Serving in Katherine – one year on

By Kristan Slack, BCA Field Staff, Katherine NT 

When we came to Katherine one year ago my plan was simple – preach God’s word, lead His people, make connections in the community and figure out how to reach them with the gospel. One year on, my plan remains the same.

Christianity Explored

Recently we ran Christianity Explored in our Sunday services. We thought it was a way of connecting people in the community who were interested in Jesus, and publicised the course in the local paper and on Facebook.

We had a few outsiders turn up the first week but not return. That’s ok because running the course made the church more visible. Normally Christianity Explored has Q&A time. This was too difficult in a big congregation so we put paper and pens around the church and a box in the back. I invited questions and tried to respond each week from the front. That proved so successful that we’ve kept it going since the course.

A growing church

Through the second half of last year we were racking our brains on how to reach families in our town. Katherine has a high demographic of young families but most are not church going. We decided to put our energy into building up our kids program.

God answered our prayer for a Christian family to join our church and we thank you for praying with us through the Prayer Notes. He sent a new RAAF chaplain and his family. We’ve also had an American family join us from the base. Then there are some Indigenous families who come and go. There is now much more momentum and we have a program which can have up to 15 kids.

In the media

When the new editor started at The Katherine Times I thought I’d pop in and say g’day. It turns out he is a Christian and three months later he asked me to write a regular column.

It has been a challenge to write for a secular audience and get them to read it. I’ve written columns on grace, Jesus and Donald Trump, the Easter bunny and Santa Claus. People who are reading, commenting or liking don’t attend my church. It’s a great opportunity to share the gospel with a wider audience.

Recently I wrote a column linked to a piece of graffiti on the Katherine Bridge that says Jesus loves nachos. I asked – Does Jesus love nachos? I said that Jesus liked God’s good things – he liked eating, he liked different ethnicities and nachos are Mexican so he’d love nachos. I concluded with “More than nachos, Jesus loves you”. ABC Radio Darwin got hold of my column and interviewed me on their breakfast program. I didn’t expect it to go past the town!

God is using our presence here to do His thing.