So most of the stuff that actually matters in our community gets done by people who have no title and don't get paid. Meals are cooked, loving words are spoken, prayers are offered, chairs are shuffled, dishes are washed, shoulders are cried on, wisdom is shared, offence is forgiven and kingdom life is lived out in everyday life by people who get little attention for doing so.
We reckon they're worth a mention.
I first arrived at FNCC at the end of 2014 during a series on 'Re-engaging with Faith, Hope and Love'. This really spoke so positively to me at the time, as I was starting to disengage from those things. Since then, I've enjoyed my spiritual journey, re-engaging with Jesus and continue to ask questions, be content in the not-knowing, and even enrol in a subject at a Theological College this year. I've also enjoyed meeting Richard Rohr (though not in the flesh) and been encouraged by his daily devotions.
During the week I'm at teacher and work with children with mental health issues. I work with a mulit-disciplinary team to help the kids re-engage with school successfully. Outside of work I still like to head into the Australian bush and to walk along long beaches. I have a heart for people, I believe that we are all made equally beautiful and important and I think one of the biggest blessings in life is to have friends and share my faith and life journey with them.
Hey hey, I'm Zara. I've been at FNCC for six years now and find that I'm regularly surprised by how nourishing I experience the community to be (after many years of vampire churches). I'm so grateful that I'm part of a safe community where I have the freedom to figure out what the flip I believe and I'm committed to ensuring this is the experience of those who connect with our church.
I work for a Christian international aid and development organisation whose work focuses on seeking a just and compassionate world where all can flourish. My primary position with the company is organising an event called The Justice Conference and I'm currently seconded into their advocacy department. While certain aspects of my Christianity seem to be in a state of flux, I have no doubt that social justice sits at the core scripture and that as a church we're called to contribute to shalom in the world. Practically, I have a strong background in administration, planning and logistics.
I started coming to Fitzroy North in March 2016 when a friend gave the classic, "I don't go there but you would love it" recommendation. That friend was right. I started a small group with a few interested people and also taught a little (very little) kid's church. For money, I'm in charge of teaching, training and course content at an online English school. I also run a barista class for at-risk youth once a week.
I don't sound Australian because I am, in fact, from Canada. I've moved around a lot, and so my church background is varied. In order: Baptist, Mennonite, Pentecostal, a small Japanese church with six members, and now Fitz North.
I still remember a conversation I had the first week I showed up at FNCC (after listening to the podcast for a while) which was possibly the first time in my life that someone acknowledged that church could be a conflicted, anxiety-inducing place to hang around. Apparently I'm a sucker for punishment, because I did hang around, and behold, it turned out to be a pretty neat bunch of folk! The process of exploring our collective and individual faith, doubt, humanity, and (tentatively at times) opening ourselves up to bigger truths is something that continues to excite and terrify me.
I'm big on striped clothes, compiling and digesting food, and borrowing library books that I never get around to reading.
After the long search for a suitable replacement for Zara (may she rest in the peace of non-church-work) was not found, Shane and Rod gave up and hired me.
With much experience in 'Life Administration' and 'Life Enthusiasm', I look after church admin as well as being the venue manager for our church building, under the guise of 75 Reid St (they'll never know its really a church!).
My free hours are spent swing dancing, crazy dancing, ugly shower singing, contemplating life and eating as many different and wonderful foods as I can.
At this point in my life, my primary role is being a father to Tilly and Kate, an overwhelming but compelling task which (as a friend of mine once said) 'pulls your heart in all directions'. The time and energy I have left over, I divide between trying to be a half decent husband to Susie, trying to be a half decent friend to the many people I love, and trying to do enough creative stuff to justify continuing to think of myself as an artist of sorts. Several lives ago, I was (what I used to describe as) 'the coordinator' of a church in Sydney called 'Plunge'. It proved to be a bit of a shooting star of a church - fleeting, but quite beautiful. I really liked that life. In fact, I've had a lot of good ones. But my current life is, without a doubt, my favourite so far. Oh yeah, and I also work for Fitzroy North Community Church.
I'm a Kiwi living in exile ever since the great jandal debacle of 2011 (don't ask, suffice to say there was a thong mixup). I've successfully managed to live the immigrant's dream by taking one of your jobs (two in fact!) and marry one of your sheila's (just the one). Although churchy stuff can make me a little anxious I feel very lucky to serve a community that engages faith with such honesty, openness and kindness. My role involves a fair bit of reading and writing which make me pretty happy, a bit of plotting and planning, and spending plenty of time with top-shelf humans.
To stay sane I also work a couple of days a week with coffee and wine, study when we can afford it, and along with my wife Meg have begun "Project Raise a Child Without Messing It Up Too Badly" (PRACWMIUTB). So far so good!
For some reason, the people who actually work here reckon what I do is important enough to warrant a bio on the website, so here I am! I’ve been at FNCC for almost two years now, and started interning at the start of 2018. Before interning, I was struck by how much this community had come to mean to me in a very short period of time. As a queer woman, I very rarely feel truly welcome in a church setting, yet very quickly Fitzroy North felt like home to me. So in a way, I feel honoured that I get to put my unironic love for admin to good use in this community.
I was born and raised in South Africa, then immigrated to Australia around 8 years ago. I’ve assimilated quite well though, so don’t be disappointed by my lack of accent! I’m currently studying a Bachelors of Theology at Whitley College, and work the occasional shift at a cafe, which leaves me with just enough time and mental capacity to intern one day a week at FNCC.
For some reason I am always tempted to start bios highlighting my tap dancing skills. Given it's been many (many) a year since I even took my shoes out this might backfire when asked to demonstrate. I’m Tamsin. I wandered into FNCC over five years ago and discovered I really liked the people and so never left. I am still surprised how much I really like everyone- I’m not sure what I was expecting but this has proven to be a happy home for me.
I am extremely honoured to join the team in 2019. This community’s capacity to hold people in love and authenticity, to encourage curiosity and to explore the spaciousness of God has been a great gift to me. This role is new territory for me but I am excited to watch it unfold and see what happens.
My days involve working in a church-based community centre - with all the colourful moments that that entails - and teaching adults ballet, which allows me to yell at people without causing (too much) anxiety. Home is south of the river with my husband George, and a happy day involves active wear and a nature-filled adventure with him.