Originally founded by four Nelson Christian businessmen who signed the Trust Deed in December 1962, they came together and used what they had:
• their God-given abilities;
• their willingness to serve their Heavenly Father;
• their confidence in the Gospel of Jesus Christ;
• their experience in business affairs;
• their training; and
• their developed financial skills.
This has continued through the decades. Now by seven new Trustees, three who never met the founders but all with the same commitment to growing the Trust, so more funds could be given to Christian work around New Zealand.
Roger Nicholson is one of the current Trustees involved in growing the Trust’s capital and then seeking God’s leading on how the funds should be distributed. He follows in his father’s footsteps, David Nicholson, who was one of the founders. DK (as he was better known) along with his good friend Ray French, was instrumental in setting up the Baptist Savings and Development Society (now Christian Savings Limited) also in the early 60’s.Nelson Christian Trust has concentrated on building a portfolio of commercial property. This has produced a regular and stable income enabling monthly distributions to be made.
Roger spent more than a decade on the Board of Christian Savings and during that time became aware that Carey College and the Baptist Union were keen to purchase the “house next door” – 477 Great South Road. Nelson Christian Trust was able to take a shareholding in this new venture and it gave them a foothold in the Auckland property market, but more importantly, it increased the amount they could ultimately give away. It also gave Carey College security so that if it wanted to, it could enlarge its footprint in the future. This was once where our office was located before we moved to our current office in Penrose. Nelson Christian Trust has also been involved in a second property investment (525 Property Limited) in Great South Road with other Baptist groups.
Today, Nelson Christian Trust distributes funds to 29 ministries around New Zealand by automatic payments plus a small number of one-off grants. They have established 4 broad categories of ministries they invest into:
• Top of the cliff
• Bottom of the cliff
• Children and Youth
• Missions in New Zealand
This investment strategy has enabled them to show success and longevity in their work, as they are able to reach more people while managing their resources with care. With this level of dedication, Nelson Christian Trust is truly a remarkable example of God’s faithfulness and his commitment towards helping those in need.