Members Update – Issue 3. 2024

News / Members Update – Issue 3. 2024

Members Update – Issue 3. 2024
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Members Update - Issue 3. 2024

April 4, 2024

1. Executive Director Update

Dear ACS Members,

I recently read this beautiful post-Easter reflection written by Anthony L. Jordan who is the Executive director-treasurer of the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma. It is worth sharing and reading:

Perspective In sports broadcasting, almost every event is followed by post-game analysis. Commentators spend hours reviewing significant plays and turning points in the game. This week, I would ask your indulgence in a little post-Easter reflection.

Easter is, without a doubt, the most significant day on the Christian calendar. The largest crowds of the year are usually on this particular Sunday.   Church members who are unwilling to attend or careless in attendance the rest of the year will go to church on Easter.  Husbands and dads who would not normally darken the doors are willing to give one day a year to make wives and children happy.

For committed followers of Christ, this past Sunday was more than a special day on the calendar—it represents a celebration of the centre of our spiritual universe.

If the story of Easter is not valid, then our faith is not valid.

Our message is incomplete without the exclamation point of the resurrection of Christ.  No, our message is empty. A martyr’s death has power to inspire, but it does not have the power to save.

It is interesting that the government-approved church in the largest country in East Asia can preach the Bible except for the resurrection and the second coming of Christ. The atheistic government understands that the Gospel is empty and incomplete without the Easter message.

But what if last Sunday had been devoid of the resurrection truth? Would there have been a reason to meet? I fear that we handle holy truth so much we may miss its significance. Christianity is an Easter religion. Paul was very clear—no resurrection, no faith—at all!

As you reflect on the joy of last Sunday and the powerful truth your pastor declared, let this glorious message sink deep in your soul. Jesus has conquered death.  Because He lives, we will live also throughout eternity. But greater still we will not just live, but we will experience eternity in Heaven with all its glory.

But there is more!  Our celebration last Sunday was an affirmation that the Savior will return as the Lord of Lords. He will place His enemies as a footstool under His feet. The evil of this world will crash and burn into the lake of fire.  The crucified Lamb will return as the conquering King of Kings.

I believe the crowds gather on Easter because deep inside there is a longing for the resurrection message to be true.  Those who nonchalantly enter the worship centre to satisfy the nagging of others or who decide to give God one day a year endure the worship, but deep inside, I believe they hope the story is true.

The message cannot be handled casually. There is a truth that demands response. I fear “church members” who pay their dues on Easter have a deep misunderstanding of the Easter reality. Christ did not die and rise on the third day for casual belief or acceptance. He died to bring radical change in the lives of all who would embrace the resurrection message through repentance and faith. Christ has no interest in indifferent church membership or faith. He demands a commitment that requires death to self and resurrection to new life.

My friends in East Asia choose to meet in small gatherings in out of the way places to celebrate the Easter story each week. They understand a faith without Easter and the second coming of the resurrected Lord is no faith at all. They are right.

In my post-game review of last Sunday, I find great joy in knowing that across this great state, our Baptist churches met to worship and declare the powerful resurrection story.

 It was a great day!  Even so, come quickly, Lord Jesus.

Even though already into the school holidays, on behalf of the staff at ACS, I wish you all a restful holiday break. I am aware that many in our schools don’t have holidays at this stage but for them holidays are always a good window of opportunity to catch up with work that may have been left lower down the priority lists.

Thank you to you or your staff that submitted the census numbers for Semester 1. Our movement now supports 45 schools, representing almost 32,000 students. Thank you also to Ethan Kuss who worked hard to ensure our portal for submitting your data is working well and Louise Toews our Accounts Administrator for her work in processing all our finances.

ACS Leadership Summit 2024

Our ACS Leadership Summit (22 and 23 July 2024) is currently taking shape and for those who have not yet planned to attend, please do so for you and or your Executive staff.

This year our abbreviated theme will be: “Leading in Love and Unity”. The broader theme will be: “Leading with Love: Unity in the Face of Cultural Hostility”

Please join us on this profound journey of faith and leadership in Christian education as we delve into the timeless lessons from Daniel 5, discovering the imperative of leading with love and compassion amidst cultural hostility. In a world fraught with division and animosity, we are called to emulate Jesus Christ’s example of unwavering love, even amid adversity – as he teaches in Matthew 5. Drawing inspiration from Daniel’s unwavering faith and Christ’s boundless compassion, this conference will equip Christian leaders with the tools to navigate cultural challenges in the educational context with grace and empathy.

Join us as we unite under the banner of love, proclaiming to the world that in Christ, we are stronger together.

Ahead of the first draft of our program that will be available on the website soon, please note the following about this year’s ACS Leadership Summit:

  1. We are delighted to confirm our keynote speakers:
    1. Emeritus Professor Trevor Cooling from the National Institute for Christian Education Research, Canterbury Christ Church University.
    2. Theologian & Author, Dr Maragaret Cooling.
    3. David I. Smith, Professor of Education, Calvin University; Director of the Kuyers Institute for Christian Teaching and Learning, Calvin University; Coordinator of the de Vries Institute for Global Faculty Development, Calvin University; and Senior Editor of the International Journal of Christianity and Education.
    4. Dr John Collier, Headmaster of the Shore School in Sydney.
  2. This year’s Summit will be held at the Sheraton Mirage Resort on the Gold Coast. Even though the conference accommodation has been negotiated to a reasonable price, we do understand that together with the conference cost, it could be expensive for schools who have multiple principals or schools that may be struggling financially. Please let us know whether you may need assistance to attend as we would love to see ALL our ACS principals attend.
  3. As per past practice, the ACS AGM will be held at the end of Day 1 of the Summit.

One Life

ACS Director, Ron Wolley contributes again in today’s update as he reflects on a wonderful address “One Life” we heard at the Christian Heritage College’s recent graduation day. We would also like to extend our congratulations to Dr Carig Murison for his leadership of CHC and all of the candidates who graduated. ACS was privileged to present some awards that we have sponsored. Thank you for what you do in the ongoing ministry of Christian education and please don’t hesitate to reach out to us for any support, advice, ideas.


Erik Hofsink
ACS Executive Director


2. Calendar & Events

  • View the ACS Calendar
  • View upcoming ACS Events
  • Please be advised that the ACS Administration Symposium has now been rescheduled for Friday the 28th of June. The new event details will be emailed out to schools in the near future.


3. ACS Public Policy and Advocacy Update

Alistair is currently on a well-earned break at the moment and will return to his ACS and Corny & Lind duties again next week.

In the meantime, we would still appreciate your prayers for the ongoing efforts to try and steer the government away from some very concerning legislative changes to the Sex Discrimination Act 1984 (Cth). A lot of work is still needed and without your prayers and support, this will be in vain.

Again, please ensure that as many as possible in your communities subscribe to My Christian School  as a growing solidarity between Christian schools in keeping our freedoms and independence from being eroded away.


4. One Life

Written by ACS Director Ps Ron Woolley

One Life

Queensland Christian schools have greatly benefited from a relationship with Christian Heritage College, and those relationships continue to adapt and bear fruit.  Commencing from a vision birthed by the late Emeritus Professor Brian Millis in 1986, CHC education graduates have found positions in a wide range of schools – private, public, Christian and mission schools, here interstate and abroad.

CHC’s most recent Graduation ceremony included an address by Ps Ross Abraham, Chair of the International Network of Churches.  He posed this question to graduates: What do you plan to do with your one life?

He explained,

“Jehoram was the son of Jehoshaphat, a godly king but a father who had arranged a marriage for his son with Israel’s most demonic king and queen’s daughter. He had all his brothers murdered to protect his throne and he encouraged Baal worship.  On his tombstone read the following epitaph (2 Chronicles 21:20)

20 Jehoram was thirty-two years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem eight years. No one was sorry when he died. They buried him in the City of David, but not in the royal cemetery.

Vincent Van Gogh’s Sorrowing Old Man At eternity’s gate is a painting of an old man clutching his head contemplating a life he can never get back about to step into eternity, a life full of regret.

Satan’s plan for you is not to deconstruct your faith and then write a blog about it. His plan for you is to have an apathetic faith where he doesn’t even have to bother with you.

So, if we want our lives to count then we must swim against the current of complacency, cynicism, indifference and disillusionment that the church finds itself currently immersed in.


Don’t waste your life!

Matthew 4:19

19 And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.”

God is in the people shaping business”.

Speaking as a fellow student at Christian Heritage College he added,

“We aren’t just here to study for a potential career opportunity, to make money and hopefully be happy.

We are labourers whom God has put his hand upon and called us into His mission, the great commandment to reach our world for Christ.

There’s an expression from the early church by Irenaeus, who lived about 130 years after Jesus and was instrumental in creating faith communities through France, where he said, “The glory of God is a human being fully alive.”

Do you think the apostle Peter had any idea that he would end up preaching all over the known world? Did he ever know that he would be so full of God’s Spirit that his shadow would heal people? Eventually crucified upside down.

When we surrender our hearts, our disappointments, our cynicisms and spend time with Jesus he will lift your vision of what God could do through your life.

What we do in this one life has infinite implications, and beyond that, our stories are bigger than history. Our stories don’t end when we do. They are only the beginning of much greater stories, the content of which we are completely unaware.

The movie “One Life” is about Nicholas Winton (played by Anthony Hopkins) a British stockbroker and humanitarian who helped to rescue Jewish children at risk of being murdered by Nazi Germany during the Holocaust. In 1938, 29-year-old Nicholas Winton cancelled a ski holiday and instead spent nine months masterminding a seemingly impossible plan to rescue hundreds of Jewish children and find them homes in the UK.

Sir Nicholas Winton rescued 669 children from Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia at the brink of World War II. Most never saw their parents again; nearly all left behind were murdered. Over 6,000 people are alive today because of his efforts.

Amy Carmichael, famously prayed, Make my life thy fuel, Flame of God. From a young age she gave herself to reaching people in India, in particular children forced into prostitution in the temples. She darkened her skin with coffee just to fit in.

Whether you realize it or not, every choice you make has an effect on your future.  In fact, the choices you make are the material from which the future is made. If our best futures can be known only in the mind of God, then how critical is it that we hear his voice and heed his call?

The most spiritual thing you will do today is to choose a life devoted to the cause of Christ. The prayers that you pray in this season will set the course of your life. Give God your younger years:

you’ll never be ready

you’ll never be ready to get married

you’ll never be ready to have kids

you’ll never be ready to start a business or go back to school or move to the mission field

you’ll never be ready financially, emotionally, or spiritually

you’ll never have enough faith, enough cash, or enough courage, and if you are looking for an excuse, you will always find one.

I never have been and I’m sure I never will be ready for anything God has called me to do. This doesn’t mean I haven’t prepared myself.  If you wait until you’re ready, you’ll be waiting for the rest of your life.

Desire that your life count for something great! Long for your life to have eternal significance. Want this!  Don’t coast through life without a passion.

I never have been and I’m sure I never will be ready for anything God has called me to do. This doesn’t mean I haven’t prepared myself.  If you wait until you’re ready, you’ll be waiting for the rest of your life.

Desire that your life count for something great! Long for your life to have eternal significance. Want this!  Don’t coast through life without a passion”.


5. Opportunities

Dr. Nathan St. Pierre, and I am a curriculum developer currently involved in developing a comprehensive Bible Literacy program for primary schools across Australia. Our aim is to create an engaging curriculum that underlines the cultural and literary significance of the Bible, with a special focus on inclusivity and the representation of diverse linguistic and cultural backgrounds.

As part of our commitment to crafting an educational program that is both relevant and respectful of the time constraints within the school environment, we are conducting research to better understand how religious education, particularly Bible literacy, is currently structured in Australian schools.

We are reaching out to respected organisations such as Associated Christian Schools of Australia (ACS) to gather insights on several aspects:

  • The amount of time allocated to religious education or Bible literacy within your curriculum.
  • The structure and content of your current Bible literacy or religious education lessons.
  • Any feedback or observations you might have on the integration of cultural diversity and linguistic richness within these lessons.

Your input will be invaluable in helping us to develop a curriculum that not only adheres to educational standards but also resonates with the diverse student body we aim to serve.

We would greatly appreciate it if you could share some of your experiences and practices or direct us to relevant resources or personnel within your system of schools.

If you have any feedback, please provide it to me and I will forward it to Nathan.


6. Career Opportunity

Emerald Christian School is currently looking for a Business Manager. Rhonda Davies is the principal and she will be delighted if you could help her find someone suitable to take this opportunity. Details can be found here: Business Manager – GEMS Christian Education Ltd – Associated Christian Schools


7. Edexia

Edexia is a new Brisbane-based AI EdTech startup researching and developing AI-guided assessment marking and feedback specifically tailored for the QCAA syllabus. Their core goal is to positively impact the education system by reducing the time, bias, and inaccuracies during the drafting and marking process while simultaneously enhancing the feedback to both the student and teacher, making it more in-depth, immediate, and useful. It focuses on ‘guiding’ the process, not automating it. It acts as a tool for teachers, not a replacement.

Although the AI is not completely accurate, the AI-assisted workflow enables final marking and drafting to be done in as little as 5 minutes per assessment. They continuously collect teacher feedback and are developing features at a rapid pace, enabling even more time to be saved.

They are about to finish their pilot with 3 ACS schools: Redlands College, Citipointe Christian College, and Brisbane Christian College. They are looking for similarly innovative schools to work with as they test and implement the technology. If you are interested, email the co-founder, Daniel Gibbon, at


8. Notices

CSA Wellbeing Leaders & Staff and Non-Teaching Administrative Staff Conferences: Monday July 8, 2024; 9:00am – 3:00pm at Mueller College

  • The Cultural Compass: What’s Shaping Identity? Mark Ryan
  • Understanding and Supporting Neurodiverse Students –  Lizaan Schwartz
  • Understanding Trauma Informed Care – Lisa Coles
  • Work Smarter, Not Harder – Katie York
  • Conflict Management and Resolution – Dr David Zimmerman and Dr Wes Turner

To register for either conference please use the following link:

Download the calendar and save key dates so you don’t miss out!

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