Monday the 6th of February 2006 saw the fulfilment of over three years of hard work and continual prayer with the opening of Heritage College Perth. The night before saw the wind pick up, and quite a ‘blow’ set in. However not even the wind was able to blow away the sense of excitement as the students started to arrive, and as the parents milled around waiting for the first assembly to commence. It was a wonderful sight to see the sixty-five foundation students and their teachers perform two musical items at that opening assembly, and to have an opportunity to thank those many, many brethren and sisters who had laboured so diligently.

Later that day a brother and I were standing at the front car park looking over what two days earlier had been a construction site, but was now a functioning school. I can still hear the joy in the brother’s voice, and see the smile on his face as he turned to me and said, “I had to pinch myself this morning at the assembly just to prove that this is actually true and happening.”

Yet at numerous points along the journey there were times when the vision became a little dim, and the ‘roadblocks’ just a little too high and a little too insurmountable. Yet through Yahweh’s good Grace and His overshadowing care and guidance all those barriers were removed one by one—sometimes in the most amazing manner.

Perhaps this aspect of the project—Yahweh’s overshadowing care and guidance—can be summed up in two events. The first occurred on the night that we settled on the block. We now owned the site—the plans had been drawn up and submitted to council, and all we were waiting on was the development approval and building licence to start work. However, our application had been rejected by the Council staff a few days previously and we were now to attend the Council meeting to plead our case before the Councillors. It was, however, highly unlikely that they would go against the recommendation of their staff. Our case was somewhat down the agenda, and as we sat there listening to the other cases before the Council I was reminded of the situation of many who were brought to the point of having to place all their trust in Yahweh—it was not an easy thing to do in practice, especially when a project had taken so long to get to where it was—but in Yahweh was where we had to place out complete trust. Eventually our turn came and we were allowed to express our desire to establish our school for our community and the education of our children. After some questions the vote was put to the Counsellors, and they approved our application—overturning the recommendation of their staff! How easy it is to doubt sometimes when things appear impossible….

The other event occurred on the Friday before we started. One of the final major items that needed to be in place for the school opening was the sewerage connection. In order to get that we needed an inspector to come and do two separate inspections. Normally these are done days apart—however we needed them both to be done on that last Friday. On Thursday afternoon the inspector refused to do both of the inspections on the same day, leaving us potentially without a sewerage connection until well after our planned opening. However, when the inspector arrived on Friday to do the first of the two inspections, it was not the one who had refused the day before—he was sick in bed at home—unable to come to work. The new inspector was more accommodating and both inspections were done that afternoon.How easy it is to doubt sometimes when things appear impossible….

It had been just eighty-four days from the day that we purchased the block to the day that we opened. During those twelve weeks it has been conservatively estimated that the brethren and sisters contributed in excess of 7 000 hours of volunteer labour, removed almost 400 tonnes worth of trees and stumps (and we still have a site that is covered with wonderfully huge well established trees), removed over 200m3 worth of rubbish and builders’ rubble, laid over 1,300m2 of turf and consumed well over 1,500 sausages as brethren and sisters worked either on the site, or in support of those on site. Through Yahweh’s Grace we were blessed to be able to transform an overgrown wilderness into orderly school grounds, refurbish a house and two sheds, relocate a transportable building (and refurbish it), construct two learning areas for our K to 4 year groups, and put in place a foundation that will allow us to continue to grow as our student numbers increase.

In looking back over the weeks and months that have allowed, through Yahweh’s Grace, the establishment of our College in Perth, I am continually impressed by the power of many.

In the last few weeks there was a huge list of both large and small tasks that needed to be completed, and yet on some days we had over sixty brothers and sisters working diligently away. When well organised, it is amazing what can be achieved. It was a small taste of the Kingdom to see brothers and sister working side by side to achieve a common goal—like Nehemiah of old we soon worked out that the best way to achieve a huge amount of work was to ‘compartmentalize’ the work load, asking certain ones to take ownership of certain tasks. If it was not the painting, then it was the plastering, if not the oval and grass areas, then it was the limestone walls or the entry statement, if not the electrical work then it was the plumbing, if it was not the building or roofing, then it was the cleaning up after the hordes of workers that saw many, many brothers and sisters work together, in unity, to achieve a final result that many people thought was impossible.

However, the work is not over—there is another building phase to commence, with the construction of the library and resource centre and then learning areas for the 5 to 10 year groups, as currently those year groups are in more temporary accommodation.

But even as the dust of the construction started to settle the most important building blocks arrived—dressed in new uniforms, huge smiles and eager expressions on their faces—the students, the Heritage of Yahweh. As our classes commenced the greatest work was placed in the hands of the staff, a work that I am convinced will continue to see Yahweh’s blessing, as attention is given to each individual student to achieve their very best in an environment where Yahweh will not only be seen as the foundation of all things, but where He will be honoured in a manner that will help to develop minds and characters ready for His son’s return.