Board member Kevin Prewett presented a Chaplaincy Award for Shane Auld at the SCNZ leadership hui in March. Shane Auld is chaplain to the Southland Sharks basketball team. Here is his citation, given by Ross Georgiou.
Shane Auld knows what it is to be let down whilst under a professional sport contract. Dreams dashed. Hearts broken. He loves sports and loves to be with sportspeople. Having experienced hurt himself, he identifies with the struggles and triumphs of others in sport.
Rugby is his sport of choice, but Shane is just as happy at a basketball game, with a fishing rod in his hand on a corner of a peaceful river, or looking down the barrel of a big bore rifle.
Shane has found his sweet-spot: passion for sport, care for sportspeople and love of God. What’s more he has discovered how to do Sports Chaplaincy ministry with his family.
When I think of Shane I see someone who is empathetic and loves others. I see someone who is an individual of integrity, who shows Christian character and values regardless of the setting or environment.
He is the husband of Sarah, an accomplished hockey player from the south, a father of four, a northerner adopted by the staunch south, and this year’s SCNZ Chaplain of the year.
Shane is our Regional Leader for Southland. He wants to ensure we have good models of Sports Chaplaincy for others to see. He fits naturally into the Sharks, the local basketball team. Shane’s ministry with them has gone from strength to strength, with not only the players opening up to him and even sharing some real vulnerabilities, but also his influence in both speaking into the lives of the coaching staff and the CEO herself.
One of the hardest meetings I have ever had was with an individual from Southland… under Ray Sotutu’s organisation I did thirteen meetings in one day – and it was one good meeting after another with getting Sports Chaplaincy going. One meeting however was cold, hard and outright rude. Ray and I couldn’t believe that an individual would be so unprofessional. Fast forward to Shane coming on board as a chaplain. I remember Shane phoning me after meeting this same individual, hurt and confused… wondering where to go with this next.
His approach was to talk about it with me, pray about it and then serve to the best of his ability with Christ’s love. Over the course of the year this individual spied on Shane. Watching what he was doing with the basketball team and with rugby players that Shane had helped… fast-forward to the last few weeks and Shane and he met once again. God had done a mighty work in this individual, to the point that not only was he happy to meet but wanted to endorse the work of Sports Chaplaincy and the work of Shane.