So Long and Thanks for all the Beautiful Memories

John and I have formally left Planetshakers North East Campus. We feel that our  long-term future is not with this church and that the time to move on is now.

I started my relationship with 360 Main Rd, Lower Plenty back in the 80’s. The church was called Eltham Assembly of God then. David O’Keefe was the Senior Pastor and he made a lasting impression on me.

In 1996 I returned to live in Australia after having lived in Vancouver for almost 10 years. I made this church home in 1997 after a close friend was tragically killed in a car accident.

Here are but a few stand out memories of this amazing church:

• When I first started coming I was followed up by a very special person in the congregation. I was in such a bad place at the time as I was heavily grieving. I would often be smelling like a brewery when she’d pick me up for church. She never said a word, just loved me where I was at and all the way back into spiritual health. I will never forget her grace and love.

• In 1998 I went with a small team to Honiara and Kira Kira Island. The country was in a state of political unrest and on our first night you could hear gun shots ring out. On the flight to Kira Kira one member of the team was almost sick with fear – of course I teased him relentlessly however he does have some very incriminating video of me attempting to synchronise swim in the hotel pool. The island of Kira Kira was so pure and untouched and God’s hand moved mightily there. There is still a tree climbing rooster that owes me more than a few hours of sleep.

• One of my ongoing favourite memories was of a Sunday morning worship time when occasionally the former Senior Pastor would sing over us.  **miss that, sigh**

• Another high point for me was the Discipleship School short course developed by the Senior Pastor of the former YPC. We explored a wide range of subjects, my favourite night being the study of the doctrine of the Holy Spirit. When the guitar came out and worship begun the Spirit of God just fell all about, a beautiful and joyful presence.

• One of the biggest regrets I have is that we left for 3 years when we moved to East Melbourne. Given the abundance of public transport we sold our car. We should have never have left and as soon as we bought a car again we were back. When we did return we felt welcome. We were a bit of a mess because of the loss of two of babies but we were accepted as is and nurtured by a loving church family.

• In 2006 while laying flat on my back in hospital pregnant with my fourth child so many people came and visited and phoned and dropped off meals. One of the Pastors came and did communion with me and my roommate. I can never repay the grace and love that were extended to us all during this time.

• One of the greatest moments for me was when Poppy was dedicated to God in front of the whole church. It was a celebration of every prayer that was lifted up to God for her safe arrival.

• I had the privilege of preaching in WOW for a period of time and I absolutely fell in love with the people there. Thank you for your encouragement, love and inspiration. You are something special. xox

• Over the last year I have watched the former YPC be transformed into a Planetshakers Campus. I have cried watching soul after soul give their hearts to Jesus Christ and I was inspired by the DNA course and Encounter Day. I have served in the Cafe making hot chips and I’d like to thank and acknowledge the amazing people who give without measure in that area of service. xoxo

I’d like to thank my entire church family for making my journey and time at Eltham AOG, YPC and PSNEC memorable. It hasn’t always been functional but I don’t know what family is all the time. You have taught me how rich a life can be planted in the house.  I love you all fully sick and with eternity in our hearts this is not the end but the beginning. Thank you for all the laughs, tears and times in God. May you all be blessed in your journey. I will miss you.

Over and Out,

Catherine Warren

2 Comments to “So Long and Thanks for all the Beautiful Memories”

  1. I pray that you will find what the Creator has for you.

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