Church Health

Church Health continues to be a major focus in the CRC. In the new Strategic Directions 2013-18, the Church Health area has been expanded into three major areas, Spirit-Empowered Evangelism, Developing Churches and Connecting Ministers. These three emphases, working together, will lead to healthier, more fruitful and more family-oriented churches across Australia.

Church Planting

As a part of the new Strategic Directions 2013-18 we will look to prioritise the Toolshed church planting training events, to raise the profile of birthing new churches and to encourage congregations to work together to facilitate church planting in new areas.

David Wright continues to champion this, and to lead by example as his Cairns church, along with his son Samuel, is outreaching into the Atherton Tablelands, QLD.

The new Momentum Canberra ACT with Mark Warren from Narrandera (NSW) has started services in July.

Other church plants in various stages of progress include:

Wati Numa (SA Pitjantjatjara Community) from Alice Springs – Allen Steel

Emerald (VIC) from South Eastern – Mike & Diane Albert

Ballan (VIC) from Daylesford – Glen Rowbotham & Roger Featherstone

Millicent (SA) from Mt Gambier – Phil Baker & Dean Andresen

Mt Barker (SA) from Stirling – Hans Voortman

Wonthaggi (VIC) – Linden Stokes

Whittington (VIC) from Waurn Ponds – Mike Groom

Koo Wee Rup (VIC) from Cranbourne – Phil Cayzer

Training & Leadership Development

The new online training system is now handling initial registrations, payments and the upload of student work and assessment sheets nationally. Financially, the College is strong and we are proposing to increase the staffing allocation for 2014 in anticipation of increased enrolments.

These are currently almost double what we had last year and the budget is in excess of $90,000.
Course materials are being updated, although support for this task is slow given the amount of work involved. New notes have been written in Cults & World Religions, Church History, Typology, Genesis, Christology, OT Prophets, Basic Doctrine and Basic Leadership, with notes to be written in Advanced Leadership, Church Management, Holy Spirit, Apologetics, Authority & Authenticity of the Bible, and several less urgent areas identified.

The required curriculum upgrade for all accredited courses will require an update of our current course assessments, too. A current audit of all training is being aided by our new compliance officer, Dorien Erasmus, supporting our administrator, Amanda Deed. These two women are doing a sterling job in support of our churches. So, too, are the State Training Coordinators Rodney Bortolin and David Bland, with David making a positive impact since joining the National Training Team at the start of the year. All this is being led by Rob Nyhuis as National / Victorian Training Director.

Pastor feedback on current units is being incorporated into the curriculum updates, along with suggested CRC competency changes. We are also exploring the option of creating a separate Children’s Ministry training stream via our website.

The relevant training office can be contacted in each State to enable ministry development whether in accredited, unaccredited or occasional programs of study and whether online or via live study options.


Both National Youth Director, Tim Lochens, and National Children’s Director, Caroline Dennis, have been preparing for the inaugural Youth and Children’s Leaders Streams at the National Pastors and Leaders Conference in Melbourne in October. These promise to be key times of not just inspiring, equipping and training our leaders, but also networking and forming alliances that can be used to both raise the profile and the fruitfulness of ministry to children and young people across the CRC.

The 2013-18 Strategic Directions document includes key developments for both Youth and Children, and Tim and Caroline and their National Teams will take leading roles in outworking these in the next few years.