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Faith and hope in the Lockyer Valley

Rev Bob Heathwood and Rev Geoff Pankhurst. Photo courtesy of Bob Heathwood
TWO RETIRED ministers in the Lockyer Valley are tackling the Synod’s call to assist in sustaining communities which have faced the trauma of devastating floods.

With support from the Synod’s Disaster Relief Funds, the congregations of Gatton and Laidley / Hatton Vale have commissioned Rev Geoff Pankhurst and Rev Bob Heathwood to exercise this important recovery ministry.

Soon after the floods swept through the region retired minister, Rev Bev Ham, and Frontier Services Patrol Padre in Charleville, Rev John Case, arrived to assist.

Now, different needs are surfacing which are causing anxieties in the communities so Mr Pankhurst and Mr Heathwood
will attempt to meet those needs.

Mr Heathwood said he has already discovered how receptive people are to this initiative.

One business in Laidley was ruined by the January flood.

The owner despaired of not being able to pay her bills and survive.

She shared a story with Mr Heathwood.

She prayed for a miracle: for an angel to help her.

A friend, another business owner, came to her with an offer to help begin again.

Now she has begun growing her business again and thanks God for this blessing.

In Grantham, Mr Pankhurst has discovered how much people want to talk to try and make sense of the events and to be encouraged to move on with hope.

Due to the generosity of others, he was able to get a replacement piano to a girl whose piano was destroyed in the flood.

A generous man at Sandgate donated it and a kind Hatton Vale removalist delivered it for free.

Photo : Rev Bob Heathwood and Rev Geoff Pankhurst. Photo courtesy of Bob Heathwood