Australian Darlene Zschech is acclaimed all over the world as a singer, songwriter, worship leader and speaker, most notably for her involvement in the music from Hillsong Church, Sydney over many years. Although she has achieved numerous gold albums and her songs are sung in many nations of the world, her success simply stands as a testimony to her life’s passion to serve God and people with all her heart. Darlene, alongside her husband Mark, are Senior Pastors of Hope Unlimited Church on the Central Coast of New South Wales, Australia.
As a songwriter, Darlene is perhaps most famous for the chorus “Shout to the Lord,” a song that is sung by millions of churchgoers every week and has been covered by many other artists. “Shout to the Lord” was nominated as Album of the Year for the 1997 Dove Awards and was nominated as Song of the Year for the 1998 Dove Awards. In 2000 Darlene received a Dove Award nomination for Songwriter of the Year and received the International Award for influence in praise and worship.
In addition to “Shout to the Lord,” Darlene has written many songs that have been published worldwide, which apart from Hillsong Music worship projects also include solo projects : “Kiss of Heaven”, “Extravagant Worship”, “Change Your World”, “Simply Darlene”, “You Are Love” and “Revealing Jesus” a live worship album recorded with Grammy award winning Israel Houghton. Through the Compassionart project 2008, Darlene was honoured to be allowed the privilege of writing with some of the most generous-hearted worship writers and leaders of our day, with the goal to write an album where all the monies raised went to others in less fortunate circumstances. Darlene is also passionate about raising and training other worship pastor, leaders, teams and writers and has written four books – “Extravagant Worship”, “The Kiss of Heaven”, “The Art of Mentoring” and the new “Revealing Jesus” devotional. These titles combined have been translated into over 20 different languages.
Many years ago Mark and Darlene made a life commitment to do whatever they could to bring answer and relief to human suffering, and one of their great joys in life is to work with Compassion International, serving the world’s poorest of the poor children.
It was during a Compassion trip to Central Africa in 2004 that Mark and Darlene were prompted to initiate Hope: Rwanda, a global endeavour designed to bring hope to a nation seemingly forgotten since the horrific genocide of 1994. The 100 Days of Hope (April 6 – July 15, 2006) project was strategically coordinated to cover the same 100 days that saw approximately 1 million people viciously slaughtered. Now HOPE: Global continues to bring hope and healing to Rwanda, and a new ‘HOPE’ has spread into Cambodia, Vanuatu, and India. The HOPE team are excited about all the future endeavours that continue to gather great momentum.
Darlene and Mark live in the beautiful Central Coast of New South Wales with their three daughters, Chloe and Zoe, Amy and son-in-law Andrew and beautiful grand-daughter Ava Pearl, grandson Roman Emmanuel Mark and brand new grand-daughter Ruthie Feather. While they travel extensively and have the honour of working and ministering alongside amazing friends around the globe, family remains Darlene’s supreme delight. As she says, “First and foremost I am a woman who simply and wholeheartedly loves Christ, and serves Him through loving my family, serving the church, and speaking up for those who cannot speak for themselves.”