‘Mr Eternity’ remembered at Hammondville

“This month will mark 50 years since the death of Arthur Stace at Hammondville. Internationally recognised as ‘Mr Eternity’, Stace spent 30 years anonymously writing the word ‘Eternity’ across the streets of Sydney. …

After spending more than three decades writing Eternity on footpaths (500,000 times) – with initial inspiration coming in a sermon by Baptist evangelist John Ridley – Arthur Stace spent his final years as an aged care resident at Hammondville before dying of a stroke on July 30, 1967.”

– Story from HammondCare.

We understand that HammondCare’s David Martin will be on Open House on Hope 103.2FM this Sunday evening.

Related:

Cathedral to remember ‘Mr Eternity’, Arthur Stace, this Sunday.

The Eternity waterfall after 40 years.

(PhotoArthur as the Emergency depot Manager at the Hammond Hotel Chippendale, 1930s. Courtesy HammondCare, used with permission. © HammondCare.)

Music for the Church: Mark Dever interviews Keith Getty

“Mark Dever recently sat down with hymn writer and musician Keith Getty to talk about his hymn-writing, the effects of technology on church music, and more.”

– An interesting and encouraging interview, as well as insights on how Mark Dever picks songs.

Listen at the 9Marks website.

Cathedral to remember “Mr. Eternity” Arthur Stace, 50 years on

This Sunday (30th July) marks the 50th anniversary of the homecalling of Arthur Stace, the man who wrote “Eternity” on the streets of Sydney from 1932 until 1966.

He died at Hammondville Nursing Home on the evening of Sunday 30th July 1967.

On Sunday, Arthur Stace will be remembered at a special service at St. Andrew’s Cathedral at 10:30am.

Why did he write “Eternity” right across our city? What happened to change him from a life of alcohol and crime and hopelessness? Was he a mystic or a loner? This Sunday, hear the wonderful news he discovered, and understand what drove this humble Sydney icon.

(He’s also being remembered, this Sunday and next, in the western suburbs. Is your church doing something? Let the webmaster know.)

Photo of Arthur Stace by Les Nixon, via Ramon Williams, used by permission. Taken at Burton Street Tabernacle, 27 December 1952. Right hand photo: the Eternity memorial in Town Hall Arcade.

Related: The Eternity waterfall after 40 years – 12th July 2017.

In Memoriam: Haddon Robinson

“Dr. Haddon W. Robinson, longtime faculty member, former President of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and one of the world’s foremost experts in Biblical preaching, went to be with the Lord on July 22, 2017.”

– Gordon-Conwell Seminary gives thanks for Haddon Robinson.

See also: Truth Poured Through Personality: Dr. Haddon W. Robinson – Dallas Theological Seminary.

‘Becoming more truly who I am: a transgender female priest’

In an Ad Clerum (a letter to the clergy) dated 22 July 2017, Archbishop of Brisbane Dr Phillip Aspinall writes:

“Recently the Reverend Dr Jonathan Inkpin shared with me a deeply personal journey involving a life-time struggle with gender issues and personal identity. That journey has now culminated in a decision to transition gender and a formal request to be known by the wider diocesan family as Josephine or Jo.

Jo has written a letter which tells of that journey and asked me to distribute it to you all in the hope that you are properly informed and that unhelpful speculation might be avoided.”

Dr Inkpin is a member of the faculty of St Francis Theological College in Brisbane, and posts the full text of the letter. (Photo via St. Frances’ College.)

Evangelical Christianity 150 Years Ago and Today

“Being an evangelical Christian in 2017 can be a fairly daunting prospect. There appear to be so many challenges in wider society and in the wider church. Surely standing up for the gospel of Jesus Christ and proclaiming it in the world is more difficult now than it was in the past!

Well, a little historical perspective can allow us re-evaluate our situation and encourage us by the inspiring examples of those who have gone before. It is for this reason I commend two recent books about nineteenth-century evangelicals.

The first little book is Allan Blanch’s A Pioneering Pastor: Thomas Sharpe of Norfolk Island and Bathurst.

Sharpe’s faithful evangelical ministry has been somewhat forgotten in our historical narrative of Christianity in colonial Australia. Sharpe was born 220 years ago in Yorkshire and was ordained in 1828 … for the specific purpose of Anglican ministry in Australia.

One of the wonderful features of Blanch’s biography is that he allows Sharpe to speak for himself through his journal. Blanch also provides important contextual background for the events — both ecclesiastical and social. This book is well-researched and easy to read.”

– At SydneyAnglicans.net, Dr. Ed Loane briefly reviews two new books – A Pioneering Pastor: Thomas Sharpe of Norfolk Island and Bathurst by ACL Emeritus Vice President Allan M. Blanch, and Bishop J.C. Ryle’s Autobiography, edited by Andrew Atherstone.

A Pioneering Pastor: Thomas Sharpe of Norfolk Island and Bathurst by Allan M. Blanch is available for $19.99 from:

Strathalbyn Books
P.O. Box 970, Bathurst NSW 2795.

email: strathalbynbooks@gmail.com

Cheque or money order made out to Strathalbyn Books.

Click here to download an order form (PDF file).

Graham Cole back at Moore to celebrate the Reformation

Coming up later this month, Dr Graham Cole, former member of the Moore College faculty, will deliver a public lecture entitled: The legacy of the Reformation through the eyes of J.C. Ryle.

In the Marcus Loane Hall, Wednesday 19th July, 7:00pm – 9:00pm.

Graham studied at Moore College from 1973 to 1976 and was ordained in 1977. He served as Curate at St James Turramurra before returning to Moore to lecture in Christian thought from 1980 until 1992.

He subsequently served as Principal of Ridley College, Melbourne (1992–2001), Professor of Biblical and Systematic Theology at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Chicago (2002–2011), Anglican Professor of Divinity and Beeson Divinity School, Alabama (2011–2015), and in 2015 he returned to Trinity to become its Dean.

– Details at the College website.

The Eternity waterfall after 40 years

Forty years ago, the Eternity plaque at the waterfall in Sydney Square was unveilled.

On Tuesday, 12th July 1977, The Sydney Morning Herald’s Column 8 wrote:

“TRUE to his words of last November, Ridley Smith, the Sydney Square architect, has immortalised the late Arthur Stace, ‘Mr Eternity’. You may recall that Column 8 campaigned unashamedly for a suitable memorial to Mr Stace, Sydney’s footpath evangelist for 20 vears until 1967. Ridley Smith promised it without strings.

TODAY, the memorial above will be officially unveilled (a small explanatory plaque is yet to come). Yesterday Column 8 had an informal peek. Mr Stace would be proud. There, set in aggregate near the Sydney Square waterfall, in letters almost 21cm (8 in) high, is the famous copperplate message. ‘Eternity’. The one-word sermon gleams in wrought aluminium. There’s no undue prominence. No garish presentation. Merely the simple ‘Eternity’ on the pebbles, as Arthur Stace would have wanted it.”

In 1994, journalist Alan Gill wrote, “The waterfall adjoins a modest cafeteria. [The Architect of St. Andrew’s House and Sydney Square, Ridley] Smith once told me that he hoped visitors would say ‘Meet you at Eternity’ as well as ‘Meet you in Eternity’.” (1)

Ridley Smith (pictured) was named for evangelist John G. Ridley, who was a friend of his father. In November 1932, Arthur Stace had been in the congregation at the Burton Street Tabernacle in Darlinghurst when John Ridley preached on the need to be ready for eternity. It was this sermon which inspired Stace to begin his 34 year campaign of writing that word on the streets of Sydney.

Arthur Stace died on 30 July 1967, fifty years ago this month.

Did the ‘small explanatory plaque’ mentioned by Column 8 ever appear? In 1994, Alan Gill wrote that some complained “the present inscription is ‘out of the way’ and doesn’t explain who Arthur Stace was. Other admirers of Arthur disagree. They believe the ‘odd’ location of the present tribute and the absence of an explanation are part of that blend of mystery and surprise that ‘Mr Eternity’ himself would appreciate.”

(Top photo showing the waterfall on the day of the unveilling, and the photo of Architect Ridley Smith in 2009, courtesy Ramon Williams, Worldwide Photos. Ramon adds, “Ridley Smith sprinkled water around the ‘Eternity’ replica so as to help photograph it.” While the pavement around the memorial has been replaced, “Eternity” on the pebbles remains, as seen in this 2014 photo.)

(1) Alan Gill, “Sydney’s Phantom Preacher”, The Catholic Weekly, 31 August 1994.

Interview with William Taylor: Impressions of Sydney & Australian Evangelicalism

“Sometimes the best lessons are learned from someone on the outside looking in. We chat to William Taylor of St Helen’s Bishopsgate London regarding his impressions of evangelicalism in Sydney and Australia, drawing on his recent visit in late 2016-early 2017.”

– Read the interview at The Australian Church Record.

Albert Mohler speaks with John Anderson

In his latest ‘Thinking in Public’ series of conversations, Albert Mohler speaks with former Australian Deputy Prime Minister John Anderson (mp3 audio).

Well worth hearing.

 

Craig Roberts to be new Youthworks CEO

Here’s an announcement from Youthworks –

“The Archbishop of Sydney, the Most Rev Glenn Davies, and Youthworks Council Chair, the Rev Chris Braga are most pleased to announce the appointment of the Rev Craig Roberts BEc BD(Hons) DipMin MA(Theol) to the position of Chief Executive Officer of Youthworks.  Craig will be joining Youthworks after fourteen years as the Senior Minister at Neutral Bay Anglican Church.  Read more

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