Australian Indigenous Awareness Header

Australian Research Theology Foundation Inc. Grant

In 2017, Professor Shane Clifton, along with Dr Tanya Riches (AC honorary lecturer) and Ps Brooke Prentis have won $10,000 in research grant funding from the Australian Research Theology Foundation Inc. This money is for a project titled “Dreaming and Spirit-filled Christianity: Intersections of Pentecostal/Charismatic and Australian Spirituality.” The grant is given to facilitate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participation in research exploring the creative ways in which they have negotiated the intersection between their heritage (in particular The Dreaming) and their Spirit-filled Christian experience.


Indigenous Chaplains: Take the Lead!

Chaplaincy Australia Tweed Heads

Recently, seven Indigenous leaders undertook the Ministry Chaplaincy Upgrade course which was held in Ganggalah Church in Tweed Heads.  This three-day course is aimed at Pastors and Leaders who have had significant pastoral leadership experience but are wanting to move further into the community by offering themselves as Chaplains. 

The training was offered by Alphacrucis College in partnership with Chaplaincy Australia.  Scholarships were made available for Indigenous leaders through Chaplaincy Australia following a special offering at the NSW State Conference.   This incredible partnership has bought about an amazing growth in the potential to impact Indigenous communities across NSW.  Chaplains will be able to connect with individuals who are outside the reach of the Church and they can minister care, support and assistance to individuals who are facing incredible moments of need.

The Ministers Chaplaincy Upgrade course is a new initiative from AC & CA and fits into their suite of courses to equip people to enter into effective Chaplaincy Ministry.  Every month we are seeing more and more people step up to take on the ministry of Chaplaincy.  Churches across the country are finding the benefit of have one or more Chaplains attached to the ministry of their Church.  These chaplains gain access to places that the Church has not been traditionally able to reach, they impact people at their point of need and they help the church connect with their community in meaningful and responsive ways.

Pastor Sandra and Willy Dumas

Many pastors and senior leaders are interested in migrating their ministries towards Chaplaincy or at least adding it to the mix, but up until now it has required the completion of a Cert IV or Diploma in order to become accredited.  This new course is a great option because it gives leaders (who have had significant Pastoral experience) the opportunity to gain the training required to move into this great ministry.  The training is delivered by Senior Chaplaincy Leaders over a three-day intensive and on completion of the course work, you can gain accreditation with Chaplaincy Australia.  At $600, this course is an incredibly cost effective way to up skill yourself into this great ministry. 

Over the next year there will be various opportunities around the country to take part in this great course. 

Many Pastors and Leaders have wanted to get involved with Chaplaincy for many years and we believe that this could be just what you are waiting for.  We want to see at least one Chaplain attached to every ACC Church in the country; we want Chaplaincy to become part of the DNA of our movement. 

Let’s follow the lead of our awesome indigenous leaders and get ready to make the difference that the Lord has for us!

For more details visit www.chaplaincyaustralia.com or contact AC College.

Ralph Estherby

National Director for Chaplaincy Australia

Photos of Pastor Sandra and Willy Dumas hosting the MCU at Ganggalah Church in Tweed Heads  (above)


Australian Indigenous Awareness Project

atsiFrom 2017, Alphacrucis College (AC), with the support of Australian Christian Churches (ACC), is undertaking a major project to prepare a series of Australian Indigenous Awareness videos and resources. The purpose is to foster understanding of Australian Indigenous societies, so that Christian ministry and community service can be conducted in a culturally appropriate and respectful way. This project recognises that there is no single Australian Indigenous culture and emphasises the importance of culturally appropriate behaviour and local community consultation.

An Australian Indigenous Awareness subject will be offered at both Higher Education and Vocational Educational and Training levels. It is taught by Ps David Armstrong with many key guests, including: Will Dumas (ACC Indigenous Initiative National Director), Robyn Green (Indigenous worship artist), Darryl Lingwoodock (ACC Indigenous Initiative QLD) and Dr Tanya Riches. It also features video footage from the Late Aunty Margaret. 

It includes basic core topics such as Aboriginal History, Building Trust and Kinship, The Stolen Generation, Aboriginal Spirituality, Urban and Rural Communities, Indigenous Experience with Christianity and Australian Indigenous Ministry. It includes many case studies and stories from experience.

Wendy Cumberworth

AC Director of VET

Photo of Darryl Lingwoodock, Wendy Cumberworth and Chris Magnussen (AC Staff)


One Good Day

David ArmstrongAlphacrucis College sessional lecturer in Australian Indigenous studies, Ps David Armstrong, founded One Good Day, in 2010, to help children and adults in tough circumstances with the opportunity to take a break, and have at least One Good Day. This time of refreshment with fun and fellowship can often lead to better times ahead and another good day. David realised that many of the existing “we have a program to fix your community” systems were not the real answer and the Aboriginal community were quick to respond with “we don't need you to tell us what to do.”

One of the key activities is the Mt Druitt Indigenous Choir, where children of all ages perform in many different locations around Australia singing not only in English but also in Dharug – the native Aboriginal language of the Sydney region. The choir is conducted by family members so they are seen by the children and community. With fundraising, One Good Day pays for singing and Indigenous language teachers. The Mt Druitt Indigenous Choir has become so popular that they have sung over 150 times around Australia. This includes the 2014 Graduation of Aboriginal Health Workers at the Aboriginal Health College, NAIDOC Week 2014 Mental Health Commission of NSW, Blacktown Arts Centre Aboriginal Conference and St Ives Show.

There are many stories about the impact Mt Druitt Indigenous Choir and Nulawala Inc in the lives of individuals, partner organisations and the wider community. Testimonials available here.

Ps David Armstrong

AC Sessional Lecturer

For further details, please contact: Ps David Armstrong 0409 046 530 or contactus@onegoodday.org.au