About the authors


Awaken The Spirit
– The Sacred Text of Jesus

In 2005 Jay Jeffries began the long journey of commissioning a book, to capture the attention of those who consider themselves spiritual. Sixteen Authors and several Artists contributed to the book.

Authors were chosen for their knowledge, experience, integrity and love for the spiritual. Most have written books, papers or articles on their topics. Authors come from United States, UK and Australia and all bring their uniquely different flavors to the book.

Tyndale House Publishing has contributed the New Living Translation to the book.

Sally Coleman

Nationality: English Qualifications and background: BTh & Member of the SCE (Society of Contemporary Evangelists) Sally is an Evangelist and Community Outreach Worker. She is the National Coordinator for White-Fields Evangelist, ‘Journey Into Wholeness’ (a Christian group in the UK who seek to place a Christian presence into Mind Body Soul type exhibitions).



Rev Dr. John Drane

Nationality: Scottish Qualifications and background: John is founders of the religious studies program at the University of Stirling, Scotland. He is also appointed to teach Practical Theology in the Divinity School at the University of Aberdeen. Currently a self-employed consultant working with churches of many different denominations throughout the United Kingdom as well as internationally. An adjunct professor in New Testament and Practical theology at Fuller Theological Seminary, California, a visiting scholar at Spurgeon’s College in London and a visiting Fellow of St John’s College, Durham. John is also an ordained minister and well known throughout the UK and western world for his academic contributions.

Books Written: The McDonaldization of the Church (Darton Longman & Todd 2000). Do Christians know how to be Spiritual? The Rise of New Spirituality and the Mission of the Church (Darton Longman & Todd 2005).
Introducing the Bible, 3rd edition with CD-ROM (Fortress Press 2005)
Family Fortunes: Faith-full Caring for Today’s Families (Darton Longman & Todd 2004) [With Olive Fleming Drane],
Cultural Change and Biblical Faith (Paternoster Press 2000)
Beyond Prediction: the Tarot and your Spirituality (Lion 2001) [With Ross Clifford & Philip Johnson]
Celebrity Culture and the Mission of the Church.

Olive Drane

Nationality: Scottish Qualifications and background: Master of Theology and Christian minister. Mission consultant to local churches. A Fellow of St John’s College, Durham, where she teaches on the MA in theology and ministry at the Anglican theological school Cranmer Hall. An adjunct professor in the School of Theology at Fuller Theological Seminary, California, Teaching and development of the mission shaped ministry course of the Church of England’s Fresh Expressions initiative.

Books Written: (Eight of the twelve books written/contributed to)
Family Get Together: Planning All-Age Worship (Birmingham: Administry 1990)
‘Bible Readings’, in Setting the Agenda: the Report of the 1999 Church of England Conference on Evangelism (London: Church House Publishing 1999), pp. 11-19
New Start: All-age Ecumenical Liturgical Resources for Advent 2000 (London: CTBI 2000)
‘Breaking into Dynamic Ways of being Church’, in Breaking New Ground: the first Scottish Ecumenical Assembly (Dunblane: ACTS 2001), pp. 138-154
Being Creative with Forms of Worship (Sheffield: Administry, 2002), Administry How-To Guide 3/2 co-authored with John Drane, Family Fortunes: faith-full caring for today’s families (London: Darton Longman & Todd 2004)
Spirituality to Go: rituals and reflections for everyday living (London: Darton Longman & Todd 2006)
“Worship and Preaching”, co-authored with John Drane, in Janet Wootton (ed), This is our Story: Free Church Women’s Ministry (Peterborough: Epworth Press 2007), pp. 50-67.

Mike Frost

Nationality: Australian Qualifications and background: Internationally recognised Australian missiologist and one of the leading voices in the missional church movement. Mike is the Vice Principal of Morling College and the founding Director of the Tinsley Institute, a mission study centre. Award winning author and editor.

Books Written: Jesus the Fool (Sydney, Morling Press, 1994)
Longing for Love (Sydney, Morling Press, 1996)
Eyes Wide Open (1999), which was voted Australian Christian Book of the Year in 1999 and published in the USA as Seeing God in the Ordinary (2000)
Lessons From Reel Life (2001) co-authored with Robert Banks
Freedom to Explore (Sydney, Morling Press, 2002)
The Shaping of Things to Come ((Sydney, Morling College, 2003) co-authored with Alan Hirsch, and short-listed for Australian Christian Book of the Year 2004
Exiles-Living Missionally in a Post-Christian Culture (2006)
Rejesus: A Wild Messiah for a Missional Church, (Sydney, Morling Press, 2008) (Hendrickson/Strand, 2009) co-authored with Alan Hirsch
Exiles in a Post-Christendom Empire (Sydney, Morling Press, 2006)

Allison Gentle

Nationality: Australian Qualifications and background: Allison was active in new age movement for 15 years. Since her Christian conversion in 2001, she has been a member of the booth ministry team at Mind Body Spirit Festivals with Community of Hope. She has completed a Master of Arts in Theological Studies, at United Theological College. She speaks and writes papers for various conferences including the Biennial Conference on Philosophy Religion and Culture. She is a lay preacher and worship leader in the Uniting Church.

Steve Hollinghurst

Nationality: United Kingdom Qualifications and background: Steve works for a Church of England mission agency called Church Army as a researcher. His job is to help enable the church to communicate effectively with the increasing numbers who have no church background.

Jill McCoy

Nationality: Australian Qualifications and background: BEd BTh DipTh Pastoral Ministry MTh
Jill is an ordained Anglican minister, currently serving as Rector of the Parish of Sorell, Richmond and Tasman in Tasmania. She has been in active Christian ministry in Australia for over 20 years, including 10 years teaching at Ridley College. Jill has a passion for helping Christians to understand what they believe and to work together as the body of Christ. She has been keynote speaker at numerous seminars and served as consultant to several local churches. Jill has also served on the board for ‘Christians for Biblical equality’ Melbourne.

John Morehead

Nationality: American Qualifications and background: Early on in John’s career he was licensed as a minister through the Southern Baptist Convention, and taught on new religious movements as an Interfaith Witness Associate with the SBC’s Home Mission Board. He is a licensed Southern Baptist minister, and has served as interim pastor for two Southern Baptist churches. John is the associate director of Neighboring Faiths Project, a cross-cultural missions ministry to new religions and alternative spiritualties.

Books Written: Encountering New Religious Movements: A Holistic Evangelical Approach (Kregel, 2004), a book that he co-edited and co-authored. This book was nominated as a 2004 Christianity Today Book of the Year Award finalist.
Forthcoming contributed to The Baker Dictionary of Cults.
E-journal – Sacred Tribes: Journal of Christian Missions to New Religious Movements. Co-founder and co-editor

Jon Newton

Nationality: Australian Qualifications and background: Jon is the Dean of Postgraduate Studies at Harvest Bible College in Melbourne, Australia. His new book The Revelation Worldview, based on his previous doctoral study (PhD from Deakin University, 2007), includes sections on the stars in Revelation, Revelation’s use of ancient myths, prophecy, feminine symbolisation in Revelation, alleged misogyny in Revelation, violence in Revelation, pluralism, etc. He has also being involved in ministry to Spiritual Seekers for 8 years at Mind Body Spirit festivals. He has written numerous articles and papers on outreach to seekers and also the Book of Revelation. He and his wife are the pastors of Oasis Church in Hampton, a suburb of Melbourne.

Papers presented:

Chapter on “The Challenge of Postmodernism” for Pointing the way, ed. Jill Ireland, Richard Edlin and Ken Dickens, National Institute for Christian Education (N.I.C.E.), 2003.
Revelation Reclaimed: The Use and Misuse of the Apocalypse. Milton Keynes, UK: Paternoster, 2009.
“Reading Revelation Romantically” in Journal of Pentecostal Theology, Volume 18, Number 2 (2009): 194-215.
“Holding Prophets Accountable” in Journal of the European Pentecostal Theological Association, Volume 30, Number 1 (2010): 63-79.
“The Scope of Christian Prophecy” in Australasian Pentecostal Studies, Issue 13 (2010): 59-86.
“Time Language and the Purpose of the Millennium” in Colloquium, Volume 43, Number 2 (2011): 147-168.
Editor, New Frontiers: Redefining Christian Ministry in 21st Century Contexts. Mosaic Press, Melbourne, 2013.  Also wrote one chapter on “Worldview Wars; battling for the mind in the 21st Century.”
“Story-lines in the Book of Revelation” in Australian Biblical Review Vol. 61 (2013): 61-78.
“The challenge of Postmodernism.” In J. Ireland, R. Edlin, K. Dickens, & G. Beech (Eds.), Pointing the way: Directions for Christian education in the new millennium [2nd ed., Kindle version]. National Institute for Christian Education, 2014.
“The Epistemology of the Book of Revelation” in Heythrop Journal, UK (published online June 2013): hard copy forthcoming.
The Revelation Worldview. Eugene: Wipf and Stock, 2015.

Simeon Payne

Nationality: Australian Qualifications and background: Simeon has worked with the Community of Hope, Sydney for 6 Years, doing mission to Spiritual seekers. He is currently a Baptist minister and Chaplain to the University of Western Sydney. He has also worked for Scripture Union Bible Ministries for 20 years.

Academic Peer Review Journals and Plenary Academic Presentations:
Johnson, Philip and Simeon Payne: 2004 AASR (Australian Association for the Study of Religion) Protestant Christianity and Astrology: A History of Fear and Fascination, and a challenge today.
Johnson Philip, and Simeon Payne. 2004. Evangelical Countercult Apologists versus Astrology: An Unresolved Conundrum. Australian Religion Studies Review 17 (2): 73-97.
Philip Johnson, Simeon Payne & Peter Wilson, 2006 (forthcoming). Toward a Contextualized Astrological Apologetic with a case study for booth Ministry outreach. Missiology (forthcoming)
Philip Johnson and Simeon Payne 2006 (Forthcoming). Dare to be Daniel. Emerging Church, Consumerists Spiritualities and Community of Hope in Australia. International Journal for the Study of the Christian Church. (forthcoming)

Contributing Writer to; Religious and Non-Religious Spirituality in the Western World (“New Age”), Lausanne Occasional Paper No 45, Editor Philip Johnson et.al., (Lausanne Committee & Morling Press, Sydney: 2004.)

Jim Reiher

Nationality: Australian Qualifications and background: BA Dip Ed MA Th. (Hons)
Jim oversees and teaches at the Berwick campus for Tabor Victoria – on Church History and New Testament Studies. Before that he had 5 years at Harvest Bible College in Melbourne.

Books Written: The Message in the Tarot, Spirituality. Self Published, 1998.
The Eye of the Needle: Discipleship and Wealth. UNOH. 2005
Women Leadership and the Church, Theology & Women. 2006. Acorn Press.

Barry Taylor

Nationality: American Qualifications and background: Barry is the co-director of Reel Spirituality, the film institute of the Brehm Centre for Worship, Theology, and the Arts. He is adjunct faculty at Fuller Theological Seminary where he teaches theology and culture, and also teaches advertising and consumer culture at Art Centre College of Design in Pasadena, California. Barry is a songwriter and film soundtrack composer who travels internationally speaking on issues related to theology and contemporary culture. He holds a PhD in Intercultural studies.

Books Written: Co-authored – A Matrix of Meaning: Finding God in Popular Culture, with Craig Detweiler, (Baker Academic, 2003).

Rev. Dr. Harold Taylor

Nationality: Australian Qualifications and background: BA (Melbourne), BD (Melbourne College of Divinity); Th.M (Melbourne College of Divinity); Doctor of Theology (Honoris causa)-(Australian College of Theology)
– Director of Community of hope
– 30 years of teaching courses in “New Age” / spirituality /healing / Missiology

Books Written: Tend my Sheep (SPCK) UK. 1983.
Thinking about Love, sex, and marriage. Trinity Press, and Scripture Union, Rabaul, PNG. 1972.
Thinking about Gambling. Trinity Press. Rabaul .PNG. l974
Sent to Heal, Order of St.Luke the Physician, Melbourne, l993. Revised & republished in USA 2006. Approx 3500 copies and still on market.
“Contextualised mission in church history” chapter, included in ” Encountering new religious movements- a holistic evangelical approach”. Edited by I Hexham, S.Rost, & John W. Morehead. Published Kregel.Publications, Grand Rapids, 2004.

Lee Walker

Nationality: Australian Qualifications and background: B.Th
Lee has come out of the New Spirituality scene after spending many years exploring it. Since her conversion 9 years ago she has worked to minister to people in the New Spirituality scene. She was mentored by Harold Taylor who directed Community of Hope Ministry in Victoria, Australia. She completed a B.Th at Kingsley College. She now owns a café Just Planet, that aims to attract Spiritual seekers and demonstrate the Gospel through action. From this she has started a group for those interested in the faith.

Rev. Peter Wilson

Nationality: Australian Qualifications and background: Peter is an ordained Anglican Minster and has worked at St George’s Anglican Church for many years. He was involved with Community of Hope Victoria, before he became the Victorian State Director in 2005. As part of his Masters degree on New Spirituality he has written as paper on Astrology and Christianity. This article first appeared in Working Together, the journal of the Australian Evangelical Alliance. In 2004 he has part of the Laussanne Conference.

Consulting Editor

Philip Johnson

Nationality: Australian Qualifications and background: Established Global Apologetics & Mission Ltd (incorporating the Community of Hope (Mission to the New Age)), and is its CEO. Has a double majored in B.A. – history and religious studies, and minored in Islamic studies. In his B.D. he majored in the history & thought of Christianity. He is the co-author of several popular books, published in both Australia and Great Britain that deal with new age and alternative spiritualities. He has had over 100 articles published in periodicals and journals such as the Lutheran Theological Journal, Australian Presbyterian, Australian Christian, Australia’s New Day, New Life, Southern Cross, and Working Together.

Books Written: Co-authored with Ross Clifford, Shooting for the Stars, Sydney: Albatross Books, 1993.
Sacred Quest, Sydney: Albatross Books, 1995.
Riding the Rollercoaster: How The Risen Christ Empowers Life, Sydney: Strand Publishing, 1998.
Jesus and the Gods of the New Age: Communicating Christ in Today’s Spiritual Supermarket, Oxford UK: Lion Publishing, 2001.
Co-authored with John Drane & Ross Clifford, Beyond Prediction: The Tarot & Your Spirituality, Oxford UK: Lion Publishing, 2001.
“Michael’s Long Search,” in Australian Stories for the Soul, Sydney: Strand Publishing, 2001, pp. 136-140.