Global Missions Update - John and Nom

In November 2008, Oxford Community Church sent John, Nom & Reuben Bilson to plant a church in Créteil, in the south-eastern suburbs of Paris.  Since then, they’ve welcomed Anaïs to the family, and are now well culturally integrated !  From a small team of four to seven, God has grown them to a community of 20-30 adults who love Jesus or are just starting to discover him.  They say:It’s been a great adventure so far – with plenty of challenges, but also plenty of excitement.  God has given us a vision for churches that are genuine family, centred around Jesus, and that reach out to people in a way that connects with local culture.  On 21 June this year we were invited to come and sing at the hospital that serves Créteil and four surrounding towns for World Music Day.  This marks another stage in our ongoing journey of ministering in this hospital where the doors seem to be wide open to us. We sang christmas carols with our faithful singers from Oxford for the first time in the hospital in 2009 and have been in and out of the childrens ward and geriatric ward ever since. At Easter we preached the gospel openly and this time we were there to sing...about Jesus!  At one point, the senior doctor on the geriatric ward popped in feeling obliged to remind us of the obligation to ask every patient if they were offended by us singing religious songs. She then proceeded to ask each patient herself and to discover that 'on the contrary' they were loving it, so she let us continue!  In a fiercely secular society, we’re getting to shine a bit of God’s glory in our local hospital.Our long-term dream is to plant churches that do that all over the Paris suburbs, where every town has its own unique identity such that people will not necessarily come to an event in the neighbouring town. God is calling us to go into every community we can, and shine Jesus in a way that connects.  Four and a half years ago we began in Créteil, the next town (St Maur) is in the early stages of germination and God is starting to speak about the next step after that!!  The last year or so have been challenging for us personally and as a church, but we’re looking to God to break through and take us to the next level.If you want to join in this adventure, join the bunch of OCC-ers who will be coming out to sing carols at Christmas (dates out in September)or get in touch to join our prayer update list: naomi.johnetnaomi@gmail.com

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