Docklands Church – Melbourne

April 18, 2009

During our time in Melbourne, we visited Docklands Church on Good Friday. It’s minister is Guy Mason who was one of the church-planter-guys who when to the Mars Hill church-planting thing. It meets upstairs in a brewery (aka classy pub).

Docklands Church

All those up front wore black (a Good Friday thing) and the talk was Dricoll/Dave Miers-esq and it focussed on the suffering of Christ and the extent of God’s love. The service was a mix of relfective music items by a quality band and schmik AV presentations.

The church seems to be growing and is located in a newly developed, yet central area of the city. Docklands is where the Melbourne wheel has been built. It’s a shame that the wheel doesn’t work, but a new Costco may come to the rescue of local businesses. It’s not cringe-worthy and the lack of a church building leads to a non-threatening place for outsiders to join.


However, like many churches, it suffers from a lack of a welcoming culture. We came on Good Friday so no doubt regular attendees were missing, but if I wasn’t for Katie recognising an old friend, I wouldn’t have been surprised if had left without having a conversation with a church member. Katie’s friend recognised the problem and explained it as, many who come come from churches which aren’t used to having newcomers and so they aren’t programmed to welcome people. How true this is for many churches.

How do we create a culture of weclcoming?



  1. How do we create a culture of weclcoming?

    legislation is dangerous. guilting people into it won’t create genuinely welcoming peeps.

    i think you win people to the vision of it.

    you can do this from the pulpit.
    i think you do this one-2-one with key peeps.
    staff and key leaders need to model it

    pray for it.

  2. Form a committee, endlessly discuss it, pray, and hope that God resurrects Moses 😛

    That’s a tricky question…

  3. Once I went to a church in Sydney, just a one off as I’m from Victoria. There was a young trainee minister there who came over to welcome me and he sat in the row of seats in front for fully 30 minutes, showing an interest in who I was. I had never been so genuinely welcomed at a church!
    This makes me think that a welcoming culture isn’t necessarily required (tho would be great!!) in a church… as long as there are some committed people who do it really well. This trainee’s example has inspired me to want to welcome people like he did.
    Maybe you get a culture as people catch it from others…

  4. I think you’re right, Jane. Committed welcomers may be the key to encourage others to do the same and therefore create the culture. I’m glad you had a good welcoming experience here in Sydney!

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