A VISION FOR A TRAINING CENTER IN THE UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

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1 SPRING, 2014 HELPING LEADERS BUILD GOSPEL MOVEMENTS IN CITIES NEW BOOK BY TIM KELLER, ENCOUNTERS WITH JESUS by Scott Kauffmann Page 3 HOW CITY TO CITY INFLUENCED MY CHURCH by Dave Furman Page 4 MIDDLE EAST A VISION FOR A TRAINING CENTER IN THE UNITED ARAB EMIRATES by Al Barth, Director for Europe, Africa and the Middle East A few years ago City to City had the privilege of helping Dave Furman start a new church in Dubai. That church grew very quickly and is helping to start three other churches in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). There are now plans underway to open a leader training center in Dubai so that more pastors can start more new churches throughout the 10/40 window. Dubai attracts people not only from the Middle East, but also from nearly every country in Europe, and many in Asia. It is flooded with workers from the Philippines, India, Bangladesh, and Pakistan, and is the 8th most visited city in the world. But there are only a handful of sizable evangelical churches, and before Redeemer Church of Dubai, there was no evangelical church presence in the downtown area. If CTC succeeds in helping Dave and the leaders there create a training center, it could bring hundreds of new churches to the Middle East. Even though Dubai is located in the heart of the Islamic world (and Islam is the official religion of the UAE) Dubai there is great freedom to preach the gospel. Several changes in visa policy now allow unrestricted travel to and from Dubai. Leaders from all over the Middle East are free to travel to the center, be trained, and return to their cities with more skills for ministry and preaching. There is also a long-term financial advantage. Funding a national leader often costs as little as 20% of the cost required to fund a missionary, and new churches usually become self-funding within a few years. This training center could raise up a generation of new pastors who will leave a lasting impact on that part of the world.

2 Church Group Gathering Thomas, Jawe, and Erna Church Worship Site AFRICA GREETINGS FROM JOHANNESBURG with Perryn Pettus, Engagement Coordinator At CTC we walk with leaders every step of the way. We help leaders from early in their call to ministry, through the launch of a church, to the start of daughter churches. Please meet Thomas and Erna Dreyer, graduates of the 2013 International Intensive. CHURCH PLANTER Thomas and Erna Dreyer Daughter, Jawe STATUS Gathering a core group WHY DID YOU CHOOSE THE NAME, CROSS CULTURE CITY CHURCH? Cross Culture City Church reflects our core values. We want to be a culturallyengaging, city-loving church community. We believe the cross of Jesus and all that it represents his sacrificial love, grace, forgiveness, and reconciliation to God creates a culture of loving sacrifice within our community and also toward our city. Johannesburg, and all of South Africa, needs this type of culture desperately. WHAT IS YOUR GREATEST CHALLENGE RIGHT NOW? Africa is divided racially and economically. The gap between rich and poor in Africa is among the greatest in the world, and Johannesburg is no exception. This division leads to the normal difficulties that usually accompany poverty, violence, crime, and socio-economic stresses. We need more people following God to step up and get involved in making our city a better place for all to live. WHAT WAS THE MOST IMPORTANT CONCEPT YOU LEARNED AT THE INTERNATIONAL INTENSIVE? Contextualization was a new concept for me, which is answers to the questions asked by people living in the city, in a language they understand, informed by Scripture. The gospel needs to be expressed in a way that speaks to the people of our city, in a way that their current philosophies or religions cannot address at all. ANY ENCOURAGING WORDS FOR YOUR FRIENDS? What we are doing in Johannesburg would not happen without the support on all levels from CTC. Thank you to the supporters who make CTC possible! NEW CHURCH LAUNCH DATE Early

3 HELPING OTHERS HAVE ENCOUNTERS WITH JESUS by Scott Kauffmann, Vice President of Content and Cause Tim Keller recently released a book called Encounters With Jesus. Here s a brief insider s guide to getting the most out of it. All of Tim s books seek to make the Christian gospel clear and compelling for non-christians. Some do this indirectly by addressing a universal topic, such as desire, justice, marriage, work, or suffering. But others more directly deal with barriers to belief. For example, The Reason for God addresses common objections to Christianity. But sometimes people aren t raising objections that can be met with intellectual arguments. They re asking questions like: What s wrong with the world? Where can we turn for answers? How can we make the world better? What s my role in that? Encounters With Jesus shows us that the ultimate answer to these questions is not a philosophical discourse but a person. That s something everyone needs to learn. THREE THINGS TO REMEMBER ABOUT THIS BOOK It s shareable with skeptics and believers. Each chapter is based on a talk Tim gave to non-christians in New York City or Oxford. Each chapter can stand on its own. You can even buy individual chapters as ebooks if you want to start someone out with a single story. It s all Jesus, all the time. It s made up of true stories that are just as relevant for us today as they were to the people who encountered Jesus in the flesh. As with many other books and resources, Tim Keller worked with the City to City content team to develop and deliver Encounters With Jesus. Learn more about Encounters With Jesus and other titles at timothykeller.com. 3

4 HOW CITY TO CITY INFLUENCED MY CHURCH by Dave Furman, Pastor and Network Leader, Dubai My wife Gloria and I always wanted to start a church. We dreamed about it even before we were married, just after we became Christians during our first year at university. It wasn t until we visited Dubai that we actually began to consider starting a new church in that city. We saw Dubai s rapid growth, all the people living there, and we observed the spiritual poverty. How could God use a multi-ethnic church in that city of over 150 nationalities? The idea of a new church in Dubai stuck and soon we made plans to start one right in the city center. Dave Furman, Redeemer Church of Dubai City to City was instrumental in 2010 as Gloria and I launched Redeemer Church of Dubai. When I first met Al Barth (CTC s Director for Europe, Africa and the Middle East), I filled pages and pages of notes with all I learned from him. At Al s invitation, I was able to attend the International Intensive training in New York City and loved it. It was a joy to learn new concepts, take a hard look at my plans for my church, rethink those plans, and envision the launch of a training center. Most of all we thought about how we can start other churches all throughout the Arabian Peninsula. Men s class before service Baptism, Three-Year Anniversary Service Special Friday Night Service 4

5 WE SAW DUBAI S RAPID GROWTH, THE UNREACHED PEOPLE GROUPS ALL LIVING THERE, AND WE OBSERVED THE SPIRITUAL POVERTY. How could I possibly measure the impact of CTC on my life and ministry? Even now, four years into Redeemer Church of Dubai, I remember the principles from the International Intensive because God has indelibly written them in my mind. I love Dr. Keller s love for New York and how it is his hobby to know and to love the city. I am always struck by Al Barth s strategic thinking on starting new churches. But perhaps the most grounding and compelling experience for me has been CTC s contagious love for Jesus and God s church worldwide. Each week, Redeemer Church Dubai gathers in the heart of downtown Dubai in a hotel with about 600 adults from over 50 different nations. (L-R) Snapshots from the congregational life of Redeemer Church of Dubai 5

6 JOIN THE PARTNERSHIP Help Your Church Share A Vision for Cities Matthieu Klass Brussels l'église Protestante de la Cambre Stephan Pues Frankfurt Nordstern Church Peter Armstrong Manhattan Dwell Church Rich Rivera The Bronx Restoration Community Church Now for the first time, you and your church can give a direct renewable grant to one of these new churches through the Partnership program. Join the partnership. For more info, contact 6

7 A NEW ATTITUDE ABOUT NEW CHURCHES IN ATHENS by Tim Coomar, church planter and graduate of the 2008 International Intensive Five years ago, First Greek Evangelical Church of Athens cast a vision for starting new churches in Athens. Two new churches have begun and two more are in development. I helped to start Exarcheia Church in downtown Athens, one of the first new church projects. In Athens, starting new churches is more challenging than you might expect. St. Paul himself started a church here. Who are we to even try? Athens cherishes antiquity and tradition, and also preserves the same agnostic mindset that Paul encountered when preaching on the steps of the synagogue. Even within the faith community, starting a new expression of the historic Christian faith is often met with skepticism and doubt. For this reason, and many others, First Greek Evangelical recently hosted an all-day symposium about church planting. We invited many of the city s denominational leaders, pastors and elders who remain unconvinced that church planting is a worthy endeavor. Our partners at City to City are often culturally sensitive communicators and bridge-builders, so we asked Al Barth and Walter Wood (City to City s Church Planting Catalyst for Southern Europe) to be guest speakers and help present church planting as a new spiritual reality for Athens. ST. PAUL HIMSELF STARTED A CHURCH HERE. WHO ARE WE TO EVEN TRY? We are thankful the response was so positive. About 50 men and women attended, engaged with the concepts and were eager to learn more about what church planting can accomplish in their city. One church elder had previously been very against it, but at this meeting he enjoyed himself thoroughly, asked questions and even helped out with the translation. Just days before he had voiced serious reservations about the importance of new churches. At the end of the event, a young leader from another denomination told me that the experience was invaluable and that they need church planting much more than they thought. We hope and pray that this will inspire a new attitude toward new churches throughout Greece. 7

8 1359 Broadway Suite 1102, New York, NY Your gift can start churches in cities. _ 2014 GOAL Gifts YTD $1M $5.5M $0 $2M $4M $6M To make a gift please make checks payable to: Redeemer City to City 1359 Broadway, Suite 1102 New York, NY or give online: giving.redeemercitytocity.com. To talk more, please contact our President, John Hutchinson: $600K of this amount is accounted for with pledges. The CTC Snapshot is sent to a special group that helps us continue this work. We thank you for your generosity, passion and devotion. Together we see movements of the gospel spread through the world s major cities, and we are humbled that you join us on the journey.

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