July Update

G’day mates, I hope you are doing great today. Here is a quick update of the latest happenings here in Melbourne (click on the link below). Thank you so much for your faithful prayers and support. Please send us your prayer request so we can pray for your needs specifically as we pray for the Aussie Connection team each night.

Until next time…

Grace and Peace to you, Andrew Russell Senior Pastor Calvary Melbourne, Australia

ps: just to give a heads up, we are looking into another process and format in how we send our newsletters, so things may change in the next month or so.


July_2012_The Aussie Connection Newsletter


December Update

Hope you are doing great. Just want to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. This past year has been probably the most challenging year in our life and ministry, but we have learned and grown so much through it. I’m glad it coming to a close and we will be starting a new year, fresh start. We are so excited to see what the Lord has in store for next year.
Here is this months newsletter in the attachment.
Have a great day.

until next time..

Grace and Peace,
The Russell Family
12_2011_Dec_The Aussie Connection Newsletter

May 2011 Update

G’day mate,
I hope you are doing great. We are doing well. It’s starting to get cold here because we are heading into winter. The ministry and church is going great and growing each month. The attachment below is this months newsletter.
Please let us know if you have any prayer request. Have a great day 🙂

05_2011_May_The Aussie Connection Newsletter

Until next time….

Blessings to you,
Andrew Russell
Senior Pastor
Calvary Melbourne, Australia


March 2011

Greetings and G’Day from Down Under. I can’t tell you how blessed we are to serve the Lord here in Melbourne, Australia.  We will be celebrating our 5th year in this amazing country in just a few months.  Wow, time has flown by!

We feel blessed that the Lord has brought Jason and Emma Wright (from the U.S.) here to serve along side of us.  Jason will be serving as the Youth and Assistant Pastor.  They are beginning to settle into their new home and are getting adjusted to the new assignment from the Lord. We wait in anticipation to see what the Lord has in store for them and us as we work together and launch into a new season of ministry.
Here is their blog site if you which to read more about them:

Guest Speaking at the Bible College in New Zealand

During the first week of April, I’ll be heading over to New Zealand to teach at the Bible College extension campus- http://www.ccbi.ac.nz/–  in Rotorua, which is south of Auckland and north of Wellington.  I’ve been asked to teach three sessions on what the Lord has put on my heart.  At this time, here are some the message topics that I feel lead to address with the students: How to respond to others when they have hurt you; Restoring Broken Relationships; Hearing the Voice of God; The Secret of Contentment; and Encouragement and Exhortation for Leaders.

Whilst I’m there, I will be looking at, interviewing, assessing and evaluating the options for starting a Bible College here in Melbourne.  We have been praying for the Lord’s direction and guidance in this decision.  If you could please lift the trip and the decision process for the Bible College up before the Lord, it would be much appreciated.

40 Days of Prayer and Fasting

This past Wednesday evening, we launched into our 40 days of prayer and fasting. This is the third time in the last 3 years that we have joined as a congregation to do this.  In every season of prayer and fasting, we have seen the Lord do some amazing things, from miracles, to breakthroughs, a greater intimacy with the Lord, and growth in the church.  We are so excited to see what the Lord is going to do in this season. If you’re interested in joining with us, in need of prayer or a breakthrough in your life, please let us know so we can pray for you.  If you would like more information on the resources we are going through, we can make them available through email.

Prayer points:

Pray for revival and a great harvest in our church, community, and country
Pray for balance and focus as homeschooling and ministry is getting busier
Pray for wisdom, direction, discernment, protection, provision, and strength (health) for the ministry, family, and marriage.

Thank you for making a difference in the lives of so many by your prayers, your faithful support, and your partnership.

Until next time……
Pastor Andrew Russell
Andrew, Niki, Joshua, & Christian

For a printable version of this update and to see pictures, please click below

03_2011_March_The Aussie Connection Newsletter

October Newsletter

I hope you are doing fantastic today. We are doing well. Today (oct 9th) is our Anniversary. It is amazing to see how quickly 11yrs can go by. God has been so good to us and brought us through some amazing things.
Thank you so much for faithfully praying for us. It’s making a huge difference in our lives and in the ministry here in Melbourne.
May the Lord bless you and I hope you have a wonderful day.

Until next time……
Blessings to you,
Andrew Russell
Senior Pastor
Calvary Melbourne, Australia


April 2010 Update

Dear Family and Friends,

I hope you are doing great and that you had a blessed time celebrating the death, burial, and resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on Easter weekend. What an exciting time we had at our services! Over the past month, we have seen the Lord do some amazing things in the life of our church. The momentum is awesome and we have grown at least 30%.

The people that have been coming and joining Calvary are seeking a church that teaches the Word.   Time and time again we have heard them say how fed up they are of attending churches that do not teach the bible. Once they attend one of our services, you can literally see their countenance change and their excitement and joy that they have found a church that goes through God’s Word.  It is so cool to watch this happen.

As I have mentioned in the past, the last Saturday of each month we have a men’s’ fellowship and barbeque. At our last bbq, we had 24 guys show up, which has been the most we have had in attendance so far. Next month, we are going to intentionally add more of an outreach feel to it. We have been teaching through the book of Nehemiah, a chapter per session / month. This month we will be in chapter four. It is always a blast to hang out and to get to know these guys and to see what the Lord is doing in their lives.  Please keep praying for the fellowship time with these guys.

Easter Services

This year was the first time we were able to have a Good Friday service (which we had over 50 in attendance) since moving here to Melbourne.

It’s been on my heart to hold this service each year, but the timing, lack of help, among many other things has hindered it. We have such a phenomenal team that the Lord has raised up, and I felt that it was time for us to step out and go for it.  Then on Sunday we had our Easter service and a big fellowship luncheon afterwards.  These luncheons are awesome; delicious food, great opportunity for fellowship, and just a heap of fun.  We’re looking forward to next year, and what the Lord will bring if the rapture hasn’t already happened.

Status on Visa

Your browser may not support display of this image. By the time you get this we will be half way through the visa process. We will be doing the medical testing next week, which is the last big thing we need to complete before we are able to lodge the paperwork. The next step in the process is the remainder of the finances to be provided, which is close to $3000. We know the Lord is in control and that He will provide as He always has.

Upcoming Church Camp

This September (19-22) we have planned our first Church Family camp. We have done in the past both men and women retreats, but this is the first for the whole church. We are thrilled to see the response of the congregation.  It would be great to have a team come out to help, and assist with the running of the camp. If you are interested, please let me know as soon as possible so we can point you in the right direction and get the process started.

Prayer request

Please pray for wisdom, discernment, protection, provision.

Please pray for our permanent visa – wisdom, favor with the immigration, quick process, finances

Pray for a revival in the church

Pray for the Lord to bless Calvary Chapel

Please pray for our family – Niki, Joshua, Christian, Andrew.

Please pray for us to have the right balance with family time, homeschooling, ministry, and all the other areas of life.

Thank you for your prayers and support. You are truly making a difference in the kingdom.

Until next time……

Pastor Andrew Russell
Andrew, Niki, Joshua, & Christian

February 2010 Update

I hope you are doing great and are have having a wonderful day. The month of January was a big one for us for several reasons.  First, we moved into our wonderful new house, then we started several new studies at the church, and last we began the groundwork for our permanent residency visa.  We have had the privilege to get to know and develop a good friendship with our new landlords.  The Lord opened the door for us to share about the work He is doing here in Melbourne.  We instantly made a connection with the family, and they shared with us that they have been looking for a church to attend. We invited them to come visit and they have come the last two weeks.   It looks like they are going to make this their home church. They seem to be really enjoying the fellowship and the teaching of the Word. Praise God!

Self-Confrontation Course

About four weeks ago, I started teaching the Self -Confrontation Manual during our Sunday night service. We have 12 in the class and 4 that are taking the course correspondently. It has been amazing to see the growth in each of these individuals’ as they apply themselves and press through the homework.  Please pray that they will persevere and finish the entire 24-week course.

Week of prayer and fasting

Last week, as a congregation, we had a week of prayer and fasting. It was an amazing to see the Lord working and ministering. Our focus was to see a breakthrough and revival in our lives and the church. There was a vision that was given at our midweek study. The main thought behind it was “the Battle is coming”. We don’t have a time frame or what exactly the battle will be, but it was an exhortation for us to be praying, staying on guard and focused. Please join with us in prayer for protection, for wisdom, for discernment, for unity, and for the Lord’s favor and blessings.

Starting homeschooling

We are back full swing with home schooling.  Joshua is in 2nd grade and Christian Kindergarten. It is a bit more challenging this year trying to balance both boys, but they are excelling and learning so much.  I get to be a part of their Bible time every morning and some other activities through out the day.  It is a blessing having your children at home, and being able to pour your heart into them and teach them from a biblical perspective.  It has been tough balancing between schooling and ministry, but we serve such an awesome Lord, who gives us the strength to get through each day.  Rejoice in the Lord always again I say rejoice!

Understanding communication breakdown.

While teaching through Ephesians 5, dealing with the marriage relationship, I came across a helpful article to help Men understand some communication break down.  I would like to share with you 8 words women use…

1.) Fine: This is the word women use to end an argument when they are right and you need to be quiet.

2.) Five Minutes: If she is getting dressed, this means a half an hour. Five minutes is only five minutes if you have just been given five more minutes to watch the game before helping around the house.

3.) Nothing: This is the calm before the storm. This means something, and you should be on your toes. Arguments that begin with nothing usually end in fine.

4.) Go Ahead: This is a dare, not permission. Don’t Do It!

5.) Loud Sigh: This is actually a word, but is a non-verbal statement often misunderstood by men. A loud sigh means she thinks you are an idiot and wonders why she is wasting her time standing here and arguing with you about nothing. (Refer back to #3 for the meaning of nothing.)

6.) That’s Okay: This is one of the most dangerous statements a woman can make to a man. That’s okay means she wants to think long and hard before deciding how and when you will pay for your mistake.

7.) Thanks: A woman is thanking you, do not question, or Faint. Just say you’re welcome.

8.) Don’t worry about it, I’ll do it: Another dangerous statement, meaning this is something that a woman has told a man to do several times, but is now doing it herself. This will later result in a man asking ‘What’s wrong?’ For the woman’s response refer to #3.Then you RUN!

Church and Family Camp

We are going to have our very first Church and Family Camp this coming September, from the 19th to the 22nd.  We would love to have some help during this time; whether it is in the form of a missions team and/or several couples who can help us with Children’s Ministry, and other practical areas.  It would be a blessing to the church family here in Melbourne to have fellow brothers and sisters from the States hang out and minister to them.     .

Prayer request

For our Permanent Visa  – we start phase one of the sponsorship for the church to nominate Us. After that part is approved, then we can submit out personal paperwork. Please pray for wisdom, discernment, protection, provision, and favor upon the whole process.

Please pray for the next season at the church as we make adjustments in the facility, and for the Lord to bless every element of the church.

Please pray for our family – Niki, Joshua, Christian, Andrew.

Please pray for us to have the right balance with family time, homeschooling, ministry, and all the other areas of life.


If you want God’s power & blessing on your ministry, you must be willing to absorb the pain of others without resentment.

Thank you so much for your prayers and for your faithful support. We could not do this without your help J

Until next time……

Pastor Andrew Russell
Andrew, Niki, Joshua, & Christian

December 2009 Update


Can you believe it’s already December?  Wow, this year has gone by so quickly! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  What a great time to spend with family and friends and reflect on the many blessings that the Lord has given us throughout the year.  No matter what has happened to us, whether good or bad, happy or sad – there is always something to be thankful to our Lord for.

Let me share with you something that happened to us last week.  We were so blessed that we got to spend Thanksgiving with some close friends and fellow Americans from the church.  Now, the day started out like it was going to be great, but if you know the weather here, it can drastically change with in minutes. It can drop in temperature over 20 degrees in a short period of time.  It can also change from sunny to pouring rain, extreme force winds, and thunder and lightening. On Thanksgiving afternoon, that is exactly what happened. It poured so hard, it dropped about 4inches of rain in less than 30 minutes, and caused our back yard to flood and the water to rise up underneath the house and flood the bedrooms. Needless to say we spent the next several hours, moving furniture, cleaning up messes, digging trenches to help the water subside, using heaps of towels to soak up the water in the house and  continuing to prepare the Thanksgiving meal. The flood did enough damage that the insurance company is going to need to replace all of the carpet in the house and repair some walls that have been water logged. This Thanksgiving will forever be etched in our minds.  It was a fun, stressful, unsettling, and chaotic event, but we are so thankful, because it could have been a lot worse.  It is all a matter of having the right perspective or attitude. Our attitude can make all the difference.

Having the Right Attitude

This past week I was reflecting on the different attitudes that we can have and how it can make all the difference in our lives and in the circumstances that surround us. I’m reminded of a poem/quote from Pastor and author Chuck Swindoll. Let me share it with you:  Attitude: The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think, say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skills. It will make or break a company… a church… a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we embrace for that day. We cannot change our past… we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude. … I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you… we are in charge of our attitudes.

I pray and hope that we would all have a great attitude especially as we close out the year and celebrate Jesus birth.

Men’s fellowship

This was our third men’s fellowship and we had 18 guys come along. The man who hosted this fellowship is a Manager / Executive Producer for some big bands here in Australia. He has been coming to our church for about six months and is a very humble guy.  He has won 5 Aria awards, which is equivalent to our Grammy awards in America.  Anyway, it was so cool to see so many guys inviting their friends, family, coworkers, etc.  They are so hungry for the fellowship, the Word and of course the great food.  I’ve been teaching on discipleship with this group.


This last Sunday, I had the pleasure of baptizing seven people. We had about 50 family, friends, and fellow brother and sisters come along to support those being baptized.  It was raining throughout the day, so we were able to use another local church’s baptismal pool.  The atmosphere, warmth, location, and the water were just right for this blessed event.

Niki’s Corner

Women’s Group

We just completed the study “Breaking Free” by Beth Moore.  Wow, what a great adventure this has been with such a beautiful group of women!  The Lord has revealed, stretched and healed many of the women through this study.  What an awesome time to reflect on God’s Word and discover things in our lives that hinder us from living the abundant life our maker intended for us.  We have shared a lot through these past 10 weeks, and the Lord has drawn us closer together.  God is continuing to bless this wonderful group.  We have 14 women coming consistently on Tuesday nights.  Praise God!

Thank you for all of your prayers for this group.  It is making such a huge difference in the lives of these women.  I am so blessed that I get to watch them grow and become more like Jesus every week.

Children’s Ministry:

What a blessing it has been to be able to watch the Lord work in the life of our new Children’s Ministry Director.  She is doing a phenomenal job.  Thank you Lord for always providing for our needs!   Please be in prayer for our upcoming Christmas program.  The children will be performing in front of the congregation on the 20th of December. We were blessed this year to have our wonderful worship leaders take over and teach the children the songs and actions for the program.
Junior High Group:

This group is doing awesome!  Three of my girls got baptized this past Sunday.  It brought tears to my eyes – what a special time.  We are continuing to meet every other Friday night for a time of fun, fellowship and digging into Gods word.  We are going through the book of Corinthians on Fridays and we will be starting the book of Daniel on Sundays.  We would like to do a junior high camp in the coming months, could you please be in prayer for direction, and wisdom.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

As we close out this year, we want to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.  May the Lord pour out His blessing upon each and every one of you!  Thank you for your prayers, encouragement, and for all your support.

Financial matters

It is always difficult and humbling to bring up finances, but I know how important it is to share and let our team know the areas in which we need support.  One of the things worth noting is the exchange rate; we are almost dollar for dollar. Then as we head into this next year we have two big expenses that will be coming up. The first one is homeschooling costs (approx $1,500) for books and supplies for both boys.  The second is our permanent residency. The total cost will be close to $5000.  We know the Lord will provide and that He is in control. Would you pray with us for these items and also for our monthly support? Thank you and God bless.

Prayer Points

Pray for vision and focus, wisdom, discernment, guidance, and provision.

Pray for revival, for harvest, for the Lord to raise up more laborers.

Pray for the continued protection of the church.

Pray for monthly financial support

Pray for our family (Niki, Joshua, Christian, Andrew)

Thank you for your encouragement, your faithful support, and most importantly, thank you for your prayers J

Until next time……

Pastor Andrew Russell
Andrew, Niki, Joshua, & Christian