Missionary Profile: Mark & Lera

Mark, Lera and their six children are serving in Belarus and the Baltic countries with Young Life. Young Life is a mission focused on introducing teenagers to Jesus and helping them to follow Him.

One of their Young Life leaders, Veronika, has been reaching out to teens in her neighbourhood over the last couple of years and just a few months ago she invited them to a summer camp where seventeen of them committed to following Jesus. She is now discipling them in their new-found faith.

Mark, Lera and their family are practising Crossway’s mission of Loving God, Loving People and Disciples that Multiply.

Missionary Profile: Dave & Colleen

Dave and Colleen Lawton are a great couple with two adult children. They were once missionaries in India; upon returning to Australia Colleen went back to nursing and Dave became the Missions Pastor at Crossway. Seven years ago the Lord led them to start a Disciple Making Movement (DMM) ministry called Praxeis, which birthed itself from Crossway. One of the keys in Movements is discipling groups rather than evangelising individuals. The New Testament is full of ‘households’ who began to follow Jesus together. Quickly, this Biblical mandate to see multiplication of disciples spread across Australia, with ‘hubs’ in Melbourne, Sydney, Perth and outback Queensland. The ministry has gone international with Dave and Colleen overseeing DMM work in Hungary, India, Singapore, Hong Kong and Seattle USA. They recently launched a practical training package called MyWorld to assist people in grasping simple tools to see discipleship happen.

“The thing about making disciples is that we can only ever reproduce who we are.” – Dave Lawton

Missonary Profile: Scott & Sarah M

Scott and Sarah with Joshua (2.5 years old) live in rural North-East Thailand. They are working with a people group called the Isaan people, which has 18 million people. The Isaan people are predominantly Buddhist (98%+), with elements of ancestor/spirit worship, and just 0.18% Christian, making them one of the largest unreached people groups in the world. Scott and Sarah are looking to make disciples and start churches that reproduce.

They felt compelled to go and work amongst unreached people after reading Romans 10:13-14 “For ‘Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’ But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them?”

Scott and Sarah have been on the field for 1.5 years and are currently on home assignment awaiting the birth of their second child.

To partner with us in missions, talk to Daron at the Welcome Desk or write to missions@crossway.org.au

Missionary Profile: Scott and Sarah C

Scott and Sarah are in Singapore seeking people of peace in the harvest. They disciple them and their immediate circle into a relationship with God so that they can do the same with their own communities. Scott and Sarah are also catalysing prayer, and mobilising and training those in the Singaporean church who share this heartbeat. In Singapore every major world religion is represented and 50% of residents are Taoist or Buddhist.

80% of people in Singapore are unlikely to ever step into Christian buildings or services. But God is at work and people are hungry in these communities – we just need to find them and help them discover and respond to Him where they are.

To partner with us in missions, talk to Daron at the Welcome Desk or write to missions@crossway.org.au

Missionary Profile: Peter & Sue Bird

Peter and Sue Bird, with their two youngest children, Lizzie (15) and Joanna (13), are based in the community surrounding Kijabe Hospital. Kijabe is found 80km North North West of Nairobi in Kenya. Their older children, Sarah and Mel, grew up in the Kijabe community and are now both married and living in Australia.

Besides being part of a team providing excellent affordable health care (Peter as a surgeon), Peter and Sue are mobilising Kenyans to be obedient to God’s Word through the Kairos course. These Kenyans then go as medical missionaries into surrounding countries where most foreigners cannot go; “We are grateful to have the opportunity to bring missions awareness and training to these medical professionals, and we pray that God will continue challenging them and using them to reach the unreached of Africa.”

To partner with us in missions, talk to Daron at the Welcome Desk or write to missions@crossway.org.au

Missionary Profile: Immanuel and Ekky

This month’s missionary profile brings us to the nation of Indonesia, where a couple in our Crossway family are working to bring the hope of Jesus to unreached people.

Immanuel and Ekky work with Praxeis. Their focus is seeing a Disciple Making Movement in the nation of Indonesia. While their main focus is in Java, which is the most populous island in the world with over 145 million people, the ‘end vision’ is to reach all of the 17,500 islands of Indonesia.

Some of the largest unreached people groups in the world live in Java. Immanuel and Ekky are working with leaders and teams from a number of cities, training and coaching them to make disciples in many different communities. Spiritual conversations lead to Discovery Groups, which lead to the formation of churches that multiply through family and relational networks.

To partner with us in missions, talk to Daron at the Welcome Desk or write to missions@crossway.org.au

Missionary Profile: Kean & Lyn

I’m delighted to share with you this month’s missionary profile highlighting the work of our international worker Kean and his wife Lyn.

Kean studied to be a professional and was very successful in his chosen line of work. But he left the corporate life to go be successful as a disciple maker in Asia. He left us as a single man. Now he is happily married to a young lady, Lyn, who shares his passion.

Kean and Lyn have spent several years now working in Asia. Their focus is two fold, raise up disciples and mobilise nearby Christian cousins to do the same. They have taught Discovery Bible Method (DBM) in noodle shops and have a mothers’ group for new mums. They have baptised five people in their lounge room using an inflatable pool. They baptise the first person as an example and then they tell that person to baptise the next and so on, demonstrating that baptism can be done by any believer.

Kean says, “ I just love seeing a new believer influence their community for Christ. I model how to do that and they get it quickly. I am also mobilising others to do what I do all over Asia.”

To partner with us in missions, talk to Daron at the Welcome Desk or write to missions@crossway.org.au.

Dale Stephenson
Senior Pastor

Missionary Profile: Gabi

In this edition of our monthly series profiling Crossway’s international workers we are focusing on Gabi, who is part of the Praxeis team and lives in Budapest, Hungary. With a heart to reach the Roma people, Gabi has brought together other like-minded Christians who prayer walk Roma villages, enclaves and ghettos to seek out people of peace who are then taught to be disciple makers themselves. Empowering pre-Christian people to read the Bible together is a significant part of the Praxeis strategy.

Gabi’s missionary story began with a question, “What will it take to see a disciple making movement amongst the Gypsy nation?” The answer for Gabi was obvious: “Me.” So Gabi returned to the country of her birth, Hungary, to reach out to the peoples known as the Roma or gypsies. Often they are found in poorer areas and strongly associated with mafia-style gangs.

Gabi continues to develop a team of Christians who will share the gospel. One lady, Kathy*, came to faith and Gabi discipled her to share with others. Kathy’s cousin Suzy* came to Budapest for her dad’s funeral. After going through the story of Philip, Suzy came to faith. Just before baptism Suzy said “I came to Budapest with the very bad news that I have lost my father and now I leave with the very good news that I have eternal life in Jesus.”

To partner with us in missions, talk to Daron at the Welcome Desk or write to missions@crossway.org.au

*Names changed