​Ben Wong, Ivy Wong, Daniel Bol Nyieth,
Alan Nichols, Peter Jongroor at a farewell
lunch for Alan Nichols at St Matthias’ Church

Multicultural ministry is a key strategic arm of the diocese’s mission, and Archdeacon Alan Nichols’ term as cross-cultural co-ordinator has served to strengthen this, Archbishop Philip Freier said on 13 March at a farewell lunch for him at St Matthias, Abbotsford.

Initially employed for six months as an interim co-ordinator, Dr Freier said Archdeacon Nichols had remained in the role for three years, and thanked him for his “wonderful contribution and commitment” to Multicultural ministry in the Diocese, giving it a more strategic focus, nurturing potential leaders, drawing on contacts in Africa and Asia, and showing an entrepreneurial spirit in finding resources.

In reply, Archdeacon Nichols said it had been a great privilege to work with what Desmond Tutu had called “the rainbow people of God”, and gave several examples of memorable encounters with them, including a story about a Karen refugee, Ganemy Kunoo, now living in Werribee and an elder at St Thomas’ Anglican Church. He had first met him in Burma during the civil war, when, with bomb shells flying overhead, he defiantly declared: “We are Karen – we are indestructible.”

 Related news