Partners in Christian Mission

February/March 2021

February/March 2021

Tas Baptist News February/March 2021


NEED TO KNOW SOME DATES? Check the Tas Baptist Calendar >>>

Claremont Baptist Celebrates its 50th Anniversary

Congratulations Claremont!On Sunday 7th March past and present members joined together in a joyful service to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Claremont Baptist Church in Hobart.

How it all began . .

In 1964, the Rev Mathew Francis, pastor of Lenah Valley Church, urged the establishment of a work in the growing residential area of Abbotsfield and Chigwell. The work began with six people: John and Roslein Priddle; Emma Cox and her daughter Freda Steedman; in the home of Ralph and Helen Tye, as the Abbotsfield Baptist Fellowship. Roslein always said the church's foundation was prayer, and their task was to step out in faith as God led.

The Home Missions Committee secured the services of Sister Heather Hunt, a trained deaconess of the Baptist Union of Great Britain to lead the team. She arrived in 1964 and stayed for five years.

In 1966 the Glenorchy Council, recognising the need for a church in the area, granted the Baptist Union a block of land on Cullen Street. Here the manse was built. It served both as a residence for Sister Heather and as a meeting place for Sunday School and Sunday services. Two new schools opened in the area and soon every room with the exception of Sister Heather's bedroom was filled to capacity on Sundays and plans were made to build the church.

The church was opened on the 6th March 1971 and the name was changed to Claremont Baptist Church. 23 October 1977 saw the official inauguration of the Claremont Baptist Church with 18 foundation members.

It's a caring church!

Cutting the cakeFoundation members Murray and Heather Hall were invited to cut the celebration cake. Heather said, "I love this church. It's a very caring church".

The Mayor of Glenorchy, Kristie Johnson was present to unveil a plaque. Kristie is the daughter of former pastor David Knox and she spoke of her memories of being a child in the church. She said, "The Claremont Baptist Church has been serving the Lord through Christian ministry for 50 years and I know that their strength through faith will see them continue for another 50 years."

Pictured: Heather and Murray Hall cut the cake; Former Paster David Knox, Mayor Kristie Johnson, Pastor Peter Clark

Former Pastor Daveid Knox, Mayor Kristie Johnson, and Pastor Peter Clark

Australian Baptist Ministries

Keith Jobberns and Mark Wilson

Australian Baptist Ministries is in a period of transition with the Rev Keith Jobberns concluding his role in mid March 2021. Rev. Mark Wilson has been appointed the new National Ministries Director and will commence in early March. The ABM office will relocate from Sydney to Perth.

Pictured from left: Outgoing National Ministries Director Keith Jobberns; New National Ministries Director Mark Wilson

Crossover is also in transition with a new Director being appointed.


Helping Australian Baptists Share Jesus

Crossover Australia Easter 2021Aussie Baptist churches are growing in diversity and although there are many different contexts, they all have a common theme of wanting to tell the Good News.


The 2021 Easter Offering video highlights our unity in the Gospel:

Give Me Ears to Hear

Give me ears to hear
Facing a Crossroads?

Maybe this poem from Ray Hawkins will help you today



Regional RoundUp >>>
The Regional Pastor's and Leaders Muster >>>
The Monthly Byte: Gambling >>>

Farewell Norman Pell

13 June1928 - 10 February 2021

Norman PellOur former Superintendent, the Rev Norman Pell, died on 10th February aged 91 years. He'd had failing health for some time.

In October 1992, the Tasmanian Baptist Annual Assembly welcomed him and his wife Dorothy from Melbourne. He began in February 1993. At the time he was 64 years of age. He concluded his time as Superintendent in Tasmania in March 1999.

When he was eight his father, the Rev. Fred Pell, was Pastor of the Devonport Baptist Church. In 1959 Norman was the Youth Chairman for the Billy Graham Crusade in Melbourne. He helped organize the Leighton Ford crusades in Tasmania in 1967-68. For 18 years he served on the staff of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association in America and other countries.

He was also a former General Superintendent of the Baptist Union of Victoria (1971-75) and former National Director of Christian Endeavour (1958-64). In an interview in 1993 he said, "At the age of 13, I and four other youngsters came to Christ in the Kew Baptist Church, Melbourne. The next Sunday we met in the pastor's vestry and formed the "Fishermen's Club". From then until he became a Home Missionary.

He continued, "We saw 70 young people come to the Lord. About 40 of them went out into full-time home or overseas missionary service. In these six years the passion was formed to win the world for Christ. Christian Endeavour in those days did so much for me with its ultimate objective 'Evangelisation of the World for Christ'. That led me out into the pastoral ministry, to denominational ministry, to C.E. work and ultimately to work with Billy Graham."

Norman was the loving husband of Dorothy, father of Alan, father-in-law of Terri, grandfather of Jessica, Zachary and Darcy.

Funeral details: 2:30pm Friday February 26, 2021. New Community Church at Maroondah Federation Estate, Ringwood, Victoria.

By Laurie Rowston

Tasmania Celebration Postponed

Will Graham remains eager to visit

Tasmania Celebration 2021, POSTPONED

We have now entered 2021, and the implications of COVID for this year are becoming clearer. Our BGEA team has been communicating with local leadership regarding the state travel restrictions, which have continued to impact preparations for the Will Graham Tasmania Celebration. In addition, the prospect of international travel in the first half of 2021 is slowly fading, and this impacts the travel itinerary of Will Graham and his team.

For this reason, in discussion with the local leadership team and other pastors, it has been decided to postpone the Celebration until May 2022.

Please see this letter from Will Graham for a personal note about this change >>>

The reality of this change is disappointing, but the mission of the BGEA is the same. We will take a step back, but continue to make preparations for the Tasmania Celebration. In the next few months, a new timeline for the Celebration will be released in consultation with the Hobart leadership team.

Senior National Manager
Billy Graham Evangelistic Association

FREE Prayer Seminar - Hobart (This event is now over)

Come and discover more about powerful prayer

Prayer Seminar

WHEN: Saturday, March 6th - Seminar begins at 9 am - Doors open from 8:30 am to allow for COVID contact tracing.

WHERE: Hobart City Church of Christ, 8 Goulburn Street, Hobart, Tasmania

COST: Free - Coffee and Tea will be provided. BYO Lunch, or purchase from nearby cafes

FOR: Anyone who is interested in prayer

Come and discover more about powerful prayer. You'll discover new things. You'll be refreshed. You'll be challenged to pray for revival in Hobart, Tasmania and in Australia. Revival can only come when Christians come together and pray.

In 2018, more than 90 Christians gathered at the Civic Centre in Nubeena where Pastor Chek presented his first "Journey in Prayer" Seminar in Tasmania, firmly believing that God is calling the Christian Churches of Australia to come together and pray for revival. Since taking this free seminar around Australia, he has been calling upon cities and towns to come together in prayer and seeing the wonderful fruit of Christian unity as a result.

Pastor Chek has been in pastoral ministry for more than 40 years. He has planted nine churches across Melbourne. He has served on state (Victoria & Tasmania) and national boards of the Churches of Christ in Australia. He was also the Overseer of the Intercessors For Melbourne Prayer Network for five years.

Praying for the persecuted church

Open Doors Australia |

Christians are being refused COVID-19 aid in countries across Asia, Middle East and Africa

The Open Doors World Watch List, 2021 AND

The Open Doors World Watch List Report, 2021

Pictured: Khalid from Ethiopia

Open Doors 2021 World Watch List. See a map or list >>>

This year's list reveals the most dangerous countries to be a Christian across the globe; key findings this year include:

  • North Korea is ranked as the most dangerous country for Christians for the 20th year in a row
  • Human trafficking has become worse for Christian women during COVID-19.
  • COVID-19 facilitates have increased surveillance and controls by authoritarian governments.
  • One in eight Christians worldwide are persecuted for their faith

Specific findings: Christians are being refused COVID-19 aid in countries across Asia, Middle East and Africa.

  • COVID-19 has been a catalyst for persecution and discrimination against Christians, who in countries from Bangladesh, India and Pakistan to Yemen and Sudan were at times denied emergency relief; some were told it was because "your church or your God should feed you" or even "the virus was created and/or spread by the West."
  • In India, 80% of those receiving emergency relief from Open Doors' partners were first excluded from official distribution.
  • The violent Islamic extremist group al-Shabaab in Somalia blamed Christians for COVID-19, announcing it was spread "by the crusader forces who have invaded the country and the disbelieving countries that support them."
FIND OUT MORE by reading the Report

The World Watch List 2021 Report includes:

  • The full World Watch List 2021
  • Trends in persecution all over the world,
  • Year-on-year insights,
  • The place where persecution is most on the rise,
  • A glimpse into the persecuted church


More great reading in the Feb/Mar 2021 ADVANCE | step by step

HEARTLANDS Summer newsletter from Tasmanian Baptist Women >>>

Tas Baptist Muster for Pastors and Leadership Teams

This event is now over. Read Louis Fife's report >>>

Richard and Catriona SharpWHEN: March 1-3
WHERE: Lenah Valley (Mar 1); Summerhill (Mar 2); Wynyard (Mar 3)
WHO: Pastors, leadership team members, and potential leaders are encouraged to attend.
REGISTER: Contact Michael Henderson:
MORE INFO: Please contact Michael Henderson for more information about this very worthwhile event.

Richard Sharp from ReNew Discipleship Network, Adelaide, will be with us to further explore key themes from our new strategic plan.
Richard will join with pastors over dinner, followed by an evening meeting which is open to our leadership teams and other key leaders from our churches.

Pictured: Richard and Catriona Sharp

New program to assist the vulnerable in Southern Tasmania

TWAC course

Christian agency Travel With A Cause (TWAC) are running a volunteer aged care program and are looking for churches - maybe yours!

Are you interested in having international students spending 120 hours under the supervision of TWAC, to do gardening projects etc and interacting with your oldies?

All students will have flu vaccination, police check, first aid, and a Working with Vulnerable People card.

There are two ways to participate:
  1. As a provider of aged recipients to this service. To find out more about how to host students through your church please contact Jane Johnston at
  2. As a volunteer international student looking for a qualification. This course meets the requirements for of CHC 52015 Diploma of Community Services. You can read more, and register HERE >>>

Applications invited - Crossover Director

Crossover AustraliaAustralian Baptist Ministries (ABM) is seeking to discern God's leading for the appointment of a Director for Crossover.

Crossover is a ministry of ABM, committed to spreading the good news of Jesus Christ to the people of Australia. Our goal is for churches and leaders to be better equipped for effective mission in our nation in the 21st century.

The vision of Crossover is focused in three key areas:

* The development of high-quality evangelism resources

* The encouragement of evangelism in Baptist churches across Australia

* The training of pastors and leaders to be more effective in evangelism

As the senior leader in the Crossover team the Crossover Director will provide pastoral leadership including preaching and teaching responsibilities in promoting the purpose of the organisation to help Australian Baptists share Jesus. The Director will also provide pastoral leadership to the Crossover team members and the members of the Crossover Taskforce.

This is ideally a full-time (1.0FTE) position, however flexibility may be negotiated to meet a candidate's circumstances.

A copy of the position description is available on request by contacting Frances Schramko at Interested applicants are encouraged to submit their CV, along with a covering letter addressing their suitability for the role based on the Position Description. These should be forwarded to the recruitment panel chairperson, Rev Dr Steve Bartlett, at

Enquiries or questions regarding the role may be directed to Steve on 0412 921 932. The closing date for applications is Friday 26 February 2021.

2021 NCLS Invitation to Churches

Local churches in Australia are invited to take part in the five-yearly National Church Life Survey, which will next happen during 2021. This project involves thousands of churches and their attenders across most denominations. The goal is to encourage church vitality, equip effective leadership and strengthen connections between church and community.


ADVANCE | step by step, February/March 2021

PROFILE: Summerhill Baptist >>>
INSPIRE: It's a New Day - 21st Century Ministry by Karen Wilson >>>
ASSIST: Perth Bushfires >>>
FROM the MD: Approaching 2021 >>>
Q&A INTERVIEW: Karen Buckney >>>
FOOD FOR THOUGHT: The Value of Lament >>>

180th Anniversary, York Street Chapel

Sunday December 27, 2020

York St Chapel 180th Anniversary Cake

City Baptist Church was filled on Sunday 27 December, celebrating 180 years of continuous Baptist life and witness in Launceston. A four-metre long timeline of the local Baptist history was on display.

With the organ resounding to great old hymns, representatives from each Baptist church in Launceston joined in, looking both backwards in our shared past as well as forwards into what God yet has for us. Pastor Jeff McKinnon spoke from Romans 10:13-15 on Bearing Good News.

Over morning tea, a massive celebration mud cake was enjoyed as sales in Laurie Rowston's history texts did a brisk trade, especially his latest--on the history of the York Street Baptist Chapel.

City Baptist continues to explore how best to continue to be a welcoming presence in our city centre.

Read more in The Examiner >>>

Emergency Services Training Day

Faith-based pastoral care in emergencies and disasters

Emergency services training daysThis event is for those interested in caring for people during emergencies.

The training day covers Psychological First Aid and Emotional Spiritual Care.
Specific topics include:

  • Introductions to the emergency setting and TCC Emergencies Ministry
  • Impacts of emergencies on individuals and communities
  • Stress
  • Community and individual recovery after disasters
  • Practical exercises around caring for people and practising Psychological First Aid

Hobart: 9:30-4pm Saturday February 13, 2021
NB. The northern training toook place last December, but those from the north are welcome to attend the day in Hobart.


Penguin Baptist prepare to send books

Penguin are 'hosting' a container for Library Aid International, a mission to supply books to schools and other places where resources are scarce. The last container is in the process of being unpacked and distributed in Zimbabwe. The neatly labelled boxes are the final step in the next shipment. There has been a richness of donations to this work over the last few months. And what a blessing it is.

Amongst our congregation, many are beset by aging pains and other issues - and many in our extended families are doing it tough. We appreciate your partnership in prayer for our witness and fitness.

FIND OUT MORE: Library Aid International on Facebook >>>

PICTURED: The neat container (top) is the one Penguin Baptist is hosting. The messy one (below) is yet to be unpacked, sorted, repacked and added to the neat container!

ADVANCE | step by step, February/March 2021

PROFILE: Summerhill Baptist >>>
INSPIRE: It's a New Day - 21st Century Ministry by Karen Wilson >>>
ASSIST: Perth Bushfires >>>
FROM the MD: Approaching 2021 >>>
Q&A INTERVIEW: Karen Buckney >>>
FOOD FOR THOUGHT: The Value of Lament >>>

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