This week we will continue our Term 1 series in 2 Corinthians and see how we are insufficient to be messengers of Jesus but God makes us sufficient.


SCG Gathering – 9am @ Invercauld House

East Lismore Gatherings – 9:45am & 6pm @ Lismore High.

DNA groups have started back! There are hard copies of the term booklets available on Sunday or you can find a soft copy HERE.

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Welcome to SCPC!

Feeling new? If you would like to connect with our church family, we’d love you to get in touch. Give us a call or email us through the contact menu above. You can also sign up here for our weekly Church Family News & Prayer email.

We’re here to help you grow in your love for God, love for Christian community and love for the world. And of course, you’re welcome to join us on any Sunday at either Lismore High in East Lismore or Invercauld House in Goonellabah (see Sunday info in the post above).

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The Pastors’ Pen

Welcome to the Pastors’ Pen – and update for life at Southern Cross…

Last Sunday at Southern Cross Goonellabah (SCG) I made an announcement regarding a next step for the church plant following Matt stepping down as their pastor. 

The announcement was that Leadership Team (LT) has decided to organise a consultation around the future of SCG. Tim Dyer, along with his assistant Luke Morgan, will travel up from Tasmania to run a consultation with the people of SCG and especially with its leaders about the church and it’s future. Tim is very experienced in running church consultations and has worked with churches in similiar life stages to SCG. He was also involved in supporting our wider church and staff team after the floods earlier this year. 

Tim and Luke will gather information through one-on-one and group interviews across the weekend of February 11-12. Afterwards, Tim will prepare a report for LT to inform them as they seek to make a wise, godly, well-considered decision about the best way forward for Goonellabah. 

For those who are a part of SCG, please take the Summer to reflect on where SCG is at the moment, on its future going forwards, and on your own energy levels and desire. We value your thoughts and your participation in the upcoming consultation.

Also, during the period from now until LT receives the report from Tim and makes a decision about the next step, I am the person appointed by LT to facilitate the consultation process. Also, along with the assistance of Ian Coutts, I will oversee an SCG Coordination group of Steve Tilley, Brent and Eliza Faulkner and Wayne and Adelle Brooks. The coordination group will facilitate SCG’s Sunday gatherings. This doesn’t mean I’ll be taking over the role of SCG pastor or that I’ll be present at SCG each week, but it does mean I’ll be involved in helping SCG move forward through this next season. 

Please be bringing SCG before our God in prayer. Pray that God would provide an abundance of his guidance and care.


Please pray also for Matt and Sue. This Sunday the SCG church family will be praising God together for Matt and Sue’s ministry at a special thanksgiving gathering at Invercauld House. Please ask God that the time would be a deep encouragement for all involved and that he would provide refreshment and leading for Matt and Sue going forwards. 

Above all we must remember have a God who rules in love from his heavenly throne. We entrust ourselves, Matt and Sue, SCG and everything else into his hands. 

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The Pastors’ Pen

Welcome to The Pastors’ Pen – an update for life at Southern Cross…

As you may have heard, James was successfully endorsed to fill the vacancy at SCPC at the congregational meeting last Sunday! A BiG thanks to our CoM Exec. for the extra commitments they endured, particularly last Friday, to ensure all the procedural elements were handled to guarantee we could move towards Sunday. Thank you particularly to Jon M, Scott P and Louise M for their brilliant efforts. Thanks also to Luke Mc from Ballina Presbyterian Church who chaired the meeting.

Please don’t forget to sign off with one of our three commissioners on Sunday to show your support for James – we will have clipboards available over the coming Sundays and all members are encouraged to consider signing. Even if you are not a member, you can also sign off on an alternate document to say ‘yes’ to James. If the signatures are successfully gathered, an induction service for James will be hosted by the Northern Rivers Presbytery on Friday the 3rd of February 2023. We will have a BYO picnic at LHS followed by the induction service at LHS at 6:30pm.

We are so thankful to James for serving as a pastoral assistant as part of a contingency in 2022. We continue to be blessed by his ministry this year. As you will know, James will be preaching at our Carols concert on December 18, and at our Christmas Day gathering (9:45am at Lismore High). The passage James will be preaching is from Matthew 11, where we hear Jesus’ invitation to the weary. Encourage friends and family to join us, both at the carols concert and the following Sunday on Christmas Day, to hear the fullness of Jesus’ invitation – the two talks will cover the same text but draw out the fantastic invitation in a fuller way.

I’ll try to give you a quick tour of how carols will run… Think about where to park! You might be interested in using the Dalley St entrance and parking in the car park in the Eastern part of the LHS grounds. We will aspire to open both pedestrian access gates also.

We will have the roundabout in front of the main entrance to the hall closed to enable a clear space for supper to operate and the BBQ will start serving from 5:15pm on the basketball court. Please pray we have enough BBQs and sausages, as it will be difficult to feed everyone at the same time! Please be patient and start with one sausage. James will announce when the Preschool to Year 6 children need to head to E Block to be signed into the Quiz Worx puppet show.

We expect that the transition from food to the kids heading to E Block will be complicated (more prayer needed!) but we will aim to start the carols at 6:30pm (irrespective of who is in and seated to join in singing)!!!

The carols will go for around an hour. Following the carols, we can spill into the carpark area. Hopefully it may be a little cooler then and you can reflect with friends and families over supper about the beautiful invitation we have just received from Jesus’ lips in Matthew’s gospel.

As James said last weekend, carols is such a wonderful and natural opportunity to invite your friends, family and neighbours to meet Jesus – the one who can heal broken hearts. Could I ask you one more time to pray? Pray for those that come, that they might be open to receive Jesus’ invitation!

2 Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. 3 And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. 4 Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. 5 Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. 6 Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone. Col 4:2-6


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The Pastors’ Pen

Welcome to The Pastors’ Pen – an update for life at Southern Cross…

We can no longer deny it, it’s December and Christmas is coming! During the week LT met
and we began our time by stopping and reflecting on how we can give thanks to our Father
God for the year 2022.

You might (understandably) be a little shocked and suggest; be thankful for what? Natural
disasters, lengthy delays on almost everything and everyone feeling, well… flat.

Yet what a wonderful moment it was as we quickly identified things we can be thankful for.
Why don’t you grab 5-10 minutes in the next week or two and see if you can come up with a
list of three things you can thank our Father God for. You might find you surprise yourself
and identify more than three, and yet even if your pen or device fails to identify anything at all
please at least make a note to join us for Carols (Dec 18) and Christmas Day as James leads
us back to Jesus’ precious words “come to me all you who are weary…”.

Now as you would know, this Sunday we will meet for our congregational meeting. We had a
helpful time last Sunday for around an hour at the preliminary information session as we outlined the
path for our meeting this Sunday. Therefore, we expect Sunday’s meeting at 11:30am will go
for around 30-40 mins. The motions from Sunday remain (regarding the call of James and
financial endorsement for Cameron for his MTS apprenticeship for 2023-24). There will
also be one more recommendation and motion to endorse three commissioners to collect
signatures towards the call, if it proceeds, in order to collect the signatures of those not
present at the meeting.

Well, December is here. You might have a rush of commitments over the next fortnight or
more, but let us not forget to be a thankful people – for through 2022 we have seen the most
unusual provision of God appear in some of the most unexpected places!

Let me leave you with the stunning hope that emerges in the pages of Lamentations:
22  Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed,
    for his compassions never fail.
23  They are new every morning;
    great is your faithfulness.
24  I say to myself, “The LORD is my portion;
    therefore I will wait for him.”
Lamentations 3:22-24

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The Pastors’ Pen

Welcome to The Pastors’ Pen – an update for life at Southern Cross…

Vision Sunday is on this weekend! Only a few more sleeps! Vision Sunday is a deliberate moment to stop in the flurry of life and refocus our commitment to our heartbeat in the city of Lovemore which is…

Growing followers of Jesus! By growing love for God, each other and the world!!!

Due to our preliminary information meeting this Sunday your Vision Sunday might look a little different. In the past I know our Gospel Community has enjoyed lunch together at someone’s place (preferably by the pool!) to spend a bit of downtime reflecting on the vision put before us earlier that day. So it is somewhat reluctantly that we do our information session this Sunday to prepare us for next week’s congregational meeting on December 4.

We are very excited about the prospect of calling James, and as noted last year at Vision Sunday our plan would have been to have achieved this process a little earlier in Term 4. However, and completely understandably, the Term 3 pre-planning goals of LT and CoM towards the induction of James were not able to be achieved as a three-year financial budget stalled (this budget was to be drawn up ready for Northern Rivers Presbytery [NRP] and Ministry and Mission NSW to endorse it). But praise be to our Father God for the incredible, even miraculous, turn-around for our finances at SCPC across Term 3, 2022! You should ask our treasurers this Sunday for the actual figures. They are remarkable!

Therefore, it is with confidence that we go into the congregational meeting on December 4, now being in a position to present Ministry and Mission with a three-year financial budget that they, along with the commission of the NRP, can comfortability sign off on. It is worth noting, our CoM will continue to work through 2023 ensuring our giving trends remain in line with the recruitment of a Pastor from Jan 1st 2024.

Vision Sunday is a considered time in the life of our church family, and the fruit of hours and hours of carefully weighed reflections from our Leadership Team. We pray that as you come away from another Sunday at SCPC this weekend, you will he be heartily encouraged to serve the Lord Jesus and not lose heart.

Let me finish with a teaser from Vision Sunday’s passage:

Therefore, since through God’s mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose heart. 2 Corinthians 4:1

Stew on behalf of LT

P.S. Again here are the motions for Dec 4:

  • A motion to insert the Rev James Ritchie into the vacancy at SCPC.
  • A second motion to endorse the financials for Cameron Bryant’s ministry Apprenticeship in 2023-2024.
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