Time has flown by since the last time we had an opportunity to connect with you, and SO MUCH has happened. We have seen a revival in the Sri Lankan community and an influx of young professionals. Many have been baptized in the water and Spirit. Evil spirits have been cast out, and people have been healed. We have battled spiritual attacks by witches in our services and seen significant breakthroughs in prayer walking.
Meanwhile, the local church is growing, and God is positioning us to expand as we develop and train new leaders. In addition to all of that, we are now the pastors of the work in Paris. You all make this exciting journey possible.
The church we pastor is a beautiful international work. In any given service, there are around 20 nationalities represented and many languages spoken. Our services are in French and English, and everyone respects and honors each other’s culture. These people and connections are precious. This year we have seen more relationships with the native French/Parisian population. We have new French nationals worshipping with us and have baptized and made special connections into the traditionally French Normandy region. These connections energize us. In addition, we have experienced significant growth in our Sri Lankan community. We have baptized seven this year, and many have received the Holy Spirit. Every week Bible studies are being taught to about 15, and it’s so cool to see them grow in their faith. They have miracles, signs, and wonders happening in their small group meetings. Many come from a Buddhist background and are excited about their new faith in Jesus. This is Kingdom growth!
In April, Paris Centre Church celebrated its 10th anniversary. Our I Love My Church weekend was a great success! The crowds were record-breaking, and the energy was electric. That weekend we had 128 people in service and caught a vision of what was to come. We invited the Rock Church of Brussels to minister for the weekend. Their music team led a concert on Saturday evening, and Pastor Jeroen Van Gorp preached on Sunday. We had missionary/chef Justin Ward cater an Italian dinner after the Saturday concert. Our church was excited as we celebrated what was and is to come! During a special weekend, the church gathered around us and prayed their blessing upon us as their new lead pastors. It was a beautiful and moving experience. We have a great team of leaders that made this possible, and we honor each of them. It was great to have Missionaries and Senior Pastor Brochu back for this momentous occasion. Their deputation travels have concluded, and they are back on the field.
A few months ago, we had the chance to pour into the youth leaders of Great Britain and Ireland. With about 50 youth leaders gathered, it was a great time of impartation. The Holy Spirit moved, and the leaders spontaneously entered into a time of deep prayer. It was beautiful. We thank Adrian Hall, the national youth leader, and Bishop Francis for the opportunity to serve their leaders in the UK. Also, in the UK, we were asked to speak to the Harvest Bible College 2nd-year students a few weeks later. We were charged to talk about “Leading Without a Title.” It was an honor to have the opportunity to connect with these young people. We honor Bro. and Sis. Kelley for their continued hard work to maintain a quality Bible school program that students from around the world attend.
Our administrative workload remains strenuous as we help with European regional projects and lead our local church. We were recently named coordinators for the regional Communications Commission as well as European AIM coordinators. We closely work with our Regional Director to help with communication efforts across our region and facilitate consistent connections with our missionary personnel across Europe. It is a privilege to serve the Europe Region of the UPCI. As an extension of our European work, we were in Amsterdam twice over the last few months for Area Coordinator and Regional Commission meetings. As we sit in sessions, hearing what God is doing and capturing the vision cast by the great leaders, we are strengthened and encouraged for the journey ahead!
We currently have two wonderful AIMers working with us in Paris. Alicia arrived in March from Canada, and Savannah came in June from Ohio. These ladies have been a HUGE blessing to the work in Paris. They have many connections in the community, started groups and Bible studies, developed curriculum, helped with music, took the burden of bookkeeping/accounting, and integrated themselves into serving on weekends. We are so thankful for the impact they have made in Paris. Word fails to express our appreciation for the momentum they have added to the work. We are interested in having workers on site who are skilled in video production and media. With digital evangelism projects in the pipeline, if you hear of anyone who might be interested in this opportunity, please direct them to connect with us.
Real Talk: Our support has decreased a bit over the last few months due to natural attrition. If you are not currently supporting us, we ask that you prayerfully consider partnering with us for the work in Paris as our financial obligations are increasing. We are starting French language classes at $400 a month. Our ability to communicate in French is critical to expanding the work here, and your contribution will play a huge role. Additionally, our transportation costs increase as we reach outside Paris into unreached areas. Our God is a faithful provider, and we thank each of you from the bottom of our hearts for allowing Him to use you. If you wish to give, you can do so with our UPCI account number (186737) or via our website at www.HopeNowMissions.com
As summer gets into full swing, we are evaluating where we are and regrouping as we move forward into the fall. Our church needs an office space to work in the city and worship facilities. Please help us keep these needs in prayer. We also covet your spiritual covering in prayer as we deal with significant spiritual resistance on the ground. You may never labor beside us physically, but you can join forces with the work in prayer!!
May the blessings of the Lord be upon you as we move forward together!