Thursday, October 23, 2008

Yes. It is true.

Yes. We are moving to Hong Kong next summer.
Yes. Encounter will be ending at the end of this semester. 
Yes. We still love you and still love Auburn.

After praying about this for more than a year, April and I sense a clear calling to move our family to Hong Kong, China. As we have processed this enormous idea, we have rested in the fact that God would make every step clear for us. In short, He has. The clearest confirmation of this decision is our unity; we are believing God together on this.

After sharing this burden and our vision for ministry to university students in Hong Kong with the Grace Campus board of directors, our pastors, family, and staff team, we have made the decision to re-plant our family in Hong Kong. With the approval of our board of directors, we will be establishing Grace Campus Hong Kong in the summer of 2009.

I can tell you that Hong Kong is uniquely positioned as a gateway city to mainland China. In Hong Kong, more than 100,000 university students across multiple campuses in HK live and study; about 20% of those students are from mainland China. Less than 5% of the 7.3 million people living in Hong Kong professs faith in Jesus.

For the most part, collegiate ministry is overlooked by the local Church in HK, but we believe this is one of the most strategic times to influence men and women as they determine their values and future direction. With great joy, we want to serve the Church by influencing the next generation to know and love Jesus Christ.

Imagine Auburn's campus if all the great churches and campus ministries were gone ... it would be a different place. Here in Auburn, you can choose from multiple meetings, worship gatherings, bible studies, community groups, and churches. There? Not much. In fact, very, very little is happening on the collegiate ministry scene in Hong Kong. Literally, people are hungry to know Jesus and not many people are there sharing the story of Grace. How can this be?

On November 20th, we will share the story at encounter of how God has worked in our lives, and our process as a family of walking into this next season of life together. We would love for you to be there!


kellyd said...

matt & april,
wow. i have followed this blog for a little while now and i have to say i wondered if this is where God was leading y'all. i'm so excited for you both and for your family. there is still a part of my heart on the other side of the globe in the small village where we served in japan. i can only imagine the excitement and joy as well as butterflies and curiosity that are being stirred up in your hearts as the day of your departure grows closer.
while we knew each other at a different phase and time in our lives, please know that you 5 are in my prayers as you make this leap of faith. i can't think of a couple and a family more cut out for God's global call that you.
love and blessings-
kelly healey :o)

Ericka B said...

How WONDERFUL! Totally behind you guys- you have my support and prayers as God takes you on this glorious new adventure! Sending you an email now...we need to chat :)

Karen Isbell said...

We are so excited for ya'll and continuously praying for you and His provision!