The Martu Christian Fellowship (MCF) is an incorporated body that boasts an all Martu membership and board. MCF runs Martu Church, operating under “The Martu Way” of positive values, value of lore, culture and language, value of family and kinship and warm and loving respect as one people. The Martu Way comes under and is entwined in “Mama’s Way” (Creator God’s way). Mama’s Way holds firm to scripture and the birth, life, death and resurrection of Jesus as a way to restore Martu and all people into relationship of how life was designed to be; with land, with culture, with each other, with self and with creator God.
MCF while physically based in Newman has a membership that has their geographical home across the communities of the Western Desert. Newman is a hub town to about seven remote Aboriginal communities. For this reason MCF has a membership that may travel. It is warm and welcoming of all people.
The Martu Farm is an initiative of the Martu Christian Fellowship. It boasts activities and engagements that are positive and supportive of positive lifestyle choices, supportive of culture and connection to land, supportive of giving and serving, supportive of responding to the needs both physical and social, supportive of wellbeing, supportive of providing and being a voice both in social issues and in individual lives. The Martu Farm aims to be pure gold in its example in the East Pilbara in the standard it sets and the practices it supports and involves in. The Martu Farm is a safe space that is the Martu’s. The motto of the Martu Farm is Do No Harm. The Martu Farm values and engages collaboratively with a wide range of stakeholders locally, state wide, nationally and internationally.
Connection: Red Dirt Blue Sky / Blue Sky Pilbara and MCF & The Martu Farm initiative
RDBS BSP second staff to support the MCF and the Martu Farm initiative. These staff are placed under the direct instruction and authority of the Martu board, elders and leaders. Roles taken include Pastor, Community Support, Community Chaplaincy and CEO of The Martu Farm initiative.
RDBS BSP supports MCF and The Martu Farm by facilitating and assisting in areas of Western bureacratic requirements for example meeting constitutional obligations, written communication with agencies and departments, insurances and compliance.
Martu Board, Elders and Leaders:
MCF has an all Martu membership and board. The governance of MCF is respective of Martu Government. Many of the members, leaders, elders and board are also pillars within the Martu Government.
Mr Peter Tinker (Chairman) and June (elder advisor)
Mr Tinker is a pillar in the Martu Government. He is pivotal within his community providing practical support as well as advice, instruction and direction. Mr Tinker travelled as a young man to Papua New Guinea. He traveled with Old Man Marsh supporting him with the translation of the Bible in Martu language. This trip was a significant time for Mr Tinker helping him form his direction that would hold him firm and support his role as he journeyed in older life and the responsibilities and obligations of a Martu Elder.
Gavin (Board) and Doreen Simpson (Leader)
Gavin has worked for ten years at BHP. He juggles this with his family and culture obligations. Him and Doreen support many children providing a warm and loving home. Both come from a long legacy of grandparents who love and walk in the ways of faith.
Terry Sailor (Board) and Tracy (Leader)
Terry has worked for many years with BHP. He and Tracy provide a warm and loving home for an extended family. Their faith gives them strength to live well and keep the Martu Way strong in their lives and community.
Julie Brookes (Board) and Wadi (Leader)
Julie and Wadi have a powerful story of the turn around that can happen when encountering Jesus. Their story of a turn around life some 15 years ago gives those in their community hope that they can also overcome and be set free. Their story includes their miracle daughter. Julie and Wadi provide a warm and loving home to many children and family. Wadi is known for his love of gardening. He can be seen watering, cutting, planting, weeding in the cool of the afternoon.
May Brookes (Board)
May is known and respected as a significant elder within Martu Governement. In her youth she came to faith as a young woman and has never looked back. May is also a renowned Martu artist. May comes alive when she sings songs of praise in Martu language. May is part of a group of beautiful old ladies who grew up in an era of AUstralian history in the missions with parents who walked in from the desert.
Dawn Oates (Elder – Advisor)
Dawn is wise and stable woman. She lives Martu Way and Mama’s Way with grace and courage. Dawn is a widow of some years now and shares a beautiful story of a husband who now waits for her on the other side. Together they wrote some beautiful worship songs in Martu language.
Heather Sampson (Elder -Advisor)
Heather is a sharp and articulate woman. She speaks strong as an advocate for her community, for faith and for Martu Way. Heather was brought in from the desert as a four year old and raised in the mission. She recollects the story her parents shared of hunting in desert time and in the darkness of the night calling out to the creator God in Martu way. She describes the Angels and despite some horrific memories of mission days being forced to stand on ant hills when she spoke in language (which was forbidden) or being scrubbed “clean” after being across the river with her family Heather is able to have a faith because what her and her family read in scripture was what they knew and experienced out on those desert nights when they called for help to their God.
Medborne (Elder – Advisor)