We are a family of churches seeking to walk in the way of Jesus in Springwood and Winmalee. Jesus said of himself: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” In walking the way of Jesus, we walk together into the life Jesus offers in relationship with the God revealed in the Bible as Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
In 1895 the sandstone church was built in Springwood. Jesus’ people, from a Presbyterian heritage, began to meet there. In subsequent years, Presbyterian church meetings commenced in various locations throughout the Blue Mountains including Woodford, Glenbrook, and Blaxland. In 1992, the church building in Winmalee was constructed on Hawkesbury Road.
But we don’t believe churches are buildings. So we don’t go to church. Churches are people; people who are disciples of Jesus, bound together in all our diversity by God’s love. We belong to God and to one another. We value faithfulness and vulnerability. We celebrate and lament. We immerse ourselves in the Bible and we pray. We participate in God’s mission to forgive, reconcile and renew people and all things throughout the world he loves so much. And being in the Presbyterian heritage, we celebrate the grace and goodness of God every day. There is so much for which to be thankful!
We like the word ‘evangelical’ because it comes from the Bible word for the message of Jesus, the good news – the best news! – that Jesus has ushered in the rule of God and that Jesus rescues humans, and indeed the entire creation, from rebelliousness, lostness, and God’s judgement. What has been accomplished through the death and resurrection of Messiah Jesus, his ascension to God, and his outpouring of the Holy Spirit, changes everything.
We like the word ‘reformational’ because it locates us in the stream of churches that emerged centuries ago, honouring the Scriptures as the written word of God and clinging by faith to the extravagant grace of God, not only for individual life, but also for the renewal of community and creational life.
Creeds such as The Apostles’ Creed and confessions such as The Westminster Confession, are significant historical statements of the character of God, and the meaning of faith, with which we align ourselves. We join with disciples of Jesus around the world in affirming: “From the beginning, through all the crises of our times, until the kingdom fully comes, God keeps covenant forever: Our world belongs to God! God is King: Let the earth be glad! Christ is victor: his rule has begun! The Spirit is at work: creation is renewed! Hallelujah! Praise the Lord!”
Rod has been married to Rosanne for nearly 40 years. They have four adult children and six grandchildren. Prior to becoming a Presbyterian minister, Rod worked in both government and Christian schools as a High School History, English, and Biblical Studies teacher. Rod studied at the Presbyterian Theological Centre in the 1980’s. He was a Presbyterian minister in Mount Druitt for 12 years before completing a Masters in Education in 1999 and then in 2003 a PhD at Macquarie University in which he explored the foundational impact of the Bible on the Christian schooling movement in Australia. Most recently Rod served as the National Principal/CEO of Laidlaw Theological College in Auckland, New Zealand from 2010- 15. Rod and Rosanne then moved back to Sydney to be closer again to their family. Rod is thrilled to be part of the pastoral team at the Springwood Presbyterian Churches.
Kirk and Lisa have been married for over 25 years and have two teenage sons. They both came to faith at Teen Ranch in their early teens and share a love for the arts. Kirk has a background in Speech Pathology and has been in ministry for more than 20 years. He has pursued postgraduate study on the book of Isaiah and on the connections between the book of Job and the human experience of disability. His working week is a mix of three days of Old Testament lecturing and research coordination at Sydney Missionary and Bible College and two days of preaching and pastoring with a focus on Alive@5. Kirk is keen to find connections between Scripture, culture and the arts and is excited by the energy, giftedness and inclusive community life at Alive@5.
Debbie and her husband, Paul, grew up in the Blue Mountains. Debbie attended Sunday School at the Springwood Presbyterian Church way back in the 1960s. For the past nine years, Debbie has worked as the Church Administrator. Currently she is employed three days per week and is based in the church office on the Springwood site. Debbie and Paul are avid Western Wanderers fans and enjoy sports, four wheel driving, camping and the creative arts. If you call the office, you will most likely speak with Debbie.
Presbyterian Churches are some of the most passionate churches about Bible teaching. But we don’t merely want to be hearers of the word. We want to be doers. Jericho Road is where that can begin. It’s a unifying program that gives each of us a different way to practically show Christ’s compassion in the community – either through some of the work of Presbyterian Social Services or through fresh initiatives around the streets where you live. The inspiration, of course, is Jesus. He told that most famous of road trip stories – of the Good Samaritan. That one man, who had no great organisation behind him, but transformed someone’s broken life because he stopped to help someone in need. But Jesus stopped on Jericho Road himself. First to bring healing to Bartimaeus. Then, to bring in a social outcast called Zaccheaus. What will you and your church do on Jericho Road? Take a look around to see what inspires – then contact us so we can help you get started.