…inevitably come to an end.
It was with a very heavy heart that we announced to church this Sunday that we would be leaving at the end of the year. We’ve been umming and aahing about a move for the last 18 months or so and it’s slowly become clear to us that the right thing to do is to look for new ministry opportunities.
Not that we want to leave! St Augustine’s has been our home for 8 1/2 years, ever since we arrived in Sydney from Singapore with Ouldlet #1 a few months away from meeting the outside world and keen to get stuck into study at Moore Theological College. Since then we’ve produced 3 Ouldlets, graduated from seminary, got ordained and settled into full-time word ministry and training. All of it has been brilliant. Hard, but brilliant. The time to speak more fully about all that we’re thankful for is yet to come but for now we look back with nothing but great happiness and forward with not a little sadness that we are leaving behind a body of people that we love dearly, especially at such an exciting time. Church attendance has grown rapidly over the past 4 years, we’ve seen loads of conversions and also Christians strengthened in their faith in and love for Jesus. We may be embarking on a building project next year. In every way I’ve had the enormous privilege of being involved in key moments in people’s lives. All of it is dear and precious to us.
We’re not quite sure yet what next year will hold, or where we will be. We’ve begun to talk to a few people but are by no means decided. We’d appreciate your prayers as we discern where we should go next and, of course, if you have a suggestion then I’d love to hear it. Every minister that God calls to this work has his/her particular set of gifts and skills and we’re keen that ours be used in the best way and to the glory of the God in the Lord Jesus Christ whom it is such a privilege and joy to serve. Where and what that will be, we would also love to know!
I’m also delighted that St Augustine’s have already been able to announce a replacement. My very good friend Lionel Windsor will be here after we leave, which is an answer to prayer in so many ways. First, because I could not think of a finer man to work here. Second because the Windsors have a certain flexibility in transitioning here which means that we can also be flexible in terms of when we leave – so the church will not suffer. Do also pray for Lionel, Bronwyn and their 3 children as they prepare for their transition here.
Proverbs 19:21 Many are the plans in a man’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.