is a gospel tract that is illustrated by students from SUPA Clubs across NSW. A competition will be
          held during Term One where students can submit their drawings. The published tract containing the
          winning drawings will be available for SUPA Clubs in Term Two.

          NotSoSecret Agent
          This resource encourages students in Years 7-9 to not be invisible Christians in their school. It focuses on
          what the Bible has to say about being witnesses in the world, and contains video clips, a game show and
          discussion topics.

          Finally 2008 sees a change to the Sydney Schools Team. Alison Laird is returning to university to complete a teaching degree.
          Alison has made a huge contribution to Sydney schools and will be greatly missed. Please be praying for her as she studies this year.

          A huge welcome to Lisa Lawrence. Lisa has been working in schools for the last few years and will be a great asset
          to the team. Lisa will join Ali OpdeVeigh and myself in supporting ISCF and SUPA Clubs throughout Sydney this year. You’ll hear a lot
          more from both Lisa and Ali as the year unfolds.
          Please be praying for us, that God will use us effectively to grow his kingdom amongst students in our schools.

08   scripture union new south wales
Schoolies in Vanuatu
                                                                                                                          su: schools

So what was the best thing about our week in Vanuatu? Was it the beach?
Walking down the drive way of the campsite onto a postcard perfect beach was
pretty amazing. Was it the sailing and snorkeling? Jumping off a boat into deep
water with tropical fish feeding all around was very cool.
Could it have been the people? Ni-vans           the Ni-vans sing in amazing ‘island
are some of the friendliest and most polite      harmony’ in church, or singing along to
people we’ve ever met! They’ll bend in half      the same country music songs in the bus,
to avoid interrupting a conversation and         or sliding down rocks at the cascades, or
are very quiet with the exception of their
                                                 experiencing God’s protection as we made
infectious laughter. Was it the experience
                                                 it through each day safely, or even just
of ministering in the schools? Having the
opportunity to tell our testimonies, sing        seeing the plans we had worked on for so
songs and do a skit about Jesus. Was it          long finally come to pass. Was it the last day
playing soccer and Frisbee with some local       when we heard from each student how God
kids, or hearing the stories and seeing          had worked in their lives that week?
the sacrifices of the missionaries and
                                                 I’ll keep pondering.
Bible translators over there, or watching
Melanesian traditional dances, or hearing        Ali O.

A Reminder of the Impact
“These days many young people, as a general rule, do not have a great deal of contact
with church groups or people of religious education. Therefore, a school-run special
religious education (SRE) program can fill a void in their lives.
The SRE program at Maclean High School          there is no exposure at home. For other           is laden with powerful values desperately
has now been successfully running at the        students, it provides for a re-affirmation        needed in today’s world.”
school since 1995. The longevity itself says    in the school of their already firmly held        Glenn Brown, Principal
a lot about the success of the program.         beliefs. Whatever way we look at it there         Maclean High School
Most students (over 95%) choose to attend       is something for all students in the
the program. The one consistent part of         SRE program.                                      Praise God for the credibility of SRE on
the program over the years is the presence                                                        the North Coast. As I visit all the public
                                                In addition to the academic, sporting,
and teaching of our SRE teacher Mark                                                              high schools in the region, it’s obvious that
                                                cultural and social side to young lives a full
Ohlmus. Mr Ohlmus is widely acknowledged                                                          the sentiment captured above is shared
                                                and complete education ought to address
for the effective way in which he imparts                                                         by the majority of executive staff in North
                                                the spiritual needs of students. The SRE
Christian knowledge and values. His work                                                          Coast schools. Please pray that the newly
                                                program and in particular the presence of
has incalculable benefits in terms of the                                                         established SRE, and also Chaplaincy
                                                SRE teacher Mark Ohlmus has been a huge
values taught to young people through the                                                         positions will develop quickly into ministries
                                                asset to the school. We teach an extensive
program. Mark has been ably assisted over                                                         that are perceived as “huge assets” by both
                                                variety of subjects and programs at Maclean
the last 2 years by Steve Philp.                                                                  the school communities, as well as the
                                                High School. However, in the long run it is
                                                                                                  local churches.
For some students the program provides          the values taught that is the most powerful
exposure to Christian religious beliefs where   message for young people. The SRE program         Mark Ohlmus

                                                                         Mark and his Hunter region counterpart Angelo Cavaliere
                                                                         are employed by Scripture Union to develop and support the
                                                                         ministry of SRE ‘Special Religious Education’ programs in high
                                                                         schools throughout their respective regions. These programs
                                                                         naturally complement the ministry of ISCF groups and provide
                                                                         an opportunity for the Gospel to go out and change lives. If you
                                                                         would like to support this work, please tick the appropriate box
                                                                         on the reply slip or visit

         Mark                         Angelo                                                                                      su news autumn 2008   09
     su: the regions

         Q&A Jess Nolen:
         School Ministries in the Hunter Region
          What have been the highlights                    Through connecting the right people
          from 2007?                                       together – there’s a new church being
                                                           planted in that school this week and
          It would have to be seeing the school
                                                           those leaders were the ISCF leaders at
          ministries flourishing! The ISCF Groups
                                                           another high school and were wanting
          at Tomaree and Francis Greenway High
                                                           to find out how they can get involved
          Schools in particular have gone from
                                                           at Junction Public school!!
          strength to strength. It was amazing to get
          a phone call from the ISCF leader at Francis     My biggest highlight every year though
          Greenway High School to let me know that         is seeing different people from different
          12 of his students gave their hearts to Jesus    backgrounds and different churches
          in the lunch time!                               who love Jesus and love to see a
                                                           generation of young people know him,
          At Warners Bay High School they’ve               come together in unity to serve their
          started a breakfast program with different       schools in SUPA Clubs and ISCF Groups.
          churches from the area - every fortnight
          serving up to 250 students with a hot            What are some ministry areas that
          breakfast of bacon and egg sandwiches!           you see as opportunities to grow
          Seeing God fully provide for the cost of         in Hunter schools?                          How can readers be praying for you
          the breakfast through fundraisers has            We are looking at running Leadership        and your region?
          been amazing! The connection between             4:12 over a few Saturdays in the year to    To thank God firstly for the awesome things
          the volunteers and the students has been         equip the students to become the leaders    that are happening in our region – we have
          awesome as they bond over food!                  that God has called them to be in their     over 50% of our high schools covered in
          God answers the prayers                          high schools.                               SRE teachers and ISCF groups! Secondly,
          of his people!                                   We need more people coming in to serve      please pray for more volunteers in our high
                                                           in our schools with SUPA Clubs and          schools and primary schools.
          One of our primary schools that runs
          a SUPA Club and has a lot to do with             ISCF Groups…..we still really need more     Pray for the schools that don’t yet
          scripture teaching at Junction Public were       workers for the harvest!                    have anyone going in there and telling the
          praying desperately for leaders for ‘08          We’ll be looking into running an HSC        students about Jesus, that God would open
          as many of their leaders were unable to          Lockdown study program in the Hunter        up doors in those schools, and put a burden
          commit to serving for varying reasons.           Region for 08.                              on people’s hearts to go in there!

                 Scripture Union DVD ON THE WAY…
                                                              One of the most common requests we receive at the
                                                          Scripture Union office is “do you have something I can play
                                                            at my church to show people what I do each summer?”

                                                       An important project for 2008 is the production and launch
                                                       of a new DVD aimed at promoting the ministries of Scripture
                                                        Union. The DVD will be available in April to anyone who is
                                                        keen to share the Scripture Union story with their friends,
                                                          families, churches, and strangers. You’ll hear a lot more
                                                                       about it closer to the release.

10   scripture union new south wales
                                                                                                           su: the regions

Introducing Carol Ramsey
                                              We are thrilled to welcome Carol Ramsey to the Scripture
                                              Union School Ministries team, supporting the volunteers
                                              and ministries throughout the Illawarra, South Coast and
                                              Southern Highlands region.
                                              Carol has a rich background in youth and children’s ministry. She helps run a thriving
                                              SUPA Club, was on team at our inaugural SUPA Camp last September, has done Scripture
                                              teaching, and also some government youth work. Carol’s passion, energy and maturity
                                              will be an asset to the Gospel workers in the region – and to those they seek to reach
                                              with this great message.
                                              From Carol
                                              “A little bit about me…I turned 40 in November, which hurt a lot less than I thought
                                              it would! I have been married for 21 years to Michael and we have three children,
                                              Nathaniel 15, Madeline 14, and Samuel 11. We live in Windang (on Lake Illawarra)
                                              and have been there for about 10 years. I really love the beach air and the picturesque
                                              scenery surrounding the lake. We have recently started attending the Lighthouse
                                              Church in Wollongong and are settling in well there. I have a passion for God’s
                                              Word and for sharing it with others. This has led to me studying a degree in theology
                                              through Charles Sturt University. I love music and over the holidays have driven my
To support Carol’s ministry, just tick        family mad by constantly playing my Casting Crown albums (they really are fantastic).
the appropriate box on the reply slip         I’m really looking forward to getting to know all of the volunteers in this region
or visit                    throughout the year.”

What’s been happening in                      How is your partnership with
your neck of the woods?                       Mark Ohlmus on the Far North
Family Missions on the mid north              Coast going?
coast are evolving to engage their own        Being a regional worker can be a lonely
particular communities more effectively.      job. It’s been such a blessing to have Mark
                                                                                             schools and Regional youth camps.
I visited Coffs Harbour, Sawtell, Urunga,     Ohlmus only two and a half hours away.
                                                                                             The new mission at Port Macquarie WILL
Scotts Head, and was on team at South         We get to connect about six times a year       run this year and an HSC Lockdown will
                                              as we collaborate on schools ministry,         run on the North Coast. All this in three
West Rocks. Each of the teams have
                                              assist in training, pray together, and         and a half days a week!
adapted very effectively to their own
                                              are sounding boards for one another as
contexts. At South West Rocks we ran for                                                     How can readers be praying for you?
                                              we work through issues and situations
a week from January 4 -12 with a team of      that affect each of our ministries. I have     • For discernment as I prioritise my time.
40. We ran a really professional program      known Mark and his wife Lynda since            • For the implementation of HSC
with a space theme, and our very own          Bible College days and it has been great to      Lockdown North Coast in the
superheroes Captain Food and Mr Galactic      connect with his whole family and work           October school holidays
providing a theatrical thread. Apart from     with him for the Kingdom.                      • For leadership for the new Port
a very clear and relevant presentation                                                         Macquarie SUFM
                                              What are you most excited about
of the Gospel we saw Christian leaders                                                       • For financial support
                                              for 2008?                                      • For my wonderful family
of the future experience ministry, in
many cases for the first time. The most       The tremendous potential! I am getting         • That I balance my new role as chaplain
                                              more and more requests to provide                to Eungai Public school with my SU
gratifying aspect was the planning already
                                              input into various groups on the coast.          work, family, social and church life.
underway for increasing the length and
                                              3 deputations already booked (I will do
effectiveness of mission in the years ahead   up to 8), motivation, encouragement and        To support Dave’s ministry, just tick
(before mission had even finished). SUFM      training for SRE teachers, ISCF and SUPA       the appropriate box on the reply slip
is Christian community at its best.           leaders, Church leadership, Christian          or visit

                                                                                                                           su news autumn 2008   11
     su: resources

            Scripture Union

             Book Centre
                                                                                                Prayer: An Evening with Philip Yancey
                                                                                                 This DVD was filmed in Sydney last year when Philip
                                                                                                 Yancey was launching his book Prayer: Does it make
                                                                             any Difference? Yancey explores this fundamental aspect of Christian
                                         The Case For Christ                 life with profound insight, humour and his trademark practicality.
                                         Lee Strobel                         If you are struggling in your prayer life, or need a reminder of its
                                                                             power and purpose, this DVD is a great tool of encouragement.
                                         Using the dramatic scenario         Available from “There is no writer in the evangelical
                                         of an investigative journalist      world that I admire and appreciate more” Billy Graham
                                         pursuing his story and leads,
                                         Lee Strobel uses his experience
                                         as a reporter for the Chicago
                                         Tribune to interview experts
                                         about the evidence for Christ
                                         from the fields of science,                            Sons of Korah ‘Redemption Songs’
                                         philosophy, and history.                                This early album by Australian band Sons of Korah
          Grab a value pack of 6 small format paperbacks.                                        is timeless and extremely powerful. A bit about the
          Pack of 6 – $29.95 That’s just $4.99 per book!                                         music… “Sons of Korah have put the Word of God
                                                                             and music together in a dynamic and captivating
                                                                             way in order to lead their listeners into an impacting encounter with
                                         The Case For Faith
                                                                             the heart of the bible. From lamentation to songs of jubilant praise,
                                         Lee Strobel
                                                                             from battle cry to benediction, from exclamation of awe and wonder
                                          This eagerly anticipated           to reflections of tranquility and perfect wisdom, Sons of Korah provide
                                          sequel to Lee Strobel’s            a compelling portrait of the world and experience of the psalms.”
                                          best-selling The Case for Christ   –
                                          finds the author investigating
                                          the nettlesome issues and
                                          doubts of the heart that
                                          threaten faith. Eight major
                                          topics are addressed including
                                          doubt, the problem of pain,                           KYCK ‘08
          and the existence of evil. Grab a value pack of 6 small                                 Two weekends: April18-20 & 25-27. KYCK is the
          format paperbacks.                                                                      Katoomba Convention specifically for high schoolers.
          Pack of 6 – $29.95 That’s just $4.99 per book!                                          The theme for this year is ‘Something to Live For’.
                                                                                                  If you’re involved in an ISCF group be sure to make

         Order your copy today!
                                                                             the most of this fantastic weekend of Bible teaching and fellowship.
                                                                             To all ISCF leaders, this is a great opportunity for your students to grow
                                                                             in their faith and maturity. To find out more or to register, just go to the
                                                                             KYCK website at Be quick!
     Contact the Scripture Union Book Centre
                      FREECALL: 1800 467 933
                           Sue Morgan has been involved in the
                           Christian publishing and resources business
                           for over 20 years. Aside from her unparalleled
                           knowledge and experience, Sue has a heart                                    In some ways AFES (Australian Fellowship
                           that beats loudly for people to know the                                     of Evangelical Students) picks up where
                           richness of God’s love. As Manager of the                                    Scripture Union leaves off. When a Christian
                           Scripture Union Book Centre, these great          student leaves high school and begins university life, AFES is right
                           passions have been fused into an important
                                                                             there on campus to help and encourage them in their Christian growth
      and fruitful ministry. If you need advice on resources to help you
                                                                             and witness. Their mission is to build student groups that centre on
      in your faith and your ministry, Sue and her team would love
      to look after you. They stock the full range of Scripture Union        evangelism, training, sending, and Christian growth and maturity.
      products, but as you can see from the specials above, they can         Check the website for much much more.
      also supply you with just about any publication that you’re
      looking for. Give Sue a call on 1800 467 933.

12   scripture union new south wales

Shared By:
Description: Celebrating Yesterday