On the 4th January 2004 in the lounge of a house in Leiderdorp, the first service of ICL took place. The small group of people, headed up by missionaries Tim and Marketa Southerland, were setting out on an adventure in response to what they sensed was the Lord’s leading. To see an English speaking, international church congregation in the Leiden area that would be:
“a planting of the Lord for the display of His splendour.” Isaiah 61:3 New International Version
Now 20 years on, during the month of January, we will take time to look back and give thanks. Yet also to look forward.
On each Sunday in the month, we aim to have some short videos to show from various people around the world who used to be in ICL. On Jan 7th, we plan to have a videoed sermon from Tim. (He and Marketa are now seving in Curaçao, including seeing an international church congregation planted there in Willemstad:International Church Curaçao. The official launch is in January – you can find them on Facebook. )
Watch out too hopefully for a podcast episode in which I interview Tim along with Kendall Reavis (along with Kristi, they were also missionaries involved from the very start). I will pick their brains on the early days and what is relevant still for life now. Kendall presently serves with helping church planting initiatives in the USA
Then on the 28th January, we will have a 20 Year Celebration service – to give thanks for God’s faithfulness, to remember how He has lead us through easier and tougher times and to look forward to the years ahead.
ICL of course is only one part of the church in the Leiden area. We give thanks for the other congregations too seeking to express about the good news there is in Christ – that in an increasingly polarised world, there is real hope in Jesus.
Personally I am very grateful for having been part of the ICL journey since 2006 – including for so many people met, both from the Netherlands and all over the world.
Grace and peace as you step into 2024!