GraceConnect eNews, No. 166, Week of August 22, 2016

Communication-Conversation-Conservation

The eNewsletter for the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches

Brothers in Ministry 


Every ministry has a leadership that God planted there. A leadership that He had been building for years to build them into the very witnesses He would need for that specific ministry. Grow New England and MetroGrace are a couple such ministries, stretching out to bring the gospel to the New England region.

These ministries come under the direction of the Brown brothers, Jack and Jim, with help from many of friends and volunteers. Jim acts as executive director of MetroGrace in urban Philadelphia, and Jack helps to lead the church planting efforts of Grow New England. While they don’t work directly together, their missions strike a similar chord in God’s work. However, there were different paths taken for the both of them to reach it.
           
Jim (pictured at right) and Jack (pictured below) are only two of the seven children born to their parents, John and Dorothy Brown. They were born and raised in Philadelphia, only a block away from Third Brethren Church, now known as 
Urban Hope. In 1968, their father died of heart disease, leaving Dorothy to raise her seven kids alone.

“Third Brethren Church understood what the Scriptures meant when it speaks of caring for orphans and widows.” Jack reflects. “We had the privilege of growing up under some great men of the Word not only in theory but in practice.”

Jack and Jim were both greatly influenced by the pastor of their church, Alan Mangum, in finding their paths in ministry. Jack was known as a rebellious teenager, but he remembers Pastor Mangum was persistent in being a godly example toward him and his brother. Jack and Jim attended and graduated from Philadelphia College of Bible
(now Cairn University). Jim also completed ministry degrees from Grace Theological Seminary and Westminster Theological Seminary, 1991 and 2009 respectfully. It was also in 1991 that he and his wife, Lisa, first became involved with the urban church development in Philadelphia.

Jack’s post grad work began close to home as well; in Third Brethren Church, under the direction of Pastor Steve Blake. He and Christine, his wife, traveled to Gloucester, Mass. for vacation in 1991. What they saw in terms of religion and fellowship prompted them to return so they could share the gospel.
           
Jack’s family moved to Gloucester in January of 1996, where Jack began pastoring a small Baptist church. In 2000, the Browns started North Shore Bible Church, which became part of the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches the following summer. This church continues to hold services in Essex, Mass.
           
“Our vision was to reproduce ourselves in various cities and towns on Boston’s north shore and throughout New England,” Jack explains. Ten years later, he and Christine were a part of starting the church planting ministry of Grow New England, where Jack acts as director and the current pastor of their latest work in Danvers, Mass.

His brother Jim is likewise the director of MetroGrace, an organization that helps develop community-based churches in urban neighborhoods. He also leads Grace Brethren congregations in the Holmesburg and Wissinoming communities of Philadelphia. Different paths, toward similar positions and callings from God. Jim agrees that his childhood in the inner-city and the pastor of their local church were a high influence on his pull into ministry. Since then, God has used the influence of the two brothers in their respective ministries to draw more people to Himself. --by Haley Bradfield

[Connect:]
Send a letter of encouragement to 
Jack or Jim Brown by clicking on their names. 
 
Both MetroGrace and Grow New England are cooperating ministries in the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches.
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[Your Turn]


[Vision: Two Stories]

Today's links represent an important paradox: to continue to reach people for Jesus, sometimes an unwavering vision is needed, and other times that vision must change to reach the culture of the day. In both cases, however, Truth, including the truth of Jesus' death and resurrection and his Gospel message, remains the same. Enjoy the two videos below.

[Watch:]

"The Chateau became a bridge between the people and the church in order to preach the gospel." -Jackie Schramm, daughter of Chateau founders Tom and Doris Julien

The Chateau in St. Albain, France, started as a ministry of Encompass World Partners, has been a haven for Christians and a beacon of the love of Jesus to citizens of France for the last 50 years. Click below to watch a video about the history and vision of this very special place.

Find out more about the vision here.
[Reminisce:]

CE National showed a portion of this video at their corporation meeting during National Conference. It was shot in the late 1960s to promote CE National. Click below to go back in time to see evidence of their unwavering vision over time. 

 
CE National's Vision Hasn't Change Since the 60's

Events in the FGBC

August 26-27, 2016   WLS: Principles of Effective Bible Study, Winona Lake, Ind. (WGUSA)
September 9-10, 2016   WLS: Soul Care in Leadership, Eagle River, Alaska (WGUSA)
September 26-28, 2016  ​Central Focus Retreat (FGBC)
September 30-October 2, 2016   Soul Cry: Prayer Summit, Auburn, Ind. (WGUSA)
October 7-8, 2016   WLS: Soul Care in Leadership, New Holland, Pa. (WGUSA)
October 16, 2016   Day Away: North of 55, Dublin, Ohio (WGUSA)
October 17-19, 2016  ​East Focus Retreat (FGBC)
November 11-12, 2016   WLS: Equipping Others for Ministry, Marysville, Ohio (WGUSA)
November 20, 2016   Day Away: North of 55, Duncansville, Pa. (CEN)
 
CEN – CE National
EWP – Encompass World Partners
FGBC – Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches
GBC – Grace Brethren Canada
WGUSA – Women of Grace USA
GC – Grace College

Send events for the calendar to lcgates@bmhbooks.com.
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