Chairman of Well-Being Australia Mark Tronson says it has been his privilege to have been a receiptent of many 'Angels Unawares' leading up to and during his 18 years of founding the Sports and Leisure Ministry, 17 years as the Australian cricket team chaplain, and now 29 years of faith financial living.
Three of these people were Baptist leaders.
Mark Tronson picks up the story. The years 1982 - 2000 in NSW Baptist Ministry was a very stable period. In this era Reverend John Edmondstone was a President of NSW Baptists, a Superintendent for Baptist Churches of NSW and an Australian Baptist President. Reverend Bruce Thornton was Secretary of the Baptist Union of NSW and Reverend Norm Nix the Superintendent of NSW Baptist Church Growth.
In 1982 the Baptists supported my establishing the Sports Ministry, and although I developed the Sports Ministry under Heads of Churches, I as a Baptist Minister was responsible to the Baptist Denomination.
In 1994 Reverend Norm Nix wrote the official 'Baptist Comment' in my book on the sports ministry's miracle, 'No Orchestra, No Trumpet'. In 1997 Bruce Thornton was the official 'Baptist' link to the Sydney 2000 Olympic Ministry that Bishop Brian King and I established.
John Edmondstone was President of the Baptist Union of Australia when I undertook the successful 1998 ATO Audit for the Sports Ministry.
After that I fell ill with stress. Those 1999 wiles from associates within the Sports Ministry followed which led to the intensive care heart ward. Although I was utterly cleared by the independent professional person set to test my veracities, with our name untainted, nonetheless I was in much distress. Reverend Edmonstone led us through this difficult period.
Often adversity leads to untold blessings and this is our new story!
Heads of Churches of which Reverend Edmondstone was one, released us to establish a fresh ministry in 2000. I was to recuperate in the Lord, enjoy my art, continue our Ministry independently with full blessings of Heads of Churches and the Baptist Denomination.
Our story is astonishing in that it is far from the norm. Dr Rowland Croucher founded John Mark Ministries for the 10,000 Australian ex-Ministers left so very damaged. It is a rare commodity by Church Leaders to bring a responsible outcome. In our situation it was so obvious, and we became the beneficiaries of such an outcome and have since received untold blessings from the Lord.
This was a Kingdom miracle. Forgiveness was not an issue, accountability was. Tension between these is very demanding. John Edmondstone, Bruce Thornton and Norm Nix recognised that these worked in two equal directions. These three Baptist Leaders were indeed 'angels unawares' !