Northwest Network December 2017

The December 2017 issue of Northwest Network, the newsletter of the Diocese of North West Australia, is now available for you to download.

Use it (1.4MB PDF file) to fuel your prayers for NW Australia, and the followers of Jesus who live there, as they hold fast to the word of life.

Dr Matt Brain elected 10th Bishop of Bendigo

Dr Matt Brain, Assistant Bishop in the Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn, has been elected 10th Bishop of the Diocese of Bendigo.

Here is the announcement from the Bendigo Vicar General:

“Diocesan Update – 7th December 2017

Election of 10th Bishop of Bendigo

Dear Friends,

Following the prayerful work of the Bishopric Electoral Board over a number of months, I am delighted to announce that last night The Right Rev’d Dr Matt Brain was duly elected by the Board as the 10th Bishop of Bendigo.

Bishop Matt is currently an Assistant Bishop in the Diocese of Canberra-Goulburn. He has worked in both lay and ordained capacity in five dioceses including North-West Australia where he was ordained and gained valuable experience in rural and remote ministry.

At the diocesan level Bishop Matt is currently responsible for Ministry Training and Development in Canberra- Goulburn, and oversees Parish Support Chaplaincy and Mission. He has served as Acting Registrar for the diocese on two occasions and was the Director of Anglican Diocesan Services until recently. He has served on numerous diocesan and school boards and is a member of General Synod and the Primatial Panel of Electors.

At the parish level he is currently the Rector of Arawang Anglican Church, south-west of Canberra, where he leads a ministry team comprising of ordained and lay leaders.

Bishop Matt has published numerous books, articles and conference papers and lectures at St Marks Theological College in Ministry and Outreach where he is also the deputy chair of the board. His doctoral thesis was “Treasures in Jars of Clay: Towards a new Pauline Pastoral Theology of Mission to Generation Y in Australia.”

Bishop Matt has a keen interest in advocacy and is a trustee of the Anglican Relief and Development Fund-Australia.

He is married to Rachael and they have 5 children aged 8-15. Bishop Matt originally trained and worked as a physiotherapist. He lists his interests as playing guitar, reading, cycling and jogging.

As a Diocese we have worked hard to be transformative, mission-shaped communities of faith so that our society may be transformed by Jesus. Bishop Matt is delighted to be able to join with us as we seek to be true to this calling and is looking forward to sharing in Jesus’ transformative work with us.

Details of when Bishop Matt will move to Bendigo will follow in the coming weeks. The date for his installation is Saturday, 17 February at St Paul’s Cathedral, Bendigo.

Please pray for Bishop Matt, Rachael and their children as they make their way to Bendigo and Matt starts his new ministry with us.

With blessings,

The Very Rev’d John Roundhill
Vicar General.”

Photo: Diocese of Canberra & Goulburn.

Anglican Bishop of Bendigo Andrew Curnow lays up his pastoral staff

“The longest serving Anglican diocesan bishop in Australia has laid up his pastoral staff and concluded his time in office.

Bishop Andrew Curnow AM was farewelled from the role of Anglican Bishop of Bendigo on Saturday …”

– Report from The Bendigo Advertiser. (Photo: Diocese of Bendigo.)

Stuart Robinson to conclude his term as Bishop of Canberra & Goulburn at Easter 2018

An announcement today from Stuart Robinson, Bishop of Canberra and Goulburn:

“Beloved Sisters and Brothers in Christ,

I am writing to our wider diocesan family with the news that I will conclude my term as the tenth Diocesan Bishop of Canberra and Goulburn in the tenth year of my consecration on the Saturday before Easter, 2018. A simple service of laying up the pastoral staff will take place in the Cathedral at 11.00am that day (31 March 2018).

Jane and I have been so blessed to serve alongside you in this great and wonderful diocese; it has been a privilege. We do sense our work is complete (as much as that can ever be discerned) and with extended and immediate family responsibilities, we have determined the time is right to conclude this ministry. We are seeking the Lord in connection with what the next chapter may hold.

Some weeks ago, as per ordinances and canons, I notified the Primate, the Metropolitan, my episcopal team and senior staff of this course of action.

Please uphold Bishop Trevor Edwards as he, as Vicar-General, will also become the Diocesan Administrator. Bishop Trevor will take a break in the early New Year and then I’ll begin the hand-over process although given the way we currently work, Bishop Trevor is ‘across’ all presenting issues.

My final formal activity in Canberra & Goulburn will be a ‘walk with the cross’ on Good Friday. 30 March 2018, followed by an open-air service in Goulburn, our See City.

A great many thanks for your kindness, friendship and partnership in the gospel.

Much love in Christ,

Bishop Stuart C.G. 10
Diocesan Bishop
1 December 2017.”

– from The Canberra & Goulburn website.

(You could pray, not only for Stuart & Jane Robinson, and Trevor & Ruth Edwards, but also for those responsible for seeking a new bishop.)

Dr Peter Stuart elected Bishop of Newcastle

Dr Peter Stuart has been elected the 14th Bishop of Newcastle.

Report from NBN News Newcastle.

Biographical info from the Diocese of Newcastle.

“Bishop Peter came to the Diocese in 2009 after serving in ministry in Tasmania and South Australia. In 2013 he administered the Diocese following Bishop Farran’s retirement. Since December 2016 he has been leading the Diocese on behalf of Bishop Thompson. He became Administrator of the Diocese on 1 June 2017.

Bishop Peter was born in England in 1963 and emigrated to Cabramatta in 1971. He has since lived in Tasmania, Victoria and South Australia before returning to NSW. …”


The news has now been posted online by the diocese.

And from The Newcastle Herald:

“Bishop Stuart wants to head a diocese that leads on important social justice issues including “supporting Indigenous Australians as they seek fairer representation in Australian decision-making”, speaking up about the treatment of refugees and the impact of fossil fuels on the environment.”

Contracts exchanged for purchase of All Saints’ College

“On Friday November 24, The Presbyterian Church in NSW and the All Saints’ College Council exchanged contracts for the purchase of All Saints’ College by the Presbyterian Church. …”

– The latest from the Diocese of Bathurst.

Newcastle Election Synod this Saturday — 25 November

“This coming weekend the Synod of the Diocese will gather for the purpose of electing its new Diocesan Bishop. …

Members of the Board are agreed that we have three very good people before us for our consideration. They have been impressed, particularly, with the openness of these nominees to reflecting on what God’s call to them is at this time, and their generosity with us testing this call. …”

Read it all here, and be encouraged to pray for the Newcastle Synod as they meet.

WA Anglican Bishop says ‘no’ to same-sex church weddings

“A WA Anglican bishop has declared he will not allow same-sex couples to marry inside Anglican churches, regardless of the consequences.

Gary Nelson, the bishop of North West Australia, was a vocal No campaigner during the postal survey.”

– Story from The West Australian.

See also: Same-sex marriage Yes vote threatens to cause rift in Anglican Church — ABC News.

Newcastle election synod set for Saturday November 25

“Over the weekend the Bishop Nomination Board advised parishes of progress leading up to the Bishop Election Synod, including indicating that they will be nominating three people to the Synod for consideration. …

This year’s Synod will open with a Synod Eucharist at St Peter’s, East Maitland, 7pm on Friday 24 November. All are welcome to attend this service of worship. The Election Synod will then gather the following day at Bishop Tyrrell Anglican College, with Synod commencing at 9.00am. Our ordinances direct that Election Synods are held in camera.”

News from the Diocese of Newcastle for your prayers.
(Nomination Board pictured.)

Sarah Macneil to resign as Bishop of Grafton

“The Anglican Bishop of Grafton, the Right Reverend Dr Sarah Macneil, has resigned, effective from March 3 next year. She announced her decision in a pastoral letter to her diocese, saying she had hoped to remain until 2020, when she turned 65, but questions of health had forced an early departure. …”

– News via Archbishop Philip Freier’s website.

Latest news from the Top End, November 2017

Top Centre, the newsletter of the Diocese of the Northern Territory, for November 2017 is now up on their website.

Download the 4.7MB PDF file and use it as fuel for your prayers for the churches and people of the Top End.

(You could also pray for Nungalinya College in Darwin.)

‘Anglican Bishop of North West Australia threatens to ditch registering marriages if Yes prevails in SSM survey’

“The conservative Anglican bishop of north-west WA is threatening to abandon registering marriages if the Yes vote prevails in the same-sex marriage survey and religious protections are weak.

Criticising the Federal Government’s handling of the postal survey, Bishop of North West Australia Gary Nelson said details of the legislation should have been released before the vote began. …”

– Story from The West Australian.

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