In Valence, 95,000 people do not yet know the message of the Gospel. Since the sixteenth century the city of Valence, in the south-east of France, has had a large Protestant minority, both in number and in its commitment to the life of the city. Founded in 1971, the Eglise Evangélique M (Evangelical Church M) is part of this story. Our church wishes “to allow everyone to meet Jesus and see their lives transformed”. At a time when religious tradition has given way to secularism, Church M aims to reach 95,000 people who do not yet know the Gospel message in the city, inspired by the verse of 1 Tim 2:4: “For God wants all men to be saved and come to know the truth”.
Today, nearly 500 people meet each Sunday, forming a joyful, intergenerational and united community, wishing to know God and grow as disciples. The church wishes to continue its influence in the city, to make itself more visible and to welcome more people in search of meaning in their life and for Christian fraternity. New premises are essential. An opportunity opened miraculously for the acquisition of a building, in a context where the evangelical churches in France often have difficulty obtaining permits for this, because of sometimes restrictive interpretations of secularism. We must not miss this unexpected opportunity. Our church, which seeks to be ever healthier and more missional, relies on the biblical training of its members and leaders as well as charitable commitments in favor of the most disadvantaged or neglected (assistance to the homeless, chaplaincy of hospitals and prisons, visit elderly, solidarity Christmas, food bank). We want to link our words to the acts that show the link between the Gospel and the love of Christ for each one, so that our Father may be glorified. “This is how your light must shine before men, that they may see the good that you are doing and that they will praise your Father who is in heaven.” Mat 5:16.
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