I will be helping a French church launch a network of churches in the city through building relationships with immigrants and refugees in order to make as many on-ramps as possible into the unreached communities for Jesus to be known.
After college, I was certain of one thing: my heart was drawn to working with immigrant populations, but I was clueless about where to start. Oklahoma, a place I hadn’t initially planned on settling, seemed an unlikely destination for such work. Then, in the summer of 2021, the fall of Kabul unfolded, and Oklahoma suddenly became the recipient of the third-largest number of Afghan refugees per capita in the United States. It was a profound realization that God had a different plan for me. I embraced the opportunity and became a case manager in Oklahoma City, working directly with refugees.
This unforeseen path became a season of remarkable healing and growth in my life. As the world reopened after the pandemic, I wrestled with personal losses, anxiety, and health challenges. Although my heart had always been committed to helping people facing extreme adversity, I had yet to learn how to do so in a way that entrusted the Lord with suffering instead of carrying others’ weight with me. This season became a transformative chapter by teaching me to rely on faith and trust the Lord in the face of human suffering.
A year ago, I sensed a prompting from the Lord to explore global ministry once again. I confided in a few trusted individuals and began a journey of prayer, uncertain of where it would lead. A few months later, I caught up over a video call with an old college friend, Emily Parmer, who is currently serving with her family in France. During our conversation, Emily shared the remarkable work being done with immigrant populations and asked me to consider how the Lord might be leading me to partner. It was yet another reminder that God’s ways are a mystery, often leading us down paths far greater than any plans I could have ever conceived.
The team in Strasbourg partners with the local French church, forging partnerships and creating numerous avenues for individuals who are interested in Jesus. They desire to build meaningful relationships with the people they serve. To achieve this, they run a welcoming coffee shop that serves as a hub for connection and conversation. Additionally, they offer a variety of programs tailored to the unique needs of the community. This includes French language classes, women’s groups, after-school assistance, and language partner programs.
Through connecting with populations that are from unreached and closed parts of the world, opportunities are made in unprecedented ways for Jesus to be known by people who would have never normally heard. The Evangelical Church association has made a vision to start one church for every 10,000 residents. And in Strasbourg, there are over 275,000 people and only 15 churches! That means there need to be at least 13 more churches planted for this city to have sufficient access to the gospel.
I will be joining the team once fully funded and firmly believe that these relationships are the key to opening hearts to the message of Jesus and am dedicated to this transformative work.