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MBC's History
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A companion meeting to services, a monthly Saturday evening “Family Night" was organised by Neville and Min Williams, with generous assistance from musically and technically minded members to look after lighting, projectors and amplifier. Continuing until the mid '70s “Family Night” gave birth to a mobile team which conducted interdenominational rallies and services in rural centres as far afield as Newcastle, Cootamundra, Wagga Wagga, Junee and Tumut.

It was also during John's ministry that the All-Age Sunday School was established (1958) - only the third such in Australia and the first to gain the Standard of Excellence Award based on principles laid down by the Southern Baptist Convention of USA.

John Curtis was followed by the Rev. Frank and Win Gallagher (1959-64) whose ministry was marked by further extension of the church building to seat 312, and by the purchase of 33 Memorial Avenue to serve as a manse.

Fresh from country service at Griffith, Rev Darcy and Anne Taplin (1964-68) caught the vision of further expansion involving complete replacement of the old hall with a new two-storey multi-purpose auditorium complex. Rev. Alan and Mrs Logan followed in 1968-71 and saw the vision of a modern auditorium become a highly practical reality.

Rev. Ben and Mrs Ewing happily accepted a call in late 1971, having earlier become known to the church as an itinerant missioner: "The Singing Sailor". Ben Ewing moved to the Dee Why church in 1977, his place having taken by Rev. Keith and Beryl Beech (1978-82) with a sincere, friendly ministry.

1982 saw the calling of Rev. Ken and Clarice Newman, a challenging preacher with a special ministry to young marrieds. He also took a hands-on role in enlarging the church entrance and foyer to limit exposure to the westerly sun and winter southerlies. Also, by largely personal effort, Ken added a free-standing study to the manse in Wayman Place. When Ken Newman resigned in 1988, a number of interim pastorates took place including a number of former pastors who ministered to the church.

In 1994, Rev Max Dundas took up the role a Senior Pastor and along with his wife Jenny have served the church faithfully and well up to the present. During this time major changes to Worship service and ministry styles have occurred.

MBC celebrated in grand style 100 years of ministry in Merrylands in 2001. Major decisions regarding the future of MBC buildings were undertaken starting in 2000. This resulted in the consolidation of properties and a major refurbish of the main church property. The congregation met off-site for 9 months to allow this major refurbishment. The enhancements included moving the worship centre from old original church building to the top floor of the auditorium installing a lift for disabled persons as well as major upgrades of playtime, kitchen and toilet facilities.

In 2005, MBC employed their first fully accredited part-time Associate Pastor Rev. Maria Vidal. This was made possible by the investment of funds raised from the sale of the 16 & 18 Newman St properties. Maria concluded her ministry in 2007, married to become Maria Matherson and now serves at Cherrybrook.

In 2008, Chris Hall was appointed to this position as a Student Associate. Chris will continue in this role when he graduates from Morling College in 2009.

 

 

Much of this history came from the 90 years on booklet, which set out the history of Merrylands Baptist Church from 1901 to 1991. The full booklet can be viewed here: www.merrylandsbaptist.org.au/files/90thBooklet.doc