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The Safe Harbour Church has a new location for its meetings and services on Russell Island.

The church will now be based at ’The Hut’ which is located on the property adjacent to the Bay Islands Community Centre on Russell Island.

The move to the new location is significant for the island church, started by the popular Pastors Fred and Margarita Brogden.

The Safe Harbour Church has come a long way on the islands since Fred and Margarita brought their special Christian message to the islands almost 10 years ago.

The couple have been involved with their church for many years, starting out in Central Queensland where they built a strong church group to support the local Backwater and Rockhampton communities as they struggled to come to terms with wide ranging job losses, due to mine closures in the region at that time.

After their work in Central Queensland, they moved to Redland Bay for two years to be closer to their children.

Fred remembers: “While we were at Redland Bay I used to walk for exercise down to the Weinam Creek boat harbour.

“As I looked out over to the islands, I felt a strong desire to "check out" the islands.

“After visiting Russell Island a few times we were definitely drawn to invest in a home.

“We felt and were excited about using our expertise in helping to build a strong, vibrant community. “We felt a definite "call of God on our lives" to move to and make our home on Russell Island to become part of and serve our local community inclusive of the islands.

“We bought property in Kings Road in 2005 which we renovated, moved in and started a home group.”

The group grew quickly and soon were looking for a bigger venue. They then hired the island Recreation Hall , which they were still using for their Safe Harbour family church nearly 10 years on.

Fred continued: “I was volunteer caretaker for the Redlands City Council managing the hall from 2005 to 2014.

“My wife Margarita and I are both senior pastors with an international network of churches, an Aussie born movement and we have been working in our area of expertise ‘social justice’ for more than 20 years.

“We believed we needed to have a holistic approach to help to build a strong community on the islands.

“To cut a long story short, we have developed and incorporated 'safe harbour community care' as our social justice arm of our church, meeting many needs in our community including our food bank which so far has been solely funded by our own church made up of many members of our community..

“I have also the privilege of being the chaplain of our local RSL, ministering to our ex-service men and women as required as well as taking the Anzac Day and other commemorative services,” Fred said.

Now they are located at their new island church at ‘The Hut’, there are new objectives to achieve and goals to attain.

One of their new initiatives is Harbour Kids Music Time on Wednesdays and Tuesdays Gateway Prayers, both at ‘The Hut’.

Other concepts run by the Safe Harbour Church include Safe Harbour Community Care, Safe Harbour men’s group, ladies KYB study group, and a ladies craft group.

Every Sunday at ‘The Hut’ there is a 9am early worship meeting and a 4pm Cafe Church on the first Sunday of every month. To find out more phone 0418 182 648.

• Fred and Margarita and Safe Harbour church members outside ‘The Hut’ in Jackson Road.