Well, it’s been almost two months since we arrived in Germany and we are mostly settled in, minus a few important things that we are still working out. God has begun to establish us in the community by allowing us to meet new people, make new friends and build new relationships with the people here. We look forward to sharing about some of this in this update as well as what’s been happening in our ministry, in our personal lives and some of the things that are on the horizon… We hope you enjoy the read!
FORMING OUR NEW MINISTRY…
CC KANDERTAL: On Sunday, May 7 we had our first meeting, a meet and greet where we shared the vision of the church during a time of food and fellowship. We had about 17 people show up that evening who had expressed interest in the church even before we moved here. There was a mutual sense of the Lord uniting us as we sat and fellowshipped over food and our time of prayer together towards the end. We began meeting for Sunday morning service on May 21st and have a consistent group of families with kids, families without, young and older singles and youth. So far our group has been made up of Germans, Swiss, Canadians and Americans, creating the multi-cultural dynamic that we anticipated.
Currently, our church meets in the Moll’s home (the family we started this with) but we think the Lord might be moving us into a public facility earlier than planned. God is definitely forming the core group of people who seem to be very excited about this church. It is a wonderful blessing to begin with this kind of group rather than completely from scratch.
CHURCH FACILITY: The building we will most likely use, as our church facility is ideal for several reasons. First of all the location is great and easy to access is in one of the small towns that are very near to Kandern and the city Lorrach. It is also well known in the community because of the Christian music school that has been housed there for many years. Its size and functional flexibility are also a plus as it has many rooms for children’s ministry, a coffee bar area, and an auditorium that can seat about 100 people or more. One of the large ministries in town holds the lease to the property so we should be able to rent it on Sundays from them at a reasonable rate. We just need God to provide!
MINISTRY TEAM: Since before we arrived here God had already begun building a team to work with. As the news spread we were moving to Germany to plant a church, God began to stir the hearts of some specific young people, whom He had also placed on our hearts, who we believe will be a good fit for this ministry and us personally. In mid-July our first intern, Emily Cass will arrive after finishing the Spring semester at CCBC, York. Emily has a heart for children’s ministry and is coming with it as her primary focus. In August Abigail Fisher, also from CCBC, York, and a recent graduate, will arrive. Abby is a gifted worship leader and will be focusing on worship. Our third intern, Jared Acuna, is still tentative and is continuing to seek the Lord about joining us. If he comes his focus will be on youth. Each intern is committing for a year to begin with after which we will see what further plans the Lord has. In addition to the interns, we have a long-term worker coming as early as July or as late as September, Jesse Corey. Jesse will be focusing on our intern program, administration and just about everything and anything else that pops up. As God builds this team of co-laborers, we pray He will continue to knit our hearts together and create a dynamic example of unity and like-mindedness. We are continuing to pray that God would bring others who also desire to be part of this ministry in order to co-labor with us, as the harvest in plentiful but the laborers are few!!
CC GERMANY MINISTRY CONFERENCE: Last week we attended an annual conference at CC Siegen. Mainly those that serve in Germany attend but there are other CC’s from other countries who normally come each year. We had a wonderful time connecting with those we are now serving with from all over Germany. We have to say that we felt very loved, embraced, accepted and encouraged by all the other churches represented. They showed genuine excitement and support for the church we are planting in Kandern. It was a refreshing time in the Word, worship and as we got to know new friends and reunite with old ones! (Enjoy the conference slide show but be sure to keep reading below!)
MAKING OUR NEW HOME…
REGISTRATION & VISA: We began Frank’s residency process soon after arriving and we are pleased to say that it is finished. The whole thing was fairly simple and his visa should arrive soon…Praise God!
GETTING TO KNOW OUR COMMUNITY & SURROUNDING AREA: Since arriving we’ve had a lot of fun exploring our city Kandern, Lorrach, and the several of the other towns in and around Kandern. We’ve adventured as far as a town in France about 20 mins away to grocery shop and get yummy bread and in to Basel, Switzerland, also about 20 min away, to visit friends that attend our church. It is hard to believe that so much is so easily accessible to explore. More importantly we can see a great potential for outreach and for the gospel to be spread beyond our town and city.
A couple weeks back we were asked to help out at a regional track meet in Lorrach. The Black Forest Academy students competed against Department of Defense schools from the different U.S. military bases throughout Germany. Suzie and I helped to run the concession stand and cooked burgers, dogs and of course… brautwurst. It was a great time to meet new people, make new friends and spread the word about the church when asked. We are very thankful for God’s favor in the many open doors He’s presented to us as we’ve truly begun settling in to our new home.
HOME HUNT: As of now we are still in our temp apartment and are still looking for a permanent place. It’s been challenging, to say the least, as housing is scarce and the ones available so far have not met our budget limitations… at all. Interestingly enough, God has been faithfully providing almost all of the furniture and appliances that we will need… FOR FREE even before we actually have an apartment to live in. With that, we know He has the right apartment for us that we will not only use for ministry but also make into a home. We have an infinitely big God who has gone above and beyond for us already!! We are excited to see the place He has picked out!
GOING WITH… GO! MINISTRIES! IMPORTANT & NEW SUPPORT INFORMATION: As many of you know we have been in the midst of a “transition” in our financial support system. We announced this back in our November 2016 update. Since then we have been in process with a well-established missions agency called, GO! Ministries, and are blessed to announce we are now officially with them! GO Ministries is a ministry that is associated with Calvary Chapel Anaheim in California and has been serving missionaries for the past 17 years administratively facilitating and loving on many missionaries all over the world. As we began praying through some different agencies, GO, was the one that kept coming up from different sources in the Calvary family and beyond. There thorough registration and application process and long waiting list left us very confident that they are careful about who they affiliate with and accept, and maintain an integral approach to ministry. Needless to say, it was a God thing and we are very happy to go with GO! Please note… that this support change is effective immediately! A link to our “Becoming A Sender” page is at the end of this newsletter. Simply follow the link and read the directions given for Becoming an Individual Supporter.
THANK YOU NOTE: Thank you again for always being so faithful to stand with us no matter where we are in this ministry world! We have been so blessed by your continued love and encouragement through your support and prayer. We are on the field because God called you too, so thank you for co-laboring with us on the mission field! Please never hesitate to email us to say hi or send us your prayer requests, we’d love to hear from you! Now it’s time for some more payer, check out our prayer needs below and thank you… again!!
TIME TO PRAY!!
CHURCH AFFILIATING AND REGISTERING: Currently Frank G. & Frank M. are working with some other CC pastors to register our church as a religious non-profit organization in Germany. Doing this will help us to invite people to come and serve with us, open a ministry bank account, make donations to the church tax-deductible, etc. We also plan on using the Calvary name so we are also beginning the affiliation process with Calvary Chapel. Please keep this in your continued prayers!
CC KANDERTAL: Please continue praying for the beginning stages of this ministry. God is working and establishing way before we arrived so needless to say, it’s all HIM! Pray that the Lord binds the enemy as we meet each Sunday for church; For God to continue to build a faithful core group and to raise up those “pillars” in the church that we do need; For Christ to unite the hearts of those attending and that we would truly be a family; That we would be a praying church; For all that attend to use the gifts that God has given them effectively; For Frank G. as he pastors this church and teaches God’s word every Sunday and for Frank M. as he translates and assists; And lastly for the Holy Spirits leading and for the roots of this church to go down deep and bare much fruit because of it.
CHURCH BUILDING: For God to provide and move us into a public facility because it is a need. For those that come we are cramped in the living room but also we desire it to be comfortable for those that desire to invite others, please pray for God to provide the right place and the funds to rent. There is a place we are praying about and it’s available so please pray.
SUMMER TIME: We have many opportunities to reach out and minister in this area as well as get to know people coming to our church. Please pray for open doors to reach out, evangelize, and love on this community during these summer months of sunshine and warmth.
WORKERS ARRIVING: Please pray for our interns & long-term worker arriving over the summer, Emily Cass, Abigail Fisher and Jesse Corey and for Jared Acuna as he continues to seek the Lord about coming. Please pray as they begin packing up their lives to move here, for the adjustments they will make in life and culture and for the ministries in the church that they will be focusing on. Also, pray for God to provide for all of their needs in this huge step of faith that they are undertaking! Additionally pray for Jesse and Jared, as they are non-EU citizens and will need to apply for visas in order to stay.
GERMAN LANGUAGE COURSES: We are looking into taking an integration course where we will learn the German language in addition to German culture, law, and history. We know it will be challenging as our brains have slowed down a bit over the years but with God’s grace, we desire to be speaking well in a years time. It is our hearts to not only adapt but also embrace this new country. Because Suzie is a German citizen, Frank will get a very good discount but it will still cost us both so please pray God provides!
APARTMENT HUNT: We need a permanent home still. Apartments are hard to come by and when they do they are way out of our price range. We are praying for above and beyond what we can think or ask because we know we have a very BIG God! Please pray for the right place, the right neighborhood, a place where we can make it feel like home, and where we can have enough room to have guests. But most of all we need provision for it and the right price!
NEW MISSIONS SENDING AGENCY: Thankful for GO Ministries (A Calvary Chapel Ministry) and for God giving us a reputable sending agency, one that we know we are like-minded with. Please pray God’s blessing on this new ministry relationship and for God to use it for His glory!
PROVISION: As we’ve always stated and that we all know, we have a very BIG God and He provides but there is nothing wrong with asking for continued prayer, which He wants us to do. We always want to depend on Him for everything. He uses many ways to provide, some supernatural but mostly through His children. We have big needs both in our personal lives and ministry and unfortunately, they are one in the same right now so please pray for God to provide for everything mentioned above and then that He would provide above and beyond what we can think or ask!
If you are a church or an individual and would like to learn about partnering with us financially with either a one-time gift or regular monthly support you can visit our “Becoming A Sender” page or click here.
Thank you again for standing in the gap with us!
Much Love, Frank & Suzie