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From Mareeba to Cairns....

Tuesday 22 February, 2011

Welcome to the Cairns Free Reformed Church Blog. A brand new venture for us but one we hope will be a joyful experience as we share the ups and downs of our house group here in the Far North Queensland. By way of this blog we will be able to keep you all updated and share our photos, and experiences with you all. 

Well after almost two years in the Tablelands the Cairns House group, has decided to pick up and move down the mountain to the coast of Cairns. We have enjoyed the usage of the Seventh Day Adventist Church, as well as the Anglican Church buildings in Mareeba. Both churches were most happy for us to use their facilities which we were so thankful for! The only down side was that it was hard to advertise, and say.... We are a Free Reformed Church meeting at the Anglican church? Created a little bit of confusion at times. However we still have had a wonderful array of visitors from all over the world! In the past year, there has only been a handful of Sundays where we didn't have a visitor or two in our midst. So wonderful to meet so many new faces from Canada, Tasmania, Albany, Holland, the West, Queenslanders, and of course our fabulous missionaries from PNG as well. Not only that it added to our numbers each week as well which is always a blessing when you have such a small group.

Our usual routine on a Sunday is we meet for a Worship service where the men of the group take turns reading a sermon prepared by one of our sister church ministers. We then all enjoy a pot luck luncheon, which always leaves us full and thankful. Once we are cleaned up we all gather around for a Sing-a-long. We are blessed to have the wonderful musical skills of Peter Jansen on the Piano, and occasionally Gil on the French Horn. The singing time is often enjoyed by the kids as well, and we certainly can belt out the tunes. It is also something our visitors have enjoyed immensely (as well as the lunch!) After the vocal cords have had their work out, the adults gather round for Bible Study and the children head off for some Catechism instruction. On the first Sunday of the month we will have a second worship service in place of the Bible Study. All of this makes for a most enjoyable day of fellowship, prayer, study and worship. It is always a BIG day, especially when there is an hour+ travel involved either way to gather together. For the past 2 years we have all met on the Tablelands, however with more and more people from the group moving to Cairns, the decision was recently made to move the group down to Cairns. This makes even more travel for the Jansen families that live in Atherton.

Here are some photos of our very last Sunday together at the Anglican Church in Mareeba....

The front of the Anglican Church....

The inside of the Anglican church...

Matthew Byl, Gilbert Jansen, Peter Jansen and Rex from Mareeba all enjoying lunch together....

Rodney Byl and Brad Pleiter....

Our Sing-a-longs together....

We were blessed with finding a new premises rather quickly and have started at the beginning of February to meet in Kewarra Beach at a hall there. So far we are settling in all okay. The hall is rather echo-y and whilst that is fabulous for the Sing-a-long, not so great for the readers.... Hopefully with time and few more bodies in the pews, we will have that resolved.

The group was so happy for the safe arrival of the Brad & Michelle Pleiter family from Rockingham in January. The Pleiters have been on their very own adventure touring the top end as a family on the past 5 months on their way to moving to Cairns. Their much anticipated arrival came at the very start to the new year. It has been fabulous to have some older children amongst us as well, and so far they are settling in well. Much for all of us to be thankful for!

Another recent event we are most thankful for is the safety of the whole group here in Cairns when category 5 Cyclone Yasi hit the Queensland coast! It was a very scary time for many of us as we haven't been faced with a cyclone of that magnitude before. The possible devastation that could be caused by a cyclone of such great proportions was unknown, and much fear was evident amongst all in Cairns and the surrounding area as it was headed right for us. We truly felt so very loved and cared for with all the  messages of love, care and support and most importantly PRAYERS, we all received during this time. The unknown certainly was quite frightening for all of us, but another opportunity to put our full trust in God and Him alone. Praise God, no one was seriously hurt or killed in the cyclone, as well as it moved a little further down the coast so minimal damage was had to Cairns itself. Whilst it is completely devastating to the communities of Innisfail, Tully, and Cardwell, these areas are low population so less lives were in danger. The clean up has begun and the highway is now open again. It is amazing how we are affected when there is flooding or a cyclone, and the roads are closed. Supplies become scarce in the grocery stores and shelves are bare. Certainly something different for us west aussies to see.  

So there is a brief update to what the group has been experiencing of late. We will endeavour to keep you all posted on the comings and goings of the group. At this stage we don't know how often that will be. I am sure there will busy times, and quieter times ahead. For now we are looking forward to setting in nicely at the Cairns premises as well as very much looking forward to the arrival of 3 new families in the coming month. Please pray for the safe arrival of Ivan & Jolene Byl from Canada,Dean & Kate Visser from the West, and from our Holland roots Sjaak and Cherie VanLaar. We eagerly await their joining us very soon.

Please know that we also love visitors, and what a better place to visit than Cairns??!! Cairns is a place where you truly see the majesty of God amongst the Mountains, Waterfalls, Rainforest and the Great Barrier Reef! ....and the people here are lovely..*wink*

Till next time....

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Posted by KAREEN SQUIRES a.k.a MUDFORD. on Saturday 18 June, 2011

Is it not a good to seek God's will through the medium of media. Thank you for your website. Please feel free to utilise my email address if appropriate to your healing ministry. Blessings Kareen. R.N.B.A.Theol. Notre Dame University of Australia Fremantle. Kevin Mudford's sister.

Posted by Kevin Mudford on Tuesday 10 May, 2011

Hi Folks hope this letter gets you in a good space just looking at the different groups worshiping in Cairns My name is Kevin Mudford my wife and I are currently in Moree I have a you tube clip called prison to pulpit that will tell you a little bit about us or me I have been on the road for nearly 30 years preaching Jesus we are leaving moree tommorrow and driving with our gear straight up to cairns should touch base up there in the next two weeks or so not sure what God has installed for us there I work heavily amongst the addicted and prisoners but I am essentially an evangelist keep us in your prayers if you have any thoughts or anything in your heart for us let us know. we have a facebook page under kevin mudford lots of photos God bless In the Kings service Kevin and Dee mudford

Posted by Hilbert & Jen on Sunday 20 March, 2011

Hi all, we love the idea of you having a blog, its great to catch up on here when ever you can. Cairns sounds lovely and we too hope to come and visit one day, and ask God for a continual blessing on your church community in Cairns. God bless you all:) Hilbert & Jen

Posted by Adrian Slobe on Tuesday 01 March, 2011

Good to hear that the group in Cairns is growing and hopefully growing towards establishing a church of Christ in Cairns. We pray for you that the Lord will keep you safe in His care and that you faithfully may serve Him. In the Lord's service. Adrian and Riet