DOUG & ROWENA

Feb 14 2018

ROWENA
My parents were missionaries in Tonga, and after a few tragedies in our family we came back to Australia when I was 4. In my teens, my father became very sick with cancer and passed away. My parents had little money but what they did have, they were always generous with… and that’s how I endeavour to live. We first came to Hillsong 10 years ago for our 3 children – we wanted our kids to love God and attend a church that was relevant.This year, we had the opportunity to foster a boy – he is part of our family and the Hillsong community has embraced him. I am forever grateful for our church and for the life long friendships we have made. I feel constantly challenged at Hillsong to love others and to live generously.

A number of years ago, I started a business teaching Sexuality education in schools. I look forward to 2018, it has grown so much that we are employing someone to help me. Six years ago, my family had the opportunity to travel to India and as a result we took on a charity “Kotdwara Help”. We travel to India twice a year now and the children and families have become a big part of our lives. We started with 30 kids and now have 220. We started off with 2 people working for us and now we have over 20. Hopefully, in 2018, we will start a women’s conference in India. I am really excited about this. As my husband Doug is a Principal and I am a teacher, we have also been asked to help Watoto in Africa. We will be travelling over there in June, where I will be teaching sex education in some of the villages. Our world gets busier and crazier every year, but as Hillsong says – there is always more… and Jesus can give you the capacity for that. Bring on 2018!!

DOUG
I love my church and I am thankful to God for all that it means to me. For me personally, church equips me with the strength, support and direction to do my work and to reach out to those in my world. As a principal, I am passionate about aiming to create an inclusive school that caters for the individual needs of all children. I have been a school principal for 10 years, was deputy for 11 years and a general class teacher for 7 years before that. I love my job, but it is also difficult at times. My job is about people and I must be at my best in every meeting, conversation and interaction. Hillsong has taught me to see the world beyond, and realise that God has given me skills, gifts and influence that reach places that I would never have dreamt or imagined.

I have been blessed to have the opportunity to serve at an organisation in Northern India twice a year. I also visit Vision Rescue once a year where I run teacher-training workshops. It is such a privilege to serve the body of Christ in this way and to empower, equip and encourage the teachers and leaders. At home, I love my weekly service at Doody Street. For me it’s about connecting and serving those who serve. Being a husband and a dad is most important to me; family and marriage is where my priorities lie. To have a family who love and serve in the House is the greatest answer to prayer I could ask for. We don’t often end up at the same service together, but I smile just knowing that my three kids are serving and planted, and finding their place and purpose. At the end of the day, I want to know Jesus more. I want to be like Him more and I want to serve Him more – living more in His grace and His purpose. I love living life, and I’m excited that 2018 promises more.