The dreaded ‘T’ word: training

Pastoral Ministry

This article is an edited transcript of a talk given by Phil Colgan at the 2014 Nexus conference in Sydney, written up and edited by Sam Freney. Personal references throughout are therefore applicable to Phil, not Sam.


Children’s ministry: burning brightly and longer

Everyday Ministry

The fourth of four principles in this series on children’s ministry is about training others to get involved in the work. The most important thing to do in order to achieve this is to protect your existing children’s ministry team from the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, insofar as this lies within your power.


Growing through Christian history

Pastoral Ministry, Thought, Sola Panel

One of the quotes that stayed with me from last year said this about historians:

“Without them, our civic life would be a wasteland of forgetfulness, a cultural desert.” [Source]

I think the same is true of our church life. As Christians we need to know something of our history. The basic deposit of our faith is the gospel of Jesus, in the whole inspired counsel of God in the Scriptures. (more…)


Mentoring growth group leaders

Pastoral Ministry

Everyone needs encouragement. It’s pretty tough doing a job on your own without the support of others spurring you along. Growth group leaders are no different. They require training and resources, but they also depend on encouragement. In a church with many leaders, no one person can be relied upon to provide all the encouragement. (more…)

The vision splendid

Resource Talk

In 1988, when Matthias Media opened its door (there was only one) in a dingy office in Kingsford, where a stingy ray of sunlight struggled feebly down between the houses tall,1 our ambitions were pretty modest. We wanted to make a difference—to produce really first rate resources that would help people at the coal face of gospel ministry—but as we turned out the first copies of The Briefing on the Gestetner duplicator that lived in the little back room near the toilet, I can’t say that our vision reached very far afield. We hoped to produce some good material for the network of churches in our own local area and region, and anything beyond that would be a bonus. (more…)

The course of Thursday nights

Resource Talk

In case you haven’t noticed, we’ve been pretty enthusiastic about The Course of Your Life.
Perhaps you’re even a bit tired of seeing it advertised here in The Briefing—we’ve included it in every Briefing since the course was launched at the end of 2011. There hasn’t been any other Matthias Media resource that has been given that level of priority. Ever. (Even though we tend to get enthused about everything we publish.) (more…)

ken2754@Yokohama via flickr

The secret of training

Everyday Ministry

What is so special about Wayne Bennett? Wayne Bennett, for the uninitiated, is one of the most successful rugby league coaches of all time. Before Bennett, St George were a talented collection of chronic under-achievers. With Bennett, they became a team, won the minor premiership in the first year, and won everything the year after that. (more…)

Mr. Theklan

Has the personal evangelism ship sailed?

Everyday Ministry

When I first arrived in Sydney in 1981 as a keen young curly-haired Christian from country NSW, I knew nothing about expository preaching or house-parties or quiet times or the importance of things being ‘helpful’, or any of the other commonplaces of modern evangelicalism. (more…)

flickr: 55Laney69

Making disciples by planting

Pastoral Ministry

Our task of making disciples is an urgent one. I want to look afresh at the Great Commission of our Lord Jesus to “make disciples of all nations” and its implications for church-planting today. (more…)

Teaching preaching

Everyday Ministry

I wish I could say that the idea to begin a ‘teaching preaching’ course at our church was part of a deliberate and well-planned strategy to equip people for ministry. The truth is I stumbled across the idea out of desperation as I tried to cope with ministry demands, but I want to share it with you because it is the most significant ministry training I have ever done in a local church context.1 (more…)