Recalling the Start of Making Disciples 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.”

June 4, 2018

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

The question arises from time to time, “How did you start the church where you are?” This is an excellent question. This past week we were vividly reminded of how the process of making disciples here began. We had the privilege of receiving for dinner and the Sunday meeting, Ursula, the first person to be touched by the Lord at the beginning of our efforts here. Ursula was here with her daughter, Veronika, who was about five when she and her younger sister came with their mother to Sunday School. She is now a fine young lady of 23 doing internship near us.

John & Judy with Ursula and Veronika

The neighborhood had a special welcome home party potluck for John & Judy. The party theme was “Dress like an American”.

Children at the neighborhood’s special welcome home party potluck for John & Judy. The party theme was “Dress like an American”.

In September 2000, we moved to Tournefeuille where we knew no one. The day we signed the rental contract on our house we were invited to a neighborhood gathering in the street a few dozen feet from our house. One of the neighbors organized the snack time so that all the new home renters could get to know each other. That event was an answer to prayer in ways I do not have the space to retell here. At this gathering, word got around that we were here to communicate the word of God and Ursula introduced herself and let us know that she would like to come to Bible studies. She a key person that God used to help us start here. She was very friendly and brought her friends and people she befriended. Ursula and her family returned to the home area of Germany in 2003. She expresses the fact that the crossing of our paths here changed her life. It was great to review those early days. I am including a picture of Ursula, Veronika and us following Sunday morning service.

One of our neighbors stopped by in early May to say that since we had been out of town for so long and missed the last couple neighborhood gatherings they wanted to have a special welcome home party potluck for us. The party theme was “dress like an American.” I am including pictures of the adults and children at this party which will give you an idea of how they visualize Americans. You might try to guess who Judy and I were trying to impersonate from an old TV series that was quite popular here. It was great to renew these acquaintances and keep the links warm for communicating the Good News of Jesus Christ. That evening I had the opportunity to spend a good amount of time giving the message of salvation to a man who is a new neighbor next to us.

The annual neighborhood party is to be held this coming Saturday evening. We thank God for all of these opportunities He gives us to link up with people and build credibility to communicate the Good News.

Thank you for your participation which enables us to be here as lights in this and other communities. God continues to work through the believers here for His glory and we are encouraged.

From southern France,
John and Judy

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

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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Communicating the Good News of Christ with Neighbors & Acquaintances

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.”

March 4, 2018

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Judy and I thank God for your continual and long-term partnership with us in the mission that He has set before us in France. Yesterday we celebrated 45 years of marriage. It seems like yesterday that we began this wonderful partnership. We have been privileged to serve together on 3 different continents and God has blessed us beyond our imagination.

We have continued to connect with our neighbors and acquaintances here. These connections are the primary means of display and communicating the Good News of Jesus Christ. About 10 days ago Judy and I went to visit Patricia. This lady used to live just a few blocks from us. Her husband has been afflicted by Alzheimer’s syndrome for a while so after becoming acquainted with her several years ago we visited her frequently.  She came to church a few times but has never shown much interest. A couple of years ago her husband was placed in a Nursing Home as she could no longer manage his care.  While we were in the US, various members of our congregation helped her in many different ways. This greatly encouraged Judy and me. During our last visit she asked us  to pray and showed more interest than she ever has before. She came to church last Sunday. Please pray for this lady who desperately needs the Lord.

As with you, sometimes believers of our congregation go through difficult times.  Paulette, the oldest member of our congregation who is faithful in seeking to reach others has had many physical problems in the last 2 or 3 years. Tomorrow she will be having a needle biopsy to determine if a tumor in her pancreas is malign. About two weeks ago she called me to ask me to meet her husband at his only brother’s home.  They had just entered the house and found a suicide note on the table. There has been no sight of this brother now for over two weeks. Pray that God will give wisdom to this lady to know how to help her husband and that he would trust receive Christ. We have had a good relationship with the gentleman for some time.

May God continue to bless each of you.

In Christ in France,
John and Judy

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

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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Every Disciple is a Missionary

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 31, 2017

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

The news from Southern France is good. Participation in the Sunday meetings has been good. This coming Saturday, September 2, will be the first youth meeting for the new school year. It has been a great blessing to have Philip and Amanda and our grandchildren serving with us. What great missionaries they are. Our Granddaughters have been very effective in reaching their friends in the public schools where they attend. Their parents have done and continue to do a great job in encouraging the girls in their walk with Christ and have been great examples as they reach out to their neighbors, co-workers and others with whom they have formed relationships in their community.

Our passion is to make disciples and every disciple is a missionary. This is how the Gospel impacted lives in the first decades following the baptism of the Holy Spirit at Jerusalem on Pentecost. Note Luke’s inspired words, “And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles. (emphasis is mine) Therefore they that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the word. (Acts 8:1-4) Now they which were scattered abroad upon the persecution that arose about Stephen travelled as far as Phenice, and Cyprus, and Antioch, preaching the word to none but unto the Jews only. And some of them were men of Cyprus and Cyrene, which, when they were come to Antioch, spake unto the Grecians, preaching the Lord Jesus. And the hand of the Lord was with them: and a great number believed, and turned unto the Lord. (Acts 11:19-21)

Judy has completed the therapy following her kneecap surgery but continues to work hard at getting full normal use of her leg. We walk in the neighborhood and exercise at the YMCA in Evansville. In these two activities, we have been able to make many contacts and have had many good conversations. Judy is now meeting weekly with a lady she met who needs Christ. They are studying through the Gospel of Matthew.

Peggy is doing better. One of the blessings we have is to participate in a Bible study she has with a couple in her home. The lady trusted Christ after being in a Bible study with Peggy for over a year and a half. She has followed the Lord in baptism. The husband is very interested. Just since we have been here the study has gone through the two letters from Peter and is now in first John.

Thank you for your faithful participation in the ministry in France and the continued support as we serve here while waiting to return to France.

Rejoicing in Christ, John and Judy

Temporary Address
John and Judy Hatcher
1901 Shepherd Dr.
Evansville, IN 47715
jmhatcher[at]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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Missionary Update: John Mark & Judy Hatcher in France [December 2013]

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

December 7, 2013

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I realized last night as I was heading to bed that I had not yet written you this month. We do thank God daily for you as we pray and desire our Lord’s richest blessings and provisions for you. God has been so good to us. As I was helping one of the brothers in our church this week do some work on his house, I was once again reminded that God has given Judy and me good health and strength as our earthly age advances.

A number of things encourage us here. One of them is the increased interest of the young people who come on Sundays and a much larger group that participates in our monthly youth meetings. The youth meeting this past month went very well. These not only touch the lives of the youth but also their families. Just this past week, Amanda was able to spend some quality time with the mother of one the young ladies who has been coming. Contact with this family started a number of years ago when Philip and his family lived closer to us. Our grandchildren and children in the family of which I am speaking were classmates in the early years of school.

Seeing an opportunity, Amanda and Judy had a weekly “English class” for the children in this family and others. This gave greater contact and more opportunities to share our lives with these families. Even though Philip and his family moved to the neighboring town (Plaisance du Touch) four years ago, they maintain relationships with these folks from their old neighborhood. Some of these children accepted the invitation to come to the youth meetings.

This past week the mother I mentioned above, called and asked Amanda if they could get together. Amanda invited her over for tea. The mother talked about how much her daughter was getting from the youth meetings and that the daughter wanted a Bible like we used. Amanda took the time to show her excerpts from the Bible, and in so doing was able to share the Gospel with her. The Lord willing, we will see this young lady and her friends at the Youth meeting next week.

So, we try to “walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, redeeming the time”. Your faithful giving makes it possible for us to continue let our light shine here in this dark corner of France. Please pray that God will enable us to effectively do so. Many of our conversations and discussions are with people who are set in their atheism (more than 50% of French are in this category.) Sometimes I “chew nails” in discussions with these folks who blindly ignore the evidences from God’s creation, but I must display the love of Christ in my demeanor. It is not human arguments or wrath that will lead them Christ, rather it is goodness of God that leads people to repentance (Romans 2:4).

Thanks again for joining us in the endeavor that God has set before us.

In Christ in France,
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 [April 2013]

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

April 1, 2013

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Thank you for your participation in the ministry here. Judy and I pray for you daily and thanking God for your faithfulness. Four weeks ago we celebrated 40 years of marriage. We enjoyed a quiet evening meal in a restaurant and reviewed God’s blessings on our lives. Little did we know, when we started our life together, what our Savior had in store for us. We are grateful for what He has done and is doing in the lives of children and grandchildren. Serving our Lord together has been a great joy as we have seen many come to new life in Christ. When Judy and I married, she had not been out of Kentucky too many times, but six weeks after committing ourselves to each other in the Lord we moved to Brazil. The Lord has enabled us to be witnesses on three different continents. The journey has truly been an adventure.

So, presently we are in France, a very different culture from Brazil or the United States of America. Our Creator and Redeemer, however, is “the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.” God has chosen us, His redeemed children, to be His witnesses in the sea of humanity so desperately in need of the eternal life that He offers.

A view of John Mark & Judy’s neighborhood from their front window.

Here are a few tidbits from our adventure this month. Early in the month, we were invited to dinner in the home of a couple who live just around the corner from us. They have been our neighbors for about a year and wanted to show their appreciation to us because we watched their house and watered their plants while they were away on vacation. During the evening we talked to them and another neighbor couple about faith in God. Neither of these couples have any religious practice.

About the same time, I had a lengthy discussion with a neighbor just across the street about God, homosexual marriages and abortion. This family, with three children, drive some distance on Sundays to go to a church that has mass in Latin, because, according to him, “it is the Universal language.” To our knowledge this family is the only one in our large neighborhood that goes to church anywhere. We pray that they will understand that they need Christ instead of a religion.

Yesterday, as we were heading home on a typical Sunday afternoon walk with our family here, I had the chance to spend some time talking to a young couple who live on a street parallel to ours. She recently began singing in the choir in which I sing. Yesterday, I met her husband for the first time and had a lengthy conversation with them. He was born in Israel and is a non-practicing Jew. His grandparents moved from Poland to France after the second World War. They left France to establish themselves in Israel in 1951. His father was born in Israel just a few months later. A few weeks ago, as we were waiting for choir practice to start, this lady asked me why we were in France. As I began to tell her, another lady, to whom I have witnessed on several occasions said, “Be careful, or he will convert you!”

There are countless other stories that could be told. There are multitudes of individuals who are lost and in need of a Savior. We have the Good News. I wish they were all saved. We keep sowing the seed and waiting for the Harvest. Thanks again for your participation in this endeavor.

Sowing the Good seed in France,

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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