Although being a pastor takes up a lot of my time I believe it’s important to maintain interests outside of my ministry to keep me energised. My interests include AFL footy and following the ups and downs of Richmond (more downs that ups unfortunately). I just have to be careful when I go to Saturday games that I don’t yell and scream too much otherwise I don’t have a voice for preaching the next day! I also love to keep fit, going to the gym most days and walking with my wife Sharon.
I have many favourite bible texts but I keep going back to Colossians 3:3-4 - “Your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory”. This reminds me that despite what our lives look like with all the turmoil in the world we know that Christ is returning and our true glory will be revealed, like Jesus at the Transfiguration.
I only started attending church when I was 18. My mother is a German Lutheran and my father is a Lebanese Muslim, both coming to Australia after World War II. Realising that there must be more to life than what I was doing I began to read my Gideon’s Bible and was led by the Spirit to make contact with my local Lutheran church (Box Hill). Being part of a congregation made me feel like I had a new caring family. I got involved in the youth group and met my wife at one of the Lutheran camps.
I love community living. I stop and say hi to everyone I meet in the street and introduce myself as the local pastor. I also attend our weekly Community Meal for anyone who needs or wants a free meal. I have made a lot of contacts there and often meet one or more of our visitors as I move around the neighbourhood during the week.
Ministry Support Worker
I love being part of my congregation because, as my church family, it provides support, care and sustenance for all facets of my life, but most importantly my spiritual wellbeing. I love the diverse makeup of our congregation and the wonderful people who have become my church family.
I am a Christian because of my parents’ and grandparents’ nurture of my faith throughout my childhood. It has always been a part of who I am and it informs everything that I do. It has been enhanced, grown and nurtured further through amazing Christian role models in all the church communities I have been a part of, and through my engagement and interaction with a wide range of faithful Christian people from many and varied backgrounds.
My interests include all types of craft and sewing, watching sport and spending time with family.
My favourite bible text is Isaiah 43:1: “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine".
I connect with my community through:
- my volunteer work as part of the Monash University chaplaincy team
- being a Kid’s Hope mentor at Templeton Primary School in Wantirna
- assisting with our congregation’s Soup & Singing program during the winter months, and
- being a member of the local U3A community where I take Calligraphy classes.
Ministry Support Worker
I am a Christian because of knowing Christ's love for me. Being a part of my home congregation includes many wonderful parts. The Neumeister family has history in Ringwood (it was lovely to already have 'roots' when moving here from the United States). I have been nurtured and cared for by members and have had opportunity to nurture and care in return.
My interests include card-making and stamping, along with other craft. Enjoying a coffee with friends is also an interest. And boutique beer is enjoyed.
My favourite Bible text is Revelation 2:10 - “Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you life as your victor’s crown”.
I connect with my community through my congregational life in mission outreach, such as serving on weekly community meal. The Head 2 Heart youth program also provides opportunity to connect with community in many different ways.
My fulltime employment in a floral relay service centre provides almost daily privileges of serving/connecting to people in times of grief, joy and thankfulness.
Retirement Village Manager
I connect with my community by being part of and caring for those around me. This is so true of life in our retirement village. We share in each other’s joys and sorrows. Community is family, and family is community. This is where all areas of my life intersect; my church family and the village community supporting one another as God meant it to be.
I was made a child of God through my baptism. I believe that I have been a Lutheran since my ancestors got off the boat in Adelaide in the 1850s!
I love sitting with my extended family soaking up all that God showers on us each Sunday and this carries me through the week to come.
My favourite Bible passage is Jeremiah 29:11-13 “For I know the plans I have for you”, declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart”.
My interests include patchwork and quilting, walking, exercise and gardening.
As a young person, I became a Christian largely by birth into a Christian family and because at that stage I didn't question it. I sometimes wonder why I am still a Christian, given the many temptations these days to move away from a religious faith. However, I remain a Christian because of God's assurance of grace through Jesus
My favourite Bible text is Galatians 5:22-23: "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law."
In being a member of my local Lutheran church I appreciate being among people with values and attitudes to life that I share. I enjoy the time I spend rehearsing and playing with fellow musicians in bands and the choir. It is a time of fellowship as well as commitment to serving in worship services.
In addition being the parish music coordinator I enjoy my other paid work as a piano teacher. When time is available I like spending time with my family, dressmaking, knitting, reading and distracting myself with various activities on my iPad.