WE ARE CHRISTIANS
• We are followers of Jesus (hence we are ‘Christians’) in this earthly life, finding identity and community in him as both Saviour and Lord.
• We believe in the gospel – the ‘good news’ of salvation through Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
• We have the hope of eternal life because Jesus came into the world to die in our place so we could be made right with God.
WE ARE EVANGELICAL
• We believe the Bible is the inspired, infallible, authoritative Word of God. Through it, we can know God, discover the gospel, and find complete guidance for life.
• We believe that there is one God, who is eternally existent in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
• We believe that God created the heavens and the earth and everything in them. We believe that he created human beings in a state of sinless perfection with the dignity of being his image-bearers on earth.
• We believe that Adam & Eve disobeyed God and brought sin into the world. We believe that everyone born since then is sinful by nature, inclined toward evil rather than good.
• We believe that sin has affected all of God’s creation and has marred his image within humankind, including our bodies, our thoughts, our desires, and our emotions.
• We believe that our God is perfect and holy and cannot tolerate sin in his presence, so he must judge all sinners, ultimately through death.
• We believe God sent his Son, Jesus, to take that judgment in our place by dying on the cross.
• We believe that in his bodily resurrection from the dead, Jesus showed that sin and death were made powerless and that forgiveness and life were available to everyone who believes in him.
• We believe Jesus ascended to rule the universe at God’s right hand and sent the Holy Spirit to dwell in us, regenerating us, growing us and enabling us to live godly lives.
• We believe we are called to continue the work of Jesus as the church community, united in him.
• We believe that Jesus will return one day to finish his work of redemption by bringing this present world to an end and ushering in a new creation.
WE ARE REFORMED
• We are first and foremost ‘Christian’ (followers of Jesus Christ), but the way we interpret the Bible (God’s Word) is distinctly ‘reformed’.
• This ‘reformed’ understanding of Scripture, which stems from the Reformation in the 16th century (when ‘reformers’ challenged the unbiblical traditions of the dominant church in Rome), can be summarised as follows:
• We believe that Jesus is the only way to be saved and have a relationship with our Creator God.
• We believe that we are saved completely through God’s grace and mercy, not
because we deserve it or earn it.
• We believe that salvation is found through faith in Jesus Christ, not because of the good things we say or do.
• We believe that God has created us and redeemed us and continues to provide for us, all for his own glory.
• We believe the Bible contains all we need to know about who God is, what he has done for us, and how we can respond to Him.
WE ARE MISSIONAL
• We believe that the gospel should be urgently proclaimed to all people so that through the preaching of God’s Word and by the power of His Spirit they may believe and so be saved.
• We believe that we must be faithful to the timeless truths of the Bible, but that it is important for us to apply these truths in the cultural context in which we live.
• We believe that our mission is to bring people to Christ, enfold them in his church so that they can grow in their faith and go out into their culture as effective servants of Christ.
WE ARE DENOMINATIONAL
• The Willetton Christian Church is a denominational church – we are part of a denomination known as the ‘Christian Reformed Churches of Australia’.
• The CRCA adheres to the historical and universal Christian faith as summed up in the Apostles’ Creed, the Nicene Creed, and the Athanasian Creed.
• The CRCA also upholds the confessional standards of the three forms of unity, being the Heidelberg Catechism, the Belgic Confession, and the Canons of Dort.
In order to go about this mission we recognise the need to grow in our commitment to praising, honouring and glorifying God by being passionate about:
• Faithful preaching and teaching of the Bible.
• Praying faithfully and regularly as a church.
• Growing in spiritual maturity and greater Christ-likeness.
• Meeting together for worship and in small groups.
• Supporting and caring for one another as a community of believers.
• Growing God’s Kingdom on earth.
Willetton Christian Church began its life as the Reformed Church of Willetton, first meeting on the 3rd July 1983, being planted in what was then an emerging suburb on the outskirts of Perth’s southern suburbs. After spending a year under the oversight of Perth Christian Reformed Church, Willo was instituted as a member church of the Christian Reformed Churches of Australia on the 23rd September 1984.
The congregation, consisting largely of young families, met at the Rostrata Primary School for six years, while working on finding and building a place to call their own. The church completed construction of its own place of worship on Portcullis Drive in 1989 and began meeting there on the 2nd September that year, where it meets to this day. Rev. William (Bill) Bosker, having joined the church as its first pastor in late 1985, moved to serve in Canberra soon after the opening of the building. Rev. Peter Abetz joined the church in January 1991.
Rapid growth in the Willetton area was reflected in the numerical growth of the congregation, and in 1994 it was decided that Willo would plant a new congregation in Yangebup, led by the newly arrived Rev. Peter Smit. The plant began meeting the following year and was instituted into the CRCA in 2002. This was followed by a second plant in 2004, Grace Christian Reformed Church, led by Rev. Abetz. This was the first CRCA church to meet ‘north of the river in Perth. During this period, the church was known as the Christian Reformed Church of Willetton.
With Rev. Clinton Berends also finishing a four-year stint at Willetton in 2005, the church underwent a period of pastoral vacancy, during which time the pulpit was filled by a variety of visiting preachers, including Don West and Marty Foord from Trinity Theological College, Rev. Gordon Fyles from Britain, and Oliver Heggers, who became a pastoral worker for the church in late 2005, and later joined with other members of the congregation to plant a house-church in Forrestdale at the start of 2010. Forrestdale Gospel Community Church continues to meet under the supervision of Willo to this day.
Rev. Tony van Drimmelen began his ministry at Willo in mid-2007, and after a few years was joined by two more pastors: Ben Murphy, who arrived as a vicar in February 2010 and was ordained the following year, and Dan Kroon, completed his own vicariate and ordination at the beginning of 2012. Rev. Murphy led Willo’s fourth church plant, this time to Wilson, which began meeting in 2014 and was instituted in 2016.
Following the retirement of Rev. van Drimmelen, the Church Council of Willo chose to implement a new ministry model, involving multiple part-time staff being employed, rather than seeking a second full-time pastor to join the work of Rev. Kroon. The Wheatbelt Christian Fellowship, a mission church based in Wongan Hills, came under the supervision of Willo in 2019 following the closure of Perth CRC. As a result, Rev. Geoff van Schie also joined Willo as an associate pastor.
Willo has trusted in the sovereignty of God throughout the nearly 40 years that the church has been meeting together. God is continually working out his perfect will through imperfect people so that more people will come to know and believe in the gospel of Jesus Christ. Even as pastors and congregants alike come and go, God remains the same forever and ever. It is our prayer that he will continue to use us to do his work in the Willetton community.
As a church family, we believe that Jesus Christ is the head of the universal Christian Church, which he established by his Holy Spirit at Pentecost. We also believe that Jesus, as the Chief Shepherd, has given the local church under-shepherds to nurture and protect his flock.
The Church Council at Willo is trusted with the task of ensuring that the church remains obedient to Jesus and fulfills its God-given mission. It consists of the ordained pastor(s), and the elected elders who are chosen from and by the congregation, and generally serve for a period of 3 years.
Every four months one pastor and two of our elders represent the church at a state-wide meeting of Christian Reformed Churches in WA. This is a time for churches to encourage and offer accountability to each other, as well as examine ministry students for ordination as pastors.
Every three years, two pastors and two elders from the Western Australian churches represent the WA Classis at the denominational Synod, which is the meeting of representatives from every CRCA Classis in the country. This is an opportunity to tackle big decisions and further empower ministry in the local churches.