Hello Trinity at 4! We are James and Lou Clark. We live in the south of Belgium, in a town called Louvain-la-Neuve, and we have three children: Max (4), Julia (2) and Sam (5 months).
Firstly, let us say how thankful we are to our Heavenly Father for your partnership in the gospel. We are thrilled to know that you are praying for us, and that we pray together to our God who is good and longs for the nations to be save. We likewise look forward to praying for you and encouraging each other in our respective mission fields, for the glory of Christ. We thought it might be useful to explain a bit about ourselves and our ministry here briefly.
Lou & I first met at church in Durham (what a place!) where we both studied French & Arabic. We were able to spend a year abroad in 2008-09 at the Brussels Bible Institute (to which we would later return). This was our first encounter with Belgium and gave us a great insight into the gospel opportunities and needs in French-speaking Europe.
After finishing our studies at Durham, we both did an apprenticeship at Christchurch Durham with a particular focus towards International Students. It was during this time of our apprenticeship that we became more convinced than ever before of the urgency of world mission, and got us thinking once again about French-speaking Europe. With the support of our pastor at Christchurch Durham, we headed back out to Brussels in 2015, for James to finish the 4 years of studies at the IBB.
During James’ final year at the Bible college, the opportunity came up to think seriously about taking part in a church plant with Robbie & Lizzie Bellis in a new town called Louvain-la-Neuve (LLN). LLN is a unique town, home to 30,000 residents and 25,000 students at Belgium’s top university – but the town has no evangelical church. Robbie Bellis asked James if he would oversee the student work and ministry training programme, and we gladly accepted!
We’ve now been in LLN for 2 months, and this year we will be devoted to getting things set up for a launch in Sep 2020. Please may you join us in giving thanks and praying for the following things:
For us as a family to be continually trusting in and being shaped by the Cross of Christ.
For a good number this year to join our church plant team, ready for our Sep 2020 start.
For the students of LLN this year to be encouraged as we look at the book of Romans on a Thursday lunchtime.
For our ministry training programme to help equip our first apprentice (Jonny) for faithful service
Thank you very much for reading, and for praying for us as a family as well as the nascent ministry here. We look forward to keeping you updated with our first year here in LLN, as well as hearing your news. And we look forward to meeting you face-to-face soon, God-willing!
Sending much love,
James, Lou, Max, Julia & Samuel Clark