September 2017 News from the Board

We have wonderful news:  Raj has formally been appointed as the new National Director for EE New Zealand and takes up his role with immediate effect.  Anne has set a steady solid foundation over 20 years for Raj to build on and I would deeply like to honour that.  Congratulations Raj, we are all excited and looking forward to your commissioning and leadership.  Here is Raj’s response in his own words:

“I have been offered the role as the new EE National Director, taking over from Tina the interim National Director. After praying and consulting with my wife, Shanthi, I gladly agreed to take up this position. It will be a great honour and privilege for me to serve the Lord Jesus through this role. I fully trust that this is God’s plan for me and I gladly submit to His will and plan. With God’s help and the well-able team around me: Tina, Chris, Anne, Ilse, Lewis and Paul, I can fulfill the huge responsibility and demand that comes with this role. In order to allow Rod Story, EE Senior Vice President, to attend and commission me as the National Director, I will be deferring the commissioning ceremony to 17 December to allow Rod to take time off from his busy schedule.”

Our Triennial EENZ Conference in Christchurch last month was a real blessing.  Even though numbers were low, we shared wonderful fellowship and heaps of brainstorming, which has resulted in many important and excellent points for us to think about and implement as part of our work over the next few years.  I have also asked the South Island coordinators to contribute to this edition and I hope you enjoy finding out more about their ministries.

Tina Toschi, Board of Directors

September 2017 News from Raj

Despite all the excitement and buzz around my appointment, all my EE training and promotion work has progressed smoothly this month. The SYF/EV2 training has concluded at the Hanouri Korean Presbyterian (HKP) church with six pastors trained and equipped to train others. The HKP church is planning to implement four weeks street evangelism at Queen Street, incorporating the teaching from EE SYF/EV2 workshop. Besides this, the ongoing 10 weeks SYF/EV2 workshop at Elim Botany is proceeding wonderfully without any hiccups. More workshops and clinics have been earmarked for the coming months – full throttle ahead. And as usual, I would like to thank Ilse, Anne, Chris, Paul and Tina for their tremendous help.

Raj Narayanan, National Director

September 2017: News from Hope for Kids Coordinators

Christchurch After School Club’s Kids Connect has been operating at Yaldhurst School on Thursday afternoons for the past 10 years and has provided the perfect opportunity to teach Hope for Kids. The Club is totally independent of the school and so the Gospel can be freely presented.  What a blessing it was to realise that I was teaching a little 6-year-old boy the other day whose mother I had also taught as a 7-year-old and praise God she came to faith only a few months back.  Kids Connect is a family ministry that builds caring relationships with the whole family and hence has the freedom to walk with them through inevitable crises when they occur. These are natural times to share the hope of the Gospel. I have a quiet assurance that the children that attend on Thursday afternoons are handpicked of the Lord and He is at work in their lives.

Adrienne van Rij, EE Coordinator, Christchurch.

In 2005 Anne Bowie and Christine Carr ran a (then known as) Kids EE training workshop.  Fran Dawson, Tim Davis and I, among others, attended.  Tim was at East Taieri Presbyterian Church while I was assisting Fran Dawson at Leith Valley Church and we immediately put the programme into practice. When East Taieri hired a full-time Children’s minister, I returned to Leith Valley, and helped run another two Kids EE programmes.  The last one was interesting in that we only had ten weeks that term, so we compressed the programme into those ten weeks – the fun fair was deconstructed and each event was put with the accompanying lesson, we put “Growing in Jesus” into the next term, and wrapped our OJT into a Christmas visit to a local nursing home.

I am excited about the upcoming opportunities for training in the South Island for 2017.  A commitment to four training sessions is fantastic!  Unfortunately, there has been no regular series of training seminars in Dunedin.  I wish the reason was that we had saturated the local churches with trainees.   In reality, there is a lot more work to be done targeting the people who ought to be introduced to EE.     But, if the question is, have children been introduced to the Gospel in a way that is memorable and able to be communicated? Then yes, they have.  They have also learned the tools to communicate their faith.  The first students we taught are now coming of age to leave home and enter Uni.  Will what we taught them hold up when they are tested and do not have the framework of their parents supporting them?  I was greatly encouraged to see some of those members of our first class being baptised this month.  Their testimonies indicate they have internalised their faith and have had a real encounter with God.  Time will tell if the other half of the programme is effective – can they share their faith with others?

David Jull, EE Coordinator, Dunedin.

September 2017 news from Anne Bowie, VP for Oceania

Last month was such an exciting one for me, both in Oceania and New Zealand. It began with the New Zealand Conference in Christchurch, which although small in attendance, was large in the commitment, enthusiasm and energy of those present and opened up so many contacts. It was great to be back in Christchurch and renewed links with Grace Presbyterian have resulted in a wonderful opportunity to equip people there with XEE in October/November, as well as Lewis and team’s Hope for Kids training this month. Mid-month it was a joy to join Raj and Chris in training gifted adult leaders in XEE over two weekends at Massey Community Church. Consolidation of that training is just beginning. Then I was ‘over the ditch’ to Wollongong, to meet with the Chairman of the EE Australia Board, and two other members to do its Annual Review.  The whole Board will respond to the group findings in early September and this will form their action plan for 2018. I caught up with Langdon Stewart in Wollongong and how good it was to spend the best part of a day with him. Finally, I spent four wonderful days in Croydon Park, West Sydney, co-teaching a Hope for Kids Workshop with Wendy Sin, a truly veteran EE Teacher/Trainer.  Leaders from four Chinese congregations and one Burmese came to be qualified to teach H4K programmes in their churches.  One of these was Pastor Angelo Ho, EE Chinese Director, who very gifted and enthusiastic, and who will now be able to go on and train more leaders in the Chinese Churches. We thank God for the six children who invited Jesus into their lives at the on-the-job training time on Sunday. This is what it’s all about!  Wendy Sin had the vision and determination to persist in making this workshop happen. She is an inspiration of passion and commitment to evangelism and especially to EE. Wendy showed me her scrapbooks of photos and records of EE training in Sydney, wider Australia and Oceania going back well over 20 years. She must have equipped hundreds of leaders of all ages! A truly unsung ‘heroine’, she reminded me of the verse: “Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervour, serving the Lord.” (Romans 12:11) May this be said of us!