Our Team

With you on the journey

Yong Shin Chee (Yoshi)

Yong Shin Chee (Yoshi)

Senior Pastor

Yoshi started as the Senior Pastor of Wantirna early 2017. Coming from a background in IT, where he worked for Coles Myer, IBM and MYOB, Yoshi felt the calling to ministry and thus went from working with technology to working with people… and absolutely loves it!

He did his Masters in theological studies at the Andrews University Seminary in Michigan, USA, and had previously been senior pastor in the Central Coast. While he loves working with people of all ages, his passion is with the younger generation, having started out as a youth pastor in Kingscliff, NSW.

In his spare time, he still loves to tinker with technology (don’t ask him if Android or Apple is better), with basketball as his other passion. He also loves music and enjoys playing the piano and guitar when he has the time. His true love however is two-fold - the service of Him in the preaching of the gospel, and his beautiful wife Nadia.

Sylvia Mendez

Sylvia Mendez

Associate Pastor

Sylvia is currently serving in her third year as the associate pastor at Wantirna. She recently completed her Bachelor of Ministry and Theology at Avondale Seminary via distance education and is now excited about all the extra time to read books for fun.

Prior to her time at Wantirna, Sylvia worked for over 15 years in the academic publishing industry before answering the call to undertake studies and enter full time ministry. In all the spare time that is left, she loves to spend time with her husband and two teenage daughters, adding books to her reading pile and cooking. Sylvia started attending Wantirna Church in 2006 and the community has been her family ever since.

She’s passionate about authentic relationships, creating a safe space where people can be honest and can get to know each other and coming alongside to hear your story.

Paul Bower

Paul Bower

Lead Elder

As the current Lead Elder at Wantirna, Paul works closely with the pastoral and elders team in ministering to the Wantirna church family. He was born in Adelaide and has been part of Wantirna church for the last 18 years.

Paul is a professional Coach and Consultant that provides Business Advisory Service to companies both large and small around Australia. Family is important to him - he ranks his family and the way they are as his proudest accomplishment. He believes Jesus is the most influential person in his life and His eternal love of us just "blows our mind". This means that very little (of any) fears or worries keep hi up at night as God has it all under control.

One would describe Paul as versatile, sociable and friendly, and he enjoys most genres of music, although rap wouldn't be at the top of the list.

Besides God and his family, one of his other passions include his Harley Davidson. In his own words, to manage stress, Paul will "hand it over to God, and then go for a big long drive on my Harley and remain positive."

Lesley Clark

Lesley Clark

Church Custodian

Along with members of her extended family, Lesley has been attending Wantirna church since 1983. Her role as Church Custodian is to manage and coordinate the use of church facilities, property and equipment. As well as our program being a busy one it is regularly used by other entities and Lesley is the person who coordinates the usage of our facility for all these events.

Trained as a registered nurse, she has served the Adventist church in various other roles, from church cleaner to the chairman of the local Adventist school board. However, the one accomplishment she is most proud of is that she and husband JC have raised two wonderful kids who love Jesus.

She jokingly describes herself as a busy body, but Lesley is seen by many as fun, reliable and faithful. She positively asserts that she trusts God implicitly and therefore has no fears or worries that keep her awake at night.

In her words, this is what she would like to achieve in the next ten years:

“To be in heaven, along with as many people in my sphere of influence as possible!  While waiting for that to happen I plan to keep myself healthy and active so I can be a blessing to others.

And to achieve a $25 season pass to snowboard at Red Mountain when I turn 75.”