Serving the Lord on Kangaroo Island

Brad Henley

It was just over nine years ago that God opened the door and put the need for consistent, longer-term ministry on Kangaroo Island on our hearts and we’ve been here ever since. It has been such a privilege to serve God here. We love it when we can spend time enjoying the beauty of creation and are really thankful for the people we’ve become close to and share our lives with.

My primary role on Kangaroo Island has been as a shepherd of God’s people, caring for, and encouraging them in the gospel. I am also that public face of ministry which means people who don’t yet know Jesus know where to go when they have questions about Jesus, life, the universe, and everything. Joh’s primary role has been ministering through her psychology practice.

Our traditional Sunday services alternate between our two church centres in the mornings and our Family Church contemporary gathering is run each week in Kingscote.

This 4pm Family Church service began with a few people in 2015. While the service is for all ages and stages, we have deliberately included fun kids’ songs and a more interactive sermon. We have a discussion time following the sermon which gives the opportunity for people to raise questions and hear what God is saying to one another. I think the relaxed feel of the service (including a level of noisiness that isn’t always accepted at a traditional service) has meant people feel welcome. After the service we share dinner together which means that those who could have driven for up to an hour to attend, can get home with the kids more or less ready for bed.

The 2019/2020 bushfires caused so much devastation on Kangaroo Island and while there has been much progress, there is still a long way to go. Mental health and well-being issues still touch many lives. Our parish has been a conduit to bring funds from various donors to increase well-being initiatives. We have also been praying for and delivering marriage enrichment materials and gifts to bushfire-affected families.

There are so many encouraging things about serving on Kangaroo Island. People have been engaging with God and the Bible through personal contact with us, in groups, and in courses. We have been so encouraged by BCA supporters who make contact and pray for us.

Please pray for us as we bid farewell to our church and wider community after so many years here and for the people of Kangaroo Island still working through bushfire recovery.

 

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