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EFAC Australia

Essentials

As we approach the 60th anniversary year of the momentous 1959 Billy Graham Crusade in Australia, Bishop Tony Nichols recalls how Graham touched the people around him, and what flowed out of this and later Crusades.

Bishop Tony Nichols ministers at St Lawrence’s Dalkeith, WA and beyond.

Next year marks the sixtieth anniversary of Billy Graham’s first visit to Australia in 1959 when he led ‘crusades’ across all capital cities over a four-month period. To commemorate the remarkable outpouring of God’s Spirit in which thousands decided to follow Christ, Franklin Graham, Billy’s son, will speak in each capital city in February 2019.

Billy Graham was invited to Australia by the Primate of the Anglican Church, Archbishop Howard Mowll who did not live to witness the extraordinary results. His initiative, however, launched an unprecedented ecumenical movement which saw thousands of Christians from different denominations meeting weekly for prayer for God’s blessing on Australia. Over 8,000 enrolled for counsellor training in Sydney alone. Those training sessions were a great blessing to me personally, not least because we had to learn off by heart over twenty passages of Scripture. Volunteers were also organised for support roles and each of the choirs had a thousand members. The organisation was superb.

Peter Adam pays tribute to a great mentor of his. A shorter version of this tribute was first published in The Melbourne Anglican, September 2018.

Peter Adam is Vicar Emeritus of St Jude’s Carleton, Vic.

Harrie Scott Simmons, 5th September 1918 – 4th May 1999.HarryScottSimmons

Harrie was born in Melbourne, attended Scotch College, and was converted through the Crusaders movement by Baden Gilbert, who ministered at Montague (South Melbourne). It was a slum parish, and some of the Crusaders helped with ministry in the parish, and paid for a women’s worker to assist in ministry there. Harrie also joined CMS League of Youth. He trained for the ministry at Ridley College, when Bishop Baker was the Principal, and benefitted from his Biblical preaching and emphasis on the devotional life.

Our friends across the Pacific

Australia has an important relationship to the USA, and Australian Christianity has an important relationship with US Christianity. Sometimes we have been on the whole very positive about things American that wash across to our shores, sometimes we are rather more negative. Almost always reaction is mixed: as a body we might simultaneously wonder at the mysteries of the American Way, or resist what we feel is an alien and unhelpful influence, or rejoice at a great help from a good-hearted ally with much to offer, or deplore the baggage we feel they sometimes encumber us with. Our two feature articles touch on ways that US Christianity impinges upon Australian Christianity. The first is Tony Nichols’ personal account of the visit of Billy Graham in 1959 (the 60th anniversary of which approaches). As Tony testifies, plenty in the churches, including influential local leaders, doubted and resisted the Graham Crusade then, but what a moment that visit proved to be, with so many hearing him speak, either live at the venue, or by some kind of relay, and with so many later testifying what an impact it had on their spiritual lives. Tony takes us back to the ferment and excitement of the Crusade and its lasting aftermath.

Our second feature article by Rhys Bezzant begins in the present with the dismay in some quarters over Evangelical support of Donald Trump at the US presidential election. He asks whether this should make us consider shedding the label ‘evangelical’, and answers with a resounding ‘no’, seeking instead to outline briefly the long and distinguished history and associations of the term, which transcend the political turmoil and polarisation of the moment.

With the advent of same-sex marriage, churches are seeking to articulate with grace and truth a response to the various issues this presents. Stephen Hale has generously made available the pastoral guidelines that the St Hilary’s Network in Melbourne has developed. Reading and reflecting on their efforts might prove helpful to others engaged in similar tasks.

Stephen Hale is the Lead Minister in the St Hilary’s Network

We acknowledge that developing a theological and pastoral response related to human sexuality and sexual practice in our cultural setting is complex and challenging. We offer our full assurance for all who are same sex attracted that they are loved, valued and welcome in our church. Our identity as believers is founded in the new life we live as God’s children. We are all one in Christ Jesus regardless of ethnicity, gender or sexual orientation. 

As a church, we uphold the formularies of the Anglican Church of Australia, which are grounded in the Bible’s teaching. The Christian rite of marriage is between a man and a woman. Both Jesus in Matthew 19:4-5, and St Paul affirm what God has instituted across all ages in the words of Genesis 2:24: ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.’ The introduction to the Anglican Marriage Service (APBA Order 2) classically states it this way,

Sonya de Lacey gives us a taste of the Bishop’s Training Event in the Diocese of Tasmania.

Sonya de Lacey is the Media and Communications Officer for the Anglican Diocese of Tasmania

The atmosphere had an expectant buzz as 400 plus Anglicans from across Tasmania gathered for the third annual Bishop’s Training Event. This year’s theme was Making Disciples Every Day. It was Saturday 22 September. Music filled the auditorium. Lanyards were handed out. Resource tables were plentiful, covering topics such as: Alpha, Bush Church Aid, Church Missionary Society, Diocesan Training and Youth/Kids ministry info, Safe Church Communities, University Fellowship of Christians and Worldview College—to name just a few. The aroma of freshly ground coffee filtered through the air. This was our biggest event ever with around 350 adults, and 70+ children in the children’s event and creche.

At morning prayer we gave thanks to God that we, his people, could gather together in his name. We asked the Holy Spirit to fill us and empower us to be Christ’s disciples, sending us to go and proclaim the gospel, making disciples in our own neighbourhoods and to the ends of the earth. In the morning session Bishop Richard challenged us to ask the Lord of the harvest prayerfully and regularly for workers to send out into the harvest field.1 He concluded his session by sharing a video of Patricia McCormack who goes into Risdon Prison to share the good news. This lovely story showed how God can take our brokenness and create something truly beautiful.2

EFAC. GAFCON.

What's the difference? Are both necessary?

Rev’d Richard Crocker, General Secretary, EFAC (Global)

EFAC had an exhibit stand at the recent GAFCON gathering in Jerusalem, Many of the GAFCON conference delegates stopped by the EFAC exhibit and the response was overwhelmingly positive. We are now in regular contact with Anglican leaders from 31 countries and many of those either have or want an EFAC chapter. They have no doubt that EFAC will benefit their churches. But upon returning to the USA we have been asked, ‘Why is EFAC needed, since we have GAFCON?’ or, ‘Why was GAFCON needed, since we have EFAC? What’s the difference? Are EFAC and GAFCON competing? Or cooperating? Or does one make the other redundant? This article addresses these questions.

At GAFCON it was obvious that GAFCON and EFAC are related on a deep level. Many of the newly announced leaders of GAFCON—the Chairman, General Secretary, and Assistant Secretaries—were mentored through, or held leadership positions in, EFAC at some point. A recent article by Chris Sugden and Vinay Samuel demonstrates that the GAFCON movement itself derives from earlier work by emerging provinces in the Lambeth Conferences of 1988 and 1998. The character, growth and maturity of these provinces, in turn, developed to a great extent from the ministry of John Stott and EFAC. It would not stretch a point to claim that the prevailing churchmanship of GAFCON 2018 was evangelical. The style of worship, the biblical nature of the week’s events, the expository style of the teaching, and the extempore prayer expected in the small group times, would be familiar to those of evangelical background. This aspect made GAFCON very similar to EFAC, which is evangelical by charter. This brings us back to the questions: ‘Do we need both EFAC and GAFCON today? Is there an important difference between them?’

That EFAC and GAFCON are complementary, not competitive, becomes clear as we examine both organizations. Rev. Dr. Stephen Noll, in his Commentary on the 2018 GAFCON Letter to the Churches writes,

‘The GAFCON Assembly is an ecclesial body, a confessional body (every attendee subscribed to the Jerusalem Declaration), and a missional body…So the Conference is upper-case GAFCON and the movement that spans the Conferences and the ongoing structures and relationships that give it life, this is title-case GAFCON.’ (Emphasis added.)

Similarly, EFAC is confessional: it operates with a Basis of Faith that is distinctively evangelical in nature. EFAC is also missional: it works to spread the biblical gospel of Jesus Christ. And, it is ecclesial: its very name references the Anglican Communion. EFAC aims to serve and build up, by biblical teaching, the Anglican family of churches, which we understand in a wide and generous sense. EFAC is not, however, ecclesial, in the way GAFCON is. It does not gather primatial councils or appoint episcopal leadership for provinces departing orthodox beliefs. Sugden says that as a recent political coalition, ‘GAFCON is rapidly institutionalizing’.1 EFAC is not; it will not match GAFCON’s ‘ongoing structures’ beyond those minimally required by its 1961 Constitution. EFAC is, rather, a resource to leadership, wherever it may be located, encouraging and developing biblically faithful teaching and mission by its activities in teaching, theological development through the Theological Resource Network, publishing online and through partner organizations. It desires the development of the more informal fellowship or partnership envisaged in its name. Therefore, EFAC and GAFCON are complementary, not competitive, pursuing different, necessary vocations.

Structures aside, another difference is that EFAC is distinctly evangelical, whereas GAFCON is not. GAFCON includes all who count themselves Anglican, whether inside the formal charity called the Anglican Communion or not, and confess biblically faithful Anglican teaching, whatever their churchmanship. EFAC is deliberately evangelical. The recognized EFAC brand allows EFAC to minister to evangelicals both inside and outside the GAFCON network among those evangelicals who are not persuaded by the GAFCON approach. Thus again EFAC and GAFCON are complementary, extending each other’s work for the Gospel. In the USA, where evangelicals in both TEC and ACNA are part of EFAC-USA, EFAC is a bridge between GAFCON and non-GAFCON evangelicals. Historically, EFAC has also formed a bridge between evangelicals in the different expressions of Anglican life in South Africa. EFAC is active in areas not represented at GAFCON and supports evangelicals whose orthodox commitments are under pressure from unsympathetic or hostile leadership. EFAC provides a link between beleaguered evangelicals in certain provinces and the wider Communion, and a partnership between evangelicals in one place and those in another for the sake of mission.

In this world of walls and chasms, bridges are vital, and so, as a bridge, EFAC offers hope for the future. The Archbishop of Sydney, Glenn Davies, President of EFAC Australia and Assistant Secretary to GAFCON, said it best upon hearing about the relaunch of EFAC, ‘It’s about time!’ EFAC and GAFCON have the same goal of promoting the biblical gospel of Jesus Christ, but in different ways. Both are necessary.

EFAC. GAFCON.
What's the difference? Are both necessary?
Rev’d Richard Crocker, General Secretary, EFAC (Global)
EFAC had an exhibit stand at the recent GAFCON gathering in Jerusalem, Many of the GAFCON conference delegates stopped by the EFAC exhibit and the response was overwhelmingly positive. We are now in regular contact with Anglican leaders from 31 countries and many of those either have or want an EFAC chapter. They have no doubt that EFAC will benefit their churches. But upon returning to the USA we have been asked, ‘Why is EFAC needed, since we have GAFCON?’ or, ‘Why was GAFCON needed, since we have EFAC? What’s the difference? Are EFAC and GAFCON competing? Or cooperating? Or does one make the other redundant? This article addresses these questions.
At GAFCON it was obvious that GAFCON and EFAC are related on a deep level. Many of the newly announced leaders of GAFCON—the Chairman, General Secretary, and Assistant Secretaries—were mentored through, or held leadership positions in, EFAC at some point. A recent article by Chris Sugden and Vinay Samuel demonstrates that the GAFCON movement itself derives from earlier work by emerging provinces in the Lambeth Conferences of 1988 and 1998. The character, growth and maturity of these provinces, in turn, developed to a great extent from the ministry of John Stott and EFAC. It would not stretch a point to claim that the prevailing churchmanship of GAFCON 2018 was evangelical. The style of worship, the biblical nature of the week’s events, the expository style of the teaching, and the extempore prayer expected in the small group times, would be familiar to those of evangelical background. This aspect made GAFCON very similar to EFAC, which is evangelical by charter. This brings us back to the questions: ‘Do we need both EFAC and GAFCON today? Is there an important difference between them?’
That EFAC and GAFCON are complementary, not competitive, becomes clear as we examine both organizations. Rev. Dr. Stephen Noll, in his Commentary on the 2018 GAFCON Letter to the Churches writes,
‘The GAFCON Assembly is an ecclesial body, a confessional body (every attendee subscribed to the Jerusalem Declaration), and a missional body…So the Conference is upper-case GAFCON and the movement that spans the Conferences and the ongoing structures and relationships that give it life, this is title-case GAFCON.’ (Emphasis added.)
Similarly, EFAC is confessional: it operates with a Basis of Faith that is distinctively evangelical in nature. EFAC is also missional: it works to spread the biblical gospel of Jesus Christ. And, it is ecclesial: its very name references the Anglican Communion. EFAC aims to serve and build up, by biblical teaching, the Anglican family of churches, which we understand in a wide and generous sense. EFAC is not, however, ecclesial, in the way GAFCON is. It does not gather primatial councils or appoint episcopal leadership for provinces departing orthodox beliefs. Sugden says that as a recent political coalition, ‘GAFCON is rapidly institutionalizing’.1 EFAC is
EFAC. GAFCON.
What's the difference? Are both necessary?
Rev’d Richard Crocker, General Secretary, EFAC (Global)THE CABOOSE
1. https://www.efacglobal.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/GAFCON-reports-Sugden.pdf
THE CABOOSE
ESSENTIALS -SPRING 2018
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not; it will not match GAFCON’s ‘ongoing structures’ beyond those minimally required by its 1961 Constitution. EFAC is, rather, a resource to leadership, wherever it may be located, encouraging and developing biblically faithful teaching and mission by its activities in teaching, theological development through the Theological Resource Network, publishing online and through partner organizations. It desires the development of the more informal fellowship or partnership envisaged in its name. Therefore, EFAC and GAFCON are complementary, not competitive, pursuing different, necessary vocations.
Structures aside, another difference is that EFAC is distinctly evangelical, whereas GAFCON is not. GAFCON includes all who count themselves Anglican, whether inside the formal charity called the Anglican Communion or not, and confess biblically faithful Anglican teaching, whatever their churchmanship. EFAC is deliberately evangelical. The recognized EFAC brand allows EFAC to minister to evangelicals both inside and outside the GAFCON network among those evangelicals who are not persuaded by the GAFCON approach. Thus again EFAC and GAFCON are complementary, extending each other’s work for the Gospel. In the USA, where evangelicals in both TEC and ACNA are part of EFAC-USA, EFAC is a bridge between GAFCON and non-GAFCON evangelicals. Historically, EFAC has also formed a bridge between evangelicals in the different expressions of Anglican life in South Africa. EFAC is active in areas not represented at GAFCON and supports evangelicals whose orthodox commitments are under pressure from unsympathetic or hostile leadership. EFAC provides a link between beleaguered evangelicals in certain provinces and the wider Communion, and a partnership between evangelicals in one place and those in another for the sake of mission.
In this world of walls and chasms, bridges are vital, and so, as a bridge, EFAC offers hope for the future. The Archbishop of Sydney, Glenn Davies, President of EFAC Australia and Assistant Secretary to GAFCON, said it best upon hearing about the relaunch of EFAC, ‘It’s about time!’ EFAC and GAFCON have the same goal of promoting the biblical gospel of Jesus Christ, but in different ways. Both are necessary.

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