GOD?S ANGEL: Pastor Garry Dronfield astride his Harley-Davidson outside the Lismore Uniting Church
GOD?S ANGEL: Pastor Garry Dronfield astride his Harley-Davidson outside the Lismore Uniting Church

A man of the cloth has bad boy image

By SAMANTHA TURNBULL

MOVE over Santa Claus, the Lismore Uniting Church has its own jolly, bearded man in the form of new bikie-cumpastor Garry Dronfield.

The long-haired HarleyDavidson lover is not your typical holy man.

He prefers black jeans and leather vest to the traditional robe and reverend's collar, and has toyed with the idea of replacing this year's Christmas hymns with Meatloaf tracks.

But the 43-year-old said his bad boy image was only skin deep. "Quite a few people are very surprised when they find out I'm a pastor, but you can't put people in boxes," he said.

"You can't judge a book by its cover because what's inside may surprise you."

A member of the God's Squad bikie club, he does not even have a sordid life story.

"I grew up in the church in Wollongong and my father was a minister," he said.

"I had no intention of becoming one myself, but because of my faith in God I believe I was led to this."

He said the local church community was unfazed by his petrol-powered machine penchant when he arrived two months ago.

"I was introduced to a lot of people after the interview process, so they knew what to expect," he said.

Christmas Day services will be held in Lismore Uniting Church at 8.30am and Coraki Uniting Church at 9am, and on Christmas Eve in Bexhill at 11.30pm.



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