Sophia Sinclair - The Australasian Religious Press Association elected its first woman President at its AGM in Christchurch on Saturday.
Sophia Sinclair has credits that go way back to her days as a journalist for New Zealand National Radio and then as the New Zealand CMS Editor. Sophia Sinclair attended the 2012 ARPA conference in Wellington where she met the Kiwi young writer program in conjunction with Christian Today New Zealand.
Having joined the Kiwi young writer program, Sophia Sinclair moved with her husband Andrew to Sydney where he undertook seminary for ministry and became the Chief Editor of the Australian and New Zealand young writers. Sophia spoke at the 2013 Christchurch young writer conference, again in 2014 in Wellington, and then at the annual young writer conference on the Gold Coast (Tweed Heads) later that same year.
Sophia Sinclair was runner up in the 2013 and 2014 NZ Basil Sellers Award, then won the 2015 NZ Basil Sellers Award and in 2017 the ARPA Ramon Williams Youth Scholarship and added to this - coordinated and ran the 2015 and 2016 young writers annual conferences in Sydney.
Andrew Sinclair, having graduated seminary the Sinclair’s in 2017 relocated back to New Zealand where he became the Associate Minister at Levin Baptist Church (80 minutes north of Wellington) and Sophia took up the editor’s role of Rongopai, a magazine for the New Zealand Christian Community Churches network.
Sophia also took up the role as the New Zealand ARPA President and thereby the ARPA Vice Presidency. With the former President Peter Bentley of Sydney and Editor of ACCatalyst stepping aside after seven years of heralded leadership and duty, Sophia Sinclair was elected unopposed. Andrew and Sophia have two small boys.
2019 ARPA Program
The afternoon of Friday 6 September the sessions were divided into four programs, the first was an amazing presentation by Rev Paul Askin and Rev Ken Shelley how Christchurch church leaders got together in the immediate aftermath of the Christchurch earthquake and the Christchurch shooting.
This was followed by an in-house discussion on the future of ARPA (an annual chin-wag). This was followed by film maker Gerard Smyth an independent contractor whose now famous Christchurch earthquake film “When a City Falls” gaining huge international acclaim – it was shown in part to the ARPA audience, then likewise after the Christchurch shooting.
Friday late afternoon the Salvation Army presented their issue of WarCry on the Christchurch shooting. Passionate and obligatory reading.
After the AGM the post morning tea session was on the Student Volunteer Army where students gathered in organised groups to engage in massive clean ups. The two afternoon sessions continued this same theme, “hope filled response”.
The first saw Debbie Roome discuss and display her award winning books, post cards and large fridge magnets on the Christchurch earthquake, and the final session of the day saw Julanne Clarke-Morris address the nature of racism as a direct response to the Christchurch shooting. Racist assumptions were tackled.
Perth ARPA 2020
In 2020 the annual ARPA conference will be held in Perth 4-6 September at the Mercure in the city.
Matt Chapman the Western Australian ARPA coordinator presented a brilliant tourism video inviting delegates to Perth next year.
Dr Mark Tronson is a Baptist minister (retired) who served as the Australian cricket team chaplain for 17 years (2000 ret) and established Life After Cricket in 2001. He was recognised by the Olympic Ministry Medal in 2009 presented by Carl Lewis Olympian of the Century. He mentors young writers and has written 24 books, and enjoys writing. He is married to Delma, with four adult children and grand-children. Dr Tronson writes a daily article for Christian Today Australia (since 2008) and in November 2016 established Christian Today New Zealand.
Mark Tronson's archive of articles can be viewed at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/mark-tronson.html