2017 was an exciting year. In our last newsletter, we shared about how the Lord has been moving in Kandern, Germany. As we now look forward into 2018, we do so with hearts full of excitement and anticipation of God’s continuing work.
CHRISTMAS EVE SERVICE: As we neared the closing of 2017 we celebrated our first Christmas Eve service together as a church. In faith, our team and members handed out invitations to people we were meeting and hung up countless flyers in different stores and public bulletin boards in town, including in the announcement case at our local town hall. After all the legwork we simply prayed asking God to bring those whom He wanted and He did. We not only had our regular 50 or so people that come on Sundays, but also an additional 20 or so visitors, quite a few of whom were non- believers. During this service we had a time of worship, a small kids’ program put on by Emily Cass, and then Frank G. shared the last part of the Christmas series (Heralds of Heaven) that he had been teaching through in December. That Sunday he covered Luke 2 and the message that the angel delivered to the shepherds in the field about the birth of Christ. After service, a man who was an atheist approached Frank and wanted to discuss the teaching. It was a great open door for dialogue and for seeds of the gospel to be planted. This sort of occurrence has become more common over the last few Sundays. We are encouraged by and in awe of the work of God that is taking place in our church!!
CHILDREN’S MINISTRY HELP: As our church is growing so is our children’s ministry. Currently, Emily Cass is our only worker dedicated to full-time children’s ministry. Although she might stay longer, she began a year-long internship with us in August with a focus on children’s ministry. She has been a wonderful blessing to our church, and the kids love her deeply, nevertheless, she is in need of help. As things have continued to develop and in thinking of future growth of CCK we see a growing need for others to step in and come alongside Emily, who have a desire and a calling to minister within the children’s ministry. People from the church have begun to help teach once every couple weeks. This does give Emily a break but our long-term goal is to see others sent or raised up who will be able to step into more of a leadership and development role within the children’s ministry.
IN THE WORD: Frank G. is beginning the year by teaching a short three-part series in Ephesians 4 that he’s entitled “Signs Of A Healthy Church”. His reason for doing so is to help lay the foundation for our church’s vision in 2018. As we head into a new year, with a new focus, it is vital for us to know who we are as a church and what God’s heart is for us. We believe that doing so will help to strengthen us as a church, build unity, stimulate maturity, and provide a stable platform from which we will be able to effectively reach out to our community and beyond. In February Frank is planning to begin the Book of Genesis. He has entitled that series, Beginnings, the Book of Genesis. As a church in our beginning stages, Frank felt it appropriate to embark on a multi-month journey through this amazing book together with the congregation at CCK. We look forward to all that God will teach us in it. (All of our messages are recorded and posted on our CC Kandertal website’s teachings page: http://cckandertal.de)
PASTORS’ & LEADERS’ CONFERENCE –JANUARY 22-26: It’s that time of year again when pastors and leaders in their churches from all over Europe come together at Calvary Chapel’s conference center in Milstatt, Austria to fellowship, get in the word and pray for one another. Each pastor has the opportunity to bring at least four men from their church that serve in leadership. This year Frank will attend and bring Frank M., Tino, and Jesse. The men look forward to a time of refreshment and Frank is blessed to fellowship with this wonderful group of brothers with whom he is serving in Europe with.
2018 VISION FOR NEW CCK MINISTRIES…
HOME PRAYER GROUPS: In February CCK will be implementing home prayer groups twice per month. Our vision is to form multiple home prayer groups in our church that meet at various locations throughout our region (different towns around the church and into Basel). The vision behind this is to provide the opportunity for us as a church to pray together in home settings. As a church family, we will be praying together for the Lord’s vision and guidance for us in 2018, open doors for personal and corporate outreach, the various needs that we have as a whole, and for each other’s personal needs. We are excited to see how God will use this to impact our area and our church.
OUTREACH: Our desire as a local church is to do more intentional outreach and we are seeking the Lord on specifics. Many things have come to our hearts but we want to make sure they are from the Lord. So far we have two tentative outreach teams coming in 2018, one of them is already in the planning stages. We are also considering doing a few music-based outreaches with local people from our church, and are beginning to pray for what they would look like should the Lord lead us forward in them.
LADIES’ TEA, APRIL 21: About a month back the Lord began to stir Suzie’s heart to put on a ladies’ tea for our church. As she began praying, God started confirming. This past Sunday she announced it to the body, shared the heart behind it and the vision God has given her. Through that, the Lord formed a wonderful group of ladies from our church that have volunteered their time to help her plan it. The theme is Growing in Christ, and Suzie asked her friend Margie Stewart from CC Padova, Italy to be the guest speaker. We pray that it will be a time of growing together as Christian women within CCK, a chance to invite ladies that we are building relationships with, and Lord willing see some won to Christ if He so chooses to use this venue to do that.
ENDING 2017 WITH A BANG! We had a fun and explosive New Years Eve celebrating with friends. It was a fun night of games and food at our friend’s home after which we all set out to enjoy the German tradition of lighting off TONS of fireworks with many of the townspeople in the main square. It was crazy, semi-dangerous, as the fireworks here are illegal in most of the U.S., but extremely exciting and memorable.
HEALTH: Blessed to report that Suzie’s last doctor visit brought a praise report with it this time. She hadn’t been to a doctor since we left Greece and needed to have her various thyroid issues (Hashimoto’s disease) looked at. The two cysts she had biopsied last year in Athens have shrunk and pose no threat to her right now. Her blood levels were mostly decent, though her cholesterol is still a bit too high. To treat this she has had to change her diet a bit more and raised the dosage of her thyroid medication slightly. This is all completely normal for her condition that she has continued to learn to manage. We are just thankful for God’s grace and peace that He’s given us in all of this.
PARTNERING WITH US: As we head into a new year, we are doing so greatly anticipating what God will do. To us, it is apparent that He is at work here and that He has a plan to continue building CC Kandertal. With that, we would like to ask you to prayerfully consider financially partnering with us this year on a monthly basis. Even the smallest regular monthly gift makes a difference to us. Occasional or one-time gifts are also welcome and will be put to good use. God is always faithful to provide for our needs but please consider asking the Lord if He would have you participate directly with us through your financial support (see information link at the end of this update).
SPECIAL CHRISTMAS EVE SERVICE PRAISE REPORT: We had many come out for this service along with our regular attendees. We had the opportunity to share Christ with non-believers that came and we all enjoyed rejoicing in our Savior’s birth together with the church body.
REACHING OUT: Please pray as God gives us the opportunity to be witnesses in our neighborhood, German class, and in our community and city. Also, that the Lord would open doors for the gospel to be shared.
GERMAN CLASS: Please continue to pray for us to learn German. We are currently working on a schedule for our next semester of classes. Also that God would provide for this class.
HEALTH: Good health for us both and for the church body to remain healthy.
CC KANDERTAL: We are thankful for this growing church body that God has entrusted to us. Praying for: The Holy Spirit to continue to guide, bless and fill; Pray for the ministry areas of service and those leading, i.e. pastor, translator, admin, AV, worship, hospitality, cleaning and Sunday school; Lastly please pray for the Lord’s continued favor as we minister to those attending CCK as well as favor for the church body as we begin reaching out to the communities around us.
ADDITIONAL WORKERS: We are currently asking the Lord to send us a family that has the heart to come and serve with us long-term. We specifically are praying for those called to an assisting role who have ministry experience in teaching and overseeing different areas of local church ministry.
CHILDREN’S MINISTRY WORKERS: We are also praying specifically for those that have a heart to serve alongside our children’s ministry coordinator, Emily Cass to help teach and develop this ministry.
CCK VISION: That God would lead us by His Spirit; give clear vision and directions for the church in this new year. Praying now for our next steps in reaching our community, city and beyond!
MINISTRY PROVISIONS: That God would continue to provide for all of the financial and practical needs of CCK. We are forever grateful how He is covering every need in this ministry!!
PERSONAL PROVISION: That God would raise-up more individuals and churches to partner with us financially on a monthly basis and that He would continue to provide for all of our needs.
Thank you again for faithfully taking the time to read our updates and for praying! We thank the Lord the way that He uses those of you who support us through your finances and prayers. Thank you for being willing vessels for the Lord’s purposes and standing with us!
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 “Support” page or click here.
Thank you again for standing in the gap with us!
Grace & Love,
Frank & Suzie