Magarey Ministers Conference

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16 April, 2024

May is just around the corner, and with it comes the much-anticipated Churches of Christ Magarey Ministers Conference!

For all Ministers and leaders, this years Magarey Ministers Conference promises to be a time of spiritual growth, learning, and fellowship.

Magarey Ministers Conference will feature keynote sessions from Dr Angela Sawyer and Dr Rowan Lewis that will stimulate conversation around Discipleship in our cultural context. Also included will be various sessions and table conversations centred around the topics raised, and an opportunity for Ministers to engage deeply with the material and exchange ideas with peers.

Tuesday 7th May - Wednesday 8th May|

SouthPoint Community Church

24 Towers Terrace, Edwardstown

Dr Angela Sawyer is the Head of Biblical Studies and Associate Academic Dean at ACOM. Her PhD (Whitley College, University of Divinity) explored church leavers via the theme of exile in the book of Isaiah. Angela’s current research attention includes trauma hermeneutics, Daughter Zion, and pedagogical innovation. Angela thrives on interdisciplinary approaches to biblical studies and is passionate about actively engaging users in ethical practice. With over 15 years of experience in tertiary education, Angela has specialised in academic leadership and teaching. She is accredited with the Victorian Churches of Christ and is based in Melbourne with her family and way too many pets.

Dr Rowan Lewis is the Head of Pastoral Theology at ACOM. He is an experienced researcher and educator in the area of formation and spirituality. Over the last 15 years, he has created and led formation programs for youth and young adults, and specialised in accompanying young people amidst times of doubt and spiritual transition. Rowan is based in Melbourne and attends St Alfred’s Anglican church.


$190.00 for full conference or $100.00 per day.

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Movement and Identity Resource

Dr. Mark Riessen, Mission & Ministry Director, has released ‘Movement and Identity: Participating in the life of God’s mission’, a new resource aimed at fostering unity and mission within Churches of Christ congregations in Australia. Comprising two parts—a leader guide and a participant guide—this resource is intended for leaders and small groups within Churches of Christ or anyone who wishes to learn more about the movement. The six studies contained within these workbooks will stimulate quality conversations and engage participants in missional practices aligned with the restoration mission of God.

Mark emphasizes that this resource transcends intellectual understanding; it is designed to engage hearts and hands as well. Mission is not confined to others or distant locations; rather, it is a collective effort to restore the world through active participation in the establishment of His kingdom here today. All Jesus followers are invited to partake in this endeavour. Churches of Christ, characterized by a liberating DNA, are well-suited for agile and creative participation in this mission.

Mark's aspiration for the resource is twofold: to inspire open dialogues that address agreements and disagreements within Churches of Christ communities and to enable diverse yet united missional initiatives. Ultimately, ‘Movement and Identity’ seeks to facilitate transformation by fostering understanding, unity, and active participation in God's ongoing work of restoration.

Published by ACOM Press, the resource is available for purchase on their website.


Firmly Anchoring Our Faith

“Therefore, we must pay closer attention to the things we have heard, lest we drift away." (Hebrews 2:1, NKJV)

Growing up, our family cherished our annual beach vacations. The children adored surfing, yet many beaches with good surf also had strong currents. Warning signs were typically posted to caution us. On one occasion, I carelessly disregarded these warnings and found myself in trouble drifting away with the current. Thankfully, more experienced surfers came to my rescue.

In a world that constantly pulls us in various directions, the passage urges us to give "earnest heed" to the teachings of Jesus Christ and the wisdom found in God's Word. It calls for active and focused attention. Furthermore, the scripture serves as a warning against the perils of drifting away. The pressures of the world, the allure of sin, and the distractions of everyday life can subtly lead us astray if we are not watchful. Consequently, we must safeguard our hearts and minds, remaining rooted in God's Word and seeking His guidance daily.

So, how can we give earnest heed and avoid drifting away? Firstly, we can cultivate a consistent devotional life by setting aside dedicated time each day to read, meditate upon, and pray over God's Word.

Secondly, engaging in regular fellowship by surrounding ourselves with fellow believers who can support and challenge us in our faith is essential. Attending worship services, Bible studies, and prayer meetings strengthens our spiritual foundation.

Thirdly, embracing accountability plays a significant role. Finding a trusted mentor or spiritual advisor who can walk alongside us, providing guidance and holding us accountable in our journey of faith, is invaluable.

Lastly, we must seek the leading of the Holy Spirit by inviting Him to guide our thoughts, decisions, and actions. Relying on His power and wisdom enables us to navigate the challenges and temptations that come our way.

May God bless you abundantly as you earnestly heed His Word and live out your faith with unwavering conviction.

In Christ's love,

Carl Haasbroek



Elizabeth’s Meaningful Role in Employment Assistance

Millions of people in the world today are without work or underemployed. Without meaningful work, there is a loss of purpose and dignity. This creates a vicious cycle of poverty—economically, spiritually, and emotionally. So, what if we flipped things and equipped churches to start helping their community find meaningful work? What if we started lending a hand instead of just a handout? What if there was a way to help people find meaningful employment with the church’s investment of money and resources?

Jobs for Life was developed in the US and is a fantastic Bible based programme that helps get people back into meaningful employment whilst discipling people in how the Gospel can give them hope and purpose for their lives. It also helps them develop life skills such as working in a team, overcoming roadblocks, dealing with conflict, and developing goals. As they attend, individuals discover their gifts and passions and prepare a plan to achieve their career and life goals.

Elizabeth is the first place in Australia to run this course. We have developed connections with a number of Christian business people and several employment agencies. These people speak to the group about expectations in the workplace, help them with resumes and interviews, and guide them into courses that will enable them to be qualified for work.

It is a 16 week course and this is the second year Elizabeth Church of Christ has run this course.

Andrews Farm Community Church has joined with us in running the programme. We currently have 10 students, most of whom have been long-term unemployed. We have a team of 14 people made up of 6 teachers and 8 mentors. The programme is led by Mark Zerna and Anne Carr. In the future we hope to run the programme in our Community Centre in Elizabeth South and later in the Men’s and Women’s prisons.