Paris churches put their love into practice

IMG_1453It started out in 2009 with feeding a hot, homemade meal every Thursday evening to about 100 people in need in the 18th district of Paris, France.

Today, the Paris food ministry has evolved from weekly hot meals to a multi-pronged ministry of compassion that is reaching people in need across the city with food, the opportunity for developing loving relationships, and now one church is even providing temporary shelter to people with nowhere to live.

The food ministry, an initiative of Nazarene Youth International (NYI) of France, is run by local Nazarene church members from several churches in Paris, along with other people in the community who have caught the vision and joined the effort. The ministry registered as an official, government-recognized association called JNI France Ministry (JNI is French for NYI), and has developed a relationship with three major grocery chains, representing 35 stores, which donate fresh produce and nonperishable food items that are near or past their expiration date.

The association distributes food six days a week in six locations, feeding an estimated 200 families.

“It’s becoming a force on the district,” said missionary Brian Ketchum. “All the churches are seeing that as a vehicle to reaching needs of people around them.”

And now the Nazarene churches in Paris are about to embark on a new, innovative outreach: a food truck, which will drive around the city and offer sandwiches, hot soup and coffee to people living on the streets.

Relief to Recovery

It has been 50 days since an earthquake devastated the lives of hundreds of thousands of families in Nepal. News from Nepal isn’t showing up much in media feeds right now, but the Church of the Nazarene is still responding.

The church in Nepal has distributed more than 25 tons of relief aid, including food, water filters, tents, and tarps, to communities in desperate need. And you have also been walking alongside those communities through your prayers and support. Thank you!

In the coming months and years, the church will work with families and individuals as they transition from relief to recovery. The church will help families rebuild their homes. It will build new child development centers that meet the educational, physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of at-risk children. It will work with families as they take steps on a path out of poverty,  including self-help groups that equip women to build small businesses, nutrition education classes, backyard gardens that help families create food security, and life skills training.

As long as there are needs, the church in Nepal will continue to reach out to the least of these.


Where Worlds Meet – June 2015

Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 2.16.44 PMInside this months’ edition of Where Worlds Meet, you will read from several UK leaders about the need for the church to embrace risk-taking and a new pioneering spirit; how 16 young people gathered for cross-cultural ministry training in preparation to be deployed as volunteers across the region; how the Nepal disaster relief team is transitioning to long-term rebuilding strategy; and more.

Download the June edition of Where Worlds Meet.


NTC Study Abroad expands students’ learning opportunities

NCN News Pic smaller (May 2015)For Bailey Weghorst, a senior youth ministry major at Mount Vernon Nazarene University, attending Nazarene Theological College (NTC) in Manchester, UK, for a semester was her first time out of the United States. She was on track to graduate early and attending NTC helped her meet that goal.

Nazarene Theological College’s study abroad program offers unique, short-term, cross-cultural experiences for University students seeking to engage in learning in the United Kingdom.

It is made up of three different opportunities: Year abroad, semester abroad, and summer abroad. Students who participate in this programme will engage various classroom and experiential learning opportunities unique to the host institution and location.

One of the learning opportunities is the chance to serve with local churches and community organizations.

Being in Manchester gave Weghorst the opportunity to experience serving in ways that are missional and holistic. She volunteered at a nonprofit that assists underprivileged children who come from stressful home situations.

“I think this culture embraces missional ministry better than the U.S. does,” she said.

Weghorst added that the NTC student body and faculty and staff made it easier to adjust to life in a new culture.

“It feels like home now. The [lecturers ] have been great and understanding.

Bangladesh church supports Nepal efforts

Two disaster experts from the Church of the Nazarene in Bangladesh, Samuel and George, arrived in Nepal May 7 to support the short-term and long-term relief efforts conducted by the church in Nepal.

Bangladesh, neighbor to Nepal, is prone to cyclones, floods, droughts, and tidal surges. As a result, the church in Bangladesh has extensive experience in bringing relief and compassion to people suffering from natural disasters.

Immediately after the first earthquake in Nepal on April 25, the church in Bangladesh extended an offer of assistance. Nepal District Superintendent Dilli gladly accepted the gesture of love and support. Bangladesh Nazarene Mission sent a copy of their assessment training manual, which the Nepal relief team found helpful in preparing their team for their first expedition to evaluate needs in a remote village called Tindhara, and helped them successfully bring aid a few days later.

“It’s my privilege to come here and stand alongside the team and help the people in the time of disaster,” Samuel said. “I had an experience in proposal and report writing, so I want to utilize my expertise to help NCM Nepal to develop their proposals and need assessment.”

Eurasia Regional Director Arthur Snijders was pleased with the cooperation between Nazarenes leaders in the countries.