Vanuatu January 2020

Our involvement with the Bible Translation work in Vanuatu expanded in January 2020, when a team of 12 from VPBC hosted the week long program for children of the SIL missionaries, who were participating in their annual conference. The team ran games, bootcamp, science activities, cooking and t-shirt screen printing. There was even time for some slip-and-slide. Through it all they encouraged the children in worship and provided spiritual input and mentoring. The SIL children thoroughly enjoyed the program.

International Training Alliance

India January 2020

Doreen Thomas joined with 10 other trainers, delivering the Leadership Matters Course for International Training Alliance in January 2020. Over three weeks, 33 participants from various locations around the world gathered in Bangalore, India to take part in this intensive course learning leadership God’s way.

"It was a great time to get to know the participants and bond with some of the other trainers.  Overall it was a great experience and I feel very blessed to have been a part of the process." - Doreen Thomas


Vanuatu September 2019

In September 2019, Paul Moore and Greg Farley served on a short (1 week) mission trip to Santo, Vanuatu, to assist Adam and Hester Pike carry our repairs at their home. The Pike family are long term missionaries supported by Horizons as they work in Bible Translation with Wycliffe. It was a busy week, with the men fixing holes in walls, replacing rotten fence posts, replacing fly screens and fixing a leaking roof. They were a blessing to the Pikes, supporting them in practical ways, allowing them to focus on the Bible translation work. 

Eagles Wings

Zambia September 2019

In September, Ben and Niccy Lowther took a team of eight for 3 weeks at Eagles Wings, Zambia. The building team completed an Adult Education block which will be used to train vulnerable adults in literacy, numeracy and a vocational skill such as tailoring.  

Wamukisa Youth Centre

Uganda February 2019

In February, Paul and Sharon Moore led a team of seven for 2 weeks at Wamukisa Youth Centre, Uganda. The team fitted out a hairdressing building, installed water tanks and renovated a dormitory for teen mums whilst also engaging with the nursery school and visiting the local hospital. It was a joy to see the new hairdressing building officially opened and to celebrate with the Wamukisa Team.


Vanuatu 2018

Jill and Garry Innes joined the work of Wycliffe in Vanuatu for 7 months as the Property and Finance Managers. This is some of their story:

Garry and I have been retired from full-time employment for a few years now. Our lives are busy, with many commitments to family, church, community and friends. So when an invitation came to consider going to Vanuatu to fill the property and finance managers’ roles, the logical answer was ‘no’. However, we have learnt that there are rich rewards in accepting opportunities that come our way, so we did some investigating.

Our working lives in administration positions and our recent experience with house renovations seemed to give us the right skill set in the eyes of the SIL Vanuatu Director, Greg Carlson. So we negotiated a five month term and set off. Our role was supporting members in remote locations and secondly, maintaining the facilities and operational logistics in Port Vila.

We did shopping for teams—food, medication, building supplies, gas etc. which we packed and despatched by ship or plane and hoped by God’s grace it would all arrive safely. We helped organise their travel and accommodation for inter-island visits, as well as travel to home and facilitated funds from their donors to support them in the field.

SIL has a number of properties in Vila, providing space for offices, a resource centre, printing facilities and accommodation. We oversaw the administration and maintenance of these properties. We took bookings and invoiced guests, and with the help of local staff, ensured all facilities were clean and well maintained. We paid the bills and kept all financial records.

The highlight for us was the people—particularly the local people with their loving, gentle, accommodating ways. We met each of the teams and gained a small insight into the amazing service to which they are committed. We were humbled and amazed. Our encouragement is to be open to opportunities that God lays before us and be willing to say ‘yes’. God has given each of us a set of life skills and experiences and he will find the perfect fit for those skills in his work. 

- by Jill Innes

Gentle Hands

Philippines September 2018

In September 2018 we sent our first STM team to Gentle Hands in the Philippines. As a church, we have been aware of the work of Gentle Hands, through our connections with Nathan and Pip Wheeley. Nathan has been hosting teams at Gentle Hands for many years, however this was the first official team to be sent from VPBC. Below is a report from Nathan:Over the 10 days in the Philippines, the team of 16, experienced the diversity of the worldwide Body of Christ, expanded their vision, and participated in a fruitful ministry where they could make a lasting impact.

At Gentle Hands, the team took on varied roles and responsibilities. This included caregiving, teaching and construction. The team were able to care for children and provide the young babies with one-on-one care, teach children enrolled in the Gentle Hands home-school program, change door handles and locks, construct a new doorway and install a door, do repairs, construction and install a new water tank at the second Gentle Hands home in Bulacan.

The team then travelled south to Calapan City, Oriental Mindoro. There they visited the Mangyan ward at the local government hospital. They offered prayer to this marginalized group of indigenous people and gave out food parcels. They also visited a mountain tribe where they provided meal packs to each of the 120 families in the village. These packs provided them with rice, sardines, and clothing.

This team stepped out in faith, with expectant hearts, as they grew through challenging situations and lifechanging experiences. They opened their hearts so that God would use their giftings and talents to share their faith and serve the Lord as they served those less fortunate. 

- by Nathan Wheeley

Most importantly, this was a mission trip I felt drawn to. I am not sure why, so it must have been God pushing me. I consciously stopped trying to pre-empt the experience before leaving because I only had World Vision images as a reference.

Several images impacted my soul and remain etched in my memory, because of their beauty and how they challenge our Australian mindset and expectations.

Imagine a tiny 4-year-old girl cradling, rocking and feeding a 3-month-old baby with diligent, loving focus, care and attention. It didn't seem right, l felt I should take the baby away and navigate the narrow staircase myself, but this little girl was so confident and so knowing it was beautiful! I realised over the duration of the trip that every child in the orphanage had a sense of belonging and purpose and they contributed to the functioning of the premises in their own way.

The image of 80 bright eyed, cheerful, orphaned Philippine children who had seen and experienced too much suffering in their short lives, who had very little but shared everything, all singing and praising God at the top of their voices, with hands in the air, to the words of bible songs and hymns, with such gratitude and joy. This brought me to tears, both overwhelmed me and challenged my own level of worship and praise.

I would recommend anyone who has the inclination in their heart to participate in a mission, to find one that draws them and follow that lead, do not consider the financial cost too much, because you cannot afford to miss out on the spiritual dividends. This trip will remain vividly in my memory and has deepened my belief of what can be achieved when we are obedient to Gods call. 

-by Phil Harris

Want to Get Involved?

It is our goal to see all of our teams:

- well prepared (training, team building, cultural awareness, host research),

- well run (experienced leaders, strong connections to host organisations) 

- well debriefed (enabling STM participants to take what they have learnt and experienced during this period, and channel this into their life and mission going forward).


If you are interested in STM, or have an idea you would like to explore, please feel free to contact me. I look forward to seeing many of our church family get involved in these life-shaping trips in the years to come. You will be blessed, when you step out and serve, being a blessing to others.

-Natalie Campbell

Click here to read about our Long Term Missionaries