Louise Sutherland (née Warren)
1991-1992 / Diploma of Christian Studies (Henderson Campus)
I remember the fun times in Church History with Stuart Lange, and especially the day we all decided to wear white collars made of cardboard, which made Stuart burst out laughing – we went outside and had photos taken, with all smiles. Prayer times and being in Cell Groups and Church Involvement Weeks were great too. I’ve enjoyed the friendships, and reconnections too, since leaving BCNZ. My first flatting experience was with a fellow student who had been there a year behind me.
BCNZ equipped me to know the Bible better and how to live in a community. Community living was quite a challenge for me at times, with some regimented ways of doing things, or the ways they liked things to be done! Duties were a chore, but better when you had encouraging and uplifting people to support you. It shaped me to be more domesticated. The study and assignments were at times a challenge too; I got there eventually, but needed discipline to train myself each evening, as I’d rather be watching TV or talking on the phone to friends. It taught me skills, though, that have shaped me for the things I am doing currently, and also with my relationship with God.
After BCNZ I studied nursing for three years at Unitec Institute of Technology. I became involved with the Christian Fellowship for the Disabled, and Joy Ministries, which all come under the Elevate Christian Disability Trust. I went with a team to Canada to their Joy Fellowship, and led Bible Studies and joined a camp. I worked as a Practice Nurse for a Christian doctor who had eight children, and got married at age fifty to a wonderful man (Norm) in 2014. I went to Romania in 2016 and visited a Christian-based orphanage, where I met many children who I have followed since they were rescued from hospital. I also spent two weeks volunteering at a Children’s Hospital in another part of Romania, playing, feeding, and cuddling babies and young children who were at the hospital without their Mums.
I’m doing a mixture of things now! I’m giving Home Help to an elderly lady from our church who needs a bit of care and companionship. I assist students who need extra help with either reading or writing, or both, for their NCEA exams. Also, as I have loved acting and drama, I am with an Acting Agency! As we are currently in a pandemic the work has dried up a bit, though I have enjoyed being an extra on Shortland Street, Brokenwood Mysteries, 800 Words and many other little things too.
I’m grateful to God for being there always in the midst of every circumstance; for always loving and being willing to gently guide us in the right direction.