Who is Australian Clergy Families (ACF)?

We began in 2014 with a small idea and a lot of prayer! After years of working in, and observing, the ministry life, we realised that few other Australian professions hold such a unique blend of joys and challenges that impact not only those employed in ministry, but also their families.

Being called to a life in ministry can be a wonderful blessing, but can also come with challenges, sacrifices, and hardships that clergy families often carry alone. We wanted to be there for these families, in the ups, downs and everydays, sharing their journey through ministry and family life*.

We're now an inter-denominational community providing support, access to quality resources,
pastoral care and advocacy for clergy and their families around Australia.

We've had the privilege of journeying together with hundreds of clergy and their families around Australia, from remote regions to the city centres, and look forward to walking with them in the years to come!

What Do We Do?

Support: We support clergy families by providing a wide range of resources and contacts. These include a reviewed library of articles, local supports, conducting independent research to better understand clergy family life, and providing easily-accessible online (and offline!) resources.

Community & Pastoral Care: We provide a range of online communities and one-on-one pastoral care to clergy family members around Australia including hosting a private online community, The PK Place for clergy children, and offering prayer and support through Facebook and email.

Advocacy: We know from our research that clergy families are best supported by their ministry and church communities (Doing Ministry Together, 2017). We aim to encourage this support by advocating for the needs and well-being of clergy families so that they, and the churches they are part of, can enjoy ministry together as members of the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:12-27). This advocacy includes hosting Ministry Appreciation Week each year, conducting seminars and presentations, and providing ministry communities with useful resources.

ACF is based in Melbourne and run by Matt and Rachel Stevens with the help of some amazing volunteers. Our supports and resources are available free-of-charge or at low cost.

Meet Our Team

Meet Matt. He studied science at Melbourne University and is a graduate of Ridley Theological College. Before co-founding Australian Clergy Families, Matt worked for 8 years with children and families as a lay children’s minister, ACCESS Chaplain, and ministry leader in a range of camps and outreach programs. He's passionate about clergy families enjoying ministry life together. When not at ACF, Matt enjoys quoting his favourite authors at his long-suffering wife - sorry Rachel!

Meet Rachel. She's a trained Health Promotion consultant & graduate of Ridley Theological College
. While Rachel has worked as a lay youth minister and volunteered for many ministries, she also grew up in a clergy family and has worked closely with clergy families for nearly 5 years. She's passionate about clergy families being heard, supported, and accepted as they are. When she's not at ACF, Rachel can be found hunting for Melbourne's best hot chocolate (recommendations welcome!).

Meet Dave! He helps out around the place in different ways particularly with our website and publications. When he's not at ACF, you'll find him studying Psychology and earning the love of local pigeons!

We're available for talks and group sessions.
The ACF team hold current Working with Children Checks.

* We support a diverse range of people in ministry across Australia, including clergy workers, couples, families, student ministers, and retirees. Clergy encompasses all denominations and their respective positions in ministry. While we use the term clergy, the profession of minister also go by titles such as pastor, preacher, priest, vicar, deacon, lay clergy and others.