Mission Possible!

Casa de Oracion is skilled at growing disciple-makers of all ages!

Casa de Oracion is skilled at growing disciple-makers of all ages!

It is wonderful to get reports like this from our LINC Mission Churches.  Thanks to God for what he is doing in and through Casa de Oracion (House of Prayer) in Pasadena.  Here is their spring/summer report:

  • April: we had 6 baptisms.
  • Church picnic: 95 people.
  • Youth Camp: 100 people. This was their first camp that they planned on their own for their youth!
  • July was Family Month: 400 after church every Sunday of the month. Families stayed to eat, play sports and just have a time to spend with the congregation.
  • Weekly youth activities at LINC Houston

They are very effective in growing disciple makers of all ages. They are very intentional about reaching the men in their church and community. They are blessed with an excellent worship team and are a very friendly and welcoming church. They have youth meetings weekly at our LINC Office.  It is a special treat for them to meet at the office where they sing worship songs, study the Bible and practice evangelism in nearby neighborhoods.

"Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess… Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds…let us not give up meeting together… let us encourage one another…" Hebrews 10:23-25

Camp’s Ripple Effects

Kids at camp engaged in fun, passionate worship of Jesus.

Kids at camp engaged in fun, passionate worship of Jesus.

“Thomas” is a 13-year-old Mission Pastor’s Kid and has already had a growth spurt, shooting him up to at over 6 feet tall. He was beginning to be “quite a handful” at home because of his height and strength. He wasn’t so sure he wanted to go to the LINC Youth Camp that his dad had signed him up for. 

But, from the moment he arrived, he was loved unconditionally. He witnessed teenagers who were excited about being Christians! He found himself joining in on the songs… even jumping up and down and raising His hands in praise to God! He felt safe asking questions about faith and the Bible. He knew people really cared about him.  He heard and witnessed how Jesus had made a difference in the lives of teens he had grown to trust in just a few days.  Everything he experienced was so genuine, and so much fun!  Camp changed his perspective and helped him want to embrace his faith in Jesus and live it out boldly.

His dad reported that when “Thomas” came home, he literally got down on his knees and BEGGED his dad to sign him up for anything like a LINC Youth Camp that he can go to which would strengthen his faith in God.   

Thanks be to God! To God be the glory! Thank you for your support & prayers!

Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund

On Friday, August 25th Hurricane Harvey reached the coast of Texas, and is now causing catastrophic and unprecedented flooding in the greater Houston area. LINC Houston is committed to providing immediate relief to vulnerable families, but we need your help!

With the destruction and devastation all around us - and with more to come - it only makes sense that we draw upon our disaster relief experience to provide immediate relief to families in desperate need.

LINC Houston's mission congregations are in communities that are often overlooked, without access to information and resources. Please donate now as we continue to assess the ongoing needs in Houston and beyond. Your donation today will go directly to disaster relief efforts. 

Mission Leaders are safe, but their communities are in need

While the storm rages on, we are continuing to evaluate the ongoing needs of our local Houston communities. We are overjoyed to share that each of our mission pastors remain safe, though the devastation of horrible flooding continues to worsen. Homes have been destroyed and families have been separated.

With unique access to at-risk communities LINC Houston is standing ready to aid those families in our network of ministries that have been most deeply impacted. But we need your help.

See where LINC's mission congregations are located throughout Houston

SCHOOL SUPPLIES NEEDED!!

We hope to collect a garage full of school supplies this year!!! Thank you for your help!!

We hope to collect a garage full of school supplies this year!!! Thank you for your help!!

While shopping...we encourage you to put some extra school supplies in your cart for LINC!! 

We have more requests then ever before, this year! Your school supply donations will be very much appreciated and put to good use!  Many of our LINC church families are not able to afford school supplies for their children. What a blessing for them to receive your donations. ALL school supplies are needed. There is also a big need for backpacks for a church in Humble.  You might want to consider ordering them in bulk www.bagsinbulk.com.  Have your order sent to 1504 Johnson St., Houston, TX 77007 as soon as possible.  Our target collection date is August 21. Please bring your donations to the LINC office (Johnson St. address) that day.

Not up for shopping this year? Let us do the shopping!!   Checks to LINC Houston and online donations accepted! http://weblink.donorperfect.com/linchouston  Please indicate your donation is for school supplies.  Contact dorinda@linchouston.org with questions. Thank you for your generous gifts!!  God bless you!!

Wow, God!

Lives changed at camp!

A huge thank you to our incredible donors who raised nearly $9,000 in sponsorships for the 70 youth and 10 adults who attended our first-ever LINC Youth Camp! With the help of 50 youth counselors from Grace Fellowship who put on the camp, the lives of these children were forever impacted with the love of Christ. Throughout their time at camp they learned that "Christ is all, and is in all".

Please join me in continuing to pray for the seeds that were planted during this time, that these children will grow in deeper knowledge of their identities in Christ.

LINC Houston Summer Intern is a Blessing!

Summer has been an extra busy time as we host Mission Teams who serve our Mission churches and their communities.  It has been a great blessing to have Daniel Heitshusen from St. Mark Lutheran Church as our Intern this summer! This is an excellent on-the-job training for a future DCE/Youth Pastor! 

Daniel copy.JPG

"God has a given me a heart for youth and outreach.  My internship with LINC has allowed me to grow in both of these areas, as I learn what it looks like to be a DCE or a Pastor."

Read more about Daniel's experiences with LINC on our website.  

"Wow, God!"

"Wow, God!" We heard this expression shouted over and over by excited children who attended VBS at Communidad de Gracia (CDG)! They were "wowed" over and over again by God's love as it was demonstrated to them by youth from Epiphany Lutheran and The Family of Faith. These two youth groups partnered together beautifully to bring Hope to Houston for a LINC Mission Trip right in their own city!  In addition to leading VBS every day, they threw a baby shower for a Congolese couple, painted a school faculty room, reorganized a LINC storage shed, and did yard work at CDG. They also spent time together in God's Word, listened to amazing God stories by local Houston missionaries, and participated in a Kunama (Eritrean) worship service. Thanks to their partnership in the Gospel (Philippians 1:5) we have MANY reasons to say, "WOW, GOD!"

Hope for Houston

On our Hope for Houston Mission Trips, there are a variety of ways to bring the hope of Christ to others.  Jr. High youth from St. Timothy Lutheran Church and Fishers of Men Lutheran church joined together to bring hope to Houston's 3rd Ward residents as they partnered with members of Adelphos Bible Church. The youth shined for Christ has they improved the neighborhood by fixing up the yards. They also decorated bags with words of hope and encouragement and filled them with essentials (including small devotion books) to give out to the homeless. For the first time in their young lives, they met and prayed for people who sleep in tents under a bridge. Many of the volunteers were pleasantly surprised at how receptive the homeless people were to their help and prayers.  

We encourage you to prayerfully consider how you can bring hope to people in your community. Consider this acronym for HOPE created by Missionary Dalton Noack...

Helping

Others

Prepare

Eternally  

We also invite you to come to a Hope for Houston Mission Trip! Any age, any time, you are welcome. Contact dorinda@linchouston.org.

"We have put our HOPE in the living God.  He is the Savior of ALL people. Most of all, He is the Savior of those who believe."  I Timothy 4:10

A Remedy for, "I'm Bored"

Before the Eritrean Kunama worship service, I asked one of the girls how her summer was going. She said, "It's okay but I'm bored". The Holy Spirit nudged me at that moment to invite some of the Eritrean youth to join our Mission Team for the week! It would definitely give them something fun and exciting to do...and would give them a chance to experience being in mission in our city. Five Eritrean youth took me up on the offer!!! They all jumped right in an helped out with VBS and so enjoyed getting to know the other teens.

It turned out to be a great remedy for boredom. Here is what the girl I had spoken to at the Eritrean worship service wrote after she spent time on our mission trip...  "It was the best experience I've ever had! It was so much fun! It impacted me to become a new person. I learned I shouldn't take anything for granted because there are others who don't have anything. This experienced made me want to go to other countries and share the love, grace and mercy of Jesus Christ."

Mission Trip Insights From Participants:

"I realized how much need there is in our own community. You don't have to travel around the world to be a missionary."

"This experience has opened up a servant heart and showed that service can be fun!"

"I learned about refugees and the fact that there are so many people in pain and suffering that my circumstances don't even compare."

"I realized I am blessed and that I should start getting more involved, not just in my own church but also in my community."

Meet Daniel, Intern Extraordinaire!

“Hey Daniel, Dorinda just texted me asking if you would be interested in interning with her at LINC Houston this summer. What do you think?” My dad mentioned this to me at the beginning of April this year. I hadn’t planned on doing anything except for stay at home and relax over the summer. But, I figured I’d go ahead and talk with Dorinda about what this might entail. As I began to email Dorinda back and forth, I learned that I would be helping her plan and lead local mission trips in Houston. When I interviewed with Dorinda, Pastor Junkans, and Mr. Schultz, internship sounded amazing, but I was also really nervous. How was I, an 18-year-old, supposed to help lead mission trips alongside adults who have been doing this for years? God had a plan, though, and a part of that plan was me interning with LINC, learning and being mentored by Dorinda along the way.

I have now helped lead two local mission trips with LINC, working with Fishers of Men, St. Timothy Lutheran, Epiphany Lutheran and Family of Faith. Cumulatively, we have done yard work, served the homeless, served at the food bank, learned about other religions, heard testimonies, led a Vacation Bible School, organized a garage, thrown a baby shower, helped serve Comunidad de Gracia, and more. Within each of those broad service projects I mentioned, we did so much more than I could even describe. Not to mention all the relationship building back at Our Redeemer, the host facility that LINC’s mission groups stay in.

As I write this, I am just getting home from the second of the two local mission trips. I am taken aback as I consider the servant hearts and Christ-like attitude I have seen in the youth who have come to serve with LINC. Not only that, but also the unity that Christ has provided for us to have. The congregations that come together for the mission trips have all grown very close to each other in a very short amount of time. It has been incredible to see youth from different churches, many who had never met each other, grow together to serve others. We also observed people that we are supposed to be serving turn around and serve us. I have loved getting to meet and talk with our LINC mission pastors and people in the community, as well as the mission teams.

I’ve thought for quite a long time that God had been calling me to be either a DCE or Youth Pastor. I still don’t know which of the two He is calling me to, but I do know this: He has given me a heart for youth, and He has given me a heart for outreach. My internship with LINC has allowed me to grow in both of those areas, as I learn what it looks like to be a DCE or a Pastor! I have gotten to stay with youth groups at Our Redeemer, and I have gotten to do outreach alongside them. And to think, I thought I’d be staying at home all summer.

God had a different plan - a better plan - indeed!

Celebrating 15 Years

What a wonderful response! The 15th Anniversary Reaching the City Gala on May 4th was a great success. With 230 guests in attendance, more than $151,980 has been raised to support LINC Houston.

Because of the generosity of so many people, LINC Houston will continue to engage local leaders who start new ministries to reach the city with the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Thank you!

Over the past fifteen years, LINC Houston has grown from a small organization to the thriving ministry we are today. With a total of 350 leaders trained, 56 new mission starts, and 345,000 individuals served, we hope for another incredible fifteen years of ministry in this wonderful city.

These are exciting days here at LINC Houston. Thank you for your generous partnership and faithfulness in your continued support!

If you would like to be part of the effort to continue this work in our city, please donate today!

 

Houston's 3rd Ward Mission Field

Pastor John Ojode has a challenging ministry in Houston's 3rd Ward. Recently he and his son, Emmanuel, shared their dreams for meeting people's very real physical, emotional, and spiritual needs in their community. 

Adelphos Bible Church wishes to do MORE to meet the needs of the community! The ultimate goal of making people feel welcome and loved by Christ at Adelphos. They also believe that once physical/emotional needs are met, people will be interested in learning about God and scripture.

"If one of you says to them, "Go in peace; keep warm and well fed," but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it?"   James 2:16

Observed needs:  Help/resources for single moms

                              Sobriety Center/ A.A.

                               GED program

                               Computer skills

                               Free legal advice

                               Counseling

                               Networking/resources

                               Help with taxes/financial management

                               Positive activities for children

                               Spiritual encouragement

 

Would you or a group in your church like to help in some way? Please pray about how God can use your time and talent to bless this church and community. Contact dorinda@linchouston.org to get connected with this LINC ministry. 

 

Salem Lutheran Church partners with Adelphos Bible Church to bring hope to this community in a variety of ways... Christmas park outreach, house repairs, prayer walks, etc. We are grateful!

Salem Lutheran Church partners with Adelphos Bible Church to bring hope to this community in a variety of ways... Christmas park outreach, house repairs, prayer walks, etc. We are grateful!

UH Campus Ministry (Salt & Light) reaches many International Students

"Lutheran Campus Ministry looks so different from what it did back when I went to school." This was an observation by a volunteer from Trinity Lutheran who has been very instrumental in gathering volunteer and financial support for LINC's Salt & Light Campus ministry FREE luncheons held one time a semester. "It used to be an organization to continue to nurture faith in Lutheran students in college...but now it is so much more of an outreach to people from all cultures and religions."  Indeed, this is so very true at UH! In addition to free luncheons, once a semester, where up to 250 international students may attend, Salt & Light has regular, lunch devotions on Tuesdays and Thursdays which may include up to 15 students who are not only hungry for a meal, but for more information about Christianity.  During the bi-weekly lunch gatherings it's common to have a gathering of Muslims from Turkey, Buddhists from Vietnam, and Hindus from India. Our Christian leaders take time to listen to their concerns and questions, pray for them and share Biblical truths for them to consider. Please keep this mission field in your prayers. 

You are invited to be a part of this mission by "feeding fifteen" (or donate $60)once a month (8 different churches/people doing this would cover all the meals!) or by coming to lead a devotion or to show Christian care. We wish to thank Trinity Lutheran, St.Timothy Lutheran, St. Mark and Communidad de Gracia for their recent support.   

Please contact dorinda@linchouston.org for more information or to schedule Lutheran Campus Ministry Leader, Dr. Petta Johnson to speak at your church. 

Campus ministry bring hope and joy to students!!

Campus ministry bring hope and joy to students!!

LINC Houston Toys For Joy 2016 Report

We PRAISE GOD for His abundant blessings this past Christmas season when TOYS flowed from many generous people in our LINC Partner Churches to 1600 JOYFUL recipients in 16 LINC MISSION churches!!!  Better yet, thousands heard about the gift of salvation through Jesus and mission churches have reported that new families are returning to their churches!  We want to thank ALL who shared toys.... 

Houston area Churches -- Christ the King, Epiphany Pearland,  Joy Lutheran, Salem Tomball,       St. Mark,  St. Peter, St. Timothy, Trinity Downtown. 

Schools -- Lutheran High North, Lutheran South Academy

Companies -- Ascentium Capital, Konica Minolta, Kilgore

Individuals -- James Butler, Edith Nino, Charles Voleck

LINC Mission Church recipients - Adelphos (3rd Ward), Casa de Oracion, Centro de Fe Y Esperanza, Communidad de Gracia & Tijerina School, Manantiales de Vida, Centro de Alabanza, Diverse City Church, Nigerian Fellowship, Karate Outreach, Kunama (Eritrean), Shalom Oromo Evangelical Church, Our Redeemer Telugu Church, Perfect Gospel Mission Church, Voice of Evangelism International,  UH Lutheran Campus Ministry (gift cards).  

"...God loves a cheerful giver. God is able to make all grace abound to you!" 2 Corinthians 9:7-8

You are invited to Worship!!

LINC Houston invites you to participate in our City-Wide Worship celebration on March 4, 2017 as we praise the name of Jesus with believers from countries across the world.

After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” Rev. 7:9-10

15977343_10154881854758334_5387735581514959067_n.png

LINC Houston is Moving!

Our office at West Road has been a great blessing, but God has opened up a new opportunity for LINC Houston. Our new office is located just outside of downtown Houston, giving us a central and easily accessible location to broaden our reach into all parts of the city. Our new office is scheduled to be open by December 1st, and we invite you to stop by and see our new home (literally, it's a house!). The new address is 1504 Johnson St, Houston, TX 77007.

 

We would love your help in the moving process! Email Dorinda Werner at dorinda@linchouston.org to help pack boxes or lend a hand on moving day, set for later this month.

LINC Houston will be renting a townhouse as the new office space, located at 1504 Johnson St, Houston, TX 77007

Meet George Creamer

Dr. George Creamer joined the LINC Houston team after completing a doctoral program in pastoral and missional leadership. Pre-LINC, George was involved in mission trips and outreach to Honduras, spiritual formation, teaching at various Hispanic Bible Institutes, and even served as a denominational associate director of Christian education and a missions pastor.

I could not have asked for a better job description that is in line with my giftings and passions. I thank the Lord for orchestrating all the pieces of the puzzle, eventually leading me to a context to which I feel called.
— Dr. Creamer

As the Director of Training, George will be working on the LINC Bible Institute, lay leadership training, and helping prepare candidates for seminary education. You can reach George at gcreamer@linchouston.org.

George Creamer is LINC Houston's new Director of Training

George Creamer is LINC Houston's new Director of Training

You met the match!

You did it! Because of your generous giving, we not only met, but exceeded the matching challenge and raised nearly $78,000 for LINC International! Thank you for going above and beyond to train and empower new leaders for Discipleship and Ministry, Church Planting, and Community Transformation so that more people can come to know Jesus as their Savior.

Even if you missed the matching opportunity, your gift today will still have incredible impact on the kingdom.

LINC TOYS FOR JOY COLLECTION 2016

Last year, fifteen Houston area churches and two local companies blessed our LINC mission churches tremendously by providing approximately 2,000 toys! TRUE JOY was found as the gift of Jesus was proclaimed to the children and their families. We thank God that Toys for Joy is a tool for spreading the Gospel which provides lasting joy to man people in our city! 

Four ways your church can make a difference in people’s lives this coming Christmas:

1. Donate money to Toys for Joy: Your donations will be used to purchase extra gifts if necessary, or provide funding for mission outreach events. Donations can be made online by CLICKING HERE. Checks may be made to LINC Houston, earmarked Toys for Joy, and mailed to 1504 Johnson St., Houston, TX 77007.

2. Donate gift cards: Gift cards of $25 only to local stores or restaurants bless families tremendously!

3. Donate wrapped toys: Please label the gift with the gender and age of the recipient. Age categories include baby, pre-school, elementary, and middle school. 

4. Partner with a mission church: Not only provide toys as mentioned above, but also become involved in planning and implementing the Christmas outreach event. This may include helping with decorating, singing Christmas carols, putting out invitations, providing food, doing crafts etc. This is a great way for your church members to actively be missionaries!

Gift cards and wrapped toys must be delivered to our new LINC office by December 6th: 1504 Johnson St., Houston, TX77007.

Contact LINC Mission Service Coordinator Dorinda Werner with any questions: 618-593-1419 or dorinda@linchouston.org

 

LINC Summer News

Things are really heating up this summer at LINC Houston!

This summer, LINC Mission Service Coordinator, Dorinda Werner coordinated several Urban Mission Trips to serve our "glocal" population here in Houston, TX. Teams of youth and adults from across the country and from local congregations joined to serve our community and share the Good News in our city.

Dorinda wrote this article to share the experience of one group traveling to serve this summer: 

Small, but mighty! That describes this group from St. Timothy very well! Most DCE's would opt to cancel with "only" four youth signing up for a mission trip, but Dan Parker persevered and believed God could work through even a few enthusiastic Jr. High students. God did, indeed! These four taught an Indian Sunday school class, invited new Indian friends to serve in the Houston Food Bank, did yard work at a LINC Mission church in Houston’s 3rd Ward and did a prayer walk and homeless bag distribution. To end their 3 day, mission trip they received a tour of a mosque, Hindu temple and Buddhist temple.

Do you have a few youth with a heart for God and missions? We would love to give them an opportunity to share Jesus with the nations right here in our diverse city of Houston and beyond. Contact Dorinda Werner, LINC Mission Service Coordinator, 618-593-1419 or visit www.linchouston.org

 


No Place To Turn but God's Grace

Yoandrys is a Cuban refugee who recently came to know Christ after experiencing God’s grace and compassion through the ministry of Comunidad de Gracia, one of LINC Houston’s mission churches.

After arriving in the states with no family to stay with or place to turn, Yoandrys was connected with Rev. Nelson Rodriguez and Deaconess Perla Gil de Rodriguez (leaders of Comunidad de Gracia) through Ysleta Lutheran Mission in El Paso, Texas. After arriving at Comunidad de Gracia, Yoandrys and several others traveling with him were welcomed, given shelter, food, and most importantly, the Word of God.

Yoandry shared his testimony with Deaconess Rodriguez stating, “I have visited many churches and have never heard the Word of God preached to me in such way, that Jesus Christ does exist and that he has died for each one of us… Now I can say and understand that my help comes from God alone and without him I would have nothing.”

 In his testimony Yoandry also shared that, “there is no difference between our family and the members of this church, because they have embraced us in every way.”

 As an organization we are touched by Yoandry’s testimony as well as the example shown by Comunidad de Gracia in demonstrating what it means to extend brotherly love in the name of our Lord and Savior. Now Yoandry will go forward extending that same love and his testimony of faith to others, further building the Kingdom of God.

“By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another."

John 13:35

What is Glocal Mission?

Many are asking, What is Glocal Mission and how does this relate to LINC?  Read below to learn how LINC Houston is making disciples, training leaders and helping to multiply churches locally and globally.

Glocal Mission lies at the heart of everything LINC Mission Director, Rev. David Kim, is and does.

Some churches focus only on domestic/local missions, while others focus only on overseas/international missions. However, Pastor Kim believes the biblical mandate, and God’s desire, is to make disciples of all nations and people next door locally and by going to all tongues, tribes and nations globally.

It is not a new concept but something that is already reflected in Scripture, specifically Matt. 28:19-20 and Acts 1:8. Glocal is a fusion of two words: Global and Local. Glocal Mission simply means reaching the unreached with the Gospel and making disciples of all nations locally and globally.

With a stunning amount of ethnic diversity, North America is the number one mission field in the world, with more nationalities represented. In fact, in our very own cities we have massive mission fields.

“The mission field is right where we are living,” he says, “right in our own backyards.”

Pastor Kim defines the mission field in the following way, “Every heart without Christ is a mission field, while every heart with Christ is a missionary by vocation.”

He raised a LINC Congolese/Pan-African congregation as an example of how we can accomplish Glocal Mission.

“By partnering and reaching Congolese people at home in Houston, they themselves can take the Gospel back to their home countries and to their own language group,” he said.

On July 22nd, Pastor David visited the Congolese church to celebrate a year’s worth of mission in the city.

The church began last year with 25 members and was looking for a place to worship. Working with LINC, Pastor Austin Tshibangu and his congregation were able to partner with Rev. Bauer and Pilgrim Lutheran Church to have a consistent facility in which to offer worship services. Now, God has blessed them with exponential growth, with 80+ people worshipping every Sunday.

Pastor Kim said, “It is so fun and easy to reach and make disciples of all nations right here and right now utilizing the resources God has given to His church!”

“You don’t have to speak their language,” he adds. “Our role is to facilitate and resource, and their job is to reach their own people and make them into disciples, leaders, and missionaries by vocation.”

For Pastor Kim and LINC Houston, all of this is possible because of “churches around the city partnering with us financially and through prayer. Our God indeed is a Glocal-Missionary God!”

To learn more about Glocal Mission, and to see how your church can get involved, contact Rev. David Kim.

Update to post: Glocal Mission is now an independent mission organization that was launched out from LINC. 

Join LINC for Glocal Mission Day

What is Glocal MISSION Day?

We intend for this to be a GOSPEL SATURATION DAY for Houston, TX where approximately 4 million out 6.8 million people do not know Jesus as their Savior!

We will mobilize and train as many youth and adults as possible in order to reach at least 1000 people for Jesus in one day through prayer walks, park & apartment outreach, distributing flyers, and by sharing Jesus via witness bracelets.

Where will we share Jesus?

We will reach out in all areas of Houston with 5 LINC Mission churches as our “home base”. After August 3, when we receive all registrations, we will assign you to a location. You may share Jesus in an apartment complex, at a park, or in a neighborhood.

When will Glocal Mission Day start and end?

At each location, the event will start at 9:00 am with a time of welcome, orientation, training, prayer and preparation. Then, a time of outreach for Jesus, followed by lunch and debriefing/sharing. We plan to conclude by 2 pm.

What AGES are welcome?

All ages are welcome. ANYONE with Christ is a missionary! God can use all ages to accomplish His mission.

How can we prepare?

Pray for those who will hear the Gospel on that day! We can plant a seed of the Gospel with actions of kindness and word, but only the Holy Spirit can convince them to acknowledge Jesus as their Savior and Lord.

What should I bring?

  • A heart that is grateful for salvation and wishes for ALL to be saved.

  • Refillable water bottle labeled with your name.

  • A Bible

  • Sack Lunch labeled with your name.

  • Sunscreen/hat/tennis shoes

  • Appropriate attire... shorts must be at least mid-thigh length

What is the Suggested Donation?

The suggested donation is $10 per person. Each participant will receive a Glocal Mission Day t-shirt! The donation will also help cover cost of flyers, bracelets etc. Please bring the $10 to the event.

How do I register? Contact Dorinda Werner -- dorinda@linchouston.org or 618-593-1419 When is the Registration Deadline? Monday, August 3. 


Overcoming the 3 basic challenges to Urban Mission Work

by: Mark Junkans - Executive Director

There are some basic challenges to urban mission work that are universal.  This is how LINC is working to overcome those challenges and build a growing network of organizations and ministries to reach and restore our cities.

OUR MANDATE

We the church have been given a mandate by our Lord Jesus Christ. That is, to make disciples of everyone everywhere.

Everywhere we look, there are people who don’t yet know how much God loves them. They haven’t heard the Good News that Jesus died for their sins so they may have peace with God. Instead, they try to make it in this world as best they can. And this world can be a very difficult place, causing many to lose hope.

Because of wide-scale poverty, families in our urban communities struggle to even put food on the table. Children grow up in neighborhoods where the streets have more influence on them than their parents and teachers. Families struggle to stay together and most children grow up without a single positive role model.

Immigrant families struggle in much the same way. Language barriers, lack of education and higher-level job skills make attaining a well-paying career extremely difficult. Most piece together multiple part-time jobs, which leave little time for their families and provide very little money to sustain them.

People from everywhere around the globe now live in our cities, and they bring with them their own cultures, beliefs and values. The city is a challenging mission field to say the least. But this is the mission field where LINC has been called by God to focus all of our efforts, the communities that are the most unreached and underserved by our supporting denomination, the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod.

We wanted to figure out a way to effectively do mission work in Houston and begin to multiply into new communities, knowing that there is always a limited amount of resources available to do so.

We also wanted to expand our ministry into new cities where the same challenges are present, but in order to do this well, we first had to figure out how to overcome three basic challenges.

These are the:

  1. Challenge of Impact
  2. Challenge of Sustainability
  3. Challenge of Scale.

IMPACT:

When most people think of ministry in the city, they think of charity work and service projects.

But charity work among the destitute actually serves a very small percentage of individuals in the city who are unable to function normally in society. The vast majority of the poor throughout our city don’t fall into this category of needing charity. Instead, they need empowerment and opportunity.

Service projects by outside groups are a tremendous blessing to people like the elderly and those who are truly helpless. The problem is that most of the projects that outside groups come to do in the city actually take initiative away from proud and able -bodied individuals who could learn to do these things for themselves. Instead of helping people fix their situation, it helps keep them there waiting for the next handout.

Most service projects create a lot of good will among the volunteers, but make very little lasting positive impact in the local community.

And possibly the biggest challenge for the church, is that we’ve come to equate relief work with mission work.

Let’s look at what mission work is: To take the message of Jesus Christ to places where the His kingdom of grace isn’t yet established. In its narrowest terms, every heart without Jesus is a mission field.

The outcomes for all mission work ultimately results in new disciples and new churches. At LINC, we seek to accomplish these outcomes by training new leaders for ministry who plant new churches that reach, impact and transform their communities with the Gospel of Christ.  We believe that this focus provides the best potential Kingdom impact in our communities.

The outcomes for all mission work ultimately results in new disciples and new churches.

SUSTAINABILITY:

Another challenge to work in the city is sustainability. Usually the communities that need the most focus and attention also have the fewest financial resources.

In low-income communities, families often live day to day or week to week, not knowing where the money will come from for tomorrow. When whole communities are living in survival mode, it's extremely difficult to sustain even basic services without outside assistance.

Mission work in these communities faces the same challenges. Outside resources are invested into new mission work in an new community. When those resources eventually go away, that mission is typically left unsustainable and struggles to even survive. In fact, most don’t, and that community is left without a mission presence until the next outside group rallies the resources to start new work. This cycle repeats itself over and over until the residents stop trusting any new work, and outside supporters stop believing that their contributions will actually make a lasting impact.

By focusing on the development of local leaders who can properly leverage their own resources, we know that our work will be more sustainable. A missionary leader who learns to develop the resources God has put in front of him primarily needs the proper training, coaching and incentives to do the work they’ve been called to do. That is precisely what LINC provides in order to create a sustainable mission field.

The opposite approach to this is to pay local leaders using outside funds for the pastoral and mission work they do.  We believe that this model is unsustainable and actually undercuts the mission's goal of stewardship and development of local assets.

By focusing on the development of local leaders who can properly leverage their own resources, we know that our work will be more sustainable.

SCALABILITY

Because of the unique challenges in each community, a ministry model that works in one location rarely replicates itself into another. It typically takes such an incredible amount of energy and ingenuity just to make something become effective and sustainable that the idea of scaling or multiplying is unfathomable. That, or we try to scale ideas prematurely with little success.

LINC has been working in the city of Houston for 14 years, and has helped other LINC organizations begin around the country. This isn’t based on a single model that is difficult to replicate, but on the basis of principles that are universal to mission work in the City.

The first principle is that the main goal of all mission work is to make disciples, who in turn make disciples. The second principle is that planting new churches is the primary means of making new disciples, through the Means of Grace, Christ’s Word and Sacrament. The third principle is this, that mission work is best done through local leaders who are indigenous to that community. The fourth principle is that work in the city must be holistic in nature in order to truly be impactful. In other words, that community transformation should be an intended outcome of all urban church planting.

Because of the unique challenges in each community, a ministry model that works in one location rarely replicates itself into another.

We’re now doing everything with the end-goal of multiplication. Multiplication of disciples, ministry leaders, churches and community transformation work here in the cities like Houston where LINC already works, and into new cities across the world.

We’re networking leaders on a local and a national level for encouragement and the sharing of best practices. We’re producing programs and materials that are teachable and reproducible in every community. Finally, we’re building a back-end system and replication model for launching LINC ministries in new cities.

Only by God’s grace are we able to move forward so that more lives and communities will be transformed by the power of the Gospel message of Jesus Christ.

That God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him will not perish, but will have everlasting life.

Rice University Students Partner with LINC

Rice University students spend their Spring Break with LINC

Spring break is a time when most college students are thinking about having fun and relaxing from all their hard work in school. A group of Christian students from Rice university decided that they would use their Spring break to make a difference in the lives of fellow Houstonians. Led by Pastor Raul from the Chinese Houston Church, these students visited almost a dozen LINC mission sites throughout the week to assist in spreading the Good News of Jesus.

One of those locations was the University of Houston where LINC operates a Campus Ministry primarily to International Students. Below is a message from Dr. Johnson Petta, the Director of our Campus Ministry at UH.


Johnson Petta - UH Campus Ministry Director

March 4, 2015

Students pray before going out to share the Gospel with University Students.

Students pray before going out to share the Gospel with University Students.

We had a delightful "warm up" session with students and their pastor Jason this afternoon before our big day tomorrow to unleash "God's Spirit of Grace" on the campus through prayer and evangelism.  There was an eruption of "excitement and evangelical zeal" as Pastor Raul Rodriguez concluded his rousing challenge to the students to heed the 'fierce urgency of now' to share the "Gospel of Love" with the campus students of our University and to pray for God to ignite an unprecedented revival on the campus that can spark a "Great Awakening" in the Houston Metropolis where every soul will be consumed in the outpouring of God's saving Grace!

Pastor Raul further shared that the the time is now to 'widen the field of our vision' that encompasses Rice University campus by joining forces with Rice University students and the Chinese Houston Church in organizing more of such "cross campus evangelistic outreach" events in the these two colossal mission fields that are magnet to students the world over seeking to advance their academic and professional career goals. 

With a significant Chinese international student representation in our weekly fellowship groups, pastor Raul stated that our partnership with Chinese Houston Church would be a logical natural progress to foster a mutual cultural learning environment for more effective ministry among the Chinese students, who are the largest contingent of international students enrolled in our University's academic and research programs. He added that our crossing paths with this group of Chinese students visiting our campus is not a happenstance but part of a larger vision that God is challenging LCM to embrace by sharpening our focus on the international community on our campus that is expanding by leaps and bounds, unabated, each year. With the current rate of growth, about half of the campus community will constitute international students in the not-so-distant future.

Is the LCM prepared for such a massive demographic shift in terms of its ministry capabilities? I would say more than ever. In a break from the past, LCM is ministering to more international students than ever before. Christian students have become a minority, and that is a hallmark of our expanding international appeal.


LCM seeing increased connection with Muslim Students

In an atmosphere of deep mutual distrust between Christianity and Islam, more Islamic students are attending our fellowship groups than students of other faiths. It is a testament to our cultural knowledge, sensitivity and the irresistible genuine Christian warmth and care that continues to draw these students of Islamic faith searching for the Way, the Truth and the Life, despite the clear and present dangers of severe penalties and stringent religious proscription against such activities. 

Our campus ministers are second to none in terms of the gifts, experience, and cultural and Biblical knowledge that they bring to the ministry. With an undeniable mastery of effective relational skills,  and an uncommon diligence, devotion, energy and passion, the LCM team is poised to scale greater heights of mission successes on the campus and beyond. I appeal to all our parters to send our way more of your diligent prayers, words of encouragements, financial and material support to accomplish more for the Kingdom, with unreserved humility knowing that we are His servants and all Glory belongs to Him and Him only.