Dear praying friends,
It was about two years ago when Kendra and I first visited Boston and we knew we wanted to be a part of the CTK network. When we first visited the church in Jamaica Plain / Roxbury was meeting at the Sam Adams building. We loved pastor Logan and Melissa’s heart for multi-ethnic ministry and a multi-ethnic congregation. We wanted to be a part of seeing that vision become a reality in JP/Roxbury in particular and at Boston at large. Since our first visit we have seen the congregation go through a lot of changes. Now that we have finally arrived we continue to see the congregation evolve. The church has outgrown its previous space and today we launched our first official service at our new location – at City on a Hill school. The new facility is not only very capacious, it also puts us in a very strategic area. The first thing we noticed as we drove to church was the big church sign off a major street that gives the church a lot more visibility. It is also located walking distance from the T, the city’s major train/transit system, as well as a major bus stop. We hope and pray that the church will continue to grow in size and influence in the city of Jamaica Plain & Roxbury. The other thing that the church location does is give us the potential to become a lot more diverse in every way (social-economically, racially, etc.). The majority of the church still comes from Jamaica Plain, but we did have a lot of visitors today who seemed to be from the Roxbury area. We hope that we will continue as a church to reflect the Kingdom of God in all its rich diversity. Today we were encouraged by the turn out and several visitors who were invited by friends. I met a PhD student from Southern California, two seekers from Roxbury who are interested in further Bible study, a woman who showed up because of a flyer we mailed out, and a young professional who is new to the city.
One of my (Steve’s) responsibilities is to oversee community groups. We are starting with four community groups this fall and are hoping to find the best way to incorporate visitors and seekers into the rest of the Body. Some of these groups have already been in existence previously and one of our leaders has moved to a new location, giving us four groups to start. Kendra and I will be hosting one group in our home and it is my hope to either start a new group for new people or to get more involved in discipling seekers and skeptics. Right now Kendra and I are asking for discernment on where to spend our time and energy. We want to pour our time and energy where our greatest passions and gifts meet the church’s greatest needs and opportunities. Right now it is our heart to see new people get incorporated into the body, seekers and skeptics feel welcome and bring their questions and skepticism. We ask that you will pray that God use us to bring and welcome more people into the life of the church.
On the home front all four of the Yangs are sick. We had a great time celebrating our 10 year anniversary in Maine while the kiddos had a great time with their Aunt and Grandmother, but we have been sick before, during and after our trip. Please pray for health and rest, esp. since it feels like we’ve had at least someone in our family sick for over a month.
Also, drumroll, the Twangs start school TOMORROW! Monday, September 11th is their first day of Kindergarten. Although Hennigan School was not our first choice in elementary schools, Kendra took the kiddos in on Friday to meet their teacher and see their classroom and everyone is very excited! We are still high on the waiting list at the other school but don’t know what will happen with that, so we are just going with what we have now! Although Henegan did not rank highly in school based on the “official rankings” (who gets to decide that anyhow?), it is located walking distance from our home. Kendra can walk them to school every morning! Pray for health and endurance for the kiddos for their first full day of school (9:30-4:10!) especially in light of having just recovered from their colds and also that they would find friends, have fun and learn a lot! And please pray for their safety as the school is adjacent to a pretty rough part of town. We also hope that this will be an opportunity for them to share the love of Christ in their own way. We have informed them that they will encounter children with other worldviews. We hope and pray that it will not only strengthen their faith and sharpen them as they interact with other worldviews at an early age, but that it will make us more humble and prayerful parents and better witnesses in our community.
“After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” (Revelation 7:9-10)
Stevo & Kendra Yang
Jamaica Plain, MA
September 10th, 2017