On the 23rd of September, two years from its inspiration, church members and community celebrated the commencement of work on site for residential rehabilitation, the Hope Restart Centre (HRC).
Peter Down, a retired builder, along with members of the HRC board and Bairnsdale church people joined together in prayers of thanks to God for His leading in this project, led by Pastor Andrew Wilson and the Rev. Brenda Burney, Rector of Bairnsdale’s St. John’s Anglican Church.
Peter told how he had a God-given burden for drug and alcohol addicted people, wanting to build a rehab centre. After a comment from one of our church members, he came to us at the Bairnsdale church property. Andrew showed him an area that might suit. As Peter looked out from a small rise, a place he had never been before, he realised that he had seen this very view in a dream. He believes this was confirmation of God’s direction in the matter.
There was much to do after that and the local paper reported that God had opened many doors to allow the development to reach this exciting stage.
From our perspective, the project is also an answer to our prayers.
Since Bairnsdale church was blessed over twelve years ago by the acquisition of the property, we’ve sought God’s guidance for the use of the part of the property not occupied by the church buildings, cafeteria, pastor’s house, ADRA op shop, Gems ’n Jams op shop, the orchard and the mahogany plantation.
Did God want a school or a retirement village? Similar ideas were proposed; none came to fruition. Now it seems leasing to Hope Restart is the answer to how to further serve our community.
The first stage of the project is likely to be completed next year.
So we were happy that memorable Sunday afternoon, to befriend the HRC people and serve them an afternoon tea, a feature of which was a large, beautifully decorated commemorative cake made by local couple Gwen and Gordon Holloway and cut by Andrew Wilson and Peter Down.
Please pray with us for HRC and the people it will serve.

Judy Walker
Bairnsdale Church