Our Macedonian call is slowly unfolding as we live and work in London. H has been leading St. Barnabas Church Kensington through a transition as their Vicar of 13 years has stepped down. He has repeated a Leadership Development course with two large groups of committed lay leaders that proved to be radically life changing for many. Ultimately, H has helped the congregation define who they are and where they hope to be going in the future. In the meantime, we’ve seen the church grow as a result.
Located in a very affluent and busy part of London that has been hard to reach with the Gospel, we are suddenly seeing many people from the neighborhood drawn to the church. After a decade of slow decline, this has been life giving for all of us to witness. H baptized a Muslim woman who came to faith and felt at home the first time she walked through the doors. We are very much an Acts church representing languages and people groups from all over the world. The manifestation of His presence through the prophetic and practice of spiritual gifts is an organic part of life in the church. It is an exciting time and we feel privileged to be leading such a wonderful group of people in London.
A new vicar was unconventionally appointed a few weeks ago, meaning he will not be available to lead the church until his contract expires in Paris in July of 2017. The only way for that to happen is for H to lead the church for another year. There was wild applause in the church when that announcement was made. We have signed a three year contract to remain at St. Barnabas and hope to be there for quite some time.
H also works for the Bishop of Islington, Ric Thorpe. Ric was appointed as the Bishop of Church Planting for London and is being invited to help around the country. H is part of Ric’s team that includes an administrator and two interns. He is helping Ric to develop strategy, train church planters and fund church planting among a variety of other tasks. I believe they have 100 new communities in the stream at the moment.
My role in London has been one of support. I make it my job to meet every new person entering the doors of St. Barnabas and cultivate community through hospitality. I meet with several one on one for coaching and mentoring as God directs. As well, my work as a writer garners speaking engagements and opportunities to influence through the message of rest. This allows me to network with people in a wide sphere of influence. Rhythms of Rest, my first book, will publish in October and is available for pre-order on Amazon now. I hope a US speaking tour will allow me to come to Phoenix and visit DMAC.
Since we landed in London nearly 15 months ago, we have been busy at work but living on a part-time salary. Though we have just this month been converted to a full-time salary, the pay is quite low and the same for all clergy no matter the size of a church/ministry. Our basic living expenses are covered here in London but we still have ongoing expenses in the US and a 20 year old daughter who needs our help. We are thankful to DMAC for the monthly support as it has been helpful in paying our bills on time in the US.
Thank you for being our people, we are so thankful for your prayers and support. We couldn’t do this without you!