Sharing Jesus in Bible Studies & English Chats

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Missionaries John and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

October 15, 2021

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

We hope you are enjoying the Lord’s blessings. This week has been busy as we have started some new meetings and are getting back in the groove of the school year schedule. Our Sunday meetings continue to be held in person with some joining us by internet.

The restart of Bible Studies in Mazere this week went very well. We are studying through the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Philippians. Philip and Amanda are restarting Bible studies in the home of a church family in the city of Cugnaux. A couple of other weekly Bible studies are also held. Small group meetings are a very effective means of communicating the Good News of Jesus Christ to seekers and helping those who trust Christ to grow up in Him. This has been our primary method of outreach to adults since we arrived in France.

The first Youth meeting of this school year is tomorrow evening. The Lord has enabled us to communicate the Good News to many Middle School and High School students through these meetings.

This week Judy and I also began meeting with three ladies who want to practice speaking English. We have found this to be a great way to connect with people in order to tell them about God’s offer of eternal life through Jesus Christ. One of the ladies in the present group is an acquaintance made on our trekking path. Each time we crossed the friendship grew. When she expressed a desire to work on English to be able to communicate with a possible future son-in-law who is Australian, we offered to meet with her for English chats.

Another participant was a kindergarten teacher for our granddaughters years ago, sang in the community choir in which I (John) sang and “by chance” (another way of saying “divine appointment”) we crossed her (while trekking) as she was going to sign up for English improvement classes at the local community meeting house. She decided to cancel the English improvement classes and meet with us! She brought a friend who also sang in the community choir.

Please pray with us that God will open hearts to Jesus for eternal life and help us all to keep growing up in Jesus.

Your sister and brother in Southern France,
Judy and John

Contact Info:
John & Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher@aol.com
Present USA phone 1-812-416-1033

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.


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Bible Studies Restarting in Mazere!

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Missionaries John and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

September 15, 2021

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

We are grateful to God for His continuous provision and your participation in what God has called us to do. Twenty-two years ago we arrived in France with a passion to communicate the Good News of Jesus Christ to French people and make disciples that God would put together in churches of Jesus Christ.
Two years after our arrival, God brought our son Philip and his wife Amanda to join us in the ministry here. They had felt God’s leadership to this part of the world for several years. Their daughter, Abigail, was five months old when they arrived. Today she is in her third year of preparation to be a doctor in Physical Therapy. So much has changed yet much remains the same. Only two or three French people out of each thousand profess personal faith in Jesus Christ. Many are atheist. We rejoice that some have come to faith in Christ, followed the Lord in baptism and are serving the Lord here, other places in France and other countries.

And, there is so much more to do.

The church at Tournefeuille is still meeting in person with some joining us live using the internet. We have had good services. The Covid virus has made it more complicated to interact with and communicate the Gospel to those who do not know Christ. However, God is not caught by surprise and does not change. We must continue to pray for wisdom to do what He wants us to do.

Next month we will restart Bible studies in the city of Mazere after a hiatus of four years that appeared to be permanent.

Your prayers for our home location and meeting place are greatly appreciated. It appears that by this time next year we will be living and meeting about a mile and a half west of where we are now. This will place us in the neighboring city of Plaisance du Touch. This city was established around 1000 A.D. Philip and his family have lived there for a number of years. We have had many church and youth meetings there and we hope that God will use the move to enable us to share the Good News with more people.

Thank you for your continuous participation and prayers. May God bless each of you.

From France,
John and Judy

Contact Info:
John & Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher@aol.com
Present USA phone 1-812-416-1033

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.


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God’s Grace on Display in France

Missionaries John and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

One month ago, we arrived back in France. God has continued to display His grace and we are greatly encouraged by the events of the past month. We crossed many of our neighbors and friends during the first 3 or 4 days back home. This continues to happen daily and, in some cases, God has given numerous effective encounters with people for whom we have praying a long time.

The Tournefeuille church, meeting in person and online, is in a two-pronged study series: Religions in France and Biblical Examples of Witnesses for Christ. The response has been very good. Yesterday the theme was the witnesses to the “non-Jews” in the book of Acts. You might like to read and meditate on Acts 8:1-4 and 11:19-26 (click to read). The narrative about these witnesses who broke the standards of the first church (while doing what Christ had commanded His apostles) is a great lesson to all of us. The results are glorious!

The Lord willing we will soon restart Bible studies in the city of Mazere. We had thought the door at this location was closed, but unexpectedly God reopened it. God gave us an effective outreach at this place in the past and we are excited to experience what lies ahead.

Two weeks ago we had a great time of fellowship with part of the leadership team at Mt. Calvary Baptist Church in Charleston, WV. Judy and I enjoyed this video chat with them to be shown to the church. You can go on their church site and see the video (click here to watch). Mt. Calvary had supported us for many years and yet we only knew one of the five leadership individuals that spoke to us in the interview. I think that this practice of keeping the church updated with their missions team is an excellent practice.

One question that arose was how a house church works. As most of you know the Tournefeuille church meets in our home. All of our Bible studies meet in someone’s home. It really works just like any church meeting in any building. We use the main room of our house for the opening and adult meetings and, as needed, the bedrooms and kitchen for Sunday School classes. This is not an ideal model in all circumstances, but is an effective way to begin and maintain at low cost until more space is needed. There are several examples of this in the New Testament. A church is a body of disciples of Jesus Christ committed to serving Him together. The Sunday meeting is only one dimension of how the body builds up itself and reaches out to others.

We are grateful for each church and individual that our Father has given as part of our support team. God uses your prayers and gifts to touch many that you will one day meet in the presence of our Savior.

May God bless each of you and encourage you where you are.

Your fellow servants in Christ,
John and Judy

Contact Info:
John & Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher@aol.com
Present USA phone 1-812-416-1033

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.


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Events May Be a Surprise to Us, But Not to God

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

April 3, 2017

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

You may have noticed that my return address on this letter is in Indiana. Sometimes we are surprised by events that suddenly arise, but our heavenly Father is never surprised and uses all for our good and to display His glorious love to folks around us.

I mentioned at the close of my March letter that Judy had remained in the US and to be with her sister Peggy. Peggy, who has outstandingly displayed the light of Jesus in ministry to others, has been diagnosed with cancer in various parts of her body. The oncologist and radiologist quickly began radiation treatment on one tumor on her spinal column to keep it from causing paralysis. Judy had mentioned to me that they might go out for lunch to celebrate the end of these treatments on March 17. About 7pm France time March 17, I called Judy to ask her where they were going to celebrate and received shocking news.

“I am at the emergency center. I broke my kneecap. I am scheduled for surgery on Monday. My leg is immobilized at the knee and will be for 6 weeks after surgery.” Judy had accidentally fallen as she went to get the car following the last treatment. This, of course, meant that Judy could not drive and care for her sister. She needed assistance herself. She did not say a word about me returning to the States. A few minutes later our youngest daughter called from Chicago having just spoken to her mother on the phone. “Mom said to not jump up and buy a ticket to the US.” This is a true reflection of Judy’s attitude. She never wants to complicate anyone’s life or interrupt the Lord’s work. However, at that moment, it was obvious to me that the Lord’s work was for me to care for Judy and Peggy.

Within an hour, our son Philip, who works with us had bought a ticket for me to fly to Evansville early the next morning. I left the house at 4:45 am the next morning having spent the few hours before leaving in contacting folks, making arrangements for replacements and packing my bags. I missed the the 8:30 am men’s breakfast at our house that morning and a first-time counseling session with a couple from our church scheduled at 11 am. Philip, Amanda and the folks from church who have really stepped up to the plate have left our mind at ease. A man that for several years we discipled several hours each week early in our ministry in France is leading the Bible study in Mazere. I am including a picture of that Bible study the week after I left taken by Douceline. She is the lady with whom we started there who now leads a couple of evangelistic lady Bible studies. The man on the left is the replacement leader. He is also in the process of planting a church with another pastor on the south side of Toulouse.

 

Bible Study in Mazere: The man on the left has been leading this Bible Study since John has been in the States. He is also in the process of planting a church with another pastor on the south side of Toulouse.

God uses events that are a surprise to us to move us and others around us along the race that is set before us. In the process, we see God’s amazing grace. He displays His love toward us through Himself in us and through His children. Our lives have been touched by the help of many around us here in Evansville. The Lord has also already opened doors of service for us here. My personal life has changed. Suddenly being removed from our usual place of ministry and facing an opaque future has a somewhat stunning effect. But, I have found that there is great joy in cleaning house, washing dishes, taxiing and giving personal assistance to those you love.

Our youngest daughter and her family are in Tournefeuille to visit us! They had bought tickets months ago for this epic visit. So, they are staying at the house we rent and call home. They are having a great visit with Philip, Amanda, Abigail, Nathalie, Camille and Emily. The house is also the church meeting place which means that the space has double usage and needs to be set up for each meeting. However, in order to make Lydia and family’s stay less stressful, various church families have volunteered to host church meetings during these three weeks.

Amanda and Philip have given raving reviews of the services in the last two weeks and the evidence of God’s people there growing in Christ as they read and apply His word to their lives. We are grateful beyond words for what God is doing.

Thank you for your prayers. Please continue to pray for Judy’s sister Peggy who is now undergoing target medical treatment for her renal cancer. Ask God to display His glory and love through all of us.

Until the next surprise,
John and Judy in Evansville

Stateside Address
John and Judy Hatcher
1901 Shepherd Dr.
Evansville, IN 47715
jmhatcher@aol.com

Field Address
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher[at]aol.com

Click here to donate to BFM.


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How God Has Blessed 2016

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

November 28, 2016

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
We had a wonderful Thanksgiving Day together with Philip, Amanda, Abigail, Nathalie, Camille, Emily and Wendy. “It is good to give thanks unto the Lord for He is good and His mercy endures forever!” I hope that you, likewise, had an enjoyable day of Thanksgiving.
As we look back on the past calendar year we are made aware of the many ways in which God has blessed us. I have learned more about God and His love for me. We have seen God’s blessings on our children and grandchildren. In July we had the opportunity be with all of them for a week. I will include a picture of all of us. We also see God at work around us in southern France. Some of the members of our congregation have been awakened to the opportunities to reach people around them.

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The Hatcher Family

God has added people in the meetings that we have in the Department of Ariege south of us and those involved seem to have a renewed interest and are participating actively. We now meet on a rotating basis in four different homes in three different towns of this department. The meetings in this area started years ago when Judy and I started driving weekly to the city of Mazere to have Bible studies with Douceline. This young lady was a believer who had moved there to take a new job. She was very discouraged. There were no churches less than about 50 miles from her. She has now become a very effective missionary in this region. Her grandmother, an atheist until the end of her earthly life, as far as we know, died last week at the age of 95.

We are thankful for the good outreach God has given us toward young people. This began with three young ladies in a family that God brought our way about 6 years ago. These girls are now in University, but our granddaughters who are in Jr and Sr High School have actively brought their friends. One teenage girl lives about 100 ft from us and she started coming after I had met her parents in the choir in which I sang. She has trusted Christ and followed the Lord in baptism last June. Her brother now comes regularly to the youth meetings. Our last baptismal service was held in her parents home. They do not attend church services but seem to be very happy with their daughter’s participation in the church.
We are thankful that God continues to open doors with our neighbors and others.
We now have many prayer meetings and Bible Studies meeting in several different homes.
Your support for us is used by God to enable us to live and serve Him in southern France. We are very thankful for your faithful participation.
The expressions of thanksgiving to God and those He uses always strengthen my faith, increase the joy in my heart and increase my ability to love.
May God richly bless you.
Thankful in France,
John and Judy

John and Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher[at]aol.com

Click here to donate to BFM.


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Encouraging Month of Events in France

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

November 6, 2016

Dear Partners in the service of the Lord,

The month has seemed to pass so quickly. Sitting near bedtime after a wonderful Sunday I remembered that I was overdue on sending you news of how things have been going here.

The events of this month have been very encouraging to us. Earlier in the month we had Vacation Bible School and most of the teaching was done by those who years ago participated as children. They have trusted the Lord and have a good knowledge of His Word as a result of daily Bible reading, good teaching and mentoring. It is great to see the commitment and development of these young people.

Our youth meeting this past week was again well attended with 16 young people. A couple of these were here for the first time. The interest of teens who keep coming and show an interest in the Bible studies causes us to rejoice. Two young ladies who have been attending the youth meetings for some time were in church for the first time this morning.  One is from a Muslim family and the other from a family that has no religious practice.

We are very encouraged by what is taking place in the Bible Study centered in Mazere. This Bible Study is now meeting on a rotating basis in 4 different homes and the folks in this area are really stepping up to the plate. There are more participants and the interest is very good. Seeing believers grow up and reach out to others is very encouraging.

There are a number of other ways that we see God at work in the lives of His children and seeing how He has answered our prayers is very encouraging. Our church has meetings in 8 different cities now.  However, there are still many all around us who need Christ. Please pray with us that God will give them a hunger for Christ and that they will respond to the Good News of Jesus Christ.

There are scores of cities within an hour’s driving distance of us that have no Gospel witness of any kind; no church of any kind that gives even the most rudimentary presentation of salvation in Jesus Christ. Please ask God to open doors, to raise up messengers of the Good News, and to enable us to effectively present Jesus Christ.

Thank you for your faithful support.

From France,
John and Judy Hatcher

John and Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher[at]aol.com

Click here to donate to BFM.


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Rotating Bible Studies in Mazere, Sowing in Hope

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

September 7, 2016

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I hope this finds you well and enjoying the Lord’s faithfulness. It just dawned on me that I have not written a letter this month to update you on what God is doing here. I have been affected a bit by sciatica the last couple of months and it is difficult to type at the computer. So, I have gotten out of my regular routines. This is not all bad. God uses all things for His glory! Thank each of you for the regularity of your giving and praying for us. Each of you is also living life in a physical body on a fallen earth and it is not always “a piece of cake”. We really do appreciate your faithfulness and pray for you.

One of the things that I can do is walk. So, I walk and walk. Besides keeping me in shape it also opens up doors of opportunity. During the past few days I have had a number of good conversations about spiritual matters and about what we are doing here. These have been with people that we know and whose path I crossed as I walked or new people that God has brought into our lives.

During the month of August we have had unusually well attended meetings. Normally at this time of the year many are on vacation, but this year seems to have been different and we have had excellent services and Bible studies.

Normally we do not have youth outreach meeting in August because there are few young people at home. However, our granddaughters were in contact with many of their friends who were already back home so Philip and Amanda decided to host an “early” youth meeting. We were all thrilled by the 14 young people who came and participated. About half of these are unsaved and from homes where there are no Christians.

Bible Study in Mazere

This Bible Study in Mazere started around 2004 when John & Judy started driving down about an hour from their home to have weekly Bible Study with Douceline.

Bible Study in Mazere

In addition to this Bible Study, Douceline also now leads two evangelistic Bible Studies with other ladies.

I am enclosing a couple of pictures of the Bible Study last night at Mazere which is about an hour south of us. You will see that we are eating. Douceline, the young lady in whose home this outreach started turned 43 yesterday. In the last couple of years some of the folks who were invited by Douceline asked if they could host it in their homes. So, this Bible study now rotates among 4 homes. You might find this strange, but it actually is a blessing. When members of the group host, they take “ownership”. They are more likely to invite their friends to their home. This study first started about a dozen years ago when Judy and I started driving down weekly to have a Bible study with Douceline, a believer who had just moved from our area to a job in Mazere, who knew no other believers in the area and was very discouraged. In addition to this Bible study, this single lady now leads two evangelistic Bible studies with other ladies.

There are multitudes who need Christ so we just keep sowing; asking God for wisdom to do so effectively. Our church in Tournefeuille is now reaching out to 7 other communities.  This is not much when you consider the fact that there are about 35,000 communities in France that need the Gospel. We sow in hope and God produces!

May the Lord richly bless you,
John and Judy

John and Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher[at]aol.com

Click here to donate to BFM.


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Missionary Update: John Mark & Judy Hatcher in France [August 2015]

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

August 1, 2015

Dear Fellow Servants,

We hope that you are enjoying the Lord’s blessings this summer. Many of you are busy with Vacation Bible School and Youth and Family camps. The effort invested in these summer ministries is well worth it. During our lifetime we have seen many come to Christ and mature spiritually through Christian camps and evangelistic outreach to youth.

The month of July was quite busy which makes me happy. On the 4th of July, the annual neighborhood dinner was held. We are very grateful for this gathering because it gives us the opportunity to build relationships, get acquainted with folks and witness. These usually start at about 6pm and continue to 1 or 2 o’clock in the morning. And at the end there is the clean up.

This year I had the opportunity to communicate our reason for believing with two neighbors. One of these is a professed atheist and the other is an agnostic. This is not the exception in France. Our yard is bordered by four other yards. Three of these four immediate neighbors are atheist. However, we have a cordial relationship with all of them. We sow in hope. According to Christ, our behavior is essential in communicating the gospel to these folks. Jesus said, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” Good works in this context does not seem to refer to church activities, but serving others for Jesus sake. Daily, we must ask ourselves, “How can I show the love of Christ to this (or that) individual in my actions?” The apostle Paul seems to mean this in the counsel to “walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil.”

Several years ago a new neighbor informed us that she was an atheist. A little while later she said, “You know I don’t believe in God, but we feel so good when you and Judy are around.” And…we did share meals together quite often. These usually included at least one other family. Often, this lady’s husband would say to everyone at the table, “I have just about come to agree with John” and then to me, “John, tell them what you believe.” About four years after meeting them, she invited us to help her celebrate her 50th birthday along with about 70 or 80 people from all over France. Just as everyone was getting ready to dig in, she stopped them and pointing to Judy and me, said, “These are some of our best friends. He is a pastor. John, please say a few words.” Unexpectedly, she called on me to share the gospel with her friends. Not too long before they moved to a neighboring town, she came running over, knocked on the door to tell us, “I want you to know that I now believe in God and that He has worked personally in my life.” From atheism to this point in her life was a stretch of about 10 years. We love what we are doing in France.

Evidence of God at work in new disciples has also been a part of the blessings this month. Many years ago Judy and I started driving weekly to the city of Mazere which is a bit over an hour’s drive each way. The purpose was to have a weekly Bible study with Douceline, a young Christian lady who lived there, and who was very discouraged because she was alone and over an hour’s drive from any church. She has grown in the Lord. She started to invite people she met to the Bible study. Some of them are now saved. She now sees herself as a missionary to this spiritually needy area. About a dozen persons come to the Bible study and she has individual Bibles studies with others. While she was gone on vacation this summer, a couple that has been coming for about two years invited us hold the Bible study in their home. Then another lady who has been coming for about a year invited us to hold the next one at her home and to stay for dinner afterwards. This is one of the individuals with whom Douceline has been having Bible studies investigating the Gospel. This lady who invited us is married to a likable young man who is an atheist. I will include some snapshots of the evening.

Well, I will save the rest for another month. This letter is beginning to look like a journal. Thank you for your regular participation in what God is doing here. We thank God for you daily. May His richest blessings fill your life.

Joyfully sharing the Good News in France,
John and Judy

John and Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher[at]aol.com

Click here to donate to BFM.


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