Meet Our Staff

Bill Winthrop

Acting Senior Minister
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bill

Bill and his wife Fran became Christians soon after coming to Australia in 1982. Bill had worked as an accountant in the UK, in Europe, and the Middle East, but just a few years after becoming Christians he and Fran decided to pursue full time ministry, and so after studying at Moore Theological College Bill, together with Fran, ministered in Willoughby, Mount Druitt, and Lithgow. In recent years Bill has ministered as locum or in part time ministry in several parishes in the Blue Mountains and Sydney.

Bill and Fran came to Australia with two children, and they have expanded to include seven grandchildren, which makes for a busy but happy family.

Peter Hughes

Assistant Minister
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peter

Pete was born and bred in Sydney. He has worked in a variety of ministry positions including church planting, campus work and church ministry. He is married to Audrey and they have 3 kids: Calvin, Kia and Evangeline.

He loves movies, what they mean and how they communicate, including the ones where stuff just blows up.

Pete also loves Jesus and explaining who he is. As well as reading and watching most sports. He doesn’t like country music.

Chris Jones

Youth Minister
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chris

Chris is very thankful to have grown up in a Christian family, who continue to remain a great encouragement to him in his faith. He is also very thankful for his wife Claire, and son Joshua.

Prior to undertaking theological studies Chris trained and worked as an architect. He completed his Masters of Divinity at Sydney Missionary & Bible College (SMBC) in 2010, and has been working in full-time youth ministry since then.

Both Chris and Claire are passionate Sydney Swans fans, and can often be found at local games on a Saturday.

Chris is responsible for the youth ministries at St Stephen’s. He has a keen passion to train and equip youth leaders in order that the youth of the local area may come to know Jesus, and grow in their relationship with Him.

Karl Bonner

Young Adults Minister
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Karl

Karl lives in Marsfield with his wife (Lani), and their cat. He became a Christian in his teenage years, and has had a passion for sharing the gospel of grace in Jesus Christ ever since. When not working, he enjoys all things creative and is known for taking on an endless list of DIY projects. Whether cooking, painting, writing, filmmaking, or just having a nap; Karl tries to make the most of each day believing every living moment to be a graceful gift of God to be embraced.

Karl is responsible for our Young Adults ministry, particularly through our 7pm service, as well as our senior high school youth group members. He is always happy to make new friends and meet new people.

Lea Pilon

Children's Ministry Worker
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Lea

Lea grew up in a Christian family and as a local has been attending St Stephen’s Normanhurst all her life. From Sunday school and then Youth group, to teaching and then co-ordinating various groups within the church, she has seen the growth of the Gospel from many angles

At Uni while studying a Primary school teaching degree Lea was also involved in leading on several Anglican Youth Department camps where she subsequently met her husband Brett. They have 3 gorgeous daughters; Jordan, Danielle and Ashleigh. As a family they are all very involved in Netball and spend most of their Saturdays in Winter down at the courts. For relaxation, Lea loves to scrapbook, make cards, cross-stitch, read a book or spend time with their ever growing menagerie of pets while enjoying God’s creations. Lea has a passion to teach children about God and to nurture and guide them in developing their own personal relationship with Jesus.

Sarah Mercer

Pastoral Care Coordinator
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Sarah

Sarah has been a member of St Stephens for 13 years and currently attends the 5pm service.

Whilst she made a commitment to Christ in her teenage years, Sarah really only grasped the idea that being a Christian wasn’t about ‘being good enough’ in her twenties. When she realised that, a huge burden fell from her shoulders!

Sarah is the only female in her household, something that she is both thankful to God for, and challenged by (on a daily basis). She feels she is a better guest rather than host of dinner parties, she loves coffee and movies and after many years of thinking of herself as a sedentary introvert, is now discovering she may just be an active extrovert!

Sarah is excited by the challenge of co-ordinating Pastoral Care at St Stephens so that we can care for our community well and follow Christ’s command to ‘love others as ourselves’.

Clare Smeallie

Ministry Intern
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Clare

Clare has lived in Normanhurst all her life and has attended St Stephen’s regularly for about 9 years. Clare is extremely thankful for her Christian family who have encouraged her in her faith for her whole life.

Clare has just completed a Bachelor of Interior Architecture at the University of Technology Sydney. This year Clare will be working as a design intern for 2 days a week as well as undertaking a ministry internship 4 days a week at St Stephen’s. This ministry internship will allow her to grow in skills and understanding by being involved in a variety of different ministry areas in the church in order to see whether full time ministry is something she would like to continue with in the future.

In her free time Clare takes dance classes in ballet and jazz and enjoys watercolour painting, watching English period dramas and catching up with friends at any local cafe.

Caitlin Healy

Student Minister
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Caitlin

Caitlin has moved from Perth in Western Australia to study her Masters of Divinity at Sydney Missionary and Bible College.

She feels very privileged to have grown up in a Christian Family who helped her come to understand the gospel and what it means for her life. While studying Speech Pathology at university in Perth she was challenged to think about how she would serve God with her whole life – and that full time ministry might be a way to do that.

After working as a speech pathologist, she went back to uni and completed a ministry apprenticeship with a Christian group on campus and is now studying to increase her knowledge and skills. Working as a student minister at St Stephen’s allows her to continue to apply all that she is learning.

Caitlin is into all things baking, craft (crochet, knitting and sewing), reading, cricket and especially loves meeting up with young women to read the bible and figure out how it applies to our lives.

Faraj Yusufov

Student Minister
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Faraj

Faraj is currently studying at Moore College and lives in Croydon with his wife Emily. He has worked as a classroom teacher for 3 years before making the decision to move into ministry. Faraj loves spending quality time with friends, playing music, and viewing documentaries on anything and everything.

Faraj grew up around Pennant Hills with his immediate family who are originally from Azerbaijan. Before moving to Australia in 2001, he and his family resided in Dubai for a few years after having to move from Azerbaijan. It was in Australia that Faraj’s whole family met Jesus and came to believe the life giving message.

Faraj and Emily love Jesus and wish to make him known among the people within the different communities they are a part of.

Melanie Cunningham

Student Minister
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Melanie

Melanie has lived in Normanhurst for most of her life with her Mum (Ruth) and 2 brothers (James and Mitchell) and has grown up as part of the St Stephen’s community for the past 17 years. Melanie and her family started attending St Stephen’s as a family after joining the preschool and she has been attending the church since.

Melanie is extremely grateful for how incredibly blessed she is to have grown up in a home that teaches Christian values and the importance of following and loving God. Melanie, while always calling herself a Christian, was moved to personally take on her faith to have it influence and affect all areas of her life at the youth camp SHIFT in her upper high school years.

Melanie is currently completing a Diploma of Ministry at Youthworks College in Newtown, where she is learning about theology and children’s ministry. When not at church Melanie loves a good book and enjoys a nice quiet afternoon reading or exploring new places and trying new things with friends on the weekend.

Tadhg Richards

Year 13 Student
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Tadhg

Tadhg has lived in Thornleigh for his entire life and has attended St Stephen’s ever since he was a tiny human. Tadhg has been extremely blessed to have grown up in a strong, Bible teaching family who encouraged him to investigate the Bible for himself.

Tadhg recently completed his HSC at Turramurra High School and is currently doing Year 13, which is a Christian Discipleship Gap Year run by Youthworks College where he is studying a Diploma Of Christian Studies. He is excited for this year to challenge him and grow him in his knowledge and love for God.

Tadhg is a keen guitarist and this takes up a significant portion of his free time, but when he isn’t making noise, he’s either kicking the footy, cheering on the GWS Giants, catching up with mates, eating, or sleeping.