About Us

About Us

Who We Are

We are a church community of local people with a vision of empowering people to live Christ-centered lives. We believe Jesus is the most important man in human history, the Son of God, who came to earth to make a way for us to be healed, forgiven and restored to relationship with God. If that is true (and we’re convinced it is!) it changes everything about life, both today and forever. Therefore, we are a church devoted to loving Christ, lifting up his name, being His hands and feet on the Earth and advocating for causes He cares about. We are all about being a community of real people who are pursuing a real relationship with Jesus and seeking to do life together. Whoever you are, wherever you are on your journey of faith, we would love to have you join us!

Each church is unique and has its own culture and DNA. Ours is contained in our vision, our mission, our values and our beliefs (aka. where we are going, how we are getting there, what is most important to us and what we believe is true).

We empower people to live Christ centred lives, building a church where everyone is welcomed, everyone is needed and everyone is discipled.

To glorify God by demonstrating outrageous love for people, our community, and the nations – with compassion, service and the message of Jesus.

We serve an Audience of One

We aim to live motivated by love and obedience to God because He is worthy of our lives and the lives of the lost.

We are grounded in the word of God and led by the Spirit of God

The Bible is our foundation which means our experience of God is living and powerful, open to the gifts and moving of the Spirit.

We believe there will be revival in our city

We pray with great faith, worship with surrender, walk in obedience and then trust God to do what only He can.

The call to make disciples is central to all we do

We aim to be a church ready for the harvest, where every member is equipped to disciple one another and those far from God.

We want to be found partnering with the work God is already doing in people and the nations

This means we’re committed to the Great Commission both locally and globally.

We seek to be a church known for our outrageous love for all people

We are a multigenerational family with people from diverse cultures and backgrounds in unity, under Christ.

We seek to establish our church as a vital and indispensable part of our local community

We desire to be a catalyst for change, making a felt impact on the Illawarra

We believe God is not glorified in fake smiles and watered-down teaching

We are committed to being a church that is down-to-earth – genuine in our relationships, authentic in our faith, and serious about truth.

We are not a church of consumers or spectators

We are a church where every member is empowered and encouraged to use their gifts and strengthen the whole community.

As an expression of our commitment to historic Christianity, the Centre holds to both the Apostles’ Creed and Nicene Creed as foundational Christian beliefs. The Centre expresses these beliefs in the following statements:


We believe in one God, eternally existing in three equally divine yet distinct Persons. This is commonly known as the Holy Trinity: God the Father, Jesus God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. God is the Creator and Ruler over all things, perfect all loving and holy, and is therefore worthy of all glory and worship.

Genesis 1:1, 26, Matthew 28:19, Revelation 4:8-11


The Father is fully God, co-equal and co-eternal with the Son and the Holy Spirit. He so loved the world that He gave His son Jesus to die for our redemption. It is only through Jesus that we can come to Him. He sent forth the Holy Spirit to help us live in and for Him. We can pray to Him and He hears and answers our prayers according to His will.


Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and is co-equal and co-eternal with the Father. Jesus, born of a virgin birth, became a man in flesh, lived a sinless human life and offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice for the sins of humanity by dying on a cross. He arose bodily from the dead after three days to demonstrate His power over sin and death and to validate that the way of salvation is through Him alone. He ascended to heaven, where He delegated all authority and will one day return again to reign as King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

Matthew 1:22-23, Isaiah 9:6, John 1:1-5, 14:10-30, Hebrews 4:14-15, 1 Corinthians 15:3-4, Romans 1:3-4, Acts 1:9-11, John 14:6, 1 Timothy 6:14-15, Titus 2:13


The Holy Spirit is also fully God, co-equal with both the Father and the Son. He is present in the world to make people aware of their need for Jesus Christ. He also indwells every believer from the moment of salvation, providing the Christian with power for ministry, understanding of God’s Word, comfort through trials and guidance in doing what is right. The Christian seeks to be led by the Spirit daily.

2 Corinthians 3:17, John 16:7-13, 14:16-17, Acts 1:8, 1 Corinthians 2:12, 3:16, Ephesians 1:13, Titus 3:5, John 14:26, Galatians 5:22-23,25


The Bible is God’s Word to humanity about Himself, revealing His will, nature, character, being and grace by virtue of His saving work of love in the world. The sixty-six books of the Old and New Testaments comprise the totality of the Inspired Scripture and were penned without error in their original language by human authors, under the supernatural guidance of the Holy Spirit, serving as our highest written authority in this world. We believe that human beings do not have to guess or speculate about who God is or what He is like. While the Bible is for us, it is not primarily about us. Instead, we believe that all of Scripture ultimately points to and climaxes in Jesus, who is the Word become flesh. We are called to enjoy, study, and submit to the Word of God.

2 Timothy 3:16, 2 Peter 1:20-21, Luke 24:27, John 1:1, 14


We believe that God created Adam and Eve in His image and placed them in the Garden of Eden to live out their identity as His creation in loving harmony with Himself and one another. However, Adam and Eve chose to rebel against God, believing Satan’s lie that they could instead become like God. This is when sin entered the world, marring our relationship with God, one another, and ourselves. We are sinners by nature and by choice and our sin has alienated us from God, placing us rightfully under His just and Holy wrath. Incapable of regaining a right relationship with God through our own efforts, our greatest need is the undeserved love of this same God, who alone can rescue us from sin and restore the relationship between Himself and us.

Genesis 1:27, 3:1-7, Psalms 8:3-6, Romans 5:12, 19, Isaiah 59:1-2, Romans 3:23, Ephesians 2:1-3, 1 John 4:10


Although people are completely sinful, God had a plan in place to lovingly save and redeem a people for Himself. Throughout the Old Testament, we read what God will do to save His people from their sins. In the New Testament, we see this plan fulfilled in Jesus Christ who came and lived a perfect life of obedience before God, died in our place by being crucified for our sins, and was raised from the dead on the third day. This is the “gospel” or “good news”. The Holy Spirit draws us to Christ our Saviour and gives us faith to believe in Him. “Whoever believes that Jesus is Lord and that God raised him from the dead will be saved.” The gospel alone is the power of God for salvation. It is the inexhaustible promise that satisfies our restlessness by restoring us into relationship with God, giving us eternal life with Him both now and forever. Salvation cannot be earned or achieved through our good works, only received as a gift of grace.

Ephesians 1:4-5, Isaiah 53:1-11, Hebrews 2:9, 4:15; 2 Corinthians 5:21, 1 Corinthians 15:1-4, Titus 3:5-6, 2 Timothy 2:25, Romans 10:13, Romans 1:16, Ephesians 2:4-9


We believe that in the confession and true repentance of our sins to Jesus, we are now seen by God as totally blameless and holy in our relationship with God. No longer children of wrath, by grace we have become children of God whom God sees in the same way that He sees His Son, the Lord Jesus. This is what the church calls “justification.” The community of people who believe this are “the church.” So while our new relationship with God is personal, it is not individual – we have been adopted into God’s family. We believe that we are to gather together in large and small settings to worship God, proclaim and celebrate the gospel, and share our lives together for His glory.

Hebrews 10:14, Ephesians 2:19-22, Romans 5:1, 1 Peter 2:9-10, Acts 2:42-47


We believe that Jesus gave His church two primary ordnances to be observed regularly: water baptism and Holy Communion. By repentance of sin and faith in Jesus, the Bible instructs us to be baptized in water by immersion as a picture of the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus. Baptism is the outward demonstration of our inward change of heart; therefore we baptise confessing believers who have willingly trusted themselves to Christ. Holy Communion is a regular observance the church shares together as a reminder that Jesus is alone is the Saviour who died on the cross, in our place, for our sins, to bring us to God. The bread represent Christ’s body that was broken and the cup represents His blood that was shed for us.

Matthew 28:18-20, Acts 2:38, 2 Corinthians 5:17, 1 Corinthians 11:25-26, Matthew 26:26-29


We believe that every believer is indwelled and sealed by the Holy Spirit at the moment of conversion. Separate to this regenerating work, we believe that the baptism of the Holy Spirit (or being filled with the Holy Spirit) is a distinct and ongoing experience that is promised to believers and empowers them for Christ-exalting ministry. Additionally, we believe that believers should desire and pray for the various spiritual gifts that the Holy Spirit sovereignly distributes as He wills. All of the spiritual gifts as outlined in 1 Corinthians 12:8-10 are still in operation and are available to believers for the building up of the church and for the glory of God.

1 Corinthians 12:13, Ephesians 1:13, Luke 24:48-49, Acts 1:4, Acts 2:32-33, Ephesians 5:18, 1 Corinthians 12:11, Acts 2:39


We believe in the personal, glorious, bodily, and imminent return of our Lord Jesus Christ in fulfilling the prophetic word. We trust in God’s promise that a day is coming when He will banish sin, sickness, death, decay, and Satan. Those who have rejected God will be eternally separated from Him in hell, while those who have accepted the immeasurable gift of His forgiveness will receive eternal life with Him in Heaven. When Jesus returns, He will usher in the New Heavens and New Earth.

Revelation 19:11-16, Acts 3:20-21, Revelation 21:1-5

Our Movement

Our church is part of the International Network of Churches (INC) movement. Operating since 1974, INC is a collective of Christian churches which was founded in Australia and has reached around the world.

Our church is part of the International Network of Churches (INC) movement. Operating since 1974, INC is a collective of Christian churches which was founded in Australia and has reached around the world.

Our Services

9:30am Family Service

All are welcome at our morning family service! The 9:30am service is contemporary in style and sensitive to the needs of a very multi-generational church. Each week we share in praise, worship, communion and a message. Join us after the service for tea and coffee and connect with other people at church.

Explosion Kidz runs during this service during the school term for children from one year old to the end of primary school. Kids are checked in upon your arrival at church and stay with you during the praise section of the service. Kids are released to the kids program just before worship.

5:30pm Youth and Young Adults Service

Our PM service is geared towards youth and young adults, but we love that it hosts people of all ages and walks of life. The music is a little louder and the service is a little shorter. Kids join in on our PM service. After the service, some of our young adults usually go to a local eatery for dinner and you’re more than welcome to join!

Parents Room

Our parents room is a place for parents with young children to be able to participate in the service while having a bit of extra privacy. We know coming to church can be a challenge with young children and we want to make it an easier experience for you! The one-way glass window looking into the church allows you to see and hear the service. There is also a baby change table and a private area for breastfeeding, for your convenience. The parents room is located on the left side of the foyer just before you enter the main auditorium and it is available during both our AM and PM services.

Our Team

Pastors Shane & Rachael Cook

Senior Pastors

Pastors Shane and Rachael were Senior Pastors of INC church in Newcastle for 12 years before feeling the call of God to pastor Shellharbour Community Church in 2008. They have a passion for our community and in the years they have been here, have launched initiatives including FoodCare, CityServe Shellharbour and Sprouts Early Learning with the vision of seeing our city served and transformed. With a down to earth, genuine style, Shane and Rach lead our church with energy and vision. They are passionate about seeing the power of God transforming lives and consistently create space in our services for the Holy Spirit to move and touch people’s hearts.


Wendy Hunter
Wendy HunterFinance Officer
Ps. Kim Imisides
Ps. Kim ImisidesDiscipleship and Pastoral Coordinator
Ps. Rachel Worthy
Ps. Rachel WorthyYouth Pastor & Greenhouse Coordinator
Koz Taylor
Koz TaylorExplosion Kidz Ministry Leader & SRE
Elin Broad
Elin BroadCreative & Worship Ministries Leader & Ministry Support
Neil Whalan
Neil WhalanBusiness Manager
Ruth Kadwell
Ruth KadwellSprouts Director
Rachelle Laudenbach
Rachelle LaudenbachFoodCare Team Leader

Team Leaders

Pastors John & Narelle Fitzpatrick
Pastors John & Narelle FitzpatrickPastoral Care, The Hubs & GIVE Evangelism
Pastors David & Rachel Worthy
Pastors David & Rachel WorthyDominion Youth
Ps. Kim Imisides
Ps. Kim ImisidesConnect/Crew Groups & New Christians
David & Wendy Hunter
David & Wendy HunterHeart for the House
Elin Broad
Elin BroadWorship Ministry
Dave Imisides
Dave ImisidesMissions
Dennis Caligari
Dennis CaligariManna Bookstore
David Dowling
David DowlingBusiness Hub
Sean Case
Sean CaseMen's Ministries
Alice McGhee
Alice McGheePrayer