Pentecostal Pastor Andrew Evans Wins Parliament Seat in Australia

by | Jun 30, 2002 | Charisma Archive

The former Assemblies of God superintendent, who’s never held office, will represent the Family First Party
In a feat that caught Australian political analysts unaware, a Christian-based family-values party–launched in September–has won a seat in an Australian state parliament. Andrew Evans, former Assemblies of God national superintendent for Australia, campaigned for the Feb. 9 South Australia poll as leader of the Family First Party. His win makes him a member of the 22-seat upper house, the Legislative Council.


“It’s an absolute miracle,” Evans said. “In South Australia they can’t believe it. I’ve never been in politics, never been in any political party ever in my life. I’m 66 years of age, a semi-retired pastor, and I get a seat.”


Though not an overtly Christian party, Family First defends its Christian values. Its stated objectives are to promote the health, welfare and unity of South Australian families, combat the problems of family breakdown, and assist groups that support and educate families. The party also pushed issues the major Labor and Liberal parties ignored, such as literacy standards and medical facilities for rural areas.


“South Australia has major problems with young women who are pregnant in [rural locations],” Evans said. “They all have to come to the [state capital Adelaide] because of insurance costs for doctors. So we did a TV ad on that.”


Voter dissatisfaction with the major parties boosted Family First’s chances. The election resulted in a hung parliament, and Labor now depends on independent members, including Evans, to retain power.


“We’ve indicated we’ll cooperate with them,” Evans said. “But there’s legislation …we’ll have to put amendments in that promote our values more. And they’ve indicated they’d be open to any of that.”


Evans said he had felt God urging him into politics for some time. Early last year, his son Ashley told him that for two consecutive nights he couldn’t sleep because he had been thinking the two ought to be involved in politics. To Evans, this was God’s confirmation he should run for the seat.


His son added that he believed they had “10 good years” to act against negative political trends in Australia such as the legalization of euthanasia, prostitution and marijuana–which would become irreversible after they were passed.


The two men created an executive team of legal, media and administrative professionals, and brought in experienced political experts to explain how the system worked. They launched Family First on Father’s Day.


“Then we began to build,” Evans said. “We worked incredibly hard. Day by day we contacted hundreds of people by phone.”


The party ran 31 candidates in the election. Twenty-seven of them contended for lower house seats, with some collecting up to 7-1Ž2 percent of the vote. Though none were elected, their influence was still crucial. Under Australia’s preferential voting system they ensured that other family-supportive candidates won or retained seats.


Family organizations welcomed Evans’ win. Glenn Williams, CEO of Focus on the Family Australia, said party agendas constrained Christians in the major parties.


“I think what you’ll find is many people interested to see what sort of success Andrew experiences with his party, the type of responses he’s able to engender from the community at large as well as the Christian community, and also the responses in parliament,” Williams said. “I think that if Andrew’s party can have a good impact there, we may see other people wanting to replicate that in other states.”


One person who already has contacted Evans about that is Peter Stokes, executive officer of Salt Shakers, a national organization promoting Christian ethics.


“I think it’s perhaps long overdue that more Christians took an interest in the political arena,” Stokes, of Melbourne, said.


Looking ahead to his eight-year term, Evans said: “It’s up to [God] as to how far He wants to take it.”
–Adrian Brookes in Australia

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

Spirit-Filled Pastor: Can I Ask God for Confirmation?

Spirit-Filled Pastor: Can I Ask God for Confirmation?

There are many incidents of God giving people a sign throughout the Bible. Although I believe God still does this, I also believe that we must be careful. Asking for a sign can be misleading if other factors are not taken into consideration. In Genesis, we find an...

Man Who Spent 23 Minutes in Hell: Are You Ready To Meet Jesus?

Man Who Spent 23 Minutes in Hell: Are You Ready To Meet Jesus?

The last words Jesus spoke to me in my 23 Minutes In Hell vision were, “Tell them I am coming very, very soon.” Then He repeated Himself and said again, “Tell them I am coming very, very soon.” The Bible is clear that Jesus is coming back to rapture His believers,...

The Best Way to Love Others and Yourself

The Best Way to Love Others and Yourself

I believe that other than the gospel regarding salvation through faith in Christ, learning to walk in love is the most important lesson in God’s Word. Jesus says that love is the most important commandment (Mark 12:28–31). The apostle Paul writes that love is the...

Prophecy: The Breach in Our Nation Will Be Repaired

Prophecy: The Breach in Our Nation Will Be Repaired

Praise be to Almighty God, righteous judge, holy of holies, the King of kings and the Lord of lords. The earth is His footstool, and to His kingdom there is no end! Breached Births The Spirit of the Lord says this day: “There has been a breach—breached births, My...

10 Reasons the Apostolic Movement Is Essential to Gospel Expansion

10 Reasons the Apostolic Movement Is Essential to Gospel Expansion

The global apostolic movement is the most significant expression of Christianity today. This is the view expressed by historian Philip Jenkins. He talks about the rapid expansion of the church in the global south, much of which is reminiscent of the first-century...

Experience a Better Kind of Love in Your Relationships

Experience a Better Kind of Love in Your Relationships

Do you have any relationship struggles? Perhaps you want to learn how to love, for real. Too often today, people search for a fairytale love and are disappointed when the fairytale fizzles, which it will. Michael Gibson, author of Real Life Love, challenges folks to...

The Power of Godly Words Over Another Life—and Yours

The Power of Godly Words Over Another Life—and Yours

Have the words that others have spoken over you ever significantly impacted you? Words can birth destinies on the inside of us and bring hope to our hearts for the future. They have the power to ignite our dreams and give life to our souls. At the same time, negative...

RECENT ARTICLES

How You Can Foil the Plot Against Your Life

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” Jesus warned us that we have an enemy, and he is a thief. He steals our joy, purpose,...
Activating Introverts in Evangelism

Activating Introverts in Evangelism

 Many believers mistakenly think that evangelism is only for charismatic, extroverted personality types. If they aren’t called to be evangelists, they shrink back from sharing the gospel with the lost entirely. The scriptural reality is that fivefold ministers, and...

Pin It on Pinterest

[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]