My wife and I recently visited England where we trained a group of pastors and church planters to launch churches from within their own congregations.
The group leader is Surekha Hulugalle, a missionary to England from Sri Lanka. You can watch him in an interview we recently made about church planting in the British Isles.
Planting Multi-Ethnic Churches
Several decades ago war in Sri Lanka drove immigrants from that country to seek refuge in England. Surekha and his wife Chrishiana, originally arrived as bivocational missionaries to those refugees. However, they soon jumped into planting churches. Today they lead second-generation pastors from Africa, (particularly Nigeria) as well as Anglo-Saxon pastors who we normally see as the English people. The cool thing about all of this is that these churches cross lines, touching people from diverse ethnic backgrounds.
God Works Despite Difficulties
The last time I was with this group was just one year ago. Their jobs made the seminars tough to operate—and to teach. We started on Thursday night, running into Saturday afternoon with people strangling in at all hours. Each time someone new showed up, the others rejoiced to see them which disrupted the flow of teaching. I thought the whole thing would turn out to be a bust. The good news is that they planted six churches in the past 12 months. Surekha told me that all of them grew out of last year’s seminars. The cool thing is that he only knew of three of the new churches prior to the meetings. That is how a movement is supposed to operate–messy!
The group now numbers 27 churches.
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