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).

Empowering people to live Christ centred lives.
Empowering people to live Christ centred lives.

CONNECT: See people connecting with God and others

ENGAGE: See people engaging in their world for Christ

ACTIVATE: See people activating their God given gifts

PARTNER: See people partnering with the Church locally and globally

We are one family united in Christ

In our church, we believe in respecting, supporting and valuing each other in our thoughts, words and actions. We honour our leaders, seek to resolve conflict and defend and protect our church against division.

Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called. Ephesians 4:2-4

Pursuing the presence of God

In our church, we actively seek the presence of God. We are passionate in our praise and worship, personal in our relationship with Jesus, welcome the gifts and moving of the Holy Spirit and make room for the prophetic anointing.

And so, dear brothers and sisters, we can boldly enter heaven’s Most Holy Place because of the blood of Jesus. By his death, Jesus opened a new and life-giving way through the curtain into the Most Holy Place. And since we have a great High Priest who rules over God’s house, let us go right into the presence of God with sincere hearts fully trusting him. Hebrews 10:19-22a

Compelled by compassion reaching others

In our church, we are on a mission to spread the gospel and lead others to Christ. We preach with words and actions, seeking to see the oppressed set free, provide food for the hungry and be generous to the poor and needy.

Then these righteous ones will reply, ‘Lord, when did we ever see you hungry and feed you? Or thirsty and give you something to drink? Or a stranger and show you hospitality? Or naked and give you clothing? When did we ever see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!’ Matthew 25:37-40

Following Christ as disciples teaching His Word

In our church, we are sold out to following Christ and leading others to do the same. We are committed to founding our lives on His Word, daily learning more about Jesus and teaching others how to apply His Word in their lives.

Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. Matthew 28:19-20a

Empowering each person to flourish in their God-given design

In our church, we understand that God has made everyone unique with a divine purpose and plan. We are dedicated to training people how to discover their gifts and fulfil their destiny in God, building the body of Christ.

The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ. This makes for harmony among the members so that all the members care for each other. If one part suffers, all the parts suffer with it, and if one part is honoured, all the parts are glad. All of you together are Christ’s body, and each of you is a part of it. 1 Corinthians 12:12, 25-27

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

GOD: HOLY TRINITY

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: FATHER GOD

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: OUR SAVIOUR

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: OUR HELPER

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: HOW WE KNOW GOD

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

HUMANITY: BEAUTIFUL AND BROKEN

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

THE GOSPEL: GOD SAVES SINNERS

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

THE CHURCH: GOD’S PEOPLE

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

THE ORDNANCES: BAPTISM & HOLY COMMUNION

We believe that Jesus gave His church two primary ordinances to be observed regularly: water baptism and Holy Communion. By repentance of sin and faith in Jesus, the Bible instructs us to be baptised 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 represents 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

THE BAPTISM AND GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

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

THE RESTORATION OF ALL THINGS

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.

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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.

6:30pm 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.

Directional Leadership Team (DLT)

Dave & Wendy Hunter
Dave & Wendy Hunter
Mark & Rachel Spinelli
Mark & Rachel Spinelli
Pete & Laura Middleton
Pete & Laura Middleton
Steve & Robyn Shaw
Steve & Robyn Shaw

Staff

Wendy Hunter
Wendy HunterFinance Officer
Kim Imisides
Kim ImisidesMinistries Outreach Coordinator
Rachel Worthy
Rachel WorthyYouth Pastor
Alison Shaw
Alison ShawExplosion Kidz Leader
Chrissie Kirchberg
Chrissie KirchbergAdmin Officer
Ruth Kadwell
Ruth KadwellSprouts Director
Karen Mathews
Karen MathewsFood Care Manager
Thom Dwyer
Thom DwyerExecutive Assistant

Team Leaders

Rachael Spinelli
Rachael SpinelliWorship Ministry
David & Rachel Worthy
David & Rachel WorthyDominion Youth
Dave Imisides
Dave ImisidesMisions
Peter Middleton
Peter MiddletonConnect Groups
Dennis Caligari
Dennis CaligariManna Bookstore
Kim Imisides
Kim ImisidesEvangelism & Foundations
Thom Dwyer & Carleigh Pett
Thom Dwyer & Carleigh PettYoung Adults
David Downling
David DownlingBusiness Hub
Leeanne Gill
Leeanne GillCityServe