An Eternity of ten years

Written by on October 17, 2019

By David Maegraith, co-founder of Eternity and ‘ideator’

For kids, school life can appear like an eternity. For others waiting to hear on a job offer or being stuck in traffic can feel like an eternity.

In what seems like an eternity ago to me, ten years ago today, I launched Eternity newspaper with my friend John Sandeman. It was a bold call – I believe a call of God – to raise $250,000 in three months to start producing and printing 100,000 copies of a monthly newspaper from scratch, then bundling and posting them to unsuspecting churches around Australia.

The name Eternity was a nod to the incredible ministry of Arthur Stace, an illiterate old man in Sydney’s forties and fifties who God enabled to chalk the word Eternity in a beautiful script on the pathways of Sydney.

I was only involved for the start-up phase and the first year, then John took an offer from Bible Society Australia and they took over production of the paper, and are still going strong ten years later.

David Maegraith (left) and John Sandeman launched Eternity newspaper in 2009

I don’t remember much from those heady days, but this Wikipedia article is fairly accurate, and the Sydney Morning Herald did a launch story.

Bad news comes in threes

They say ‘bad news comes in threes’ and for me, 2009 was a shocker. Early in the year the Sydney Anglican Diocese laid bare the amount of money they had lost in the Global Financial Crisis through borrowing money to buy shares – the extremely risky practise of margin lending.

It was tens of millions lost through greed, the result being that over 80 diocesan workers, myself included, lost their jobs. I was made redundant from Anglican Media Sydney, with a wife and three young kids to support.

Then, my mentor and good friend Geoffrey Bingham died. He was 90, and had played a good innings, but it was still a sadness, as death is. While in Adelaide for the funeral, my son Jacob was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.

Three major shocks in six months. And then I started Eternity.

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