We have just returned from one of the most encouraging trips we’ve ever taken. We spent several weeks touring Australia and New Zealand and we were overwhelmed by the response!
Australia: February 19 - 23
We visited four cities in Australia: Geelong (near Melbourne), Canberra (the capital), Rockhampton, and Brisbane (where we have a distribution center managed by United Christian Broadcasters).
In each venue we were received by capacity crowds whose enthusiasm was contagious! We are now on 267 radio stations throughout Australia and the response has been beyond our wildest hopes! UCB has simply done an amazing job!
New Zealand: February 24 - March 4
In New Zealand we also visited four cities: Auckland, Christchurch (in the South Island), Rotorua, and Wellington, and again, we were favored with capacity crowds in substantial venues, and the enthusiasm was overwhelming. (Christchurch regards itself as the “uttermost part of the earth,” since each direction from there brings you closer to Jerusalem:
…ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. - Acts 1:8
In Wellington, the capital of New Zealand, our local Area Representative arranged for us to have the whole day in the Civic Center Auditorium on a Sunday, and the major local churches actually shut down to encourage their people to attend our sessions! (The cooperative attitude among the several denominations represented speaks volumes for the quality of leadership present in that community!)
We were also featured in numerous interviews in various print and broadcast media, including the popular secular broadcast of Leighton Smith, who is widely followed throughout New Zealand. We were treated to a private lunch with Gordon Copeland, Member of Parliament (who, with two of his colleagues, often hold the key votes on controversial issues).
Bill Koenig, our White House Correspondent, joined me on this entire tour and was also very well received. (His website, www.watch.org is well worth monitoring.)
We established additional KI Area Representatives in many of the venues, and over 600 people expressed interest in the Institute. We awarded our first Bronze Medallions in New Zealand and anticipate several more to qualify over the next few months.
We will be revising the KI Handbook with a number of improvements over the next few months, since we now have a large number of Bronze Medallion holders heading for Silver! It is challenging for our staff to stay ahead of the stampede! (We will also soon be offering a complete “Bronze Starter Kit” to assist newcomers.)
Click on the following for more photos from the trip:
- Phil Edwards of UCB Australia
- Corey Pitchford, Dad Andrew, and friend in Brisbane, Australia
- Hal Short, UCB International
- Curtis and Nardene Reid, KI Area Reps in Wellington
- Brian Hughes examines the KI Handbook