CE Societies were established in each Australian state, with young people receiving a Diploma of Christian Endeavour Efficiency when they showed that they knew and applied the principles and practice of ‘for Christ and the Church’.
The first Victorian convention was held in Melbourne in 1890. Rapid growth occurred with 3000 members, representing 65 societies, attending the second convention in 1891, and 205 societies attending the third convention the following year.
Some of NSW’s 7000 members began evangelism and discipleship in aboriginal communities, beginning the work of United Aborigines Mission.
Western Australian CE members began the tradition of visiting hospitals and nursing homes with gifts of fruit and flowers.
Australia wide conventions helped young people to live for Christ and the Church.
Pictured: – Delegates of the North Queensland Christian Endeavour Convention held at Charter Towers in 1906 – State Library of Queensland, 86395
CE Societies continued to thrive, such as the Kalgoorlie Junior Chrisitian Endeavour Union who proudly display their shield which was won at a sports day with the Eastern Goldfields Division.
CE societies were still strong around the country, with 15,000 members in Queensland and 21,000 in NSW.
In 1938 South Australia held its largest camp of 300 campers following the 10th World CE Convention being held in Melbourne.
Delegates from the 10th World CE Convention being marching Melbourne streets
A singing stop on the way to 10th World CE Convention in Melbourne
CE was remained strong after World War Two, with this Christian Endeavour Group gathering at Rathmines RAAF Base in 1945.
The 14th World Convention was held in Sydney and South Australia’s Choir – The Endeavourers – toured Australia.
The Endeavourers sang at the Centenary Convention in Portland, Maine, USA, while camps remained strong in Mount Barker, South Australia.
State CE Unions declined, with Queensland, Victoria and Tasmania closing. After the National Convention in Adelaide The Endeavourers disbanded.
Junior Groups and Adult Grades remain throughout Queensland and SA. South Australia’s Junior and Senior Camps remain strong.
Adapted from ‘A Brief History of Christian Endeavor : Christian Endeavor in Australia and the Pacific’ Joyce Spicer
For the history buffs
Archives of Australia Christian Endeavour are held at the National Library of Australia.