Ben, can you give us an update on the Franks family? Remind us a bit about the Rhondda Valleys?
We are Ben and Lois Franks. We live in the Rhondda Valleys in South Wales, UK. We have two little boys; Evan who is three and a half and Caleb who is nearly two.
We absolutely love where we live. Our region is a network of small villages and towns that came to prominence during the industrial revolution and became the heartlands of spiritual revival in the late 19th and early 20th century. Sadly, the heavy industry has long ceased and has left a bunch of socio-economic challenges, an unchurched population (less than 1%) and a lot of hopelessness.
We caught up with Corey Sanders who leads the Movement Church with his wife Robin. The Movement Church is located in South Florida (USA) and has recently partnered with Advance. We wanted to share the background story of this inspiring community of Christ followers.
Tell us a bit about your neighborhood and the Movement Church?
Homestead is a growing suburban community that sits about thirty miles south of Miami, Florida; one of the country’s most vibrant and culturally rich cities. It’s the kind of place that offers a small-town feel but still includes areas offering big city amenities. West Homestead, which is also called Old Homestead, has struggled greatly because of issues of property, poor education and crime.
We felt it important to re-share this fabulous teaching from Terry Virgo, the video is from Crosspoint Church in the USA. Terry has also written a book of the same title and we give a review of the book and links to purchase a copy.
n 2018, One City Church planted a new site into neighbouring Pinetown, on the East coast of South Africa. We caught up with Stephen Rothquel, who leads One City with his wife Bronwyn to find out how its going. It is so encouraging to see a church take action with conviction, stepping out in faith and full commitment to see a new, healthy church established!
Each year, the Catalyst Social Action Fund resources churches and projects to work within their communities serving disadvantaged people and bringing support, hope and life to those most in need. In this blog, Rosie Swift from Kings Community Church shares about their ‘Treasure Trove’ project:
One of the most challenging decisions facing church planters is the selection of a venue. Churches must navigate the tensions of ambiance, accessibility and capacity. We spoke to three church leaders who have recently moved into new venues about their decision making process, unexpected wins and any advice they have for those considering a venue change.
Responses from Chris Knight in Auburn Washington; Iain Kennedy in Glasgow, Scotland and PJ Smyth in Washington DC.
This year Catalyst will be planting a new church into the city of Wakefield in West Yorkshire. In 2018 God spoke prophetically to leaders in the Catalyst team about church planting into towns and cities in the north of England, and Wakefield was the first place where He was clearly directing. Wakefield is a historic city of approximately one hundred thousand people, but the wider borough, which incorporates towns such as Pontefract and Castleford, makes it one of the UK’s larger cities with a population of over three hundred thousand. It is a fast growing city and has a large scale housebuilding project underway.
Last month hundreds of leaders from across the Newfrontiers family of churches gathered together for a day of prayer for the nation. The venue for the day was the wonderful Westminster Chapel, right in the heart of our capital. Westminster Chapel is now home base for Guy Miller who leads the Commission family of churches.
What was memorable about the day was the sense of togetherness, of being reunited with family from across the nation and the nations. Across the room you could see many happy reunions as we spotted friends and caught up on news!
We are happy to announce that our 2018 Advance Annual Review is now available.
Looking back on 2018, our faithful heavenly Father has outworked 1 Corinthians 3.6-9 amongst us:
“I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow… … For we are co-workers in God’s service; you are God’s field, God’s building.”
Photo Credit: Michael O’Brien of Miracle Photography
Andrew and Julie Greenhalgh have been members of Jubilee Church Wirral since moving to Wirral in December 2004. They are Life Group and youth leaders at Jubilee and in the next few months are moving with their four children (Benjy, 17, Elizabeth, 13, Eva, 10 and Sammy, 8) to Kitwe in Zambia to work on a new primary school, a street-feeding project and two orphanages.