Compassion_ by gdf57j


                      My recent experience in North Forbes really
                      rattled me. I want to try sharing with you
                      some of my thoughts and struggles since
                      then. God has been on my case. Let me get
                      right to the point and paint the picture
                                                                            His compassion is always accompanied by action. As his follower I want to
                                                                            feel the same compassion, I want my heart to resonate with his, I want to
                                                                            see and feel what he sees and feels. And I think in a small way I do!

                                                                            Really? I was forced to ask myself, then, where is the action? Is it okay
                                                                                                                                                                                     NEWSLETTER OF THE CHURCH ARMY IN AUSTRALIA NO 74 JULY – AUGUST 2007
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        CHURCH ARMY AUSTRALIA

                      by quoting Phil Clark’s words following               to go to a place like North Forbes, to see and to feel, a fraction of what
                           his visit:                                       Jesus must see and feel, and go home and forget about it. I could                                        Church Army in Australia PO Box 12 Hazelbrook, NSW 2779 Telephone 02 4759 1360
                                                                            justify inaction with, “We’re already stretched enough. What more
                                North Forbes, Church in the Schoolyard,
                                                                            can we do?” I was cornered.
                                 watching those kids felt like a kick
                                 in the stomach. All too familiar tear
                                  streaked faces, hunched shoulders,
                                   clenched fists. Aggression, hatred,
                                                                            But things got worse still… as I was reflecting on Paul’s words from
                                                                            1 Corinthians 4:1
                                                                                                                                                                                     Nation to benefit from Forbes expertise
                                     anger, and violence hovering like
                                                                            So then, men ought to regard us as servants of Christ and as those
                                    brooding spirits from hell. Verbal
                                    abuse to one another and to Tim.        entrusted with the secret things of God. 2 Now it is required that those
                                   Outbursts of raw aggression. Signs       who have been given a trust must prove faithful.                                                                                                     A tour of ministry black spots across NSW has led Tim Scheuer,
                                  of hopelessly inadequate parenting.
Abused, neglected, badly damaged little ones. The sickening sound           I am called to be a faithful steward of the gospel that God has so freely                                                                            Director of Church Army Australia to recognise the huge
of Satan’s laughter and the sight of his malevolent smirk.                  given me. He has charged me with a duty. In fact, The Master has given
                                                                            each of us something – “the secret things of God”, new life in Christ,                                                                               ministry need in the bush and has mobilized Church Army
                                                                            ambassadorship. He has made us middle men and women managing
The behaviour of the kids was unreasonable because you don’t need
                                                                            the distribution of his gospel.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 to back another rural Local Mission Base (LMB).
a reason when all you know is pain and brokenness. And it made me
sick and angry because it was all so familiar.
                                                                            Who then is the faithful and wise manager, whom the master puts in                                       After partnering successfully with Forbes parish as part of their       This is why Church Army feels compelled to back North Forbes.
When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because                  charge of his servants to give them their food allowance at the proper                                   recent ‘Back to St John’s’ mission over Easter, Church Army Australia
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             “I am convinced we need to do more to accelerate the mission
they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.             time? Luke 12:42                                                                                         has announced it will formally support the Church in the Schoolyard
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             efforts in North Forbes,” Tim Scheuer says. “If we don’t go to them
Matt. 936                                                                                                                                                                            initiative in North Forbes..
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             with the love of Christ we risk losing an entire community to
                                                                            I want to be one of His faithful and wise managers and I suspect you                                     The Rev’d Sister Lyn Bullard started Church in the Schoolyard           substance abuse, correctional institutions, and hopeless despair.”
The Greek word for compassion means “to have the bowels yearn”.             do too. That is why I am convicted that together we must make a                                          to reach a community the Church has previously put in the
In other words, Jesus feels a deep internal pain when he sees               difference in North Forbes. Church Army is all about going into some                                     ‘too hard basket’.                                                      As part of the ‘Back to St Johns’ mission, about 50 local kids
broken and hurting people. A recent discovery is that whenever this         of the toughest places to reach those without hope and without God.                                                                                                              turned up to the primary school during the Easter school holidays.
                                                                                                                                                                                     Now Tim believes that Lyn’s initiative in North Forbes can offer        The program was supported by a team from Church Army largely
word (compassion) is used of Jesus it is always followed by action!         Please generous with your prayers and giving.
                                                                                                                                                                                     a ray of hope to communities across rural NSW and beyond.               made up by their Global GAP Year students.
In other words, he doesn’t feel this deep pain in his guts flowing out      Capt. Tim Scheuer                                                                                        “I am aware that there are a number of rural communities that have      “They did a great job-especially with the children’s ministry
of his intense love for the lost and do nothing – ever!                     National Director                                                                                        acute problems like those of North Forbes. It’s not right!” he says.    as well as visiting and a lot of practical help. It was great to have
                                                                                                                                                                                     Phil Clark, a Church of England expert in reaching disadvantaged        them here,” Lyn Bullard said. “Families are being followed up
                                                                                                                                                                                     young people, said the level of anger amongst the rural kids was        by parishioners and “Church in the Schoolyard” continues to
                                                                                                                                                                                     ‘something I’ve never witnessed before’.                                grow steadily.”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Church Army is supporting five new initiatives ministering in some
      Yes! I want to support Church Army’s local mission teams in reaching the lost.
                                                                                                                                                                                     This assessment comes from someone hardened from front-line
                                                                                                                                                                                     ministry in one of England’s toughest districts - the Page Moss         of Australia’s hardest to reach communities. All of them are fresh
                                                                                                                                                             Y A
                                                                                                                                                                                     Estate on the outskirts of Liverpool.                                   expressions of church, reaching working class or marginalised
                                                                                                                                                                 U   STR
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             communities. (see inside)
  I enclose a gift of        $25      $50      $100 other amount $                               I want to give by direct debit. Please send                                         Ian Metz, an American Church Army trainee who has spent the past
                                                                                                 me a direct debit request form.                                                     5 years working with recovering drug addicts in Missouri, was also      Most significantly, all but one of these initiatives is in a rural
  Please debit my credit card       Monthly      Quarterly     Only once                                                                                                             shocked by the impact of drug culture on the primary school kids        or regional area, meaning the lessons learnt at the LMBs can
                                                                                             Please be assured your personal details are held in
                                                                                                                                                                                     he met in the bush.                                                     be applied in parishes across Australia.
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           THIS ISSUE
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           • Mission to Forbes
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           • Learning Curve: Updates on
  Address                                                                                            State                   Postcode
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              the new Local Mission Bases
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           • Global Gap Year

                   Church Army in Australia PO Box 12 Hazelbrook, NSW 2779 Telephone 02 4759 1360
                                                                                                                                               LEARNING CURVE: updates on
               Mission to Forbes     by Tim Adkins, a member of the Lawson LMB
                                                                                                                                                the new Local Mission Bases
                                                                                                                                                         1. Broken Hill
                                                                         I went in with an open mind and was                                             LMB leader: The Rev’d Neville Naden
                                                                                                                                                         Mission: In partnership with BCA, Uniting NSW Board of Mission and Uniting Aboriginal
                                                                         ready to receive what God was going                                             and Islander Christian Congress, raising up Aboriginal leaders to reach Aboriginal
                                                                         to do through the team and what he                                              Latest News: Neville has gathered a team consisting of indigenous and non-indigenous
                                                                                                                                                         people to spearhead the mission. They have identified 4 receptive Aboriginal families to
                                                                         might want to show us. It was a time                                            serve and share the gospel with. The team are praying for those families to embrace the
                                                                                                                                                         gospel and find God’s transformation.
                                                                         of growing, serving and stepping out.
                                                                                                                                                         2. Berkeley (Lake Illawarra)
                                                                                                                                                         LMB leader: Capt Wayne Pickford
In the week leading up to Easter, eight people from the Church           In the second half of the week we went door knocking. Across
Army Local Mission Base in the Blue Mountains, including our GAP         three mornings we knocked on over 200 front doors. This was both                Mission: Located near the Port Kembla steelworks, this large working class area has
Year interns, were in the town of Forbes to help with a festival run     challenging and rewarding.                                                      seen the major denominations pull out from ministering in this community.
by the local Anglican Church called ‘Back to St Johns week’.                                                                                             Latest News: Wayne’s team, by popular demand, is expanding their coverage area
                                                                         The door-knocking was in preparation for the Sunday mission
I didn’t really know what to expect in terms of what the town or                                                                                         for their ‘adopt a block’ program. They continue to be amazed at the openness to
                                                                         at Church in the Schoolyard in North Forbes.
people would be like. So I went in with an open mind and was ready                                                                                       the gospel and to their personal approach. They have just received a Global Gap Year
to receive what God was going to do through the team and what            Sunday was a challenging day for all of us. Up to 50 children aged              student, Bart Virtue, for his 5 month internship.
he might want to show us. It was a time of growing, serving and          between 5 and 15 came to the mission.
stepping out.
We were involved in a range of activities including a morning tea at a
                                                                         It made me think about how much everybody needs God’s love.                     3. Lawson (Blue Mountains)
nursing home, where we sang songs and got to pray with people. We        And that if we don’t get out there and show it, they just won’t see
                                                                                                                                                         LMB leader: Capt Jon Bennett
also helped run a kids club for some afternoons in the grounds of the    the gift of life that is available to them.
church; there we had times of games, songs, dramas and kids talks.                                                                                       Mission: Amidst one of the NSW’s largest communities of New Age believers and
                                                                                                                                                         Pagans, The Sanctuary offers a real alternative including a restoration ministry for
                                                                                                                                                         recovering drug addicts and alcoholics.

Forbes boy commissioned for drugs ministry
                                                                                                                                                         Latest News: Jon’s team continues to penetrate the community by intentionally
                                                                                                                                                         building relationships with those that are non-churched. Jon says that moving towards
                                                                                                                                                         establishing a residential restoration ministry has been a great learning experience
                                                                         Garry left school at 16 to work in an abattoir. Drugs and drinking              and one which will surely provide heartache and joy. Jon says, “Building an authentic
                                                                         saw him go off the rails before he ended up in a Wollongong                     Christian community that integrates the LMB team, Church Army staff and the new
                                                                         hospital after a motorbike accident.                                            restoration ministry is an awesome challenge”
                                                                         “A guy was going around the wards preaching,” says Garry.
                                                                         “And he brought me to the Lord.”                                                4. Maroubra
                                                                         Garry went back to his hometown, and was immediately made                       LMB leader: The Rev’d Steve Bligh
                                                                         to feel loved and welcome at St John’s, the local Anglican Church.
                                                                                                                                                         Mission: Maroubra Surfers Church is reaching the hardcore surfing community made
                                                                         “The Anglican parish has nurtured us for 20 years,” he says.                    infamous by the Bra Boys movie.
                                                                         More recently, the people of St John’s encouraged Garry to                      Latest News: The main Monday night gathering has outgrown its original lounge room
                                                                         think about full-time ministry and he decided to study through                  and has moved into the Zeebra cafe at the beach. ‘Grom Church’ aimed at school-aged
                                                                         Church Army which included completing an Advanced Diploma                       kids is ‘buzzing along on Sunday nights, with the children, parents, and their friends.’
                                                                         of Theology.                                                                    A restoration fellowship has started at the Café on Tuesday nights. “The team of leaders
                                                                         “It was important for me to get some proper biblical studies                    and trainees is slowly consolidating,” says Steve. “The mission is big and I need to
                                                                         so I have a firm foundation,” he says.                                          remind myself to keep the long term view and wisely plug away.”

                                                                         While studying he has worked part time, first at Narooma Anglican
Garry South, a Forbes boy born and bred, was commissioned
as a Church Army officer during Forbes’ ‘back to St John’s’
                                                                         Parish then in Wagga Wagga’s Juvenile Justice Centre.                           5. North Forbes
mission in April.                                                        Garry says it was the hands-on aspect of Church Army training that              LMB leader: The Rev’d Sister Lyn Bullard
He has taken up a ministry role with a privately funded Christian        has been really valuable.                                                       Latest News: Church Army is seeking to find and fund another worker who would be
drug and alcohol rehabilitation centre on the NSW North Coast.           “A lot of the training has been practical,” he says. “Being able to             placed in North Forbes to give full-time attention to the new initiative. (see main story)
“We are having great success,” he says. “It is a farm so we are          go on missions and learn ministry on the spot is very important.”
able to go off [onto the property] and work together with the
guy’s one on one.”

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