Michael Henderson

Aug 02, 2023
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Ministry Profile

Skateboarder and Jesus-Chaser

Michael Henderson is known across Baptist churches in Tasmania for his skills in leadership development and creating edgey art installations. He’s less well known for skateboarding and golfing! Find out more . . .

I was born in Surry Hills Women’s Hospital in Sydney, which closed shortly afterwards. My mum had travelled from Bourke to have me there. Before I turned five, I lived in Bourke, Lismore, Ballina, and Hay. I grew up all over NSW, in many country towns, and loved it. I loved the freedoms I enjoyed in the country, and the sport all weekend, and always being outside doing something. Moving from one place to another was so normal growing up, it felt weird to then stay in Sydney for 20 years, before we moved to Tasmania.

I had touch points with church and God growing up, but committed to following Jesus when I was 20. Actually, I have never connected with the term or category of “Christian”. Instead, from beginning I have needed and engaged with a present and active Jesus in my life, and as someone I follow, like a mentor. 

From beginning I have engaged with a present and active Jesus in my life, and as someone I follow, like a mentor. 

Michael Henderson

Tasmanian Life

I am married to Tiffany. We met over attaching wooden toilet tags to toilet keys at a Scripture Union Beach Mission where we were both serving. She was finishing her studies in Speech Therapy and had recently sailed from Sydney to Hobart on a tall ship. I was a skateboarder enrolled in art college. We have two young adult children Gabrielle and Sam, and we all live in Tasmania. 

I moved to Tasmania to combine art and faith into the Dark Mofo Festival. Gabrielle moved to study Marine Biology at UTAS. Sam moved for the adventure. I am thankful that Tiff moved because the rest of us moved!

I love living here because of the great outdoors. Bush walking, playing golf, skateboarding (skate parks are everywhere in Tassie), and seeing new things. I also love the country town feel of Tassie, and I can visit Sydney and Melbourne without having to live there.

I attended the Lausanne Conference in March this year. The conference was good to attend from a representation point of view, and speak to other leaders who were present. The conference itself included talks about different churches and people doing amazing things, which was interesting but not necessarily helpful.

Ed Stetzer, though, was excellent. He spoke about the basic general principles of evangelism. The standout was Tim Piesse, from Crossway. He gave insight about his honest search for something his church could engage with around evangelism. This involved what he found to do about discipleship and evangelism. As well, he shared how to help introverted personalities get involved without having to be a part-time extrovert. (You can find out more here: bdc.org.au/about-us/)

Tim Piesse shared how to help introverted personalities get involved without having to be a part-time extrovert.

Michael Henderson and is art
Michael at the launch of his recent art installation at Hobart; And his work: The Seed of Life Weighed Down

Michael’s work life

My work with Tasmanian Baptists involves leadership development. And I also work with Hobart Baptist Church in a mission capacity. But when people ask me how I spend my time, I say I am a skateboarder!

To be honest, I genuinely love working in leadership development, supporting leaders, and helping churches do new things. 

My work can sometimes be challenging when trying to get Baptist Churches to talk to me, and trust I am worth speaking with. It is never easy to convey my task is to help them realise their vision for their church. Most people think I will come in and tell them what to do, which no one wants to hear. 

I would value your prayer for energy, and for a love for people. That I will be quick to listen, and slow to speak. That I will continue to chase after Jesus with all my heart and strength.

The best piece of advice I have received is to have low expectations of Christians, they are just human. Have big expectations of Jesus and what He can do.

Michael Henderson - best advice: Have big expectations of what Jesus can do.

Short ‘n’ Sweet

am looking forward to . . . getting to 50 years old.

I am worried about . . . my ability to see where Jesus works in our world.

I am confident that . . . Jesus is always doing a new thing in our midst.

I am joyful about . . . my family.

I would like to change . . . my car to a Ferrari. 

I am at my best . . . when I have had time to be bored. 

Michael Henderson
Mission Leadership Development
Tasmanian Baptists

Michael Henderson

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