11 Dec 2010

Prayer Day

All this week the BMS Prayer Guide has been focussed on Peru - praying for some of the workers and opportunities that are happening there. Today is our day to be prayed for. Many thanks to all of you who have already said that you'll be praying for us.

If you'd like to pray, we'd love it if you could pray for the following:
  • Give thanks for our ongoing training at IMC, and the great friends we've made here. This has been a brilliant opportunity to focus on our move overseas and some of the opportunities and challenges this will throw up.
  • Give thanks that we finally appear to have a country (Peru) settled on!
  • Pray for language studies and other preparation whilst we are here. In the not too distant future we need to start arranging visas and vaccines, so pray that it all goes smoothly.
  • Pray for further guidance as to where exactly we might end up. 
Many thanks again for all your support and prayers.

22 Nov 2010

And the winner is...

Some of you will know that whilst we have felt called to South America for a long while, there has been less certainty about which country we might end up in.  Well... the big news here is that we are almost certainly going to Peru early next summer!  After a long while of thinking and praying it seems right that we go and serve as church planters with the Baptist Convention of Peru. It's great to have a country fixed so that we can now begin to plan and learn about Peru's people and history.  And we can begin to get excited!  Thank you so much to those of you who've been praying for this decision.  It's been a while in coming, but we do believe it is right.

Although a specific location is less definite, it looks like we may well go to live in a small town called Urubamba in the Andes.  Check out pictures of it on Flickr... it's in the Sacred Valley where the landscape is stunning!

Please continue to pray for us too.  We have up and down days and sometimes the idea of leaving family and friends feels really painful.  Please remember us and our families in your prayers as we prepare to go overseas.  Please pray that we would all know God's comfort, peace and strength for the months ahead.  Thank you!

Photo credits: Rio Urubamba (c) Phillie Casablanca; Colors! (c) Chang'r

7 Nov 2010

Worthing Link-Up Visit

We've just got back from a great day with Worthing Baptist Church, who are one of our Link churches. We attended the morning service, in which James did the children's talk and we were both interviewed and given a chance to share some of what God has been doing in our lives so far.

Some members from the church travelled to Paraguay last year with BMS and have been instrumental in beginning and supporting the work with the elderly there. It is hoped that a lot of the framework put into place in Paraguay can be adopted for use in Peru.

It was great to meet so many friendly and supportive people and to know that they are praying for us as preparations to go abroad continue.

21 Oct 2010

Julia is ordained!

We had a wonderful day on Saturday celebrating God's goodness to Julia over the past few years as she has followed His call into ministry.  The service traced the journey from God's early promptings through to the people who have helped test and confirm the call. Roger Standing came from Spurgeon's College to officiate and to preach and  Janet Quarry came representing BMS World Mission.  It was great!!

Thank you to those who came to celebrate and pray with the new Rev Julia Henley and for those who sent good wishes! 

It really was such an encouraging afternoon, and one that Julia will remember for many years to come.

'For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands.  For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.'
2 Tim 1:6-7

27 Sep 2010

Julia's Ordination

On October 16th at 2.30 pm Julia will be ordained at Romsey Baptist Church. The service will be a celebration of the way that God has led her over the past few years and an opportunity to pray for his strength and grace for the next part of the journey!

After the service there'll be tea and cake and a chance to chat.

All are welcome - but do let us know so that we can ask the lovely people at RBC to make enough cakes! And feel free to get in touch if you have any questions or if the directions don't make sense! Sadly the church doesn't have a carpark so leave a little extra time to find a parking space in town. Hope to see you on the 16th!

View map of SO51 8GW on Multimap.com
Bird's Eye view of SO51 8GW
Get directions to or from SO51 8GW

26 Sep 2010


Today James ran in the Run to the Beat half-marathon in London, raising money for the charity HopeHIV. Despite a very cold start(!) he finished the race in 2hrs 31mins, coming in 9538th place (out of 17000+ runners). 

Many many thanks to all those who have already sponsored him -so far £374 has been raised. If you haven't sponsored him but would like to do so you still can by visiting http://www.justgiving.com/jhenley. Thanks!

8 Sep 2010

New Chapter!

From the piles of boxes and mess you'll guess that this weekend we moved into the International Mission Centre (IMC) to commence training with BMS.  Apart from a little chaos and a few low beams (resulting in a few bruises for James!) our flat is really nice and should make a lovely home for the next nine months or so.

Our course starts next week so for now we're unpacking, getting settled in and preparing to celebrate our first anniversary in a few days!  Time has flown so fast this past year and we can't believe we've already been married a year or that in such a short time we'll be leaving for South America.

Please keep praying for us as we settle in, as we celebrate this weekend and as we start the course with the other mission trainees.  And please keep in touch!  We'd love to hear from you.

22 Aug 2010

Visit to Highams Park Baptist Church

Today we visited friends old and new at Highams Park Baptist Church in North East London.   Julia spent 9 months working with HPB during a gap year several years ago so for her it was great to share fellowship with many old friends.  It was working with HPB and in particular their 'Fellowship Club' that first began to spark in Julia a desire to minister to elderly people.  Today was James' first visit to the church, but with such a warm welcome we quickly felt very much at home. 

Thanks to the church for your prayers and thanks to Geoff and Margaret for the wonderful hospitality!  We hope to keep in touch with HPB as we prepare to serve overseas with BMS.

9 Aug 2010

Exeter D Link-Up Visit

We've just come back from a great weekend in Devon visiting our first Link-Up group, made up of Budleigh Salterton Baptist Church, Brixington Community Church and a Rural Expressions church plant at Feniton.

On Saturday Budleigh Baptist hosted a tea at which we were able to introduce ourselves and say a little about BMS and the work we're likely to be involved with. On Sunday Julia preached at Budleigh whilst James was interviewed as part of the morning service at Brixington.

We were made to feel very welcome by everybody, and it was so good to meet some of the people who are going to be supporting us, make some new friends and be encouraged by their enthusiasm.

Back in London things are steadily descending into chaos as James tries to get his dissertation finished whilst Julia packs and cleans the flat in preparation for the move to Birmingham in a couple of weeks time!

9 Jul 2010

'Engage' Article

The Summer 2010 issue of BMS' Engage magazine features a short article about our journeys into overseas mission work, both individually and as a couple.

To read the article click here (it's on page 8), or to find out how you can receive Engage magazine for free on a regular basis, click here.

8 Jul 2010


On 26th September 2010 James and Stjon (brother-in-law) will be running a half marathon to try and raise money for HOPEHIV, a charity working to help children vulnerable to HIV/AIDS in Africa. As many of you know we were in rural Tanzania a couple of years ago where we met many orphans whose lives had been turned upside down by this terrible disease, and since then this has been an issue very close to our hearts.

According to HOPEHIV, any money we can raise by running this half marathon will most likely go to Kibera Nursery School, a community run school for 2 to 6 year olds in the heart of Kibera slum Kenya. For the 85 children that attend the school, it’s a lifeline in their poverty stricken lives and the one chance they have to get what most of their parents never did – an education. Without this school, many of these children would have no opportunity to attend another and might never start their education, remaining illiterate and innumerate, trapped in a cycle of poverty.

To give you an idea of the amount of money needed: £6,250 would pay for two teachers, a cook and a cleaner, £1,350 would help towards the cost of food and £100 would help towards either essential classroom materials or medicine and minor medical treatment.

This is a great cause so if you are able to sponsor me, even if it's only for a small amount, it would be much appreciated! You can do so by visiting our Just Giving page here. Thanks again!

29 Jun 2010


After three years of hard work at Spurgeon's College, Julia graduated last week with a 1st class honours degree in Bachelor of Divinity! She's now relaxing (a bit) and getting ready for the move to Birmingham. She'll be ordained as a Baptist minister at some point in the autumn.

June 2010 Prayer letter

As we prepare to finish our time in South London and move to Birmingham to begin training with BMS, we thought this would be a good opportunity to do the Christian thing and write a prayer letter! Some of you will have seen this already either in print or if you are on the email list. If you would like to be on the email list please click on the 'Subscribe' button above, where you'll find details of how to get in touch and receive updates etc.

Anyway you can download this prayer letter by clicking here (it's a pdf file so you'll need the free Adobe Acrobat reader, which can be downloaded by clicking here).

27 Jan 2010

Please pray for Cusco

Please pray for the Cusco region of Peru, which has been severely affected by heavy rain causing flooding and mudslides. Several people have already been killed and many have had their homes and livelihoods destroyed. BMS Mission Workers Scott and Anjanette Williamson and Margaret Swires have been working with the Baptist churches to try and provide basic shelter and food/utensils. For more details click here or here.