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  • Going With The Gruenings

Ministry Update

Updated: Dec 31, 2022

Hello everyone!


We are overdue for an update to you guys. A lot of things are happening, and we thought it would be good to keep you up to date.


Twelve Stones Europe


First off, we wanted to give you an update about the ministry itself. You all know that we are seeking to multiply/replicate the work of our "parent" ministry Twelve Stones (Brown County, IN). In thinking about the ministry and what we should call it, we had various ideas but ultimately decided to stick close to the name of the ministry out of which ours was born. While it is not a German name, it seems to us that the greater importance was a close association not just in content/focus but also in name. Additionally, we thought that if we do any work in greater Europe among like-minded people, it would be imperative to have a name that is not exclusively fitting the German context.


Part of the work we have been doing is to develop a website and some marketing materials so that people have a place to land and begin asking questions. We are super excited that we could take those steps to solidify some ministry-related things and also give our existence some "flesh and bones."


We would love for you to visit the website (even though it is currently in German only) as it will give you a feel for the site and what we've been working on.


Additionally, we have some pictures of the marketing pieces and the website below so you can see it for yourself.


Biblical Counseling Conference


This past weekend the German Biblical Counseling Coalition (Netzwerk Biblische Seelsorge) held its annual counseling conference in Paderborn, Germany. We had almost 300 people in attendance in person plus over 150 people who participated via an online stream of the conference. We were very pleased by these numbers, especially since our last live conference was in 2019 - and after two years of Corona, this is very refreshing and encouraging.


Dennis was able to teach two workshops - one on Soul Care in the local church and the other on the place of Biblical Counseling compared to worldly approaches to helping people. He was also able to have several very encouraging conversations either related to counseling intensives or related to working with churches on establishing or strengthening their counseling teams.


All in all, we were very encouraged about the possibilities ahead for ongoing ministry that will help people and strengthen the biblical counseling efforts in the German church.


Family


We had a good start to the school year following a busy summer. The girls have been able to adjust quite well to the new rhythm and are able to manage their own time/schedules a bit better (like doing homework right after school, getting their things packed for the next day, etc.). This week and next the kids are off of school for Fall break. Leyna will be delighted to have her best friend from the states visit (please pray for safe travel for her and her mom).


Of course, Deanna will also be happy to have two of her best friends visit her. Deanna deserves a break and some much-needed time with friends who have known and loved her for so many years. What a blessing such friendships are.


What's on the horizon


As you can imagine several things are already in the hopper as we head into November/December...


First off, Dennis is planning his first intensive with a couple from Germany at the beginning of November - how exciting! Please pray that logistically everything goes off without a hitch and, of course, pray that God would deeply touch and change the hearts of those who come for counseling. You know that the outcome of this first intensive has the potential to shape future ministry - so we ask God to work miracles. :-)


Additionally, Dennis will be preaching at our church for the first time since we moved here. The elders called him to be a deacon for Soul Care in the church and it will be a good opportunity to not only share God's Word but for Dennis to share of and about himself.


Then in November, we will have two weekends of training where Dennis will teach about some basic soul care and small group leadership things (still with an emphasis on soul care, of course). All in all, we will have many busy weeks ahead before we expect things to slow down a bit toward Christmas.


In the new year, Dennis will also be starting training only for counselors. We will be working toward creating a team of counselors who will be equipped to care for the hurting in our church. This will mean of course not just teaching content but teaching practice - what does it look like practically to sit in the seat of the counselor?


Prayer


Of course with all of that said, you have already plenty to pray. At the same time, we would encourage you to pray for the fruitfulness of all these things as well as the wisdom, patience, and fortitude needed for all of this. We also would encourage you not to forget to pray for us as a family. With many ministry demands and still working on adjusting to this place and culture (especially Deanna and the kids), we have much need for prayer support.


We look forward to another zoom prayer time soon as well as an updated prayer calendar (details yet to come).


We count it a privilege to be journeying with you as we serve our Lord Jesus Christ and feel truly blessed to have your support and encouragement. May the Lord himself bless and strengthen each and every one of you - we know that you too have burdens to carry and need His wisdom and strength - we pray for you all often!


In Christ's wonderful care,

The Gruenings!

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