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Chaplain's Chat 27th July 2016

I am taking this opportunity to introduce myself to you as the new Chaplain at Peter Moyes Anglican Community School.

I have a lovely family; my wife Pat, and four (now adult) children, Justin, Michelle, Nicole and Stephanie. Justin and Michelle live in the UK. I am South African by birth but have had the opportunity to live in a number of places since then. My family and I left South Africa in 1986 when we moved to England. I spent many years working in the City of London for a Swiss bank.

In my late thirties, I started to reflect more deeply on the questions, “who am I?” and “what do I really want in life?” It was at that time that I left the banking industry and began teaching in a Catholic School. I taught Senior School Geography. However, I had long felt a calling to ministry and so I began to investigate the possibility of becoming an Anglican priest.

I was ordained in 2006. In England they have a ministry called Self-Financing Ministry which means that as an Anglican Priest you keep your “day job” and assist at your local parish wherever you can. So I was both a priest and teacher. I was still not entirely comfortable that that was my ultimate calling. I then started to explore the possibility of full-time ministry as a Chaplain. I saw an advertisement in the Church Times that had been placed by the Anglican Diocese of Perth. They were looking for Chaplains to work in the Anglican Schools in Perth. The process of discerning whether this was God’s calling for my family and I was long, and often stressful. After a number of interviews, a fact finding trip to Australia, and much prayer and reflection, I was offered the role of Chaplain at John Wollaston Anglican Community School in Camillo. I took up that role in January 2011 and had five and a half years of happy and fulfilling Chaplaincy. Pat, Nicole, Stephanie and I are now settled in Perth and became Australian citizens earlier this year. 

I am delighted to be the Chaplain at Peter Moyes Anglican Community School. I see the role of being Chaplain as a very real privilege. It is a privilege because I get to work with our students and their families, our staff, and everyone who is part of the wider school community.

I am here as a Christian leader, and more particularly, an Anglican priest in an Anglican School.  What do is see my role as being in this school?

  • The most obvious things are to run chapel services, and to teach CRE and BV.
  • Some people say that the role of Chaplain is to “keep the rumour of God” alive. My role is to turn that rumour into reality in such a way that people are able to relate to God in a way that transforms their lives.
  • I am here to point to God!
  • I am here to try and care for members of the School community in the way that God does – to be there in the good times …. to be there and support people through the bad times .... even through horrible times!
  • My job is to give people a safe place to be themselves when the world around is falling apart.
    • I have been privileged to journey with people to some very difficult places, through many difficult experiences.
    • I do not take those moments lightly.

I hope that I can enrich the life of this community. I very much look forward to working with you all!

God Bless
Reverend Dave