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Remembering where we came from
(need photo of Nikki & Andy here)

The Start (1990)

Americans Bob and Kathy Helvey began FamilyLife in 1990 running one marriage event per year. In 1992 Andy and Nikki Bray attended the first event held at the Waipuna Hotel & Conference venue in Auckland. It was here where Andy sensed God calling him to leave his corporate career as Managing Director in branding and advertising and take the message of FamilyLife to the whole of New Zealand.

As a couple, they then joined FamilyLife in September 1993. Once God had answered their prayer by providing New Zealander leadership, the Helveys headed back to the States. Andy and Nikki Bray then became the National Directors of FamilyLife until Andy’s passing in 2018.

The Growth (1994)

Under Andy’s creative and dedicated leadership, FamilyLife thrived. Initially, the ministry was a video conferencing event with ‘Homebuilder couples’ bible studies resources.

FamilyLife grew from one Weekend To Remember marriage conference to up to 13 conferences a year; from one full-time supported couple to 5 couples; from a handful of volunteers to a national volunteer team of almost 100, and running one-day seminars such as “Building your mate’s self-esteem’ and “Rekindling the romance’. 

During this time, we also assisted a volunteer team in Singapore run “Weekend To Remember” events, as well as sending a Kiwi couple to Pakistan to run a marriage conference.

The Kiwis (1999)

In 1999 we changed tact as it was clear that New Zealand needed to hear from New Zealanders, and so while we re-recorded a brand new US FamilyLife Weekend To Remember video in the US the Brays also worked at growing a homegrown New Zealand speaker team with the intention of running live events. In the early 2000’s Andy created “A Day to Treasure” live event which in time became what is now known as “A Day Together”. This is a seeker event which has been held all across New Zealand as well as in the Pacific Islands, Australia, and Canada.

Resourcing Families (2006)

The Brays have also authored several resources, ‘Treasures in the Darkness’ (the story of Andy living an abundant life despite health hardships and difficulties), ‘First Things First’ (a planning guide for couples) and “Small Talk Question Cards” for couples and families. Andy also re-wrote “Preparation for Marriage” for a Kiwi audience.

live Events (2008)

The Weekend To Remember marriage getaway was then delivered live starting in 2008. It has had several iterations along the way and it continues to be delivered by our own team here in New Zealand and continues to be well received. Andy and Nikki also hosted a 30-minute weekly radio slot on New Zealand’s radio Rhema Christian broadcasting station with Aaron Ironside for 6 years as well as speaking at churches, Promise Keepers, and NZ Forum on the Family.

Tragedy And God's Faithfulness (2008)

It was evident that Christ was the source of Andy’s strength as life was a series of personal hardships. Andy lived with chronic kidney failure, home dialysis, suffered a stroke, heart attacks and the Bray’s also lost their oldest daughter Natasha in the public tragedy of the Elim/Mangatepopo canyoning disaster in 2008. Through it all God was faithful and He was glorified.

The Legacy (2018)

Christ called Andy home in June 2018 – he indeed was a good and faithful servant. Nikki continues to be involved with FamilyLife as a board member and on our speaker team, giving the rest of her time as a therapeutic coach.

The legacy lives on as FamilyLife continues to flourish.

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