Men’s brunch event unites generations in WA

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Men’s brunch event unites generations in WA

September 13, 2022

Men from the Western Australia Division traveled to Optus Stadium for a Salvation Army Men’s Brunch in August. Guest speaker Peter James-Lyndon’s story touched guests and staff alike. Photo: Joel Gibson

By Jessica Morris

God is doing a new thing in Western Australia, and a men’s brunch is just the threshold of a growing cross-generational ministry emerging in the state.

In August, 84 men gathered at Optus Stadium in Perth for an event filled with intention. Attendees aged 16 to 70+ traveled from bodies as far afield as Kalgoorlie and Bunbury to hear guest speaker Peter Lyndon-James, founder of the Western Australia Shalom Group. And what came out of the event was more than a moment of inspiration – it was hope for the future.

It was fun and games for all ages at the Men’s Brunch! Captain Pete Brookshaw (with microphone) tries to get rid of the competitive spirit of the participants.

“We had a vision to organize a men’s event that gives people hope. We wanted to bring the guys from the Salvation Army family together for good fellowship, food and to encourage them in their faith, with the ripple effect that would actually boost local ministries,” said Major Andrew Jarvey, Public Assistant. Relations Secretary for WA.

“Nothing we do is done in isolation. We are thinking about next steps, so we hope this event will not only kick off local men’s initiatives, but also help grow kingdom communities within our division.

The 2022 men’s brunch was a mainstay of Western Australia’s regular divisional men’s camp. However, after COVID-19, when so many people are looking for community, it was decided that the weekend would become a unique brunch-based event – ​​something that could appeal to people of all ages, respect safety protocol and accommodate work and family schedules. of a range of people.

And with the support of a male mission team who took the idea back to their local body, they saw diverse participation. Youth, corps officers, staff, volunteers and community members were all present.

The impact of the guest speaker

Peter Lyndon-James spoke forcefully on behalf of Shalom, of which he is the CEO. Shalom House, established in Swan Valley in 2012, was born out of Peter’s vision to bring holistic recovery to men’s lives, providing a long-term safe community for those pursuing an addiction-free life.

He told those gathered that he drew inspiration from his own life experience recovering from a broken family and the trauma associated with it.

The Holy Spirit spoke through Peter to that no one questioned the transforming power of God – and that included the waiters. After the presentation, two men were approached by a member of staff, which led them praying with an employee, the Spirit revealing the fruits of the occasion even before the dirty plates are removed from the tables!

“For us, it wasn’t just about how many people were in the room; it was about who was in the room,” said Major Dianne Jarvey, Mission Support Coordinator for WA.

“When [people] go to these events, they reflect Jesus to everyone, including the staff. There’s something amazing about going out and using other spaces and having the community [realise] ‘Oh, the Salvation Army, it’s a spiritual thing. It’s not just a question of well-being. Everything we do should resonate with Jesus in what we do and should impact those around us.

The vision of the WA Mission Department extends beyond an event and beyond a single gender. A day of family fun is brewing in October thanks to the Kids and Families team, while a women’s event with guest speaker Penny Webb is planned at Perth Zoo on October 15.

Transforming Lives

Meanwhile, the department is also using video content from the Men’s Brunch and plans to release resources this week based on Peter’s speech. Peter explained how he spent most of his life in prison, which led him to a life of addiction and unhealthy choices.

God appeared in an undeniable way and transformed his life. He now lives with a passion to transform others whose lives have been touched by addiction. The fact that a handful of corps are tuning in to the event via live stream also means the additional resources will come in handy for discipleship training across the state.

“I want [people] at [see these] events as discipleship,” Andrew said. “It actually helps teach our men how to make disciples. [At the brunch] we got to chat with a young man about discipleship, and then he saw it modeled in a practical way.

As Salvationists in Western Australia navigate church and faith in a world with COVID-19, the Missions Department has a surge of Spirit-powered momentum as it sows the seeds of an intergenerational ministry that extends from leaders to local bodies.

“We’re very excited to say that we need all generations so we can all share together,” says Dianne. “We need each other.”

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