Steve Thomas shares an update on the work that he and his team have been doing over the last few months, following the prompting of the Holy Spirit to increase mission into Europe.
It was at the back end of 2022, and early in 2023, that a number of European leaders felt that God was speaking to us about a fresh thrust into the continent of Europe. We have been working in Europe since the early 2000s, and have seen a number of churches planted, adopted and working together in family in the French-speaking countries and in Scandinavia. It was clear just about a year ago that God was speaking afresh about many other nations in Europe, and that it was time to be much more intentional about this development. Lorraine and I were asked to lead a new team with a fresh thrust into nations where God was opening quite significant doors for us. In May 2023, the S&L International Team encouraged us to “get on with the job”, and we were very grateful that in September 2023, we were commissioned from the Oxford church base to develop this fresh thrust.
We are excited about fresh doors that God is opening to many different members of our family: in Spain, Italy, Germany, Austria, Poland, Greece, Albania, North Macedonia, Latvia, Serbia, Croatia, Belgium and others. It is like a sovereign move of God, who is bringing fresh opportunities to the fore in these days.
In October, we called together about forty leaders from Scandinavia, Germany, Italy, Belgium, Poland and UK for a two-day meeting in Hamburg, Germany, to pray, worship and seek God together. It was a huge pleasure to have with us Victor Moskovenko (and his daughter and translator Veronika), who leads a group of churches in Ukraine, whom our S&L family has been praying for and supporting financially. This gathering was a thrilling time. There were significant prophecies about what God wants to do across Europe. You can see some of these prophetic words here. At the same time, we agreed a fresh vision statement to sum up what we feel God is now calling us to do, and you can read this here.
Two highlights for Lorraine and me:
• We were invited to visit Serbia in November, along with a couple from Norway, Knut and Hilde Tommerbakk, where we held a leaders’ conference and spoke in churches and an addiction rehab centre. We have since been invited to do a larger-scale leaders’ conference this year, for leaders from Serbia and Croatia. This is a great bunch of younger leaders, who God is blessing after all the hostilities and tensions in their area in the last 20 years.
• In both September and December 2022, we were invited to minister in a church in North Italy, the Casa di Grazia, in Verbania. First time was just an introductory weekend, and the second was to lay hands on new pastors for the church, Tim and Martina Pegler, along with Buck Hudson, a prophet in the S&L family who operates out of Sweden.
In the next few months, we will be visiting France, Germany, Norway and Serbia. Many others will be ministering in various places. Our commitment is to minister much more in teams, in and out of different nations. We want to equip God’s people with fresh vision for church-planting, growth and increase through the power of the Holy Spriit.
And next October 3rd-5th, we will have a pan-European conference in Amsterdam, which we are trusting will light the fires for European mission even more. We are convinced that only the advance of God’s kingdom will turn the spiritual tide in Europe afresh! Please pray with us for this Kingdom advance and growth. And if working in Europe in visiting different nations or church-planting interests you, please do get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.