Jarryd Hayne on his way to Perth

Jarryd Hayne. Photo: Getty
Jarryd Hayne. Photo: Getty

DAILY prayers, lectures and worship are on the agenda for two-time NRL player-of-the-year Jarryd Hayne after he was permitted to attend a Christian missionary school in Perth while awaiting trial on rape charges.

The former Parramatta fullback, who was twice awarded the Dally M medal as the NRL’s best player, was in Newcastle Local Court on Wednesday where he was committed to stand trial in the District Court on two counts of aggravated sexual assault.

The 31-year-old has not yet formally pleaded but his lawyer has previously indicated he denies sexually assaulting a 26-year-old woman in Newcastle on the night of the NRL grand final in September 2018.

The court heard the trial isn’t expected to start before September 2020.

Meanwhile Hayne, who played eight NFL games for San Francisco after quitting the Eels in 2014, was successful in having his bail varied to permit him starting discipleship training with evangelical Christian organisation Youth with a Mission Perth on Sunday.

As part of the program and to abide by his new bail conditions, Hayne will live in a male-only dormitory and compulsorily attend lectures over three months.

The course focuses on Christian discipleship in areas of personal growth and basic training for service within Christian missions, training director Caleb Brownhill said.

That’s followed by a three-month field assignment, although Hayne would require another bail variation to participate.

“This course develops participants in their personal understanding of God and relationship with Him as well as core concepts of missions and processes of evangelism,” Mr Brownhill said in a statement to AAP.

“We are aware of the charges against Jarryd.

“Youth With a Mission Perth supports all our students in their desire to grow in Christian character. This would include Jarryd.”

Two letters from YWAM Perth were presented to Mr Stone to assist Hayne’s application, which was opposed by prosecutor Hamish Fitzhardinge on the grounds varying bail could put the community at risk.

Hayne went through the formal application process and disclosed the nature of his charges and background, his barrister Richard Pontello told the court.

“He’s been assessed as suitable with full disclosure,” he said.

The magistrate said any perceived risk to the community could be mitigated by continuing to require Hayne to report to police three times a week and by requiring the course provider to notify prosecutors if he failed to attend classes.

Hayne will be one of about 11 students doing the course, which YWAM Perth says can lead directly to related ministry opportunities.

He’s expected to return to Newcastle District Court on July 25 for arraignment.

– AAP