We are Churches of Christ. Our identity, existence and purpose as an organisation is found in Jesus Christ as revealed in the Scriptures.
Churches of Christ in Queensland today
Churches of Christ in Queensland is a group of mainstream Christian churches which has been an active part of the Queensland community for 130 years. We are a significant presence within Queensland and Victoria with over 200 services in more than 100 communities, touching tens of thousands of lives each year.
Churches vary greatly, having no fixed order of service and are generally quite informal. It cannot be too strongly emphasised that a Church of Christ is never a building, although the term is often used in that connection. The services of a Church of Christ may be held anywhere, where two or more are gathered in Jesus’ name.
Strategic Plan 2011-2016
After significant listening, prayer, research, reflection and work from all areas of the organisation, the Churches of Christ in Queensland Strategic Plan 2011-16 was developed.
The Plan sets out six overarching goals that form the basis of our mission of ‘bringing the llight of Christ into communities:
- Establishing more ‘kingdom access points’ and followers of Jesus
- Every client receiving quality care within a Christian ethos
- Every community being uplifted
- Our churches being healthy and committed to mission
- Operating and growing in a financially sustainable way
- Being an organisation people want to be associated with.
Bringing the light of Christ into communities
When asked what the greatest commandment was, Jesus responded as follows:
‘Love the Lord your God with all your passion and prayer and intelligence’. This is the most important, the first on any list. But there is a second to set alongside it: ‘Love others as well as you love yourself.’ These two commands are pegs; everything in God’s law and the prophets hangs from them. (from Matthew 22:37-40 in The Message).
Jesus also gave this great commission to his followers:
Go out and train everyone you meet, far and near, in this way of life, marking them by baptism in the threefold name: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Then instruct them in the practice of all I have commanded you. I’ll be with you as you do this, day after day after day, right up to the end of the age.” (from Matthew 28:18-20 in The Message).
Our mission is to do these three things, expressed as: Bringing the light of Christ into communities
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As we read in the Acts of the Apostles, the Christian church was called into existence in AD 30. Since that time there have been many struggles and issues. In the early part of the 16th century, Martin Luther protested against practises that had grown up in the Catholic Church, and he released the Bible and a new understanding of being ‘justified by faith’ to the world. Later Calvin stressed the divine sovereignty of God. John Wesley agitated for more spirituality in the churches. Around these great movements of God, great denominations grew; but divisive walls also grew. As time went on, more and more splits occurred as people claimed authority and insight. By the 19th century there were hundreds of ‘denominations’ and groups claiming to be THE true church.
In the midst of all this, a movement emerged that centred on Christ and the Bible. The spirit of God was moving in the lives of many people unknown to one another, yet who shared a common sense that all this divisiveness was wrong – Christ had founded one church, one body with one mission. Their collective heart was to call on all Christians to unite together on the basis of restoring New Testament faith and practices. There was a conviction that through this reformation, the church would be restored and reborn into what God intended.
Churches of Christ in Queensland is part of this ‘restoration movement’ which began around 1800 in the USA. Believers from various denominations began to meet together with the goal of attempting to reproduce the essence of the church as presented in the New Testament. They saw themselves as a movement and had no thought of founding another denomination. They still had theological differences, but they insisted that this was ok as long as all beliefs were based on the Bible.
During the last 150 years of the movement there has been very little in the way of centralised organisation. Each congregation has had the complete control of its own affairs and its relations with other similar churches have been purely voluntary.
In Australia, the movement has been established for over 125 years and State Conferences and a National Conference have been set up. For the common good the churches have given certain responsibilities to these conferences.
Churches vary greatly, having no fixed order of service, and are generally quite informal. Churches seek to develop styles which will best suit the needs of the local congregation, and happily change to something different when the old styles become unsuitable. This freedom brings tremendous diversity.
It cannot be too strongly emphasised that a Church of Christ is never a building, although the term is often used in that connection. The services of a Church of Christ may be held anywhere.
While Churches of Christ do not have a set creed or written statement of faith, the following principles have been foundational to the movement since the beginnings. Early catch cries are in italics:
- Acknowledge Jesus as the only head of the Church
- Exclude sectarian names, using the title of Christian only
Not the only Christians, but Christians only
- Use the New Testament as the only rule of faith and practice, not man-made creeds
No creed but Christ
- Promote the rights to private judgement, liberty of conscience and mutual responsibility
Where the Bible speaks, we speak; where the Bible is silent, we are silent; in all things grace and liberty
- Faith is available to anyone who chooses to believe
- Make Christian character as the only real test of membership and fellowship
- Practise believer’s baptism
- Observe the Lord’s Supper weekly
All who love the Lord are welcome at the Lord’s Table
- Establish congregational government, plurality of elders, the rights of lay leaders to lead, and congregational cooperation and support
The priesthood of all believers
- Work towards the union of all followers of Christ so that the world will believe.
In essentials unity. In opinions liberty. In all things love.
- Modelling unconditional love
- Behaving with integrity
- Being good stewards
All are welcome to share in our services. Worship is informal and friendly. Services are easy to follow with preaching from the Bible that is interesting and related to life. Our aim is to provide worship which is positive, refreshing and renewing.
Worship is presented in an atmosphere supported with music, prayer, scripture and teaching. You will find a variety of styles of worship in Churches of Christ, from traditional to contemporary.
In Churches of Christ, all are encouraged to take part in the life and work of the church. We believe that the Holy Spirit equips each member with gifts and abilities to help in ministry and mission.Back to Top
In Churches of Christ all are encouraged to take part in the life and work of the church. We believe that the Holy Spirit equips each member with gifts and abilities to help in ministry and mission.
Through ministry and mission, Churches of Christ respond to human need. We want to share the good news of Jesus through effective evangelism and mission.
We are not only concerned that people should find a vital faith in God, our concern is also to respond with compassion to human need, both local and international. In the local church we show compassion through pastoral care activities. As a state body, Churches of Christ in Queensland operates a range of care and support services including early childhood services, child protection, affordable housing, retirement living, community care and aged care. Through these services, we aim to show God’s unconditional love in action and support all who are in need.
There is a place for everyone in the diversity of our churches and in the mission in which we are called to participate.