Roger Nixon

The pastor who never retired

Sunday, August 20, 2023
Brenton Stacey
About the Author

Brenton Stacey

Twitter LinkedIn Profile

Brenton is Avondale University’s Public Relations and Philanthropy Officer. He brings to the role experience as a communicator in publishing, media relations, public relations, radio and television, mostly within the Seventh-day Adventist Church in the South Pacific and its entities.

Roger Nixon cited for 60 years’ service to young and old

Roger Nixon enrolled at Avondale because he felt called to serve. Now he has 60 years of denominational experience—including 23 in young adult ministry, four in mission leadership and 14 in chaplaincy.

It began as sole teacher at the Seventh-day Adventist school in Gisborne after graduation but the call changed by the time Roger and wife Elva arrived. They would now reopen the primary school in Rotorua and minister at the church. Enrolment grew under Roger’s charge. Moves into youth ministry followed, in North New Zealand twice and the Central Pacific, where Roger, now ordained, established the Pathfinder ministry and introduced the 5-Day Plan to Stop Smoking. A relocation of the office from Suva to Auckland meant travel took Roger away from home for up to half the year. Tui Ridge Park is a legacy of Roger’s leadership in North New Zealand—he found the property for the camp.

Roger would also head youth and family ministries for one of the unions of the church in Australia and return to field ministry before a challenging appointment as president of the church in Fiji—finances were tight. He planted a new church—Gateway—during his last paid pastoral appointment.

In retirement, Roger has served his home conference in departmental ministry (as director of the Adventist Development and Relief Agency) and in field ministry (at Wallsend and Inverell) and in chaplaincy, visiting patients in hospitals between Maitland in the Hunter and Woy Woy on the Central Coast two days a week in addition to those in aged-care facilities. His rounds bring welcome company. He is also a former Avondale Alumni president. His message to alum reflects his pastoral heart: “Stay focussed on Jesus.”

Roger and Elva, married for 64 years, have two daughters. Stephanie (DipTch, 1984) and Kim (AdvCertBus, 1985) are also alumni of Avondale.

The Class of 1963 honours Pr Roger Nixon for his quiet commitment to a loving and faithful service that has ministered to young and old.

Homecoming 2024

Homecoming 2024 is August 23-24. Register to receive all the information you need to connect with your 1954, 1964, 1974, 1984, 1994, 2004 and 2014 classmates.