His appeal to any would-be politicians is to ‘Do your research!’
If you’re writing to a politician – ‘Don’t mention you’re a Christian.’
Statistics from one western country – ‘A hundred children euthanised (annually) without their parents’ consent. That’s what the research shows. It’s murder!’
“The government stats on gay marriage say those marriages last only for 18 months.”
Veteran Christian leader Andrew Evans has given insight into the need and the future of Christian influenced politics in Australia.
The 82 year-old retired pastor was the founder of the Family First Party that recently merged with Senator Cory Bernardi’s newly formed Australian Conservatives Party.
Pastor Evans said it’s going to strengthen the conservative Christian cause.
That was his first reaction to the news and he said Dennis Hood, the Family First leader in South Australia has kept him informed with the merger proceedings.
“I met with Cory and my son also before any changes were considered,” Pastor Evans said, saying that Dennis would not have agreed to the merger if Andrew and his son Ashley were opposed to it.
“I talked frankly with Cory about some of the issues.”
“How do you keep certain people out from the Party because so often they creep in and they bring their ideologies with them,” Pastor Andrew informed, saying Senator Bernardi had the exact same plan as he had.
Pastor Evans said Senator Bernardi’s reason for setting up his Conservatives Party was for the same reason he’d established Family First.
“I’ve always been a Liberal supporter because of the moral issues. Labor had some very good moral people but generally I’ve been a Menzies supporter,” Andrew Evans admitted, but said the situation had changed at the turn of the century.
“They tended to be slipping away from that moral compass they’d had for years and years. So I put my hand up and started Family First Party.”
Senator Cory Bernardi’s reason for leaving the Liberals was for exactly the same reason.
“He’d seen even a further drift than I had seen. The Liberals had gone further to the Left to try and appease the Left element in society. So it was a great joy to join him,” Pastor Andrew said of Senator Bernardi.
“In fact last week I was at the last meeting of the AGM for the Family First Party in South Australia.”
“Cory was there and we had a whole time of questions and answers before a secret ballot. It was unanimous,” Andrew reported, chuckling as he repeated the result confirming the merger adding that it was a good victory.
Pastor Andrew Evans agreed that it clearly gives a very large, stable, and a growing party foundation for what will happen in the future.
Cory Bernardi had always been a friend of Family First.
“When Denis Hood was first elected in 2006 the first phone call he received to congratulate him was Cory from the Liberal Party.”
“We used to say to Cory, ‘Don’t leave the Liberals. Stay there. You’re a voice for conservatism within the Liberal Party.”
“But he eventually found exactly what I’d seen. The drift was so much. They wouldn’t listen to you, they’d push you aside and so he made the move,” Andrew commented, saying the Australian Conservatives can now utilise Family First’s infrastructure.
“We’ve people on the ground everywhere in Australia. Cory Bernardi was surprised to find that we had run 160 candidates for two, maybe three, federal elections across the nation.”
Pastor Evans said Family First has the infrastructure and now with Senator Bernardi in Canberra, it has the necessary front, approach and insight.
“Already we’re seeing amazing people being drawn to our pathway,” said Pastor Evans.
But, as 20Twenty host Neil Johnson calculated, there’s anywhere between a year to two years before the next federal election.
That being the case, was Andrew Evan’s prepared to make a call this far out on the Conservative Party’s chances.
Pastor Andrew first noted that Senator Bernardi is not in any hurry to rush things.
“He’s analyzing everything and the arrangement is that he and Denis Hood will work together to build the new party. And looking at South Australia I believe we’ll get possibly two seats at the next state election in the upper house,” Pastor Andrew announced.
“If we get those two we’ll hold the balance of power in the upper house by ourselves. We won’t have to rely on someone else.”
Andrew’s also confident Cory Bernardi will get another South Australia candidate up at the next federal election. But the momentum is growing elsewhere.
“He’s just feeling the waters. He’s not rushing anything. But depending on how the momentum goes.”
Andrew remarked that in Queensland they want Cory Bernardi to put up Australian Conservative candidates in the state election. But the senator’s not so sure about that and Andrew said if Queensland wants the senator’s help then they should put together their reasons for him doing so.
“Present a case why he should run candidates in the state election with no upper house.”
“We’re in a transition phase. South Australia’s locked down. I hear Victoria’s getting registration, and in the other states we’ve hundreds of people on our data base.”
“So as we build the thing you’ll be amazed where it will take us,” Pastor Andrew Evans confidently expressed.
The news for a resurgent conservatism has all been good news so far. Neil Johnson switched the focus onto the recent UK election where the Tories lost a swag of seats and to stay in power will need the support of the Democratic Unionists Party.
Neil suggested the DUP has similarities with Family First. Could that be a good thing?
The DUP was started by the Reverend Ian Paisley and Andrew Evans said they’d love it here if the day came when the likes of the Australian Conservatives were called upon to form a coalition government with the Liberals.
“After all, what’s wrong with Christian values? Our whole society is built on that. It’s a better way to go.”
“The left wing approach is not the way to go. It is a disaster.”
“It’s better to go the old fashioned way and see stability and strength,” Andrew Evans declared and added some wise word of advice for any aspiring would-be politicians.
“Do your research. If you do your research you won’t go down the euthanasia road. You won’t go down the gay marriage road.”
Pastor Evans said the research reveals it has been a total failure in those countries where these issues have been legalised. He used The Netherlands statistics as an example for euthanasia and gay marriage. Andrew gained the knowledge first hand from a trip to the country.
“They euthanise at least a thousand people a year without their consent. That’s murder.”
He said Holland has also had gay marriage for years, so he looked at their statistics on same sex marriage.
“The government stats on gay marriage say those marriages last only for 18 months.”
As for a traditional heterosexual marriages, they last an average of 10 years.
Next came climate change. Again the cry from Andrew Evans. “Do your research!”
Pastor Andrew Evans was adamant that Christians and conservatives in Australia need to make a stand.
“The gay lobby are pushing their line, the euthanasia lobby are pushing their line, so if we do nothing they’ll get their way.”
Pastor Evans believes churches need to be politically active against the bad stuff. Write to the politicians, and don’t mention you’re a Christian.
If you would like to listen to the full audio interview click play below
Andrew was born to missionary parents in India. From 1958 to 1960, Evans studied for Christian Ministry at the Assemblies of God Commonwealth Bible College in Brisbane (now known as Southern Cross College in Chester Hill, Sydney). He graduated with a Diploma in Theology in December 1960 and was ordained to the Ministry in 1963. He then served as a credentialed missionary with AOG World Missions in the East Sepik province of Papua New Guinea from 1963 to 1969.
For 30 years, Andrew served as Senior Pastor of Paradise Assembly of God in Adelaide, now known as Paradise Community Church. He was National Superintendent of the Assemblies of God in Australia, before being succeeded by Pastor Brian Houston of Hillsong Church, who changed the title to National President. Andrew then started the Family First Party and was elected into the Legislative Council at the 2002 state election in South Australia. He retired from service in the Legislative Council 3 July 2008. Andrew now travels and ministers most weekends in various locations in Australia.