During an Anglican international conference on spiritual renewal in 1978, a prophetic word given in Canterbury Cathedral formed the basis of Sharing of Ministries Abroad.
“You are to take care of the nervous system of the Anglican Church”.
The burden of this vision was picked up by the then Archbishop of Cape Town, Bill Burnett, Rev’d Michael Harper and Rev’d Terry Fullam. Michael Harper became the founding Director in 1979. An international board was formed under the chairmanship of Archbishop Burnett in 1983.
SOMA has established offices across the globe, USA (1985), Canada (1986), Australia (1986), Ireland (1991), South Africa (1992), New Zealand (1994) and Singapore (1999). Since 1999, other SOMA national and regional bodies have been established in Uganda, Nigeria and Latin America.
SOMA Australia was established in 1986 with Rev’d John Wyndham as National Director. Their first mission team ministered in the Torres Strait Islands in July 1987. Since this time, over 2000 people have participated in over 30 countries in Africa, Asia, South America and the Pacific region.
Our international board
The International Board is the guardian of the SOMA vision.
The International Board comprises Anglican Renewal leaders drawn from nine nations together with the National Directors. The International Chairman is Most Revd Justin Badi – South Sudan.
The Board meets every month for an online share and prayer time, and in person every 18 month and has appointed an Executive group to act as a “standing committee” between meetings. This group comprises the chairman, secretary, treasurer and three representatives of the national directors. The national directors form a collegiate leadership in planning and carrying out SOMA’s ministry globally.
As well as Australia, there are national SOMA bodies in the United Kingdom, the USA, Ireland, South Africa and New Zealand. Each national SOMA body has its own board or council which provides a covering and support for the National Director, and for Australia an Executive Office, whom they appoint. These boards meet at regular intervals and also appoint executives to act on their behalf.
The focus of our ministry is to both the leadership and members of the local church being visited. Teaching will always include hands on training to equip people for ministry in their local context. SOMA is very much a servant ministry.
The initial visit to a diocese (at the request of the Bishop or Diocese Evangelism body with the Bishops support) defines the focus for subsequent missions, this “exploratory” mission serves several purposes:
- To build relationships between the national leaders and SOMA Executive
- To understand the needs and culture of the local situation
- To introduce the leadership to Renewal if not previously experienced
SOMA Australia – management committee
“Ian began his spiritual journey in the Presbyterian church, coming to know Jesus as Lord and Saviour ten years into his military career as an Army Officer. After receiving a call for full time ministry Ian discharged from the military and studied Theology at St Marks Theological College Canberra. Home grown in the Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn, Ian’s spiritual formation and experience of the grace and power of God was greatly enhanced by his regular mission trips and partnerships in the Solomon Islands . After ministering as the Anglican Bishop to the Defence Force, Ian is now enjoying retirement, yet remains as Chair of SOMA Australia.”
Liz is a distinctive deacon licensed to the Anglican Diocese of Melbourne and currently on the ministry team for Mornington & Mount Martha Anglican Church, with oversight of the children’s and family’s ministries. Liz has a passion of sharing the Gospel with the marginalised, the forgotten and the unmet children of God and is thankful that she can do this through both of her ministry streams within her parish and SOMA missions alike.
Liz has taken up a recent moto: ‘We each hold the responsibility of passing on the Baton of Faith! Therefore, as we allow the Father’s love to envelop us, drawer closer to the teachings of Christ and partner with the Holy Spirit who empowers us, we must never stop holding, sharing and passing on our Baton of Faith, that others may come to know and enter a relationship with; God, the Father, Son & Holy Spirit.’
I was born in Sunshine, Melbourne (Western Bulldogs territory) but grew up in East Doncaster which was then on the eastern fringe of the Melbourne suburbs.
I am the no. 4 boy in a family of 5 – the youngest is my sister. Growing up I idolised my brothers and followed in their footsteps by playing footy (AFL) and surfing. These days I’m too old and slow to play footy but I still regularly enjoy taking off on a good swell at my favourite spot near Torquay! An encounter with God at 19 saw me take a different path to my brothers and join my sister at the local Anglican Church (Holy Trinity Doncaster) and become fully immersed in the life of the Youth Fellowship.
After a false start in General Nursing I trained as a Primary Teacher and spent the next 20 years or so involved in Primary Education. Over these years I also completed a Bachelor of Theology at Whitley College, Melbourne. I was ordained in 2010 at Sale in Gippsland and our six years in Gippsland involved me working as the School Chaplain to Gippsland Grammar. We returned to Geelong in 2016 where I was appointed as Priest in Charge at St Alban’s, Hamlyn Heights.
I am married to Karen and we have 3 children – Charlie (19), Ellie (17) and Anna (14)
I am very happy to be supporting the work of SOMA Australia through my involvement as a Board member.
Clara is living in Baxter, Victoria as a newly wed (December 2021) to Connor Wilson. Growing up in the Anglican Church of Batemans Bay, and more recently was attending a Baptist Church which had other faithful young adults she was journeying with, yet in recent times Clara and Connor together discerned the need to return to the Anglican Church., so are now worshiping at Mornington Anglican.
A SOMA mission to Tulagi Island church in the Solomon Islands was the first mission trip Clara engaged with at the age of 14 and at the end of 2017 she also traveled with the SOMA Youth mission in which ignited her passion for future mission work. Clara stepped into the role of SOMA Australia’s secretary in 2018 and has been learning much and growing within the team.
Stephen Borserio joined the SOMA Australia Board and elected Treasurer in 2022 AGM, his Bio will be recorded here in the near future.
Colin has a strong commitment to the Great Commission (Matt 28:16-20) and has been involved in mission teams working in The Solomon Islands, The Philippines, Uganda, Pakistan, Kenya, Northern Ireland, Vietnam and Australia. Colin studied at St Marks National Theological Centre in Canberra and was ordained in 2006. Colin was also the former National Director of SOMA Australia. Colin has seen many people released, healed, set free and lives transformed through the ministry of SOMA teams through the gospel of Jesus Christ at work within the nations. Colin’s role, as SOMA Ambassador, is to build an awareness within the Australian Anglican Church about the ministry and mission of SOMA both within and outside of Australia. Colin is available to visit parishes to help them understand the vital role of SOMA in supporting and encouraging local churches through short term, Holy Spirit led missions.
Originally an Industrial Chemist, The Rev John Davies served as an Anglican Minister for 37 years in the Diocese of Sydney, and after retirement pastored a Christian and Missionary Alliance church for 12 years. He was married to Rosemary for 54 years, until she died of cancer, and has four children and 13 grandchildren.
John has a passion for sharing a faith in the living God and an experience of His power and presence that is relevant to every aspect of life. He led multidenominational Scripture Union Beach/Family Missions for over 30 years, and has seen many answers to prayer, has a long experience in the ministry of Healing and in Prayer Counselling, and has seen many lives transformed and relationships restored. John is strongly committed to the study of the Bible and lectured in Old Testament and Ethics at graduate level.
With a vision extending beyond the local church, John has been on short-term Mission trips with SOMA to Rwanda, Madagascar, Mauritius, Seychelles, Uganda and here in Australia.
Marco Vervoorst joined the SOMA Australia Board and was elected as a General Committee Member at the 2022 AGM, his Bio will be recorded here in the near future.