St Luke's Lutheran Church - A Growing Church for a Growing City
St Luke’s Lutheran Church is located in the border city of Albury, NSW. It is a sending church in an emerging missional model of church, and part of the Lutheran Church of Australia’s Church Planting Initiative in partnership with the Lutheran Church of Australia’s New and Renewing Churches Department.
St Luke’s is the largest and oldest Lutheran church in the NSW rural city of Albury, one of the fastest growing rural cities within Australia. Albury is a border town with Wodonga, VIC, also rated as the fastest growing rural city in Victoria, and is about three hours north of Melbourne on the Hume Highway.
The Lutheran presence in Albury/Wodonga is quite unique. It has three worshipping congregations, a P-12 Lutheran School, Lutheran Aged Care (the largest of its kind in the region), and Australian Lutheran World Service. In the surrounding Riverina there are a number of Lutheran congregations of various size, a Lutheran primary school, and Lutheran secondary college. This configuration makes Albury/Wodonga a microcosm of the Lutheran Church of Australia.
There are numerous other church communities in the Albury/Wodonga region, all with varied and unique styles of ministry, including two new church plants.
St Luke’s has a training vision, recently partnering with ATEL, a local training provider, to develop a Church Administrator. It has great facilities, all geared to provide a wonderful training venue where people can grow and learn in a loving and grace empowered environment.
FRONTIER is a natural extension of St Luke’s vision of being
a growing church in a growing city.
The congregation is served by Pr David Grulke (lead Pastor), Malcolm Hall (church planter team leader), Peter Reed (music director) and Tim Edwards (administrator).
David Grulke is lead Pastor of St Luke's. He has a Doctorate in theological practice, focusing specifically on leadership. His academic qualifications compliment his extensive pastoral experience in leadership, theological practice, life-long learning, missional practice, and faith formation. He has served in a number of ministries, including parishes, schools, and Defence chaplaincy. Much of his ministry has been on the fringe of the church, connecting with those outside the church.
Malcolm Hall is our evangelist - church planting team leader. Over the past four years Malcolm has developed relevant skills around building relationships with the local community, by sharing the good news of Jesus Christ. He serves as the church planting team leader in the ministry team at St Luke’s as our Church Planter. Malcolm enjoys most sports, reading and films etc. What Malcolm enjoys the most is coffee, and talking about the Gospel of Jesus.
Peter Reed is our music director. He holds a Bachelor of Jazz Studies and a Diploma of Youth work. He’s previously worked as a School Chaplain, a missions trip organiser, and an Instrumental Music Teacher. Most of his ministry has been with unchurched teenagers and families, and he has a passion for engaging local churches into missions and sharing his faith in an easy to understand way. Peter loves music, good coffee, great food, board games, and science fiction.
Janet Mieglich brings a blend of life experience and practical application through her ministry. Having completed a Certificate in Christian Studies while participating in FRONTIER 2018, her calling is essentially rural and regional congregational health. With previous experience in Children’s Ministry and as Coordinator she has also volunteered in many and varied roles in the last 35 years. With a heart for individual and congregational restoration and prosperity, her most rewarding achievements include encouraging and supporting others in their Christian journey. Janet enjoys spending time with her new granddaughter, four adult sons and partners, extended family, friends and church family in Strathalbyn SA. Gardening, reading, walking, painting and renovating are her favourite pastimes.
Tim Edwards runs the administration ministry of St Luke's. He completed a Cert II Business Administration trainee ship, and is now employed to be the front person or St Luke's. He has a passion for serving and connecting people with Jesus. Tim enjoys caring for his cats, movies, building his backyard, and quirky humorous things.
Dean Eaton is an experienced church planter and missional practitioner, personally planting 21 new churches in Australia and Japan. His teaching experience includes being a Senior Lecturer and Principal of Tabor College in Adelaide, SA. After Dean became a Lutheran several years ago, the Lutheran Church of Australia invited him to become the Church Planting Mentor and Mission Facilitator for the Lutheran Church of Australia’ New and Renewing Churches Department. His mentoring of missional communities is a transformative key to how we grow churches in the 21st Century. In addition to these leaders, St Luke’s has access to a range of other highly skilled and unique Pastors, church leaders and laity with the capacity to mentor, guide, support and encourage missional activity and formation.
Steen Olsen is a recently retired Lutheran Pastor who over seventeen years served parishes in Australia (Hunter Valley NSW, Tuggeranong ACT/Cooma NSW) and New Zealand (Christchurch) and then as bishop of the Lutheran Church of New Zealand for twelve years and finally as director for mission for the Lutheran Church in South Australia and the Northern Territory for a decade. He received his doctorate from Fuller Theological Seminary, CA USA. His publications include Bring Jesus: Making Sense of Mission, 125 Years of Grace: St Luke’s Lutheran Church Palmerston North 1882 – 2007 and he is co-author with Dr Noel Due of Spirit Filled: Normal Christian Living. A post-war Danish migrant, Steen has a special interest in helping the church to be more missional in its culture, theology and practice.
Mark Worthing holds a Ph.D in the history and philosophy of science from the University of Regensburg, Germany, and a Dr.theol. in foundational and ecumenical theology from the University of Munich. He is currently pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church, North Adelaide. He was formerly Senior Researcher at the Australian Lutheran Institute for Theology and Ethics (ALITE) (2013-2015) and Senior Research Fellow of the Graeme Clark Research Institute at Tabor College, Adelaide (2010-2012), Head of Humanities, Tabor College (2006-2010), Head of Theology and Postgraduate Studies, Tabor (2001-2005); and lecturer in theology, Luther Seminary (now ALC) 1996-2001. He is currently an adjunct lecturer and thesis supervisor at Flinders University.
His recent publications include Unlikely Allies. Monotheism and the Rise of Science (ISCAST/Bible Society, 2019); Iscariot (Morning Star 2018); The Winter Fae. A Fantasy Novella (Stone Table Books, 2018); Martin Luther: A Wild Boar in the Lord’s Vineyard (Morning Star, 2017); What the Dog Saw (Morning Star 2017); Narnia, Middle-Earth and the Kingdom of God (Stone Table Books 2016); Graeme Clark. The Man Who Invented the Bionic Ear (Allen&Unwin 2015); God and Science in Classroom and Pulpit, with G. Buxton and C. Mulherin (Mosaic Press 2012).
Mark is an ordained pastor of the Lutheran Church of Australia, is currently a Fellow of the Institute for the Study of Christianity in an Age of Science and Technology (ISCAST), member of Omega Christian Writers, and a founding member of the International Society of Science and Religion (ISSR).