Heralding a new era under new pastors

Heralding a new era under new pastors

New Riviera Christian Centre pastors, Shannon and Bec Riley, want people to know church has stepped into a new era and that thereʼs a place for everyone, no matter what your background, nationality, history or belief.

Arriving from Newcastle in mid January, Shannon, Bec, and their two-year-old daughter, Maya, are settling into life as the senior ministers at the centre.

Shannon grew up in Launceston, Tasmania, and Bec grew up in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne.

They were set up on a blind date and hit it off.

Now married for 10 years, they love seeing life as an adventure and choose to have fun, even among all the nappy changes and day-to-day routine.

“A big part of who we are is about how we can help other people,” Shannon said.

“We would hope to be, personally, and for our church to be, a positive influence in the community we are in, as well as those communities we can reach into,” Bec added.

“There’s no doubt that we can achieve more together than any one person could do on their own.

“We would love to be known for how we championed other people, local businesses, education, sports and entertainment, as well as those in media and government.

“A community needs many facets, and the church is one of those.”

The Riviera Christian Centre is a contemporary church for all ages, with a focus on young families, youth and young adults, providing a place not only to celebrate Jesus, but to connect with others in the community and provide a support network and loving environment.

“Wanting church to real, relevant, and relational, church is a place to be enjoyed, not endured,” Shannon said.

Bec, who also has degrees in law and journalism, believes brining scripture to life through contemporary and engaging preaching is just part of the holistic church experience.

“Church is more than just a Sunday experience, there’s so much more available for those willing to get connected and get involved,” she said.

“Knowing you’re loved and accepted for who you are brings a freedom to experience the blessed life that God has for each and every person,” Shannon said.

“I can honestly say, there is no where else I would rather be on a Sunday than in church, it’s where I’m built up, encouraged and inspired to live my life on Monday and the rest of the week too.

“Church makes me a better parent, a better pastor and a better wife. It’s yet to make me a better cook,” Bec said.

“Oh yes, did we mention that we love our food. We really love our food!

“Already we have been to some amazing places in Paynesville, Bairnsdale and Lakes Entrance.

“It’s been fun exploring and eating our way through this beautiful region.”

Being a passionate Blues supporter in the AFL has also made the move south all the more sweet for Shannon as well.

Services are on Sundays at 10am and 5pm, and youth services for high school students are on Fridays from 7pm to 9pm.

If you want to know more about the future and direction of the centre, check out Vision Sunday, this week, 10am and 5pm.

Bec and Shannon hope this will be a great community event, and an opportunity to come and visit to see what the church is all about.

If they could leave you with one thought, they said they want the people of East Gippsland to know “the door is always open at Riviera Christian Centre”.

PICTURED: New Riviera Christian Centre pastors, Bec and Shannon Riley, along with daughter, Maya, have been welcomed into the East Gippsland community with open arms.