JUNE 19: MATT AND MIRIAM GORDON Q+A (WA)


Q. Where do you live & what's your local surf break / community?

We live in Doubleview Perth and our local surf break is Scarborough.

Q. Any recent significant relationship / family news?

We have recently been married in January 2019. 

Q. What do you love about being a Regional Coordinator in CS?

Great connections throughout the state and hearing other communities being impacted by CS. Great getting out there for God in the surf community and building up relationships in our state to share the froth.

Q. How have you grown as a leader in your time within CS?

Continually growing and learning in leadership, through support and encouragement by other leaders. By learning to follow Gods instructions in faith of what God wants in CS and his vision. Learning to take steps of faith when things may seem unreachable.


Q. What importance do you place on leadership within CS in your region?

Gods given each leader a passion for this mission and a gift of leadership to share and honor God with.

Huge importance with leaders as they are the ones that will build up CS to reach more surf communities around the state. Leaders need to have a passion for the mission and motivation to jump out and trust the calling and gift God has for them

Q. What challenges do you face in your role?

It is challenging to get people on board and fully committed to what CS is doing in our region. I have been learning about vision casting and how to communicate the CS vision with people might help that.

Finding time to fit everything in on a weekly basis, figuring out priorities and how to implement them in a productive manner.

Q. What are your current hopes and dreams for 2019 and beyond? 

Current hope is to see more young people join CS and to see some growth in our weekly hangouts. 

Reach out to more schools and seek out the young people we can invest in.

Q. For those that would like to support you and your role - what do you need and how would their support make a difference? 

We would love to be supported financially, enough to pay for flights to staff meetings and conferences, able to pay for fuel to the regional towns for CS development etc. Also would love to see support through prayer and encouragement and connect with more churches.

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If you’d like to connect more with Matt about supporting CS WA pls contact:

Email: matt@christiansurfers.org.au

Mob: 0403 285 756

JUNE19: DAVE AND NAOMI O'BRIEN Q+A (SA)

Q. Where do you live & what's your local surf break / community?

We live in beautiful Port Elliot, South Australia. It’s about an hour south of Adelaide. We have a few surf breaks around our community just depends on conditions as to which ones we surf. Our most consistent surf break is Middleton.

Q. Any recent significant relationship / family news?

We have been married for 16 years and have 3 beautiful children and a well-loved dog called Lockie!

Q. What do you love about being a Regional Coordinator in CS?

We love the people! When we come together as a collective group it is just awesome! There is always good times, good laughs and good fellowship.

Q. How have you grown as a leader in your time within CS?

Every day presents opportunities to grow. We have definitely had our fair share of challenges and obstacles to overcome, but continuing to trust in God and believe He loves us so much and know that He has never let us go without anything. 

Q. What importance do you place on leadership within CS in your region?

We place a high level of importance on the leadership within CS. We really value our leaders and what they bring to our region.

Q. What challenges do you face in your role?

Winter!! And time! Running our own business and having a busy family creates its challenges as sometime there isn’t enough hours in the day. But we believe in this mission and are very passionate about serving our local surfing community and beyond. 

Q. What are your current hopes and dreams for 2019 and beyond? 

Everyone who knows Dave knows he loves his coffee! We would love to put a fridge and coffee machine in the back of our Ute to help us make new friends and build relationships within the surfing communities in our area. We would love to see new missions in South Australia opening up like, Yorke and Eyre Peninsular, Robe, Ceduna and Kangaroo Island and new growth in the South Coast and Mid Coast missions.

Q. For those that would like to support you and your role - what do you need and how would their support make a difference? 

We would encourage you to pray and seek the Lord. If God tells you to give, give with a cheerful heart (2 Cor 9:6-8). God has always been faithful to us. God feeds and clothes the birds of the air and we are far more valuable to Him than they (Matt 6:25-34).

God bless you all and thanks for reading a bit about us! 

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If you’d like to connect more with Dave & Naomi about supporting CS SA pls contact:

Email: davo@christiansurfers.org.au

Phone: 0422 965 176

JUNE 19: BRAD AND ALEX KERMOND Q + A (TAS)

Q. Where do you live & what's your local surf break / community?

We live at Lauderdale, Tasmania which is about 20 minutes out of Hobart and we have several local surf breaks close by down at South Arm.


Q. Any recent significant relationship / family news?

Recent family news is that Alex has been chronically sick for the past 8 months but in the last couple of weeks we've seen a massive  improvement, Praise God! 

Q. What do you love about being a Regional Coordinator in CS?

What we love about being Regional Coordinators is honestly doing life with our leaders, seeing them get creative and really own and enjoy their roles. It's a huge encouragement to witness this region grow in the nearly two years living here. Being part of the National Team is another highlight of our role as we are constantly learning from the big guns  and actually get super pumped for staff meetings... who would've thought this possible aye!


Q. How have you grown as a leader in your time within CS?

How I (Brad) have grown as a leader in CS has definitely been through the friendship of CS leaders who have simply believed, discipled and empowered me to lead in different scenarios and opportunities.


Q. What importance do you place on leadership within CS in your region?

I see leadership within CS Tassie to be super important as they represent Jesus and what Jesus has to offer to the surfing community. The culture of CSA was founded upon servant leadership and seeking God, so sharing these values is a must in our team.

Q. What challenges do you face in your role?

Tassie has a small population and an even smaller surfing population that is very spread out so pulling in crew is a challenge. Also our major surfing locations are a good drive away from anywhere so we spend a fair bit on fuel. I guess flying to Staff Attacks and other events related to the role can be a bit pricey but is always worth every dollar spent. 


Q. What are your current hopes and dreams for 2019 and beyond? 

Ambitions for 2019 include going north, scoping out the scene up there for CS and connecting with crew. On a personal level, we are frugally saving for a home by the sea where we can be planted in and invest in the surfing community. Next year I'll be studying part-time teaching and beyond that, lots of babies...


Q. For those that would like to support you and your role - what do you need and how would their support make a difference? 

I'm currently working 4 days a week as a Teachers Aide, and my 5th day I volunteer up to smash out CS work. For those who can and would like to support us an extra $185 a week would enable me to cover costs of fuel, get to meetings whilst also giving us a day of paid work for CS.

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If you’d like to connect more with Brad & Alex about supporting CS Tas pls contact:

Email: brad@christiansurfers.org.au

Phone: 0499 774 070

JUNE19: ROB & CAT LOWTHER Q+A (QLD)

Photo: @samuellowtherphoto

Photo: @samuellowtherphoto

Q. Where do you live & what's your local surf break / community?

Coolum Beach, Sunshine Coast 

Q. Any recent significant relationship / family news?

Zoe our 5 years old daughter has started prep at a local school and is enjoying it. Kai has been in good health and loves burning around the local skatepark. 

Q. What do you love about being a Regional Coordinator in CS?

Having influence on the lives of Cs leaders and watching them grow into their God-given potential.

Q. How have you grown as a leader in your time within CS?

I have grown in my confidence and ability to lead people in a servant hearted yet influential way. 

Q. What importance do you place on leadership within CS in your region?

Leadership has a high value in our region. Without leaders who are passionate and competent we would never fulfil our mission. Developing leaders within our region has been a key strategy. 

Q. What challenges do you face in your role?

Time and resources. Not have the required finances and also juggling life’s responsibility and other work commitments can make our role as regional coordinators quite challenging.

Q. What are your current hopes and dreams for 2019 and beyond? 

Our dream is to have more thriving hubs established along the QLD coast. Our hope if that we know Christ intimately in our own lives and make him know in the lives of other QLD surfers. 

Q. For those that would like to support you and your role - what do you need and how would their support make a difference? 

  • $5000 for our personal travel and conference expenses.

  • $5000 for our region to purchase more beach equipment such as beach shades and hospitality equipment.

  • $10,000 for equipping our leaders with first aid training, surf coaching and judging and also to contribute to 5 leaders heading to new swell. 

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If you’d like to connect more with Rob & Cat about supporting CS QLD pls contact:

Email: robandcat@christiansurfers.org.au

Phone: 0405828907

JUNE 19: LUCAS AND ASH BARTLETT Q+A (VIC)

Q. Where do you live & what's your local surf break / community?

I live on Phillip Island off the coast of south east Victoria. My favourite place to surf here is woolamai!


Q. Any recent significant relationship / family news?

Our little family of two will soon be three as Ash is expecting in October! We are super pumped to meet our new little one!

Q. What do you love about being a Regional Coordinator in CS?

I love to empower people to follow their calling into surf mission and to have creative control around what that looks like in their leadership.


Q. How have you grown as a leader in your time within CS?

Well I’ve been in CS for 20 years so it’s fair to say most of my growth can be attributed to my time in CS. But I think I have learnt the importance of not putting the ways we relate to God in a box of “This is how you do it” God is the creator of the wind and waves he’s big and wild and beautifully unpredictable. Our expression of him should be the same!


Q. What importance do you place on leadership within CS in your region?

Leadership is the steering forward of whatever movement of Gods kingdom in our Region God has in trusted to us. In Vicco we celebrate strong leaders and empower those who feel called to walk out a leadership journey. 


Q. What challenges do you face in your role?

Often not having enough leaders with heaps of time up their sleeves can be a challenge. Our society has so much going on so we have some amazing leaders but sometimes they can be spread thinly as there is only so much you can do and only so much time you can do it in!


Q. What are your current hopes and dreams for 2019 and beyond? 

My hope this year is to strengthen our existing missions and raise up new young leaders that can keep these missions healthy for the next season.


Q. For those that would like to support you and your role - what do you need and how would their support make a difference? 

Thanks to the generosity of many friends and family I am currently financially released in my role 1.5 days a week.

I feel if I could increase that support to 2 days per week which is approximately $500 support increase a month I would have further capacity to give the time and attention in needs and also cover some of the travel costs. 

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If you’d like to connect more with Lucas about supporting CS Vic pls contact:

Email: lucas@christiansurfers.org.au

Phone: 0421 662 320

JUNE 19: Dave Lovell Q+A (CNSW)

Q. Where do you live & what's your local surf break / community?

We live in the Sutherland Shire Sydney. I serve with the Cronulla CS crew on the comp team. Surf at cronulla and support the Cronulla sharks (Everyone who visits comes to a game).

Q. Any recent significant relationship / family news?

Our at home family is shrinking and our extended family growing. Our second daughter Carly is getting married in July.

Q. What do you love about being a Regional Coordinator in CS?

I love my role because it links my love of God, the heart he has given me for people and my passion for surfing.

Q. How have you grown as a leader in your time within CS?

Yes I have grown as a leader, firstly in patience (leading surfers you need tonnes ,Ha). But mostly in service and inquiring of God first and foremost.

Q. What importance do you place on leadership within CS in your region? 

CS leadership is vital as it births vision, brings unity and strengthens mission. Good CS leadership serves, disciples and provides spiritual mentoring.

Q. What challenges do you face in your role?

Time is my biggest challenge, I have a fairly constant 60 hour week between work and CS commitments. On top of that family and home priorities. I have learnt that there is no equation between hours put in by me and what God can do I just need to be strategic and be guided by him. What I have seen Him do with faith and a willing heart is mind blowing.

Q. What are your current hopes and dreams for 2019 and beyond? 

Succession planning raising up the next generation of leadership.

Q. For those that would like to support you and your role - what do you need and how would their support make a difference? 

$5K a year would help me sponsor at least 2 young leaders a year to go to our Newswell leadership training school. Sponsor groms who can't afford to get to regional camp. Provide updated resources for the missions such as new  beach tents screen printed with CS logo etc. As well as assisting me with travel expenses to national team meetings and mission visits. At present I pay for everything out of what the Lords blesses me to earn.

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If you’d like to connect more with Dave about supporting CS Central NSW pls contact:

Email: dave@christiansurfers.org.au

Phone: 0418 412 103

JUNE 19: NATO AND BETH BENNETT Q+A (NTH NSW)

Q. Where do you live & what's your local surf break / community?

Port Macquarie – North Shelly 

 

Q. Any recent significant relationship / family news?

Beth has started work again this year coming off maternity leave with Hazel. She has started in a new role at our local GP practice and is working casually in emergency. Also, for the last year I have been working in the community adolescent mental health team here in Port covering a maternity leave position and at this stage it’s looking like I will be staying on in this role. It’s been such a blessing working normal hours mon – fri and such a great opportunity working with some of the most vulnerable and at risk teens in my local community.

 

Q. What do you love about being a Regional Coordinator in CS?

I love being a part of the National Team. Also being in a position to empower other leaders and encouraging them to serve in their surfing communities as they live out their lives striving to walk as Jesus did gets me pretty pumped.  

 

Q. How have you grown as a leader in your time within CS?

I have learnt the importance of putting my family first in ministry and amongst the business of work, family and CS the importance of keeping God first, because without him it’s all just my own silly ideas and effort – a lot less effective and a lot harder. 

 

Q. What importance do you place on leadership within CS in your region?

Leadership on a local level is so important, without solid leaders investing into their local surf communities/churches , effective local missions don’t exist. This year a big focus has been on the importance of Godly character as leaders, just not gifting and personality. 

 

Q. What challenges do you face in your role?

Trying to manage family, full time work, local and regional CS and trying to fit in the odd surf/fish gets challenging at times. Also having enough time and financial support to travel to other missions and staff attacks can be difficult. Another big challenge for us locally and as a region has been finding enough leaders that are willing to step up and lead/serve in their local surfing communities alongside CS.

 

Q. What are your current hopes and dreams for 2019 and beyond? 

We are hoping and praying for God to raise up Godly leaders to step in to existing missions/ starting new missions throughout the region. Hoping to see missions started up in Bonny Hills, Lennox and Kingscliff in the not too distant future. 

 

Q. For those that would like to support you and your role - what do you need and how would their support make a difference? 

Receiving more financial support would make a massive difference in enabling us to visit leaders within our region, attending National staff attack meetings and for general regional expenses eg trailer rego, regional camp, leaders training weekends etc. At this stage we are hoping for $250/ month into the regional account.

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If you’d like to connect more with Nato about supporting CS Nth NSW pls contact:

Email: natoandbeth@christiansurfers.org.au

Phone: 0401 219 409

NG19 SNSW: BLAKE

I’m a new leader (started in 2018) in Christian Surfers at Stanwell Park NSW. It’s so good. Me and the 8 other leaders are like a little family minus the parents - so it’s always fun. But we keep it real. Being accountable, God centred and loving, are a few things that we aim to do as CS leaders - on Wednesday nights when a million high energy gromits show up - and in our normal lives. 

I heard about National Gathering and got hyped. Pretty much hoping for a bunch of people who liked to do the same things as me and live for the same King as me - I wasn’t let down. I made friends for life! From all over Australia! The crew on it was like this: chill, loving, welcoming, encouraging, and all the other good things that God blesses us with as we follow in his plan.

This mountain-top experience was made complete by the love and community that everyone shared, the challenging and highly emotive talks by Jono, and the waves, but most of all Gods clear presence - He did incredible things in Philip Island that weekend. Ask someone who went and they will surely tell you of something amazing. 

I was able to take all the love and joy I experienced and bring it back to my fellow leaders who couldn’t make it, and all the grommies who come every week to CS. 

There’s every reason to make CS national gathering 2020! Yewwwww

- Blake (Stanwell Park)

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NG19: JOHNO - TEACHING SESSIONS SUMMARY

When I was first told the theme of conference (Own it) I took some time to think about how this looks. The three topics that came out of my pondering on “Own it” were

Beginnings: both CS and personal

Simple Gospel

I will go

I wanted to focus intentionally on the beginnings of our personal faith as Easter is a great time to reflect on this. The beginnings of CS in Australia is a great testimony of God stirring a small group of late teens to embark out to form CS. The desire is wonderful and truly inspiring. Today CS is an international movement. ‘Every surfer in every surfing community has the opportunity to know and follow Jesus.’

My second session was about the simple gospel, about being aware of a changing environment here in Australia, where society might be preaching a message of the irrelevance of Christianity but individually people are seeking, many knowing that there must be ‘more than this’. I challenged us to not be intimidated by culture but to come back sharing the simplicity of the gospel and stripping away the superficial.

My last session, ‘I will go’ really looked at not allowing our circumstances to prevent us sharing the gospel but rather seeing the importance of our daily lives in providing opportunities to share the love of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

For me the Sunday dawn service and baptisms were a highlight and such a powerful proclamation.

Bless ya. Mark J.

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NG19 WA: MATT GORDO

National Gathering is always a great time to reflect and see what God has done and is doing through the CS crew in our country. It is a time of empowerment where we are equipped to go back into our surfing community with fresh vision and a overflowing spirit. God really challenged me about a few things regarding my past performance. I was set free and really believed that past mindsets and failures were swept away and have a renewed mind about the things God wants to do with us in CSWA. " He must increase; I must decrease" John 3:30

WA Crew at NG19 (plus some extras)

WA Crew at NG19 (plus some extras)