News

THE FUTURE CHURCH

By Nick Parsons, Director of Recruitment “It’s difficult to make predictions, especially if it’s about the future.” – Mark Twain The 1989 film, Back to the Future II, made some incredible predictions about what the year 2015 would look like. It correctly foretold flat screen televisions, video conferencing, biometric identification and even the presence of aerial drones – although they don’t walk our dogs – yet! Unfortunately, we don’t have the flying cars, self-lacing shoes, or hoverboards the film anticipated, but we do have things like cell phones, 3-D printers, and fully battery powered cars. Let’s face it, predicting the…

CITY SIMILARITY

From Luke Greer,  As I stepped from the platform into the car, the familiar sights, sounds, and smells of the subway assaulted my senses: a suit-wearing executive barked orders on his iPhone before losing coverage, teens sporting Yankees caps and loosely-laced Nikes slap-knuckled one another in greeting, a beggar entered from an adjacent car jingling his donation cup, most folks read books and screens strategically avoiding eye contact, and white earbuds blasted loud enough for all of us to sing along to Coldplay. This wasn’t New York City. This was a typical ride on the subway in Mexico City. It…

Where East Meets West

Glances at a map of Paul’s early church planting efforts reveal churches that were established in what would become modern-day Turkey. Those early Christian communities have all but disappeared. Turkey is one of the least Christian countries in the world, with Christians making up .2% of the population. The number of Christians in the capital city of Istanbul hover around 5,000. Following Jesus can have dire consequences in the region sometimes due to religious hostilities, and more often because confessing Christ can estrange a person from their family and work communities. It is a challenging place to plant a new…

On Christmas And The Urban – Rural Divide

From Luke Greer, Director of Partnership For me, part of the Christmas season means spending time reading the Bible’s nativity stories in Matthew and Luke. Although I’ve read them many times before, something “new” often captures my attention. This year when I read the angels’ declaration to the shepherds: “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:11), I realized I hadn’t ever really noticed what’s always been there: the city of David.  The angels weren’t referring to the great city of Jerusalem, but instead to the quiet…

Isolate or Engage?

Isolate or engage?  This challenge confronts Christians who face the challenges of prevailing cultural norms that often run counter to a life centered on Jesus. This tension is not new. Jesus mentions being in but not of the world. Cities often appear to be places where unchecked secularism prevails, yet the idols of money, sex, and power are ultimately hollow. Cities are a good place for Christians to engage culture: God sends Jonah to Ninevah. Paul travels to Athens and to Rome. Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem. God does not give up on the people in those cities, nor…

City Church Launches in Lagos, Nigeria

Lagos, Nigeria is a city unique in the world for its explosive growth. Studies show that it grows by 85 people per hour, faster than London and New York City combined.  Not only is Lagos growing rapidly, it is a religiously binary city; the Muslim and Christian population are split nearly equally.  Femi Osunnuyi, lead planter of City Church, shares that much of the Nigerian Christian population is marked by enthusiasm, but lacks a solid biblical grounding.  The prosperity gospel is the only Christianity many people know. Femi shares, “This environment has created a generation of disillusioned Christians, believers who turn away from faith, and made skeptics…

Connection Brings Strength

The Redwood groves in California are one of nature’s wonders. These trees can grow to 275 feet high and 25 feet in diameter – large enough to drive a car through! Some of these trees are over a thousand years old, withstanding floods, fires, and strong winds.  With the tops of the trees reaching into the sky, one might assume that the roots go down hundreds of feet into the ground to support their height.  Surprisingly, the redwoods have very shallow root systems, sometimes only 12 feet deep. Unusually, the trees’ roots reach out towards each other, interweaving to create a strong…

Meet Courtney from Mosaic

Meet Courtney, from Mosaic Christian Church in Baltimore (right, with Louis and Yolandi Scheepers, lead planters of Pro Deo Church in Cape Town, South Africa). After college, Courtney found herself in a toxic relationship and drowning in credit card debt.  She was unhappy, but didn’t know where to turn.  Her sister invited her to Mosaic Christian Church, and Courtney started to attend.  Repeatedly, the sermons were relevant to the issues that she was dealing with that week.  The Biblical messages were providing hope for change. “God would even use the music to speak to my issues.  What I was hearing and learning…

Pro Deo Launches in Cape Town

Pro Deo Church celebrated a successful launch in Cape Town, South Africa last month! Partners from Mosaic Christian Church and Renaissance Church were on hand to volunteer and take photos:

Celebrating Christ in the Chaos of the City – Lagos, Nigeria

“I’ve never heard anything like this before.” “This is what I’ve been looking for.” “When a friend told me about this place, I had to come see for myself.” These are all verbatim statements made at a preview service at City Church in Lagos, Nigeria.  City Church prepares to launch in January 2017.  Luke Greer (below) had the opportunity to meet the core launch team, to hear their stories, to meet their families, and to hear them say beautiful things about the church. The city of Lagos is extraordinary: 600,000 people moved there last year alone. The sheer magnitude of the…