The ACR chats to Tony Payne about a Nexus Conference 2020

ACR: Tony, thanks for taking the time to explain about Nexus! So when people ask, ‘What is Nexus?’, how do you describe what it is?  

TP: Nexus is a rare opportunity in the midst of a busy ministry year to get together with other Reformed-evangelical gospel workers, to be stimulated and encouraged for the task, and just to hang out with brothers and sisters who are all on about the same thing. It’s a one-day ‘shot’ of ministry encouragement and networking.

ACR: Why is it important to have something like the Nexus conference? 

TP: It’s important because gospel ministry is so important — for our congregations, and for the lost all around us — and because gospel ministry is hard. It’s easy to become discouraged, distracted and disappointed. We need each other, to keep speaking the word to each other, and that’s why we launched Nexus. Our tagline is ‘where theology, ministry and fellow workers meet’, and that pretty much summarises it. 

ACR: Can you share about how Nexus has helped people in the past? 

TP: At the end of the conference each year, we get loads of feedback. And the two common threads are that pastors find it really refreshing and encouraging to catch up with old friends (and meet new ones), and to be stretched theologically and biblically — to be able to just sit and listen for once, rather than preach. 

The other surprising story with Nexus is how much the Livestream audience has grown outside Sydney. For many ministry teams in other parts of Australia, Nexus is an annual opportunity to spend an encouraging day together, along with other gospel workers in their area. 

ACR: What’s the theme of this year’s conference? Who should come to it? 

TP: This year (March 23 at Moore College, 2-8pm Ed.) we’re talking about ‘How to save a city’ — by which we mean: how does God use local churches and local gospel workers to bring his salvation to the city we’re in. In our case, that’s Sydney, but the concepts are the same for whatever patch God has put you in. 

The people who should come (or tune in via Livestream) are basically anyone in evangelical ministry, or training for that ministry. So everyone from a key lay leader who is part of a ministry leadership team, through to MTS trainees, theological college students, youth workers, children’s workers and pastors of all kinds. If your life is committed to gospel ministry and you want to be encouraged and encourage others in that task, then get along to Nexus. It’s a fantastic opportunity for both of those things. 

ACR: What are you particularly looking forward to at this year’s conference? 

TP: I think the speaker line-up this year is particularly strong, and I’m very much looking forward to how that unfolds. Carl Matthei is kicking the day off with an exposition of Revelation 4-5, and Carl is a great Bible expositor. Pete Tong is then going to speak about the ‘glory and power of the local church’ in reaching our city (especially when we don’t tend to feel very glorious or powerful much of the time); Mike Leite will then focus on how ordinary and yet extraordinary the work of the local pastor is; and then after dinner, Phil Colgan will sum up the challenges of where we currently stand, and what’s needed next. 

ACR: Thanks, Tony! If people want to register and come along, how do we do this?

TP: Head to and you can get all the details and sign up. Looking forward to seeing many brothers and sisters there!