Church Planting and Empowerment Ministry 
Christ Presbyterian Church, New Haven CT

Mission Anabaino

MA Newsletter 

Report from Our New Executive Director, Rev. Dr. Preston Graham

Dear MA Friends and Supporters,

As the newly appointed Executive Director of Mission Anabaino, I wish first to express my heartfelt “job well done” to Charles Olcott.  We will no doubt miss his positive leadership and those-- oh so creative-- clichés!   I am however delighted that he will remain a faithful member of our church here in New Haven, CT and continue as the MA liaison to our unique inner city church planting project,  “CPC in the Hill.”

MA moving forward: As we seek to transition from an initial start up phase to a more robust growth and implementation phase in organization, there are several very important strategic initiatives that we can all be praying about for MA. 

First, please pray as we seek to re-organize MA in the formation of an Executive Leadership Team reflective of both the local (Southern CT) and global (strategic cities nationally and internationally) contexts of our church planting and collaborations in “missional ecclesiology.” (BTW, when you here me use that phrase “missional ecclesiology,” I mean a reformational study of the church - her nature and strategies - suitable to a post-Christendom context—the church that is not just a “source” for missions,  but a “locus” of mission.) I plan to announce the details of this re-organization in next month’s update.  

Second, Pray for our next Annual Collaborative that involves both local and global MA members, potential recruits, and interested friends.   True to our name “Anabaino” (Greek for “I ascend”), our next annual MA collaborative has been moved to May 4-6 in sync with Ascension (May 5th).   Our theme this year will be “Missional Catholicity in a Post-Christendom and Neo-Denominational Time.”   We are delighted to welcome the Most Rev. Dr. Foley Beach, Archbishop of the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), and Rev. Dr. Richard Lints, Faculty Dean of Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary—both assisting us in our collaborative-style discussions.

Third, pray for all our global and local MA church planters and churches - that God would anoint them in their spiritual and strategic leadership for the glory of Christ in/with/through healthy Christ-centered churches, and in  their work toward the start-ups of MA collaboratives in each of their respective cities (c.f. MA member websites and links to prayers letters in the featured local and global sites below).

Finally, (and I’m sorry that it feels so expected), pray for God to raise up the resources we need to expand our vision for “Total Christ” church plants and a much needed reformation movement in Missional Ecclesiology.   Specifically, three kinds of resources:


  • Church planters.  We are especially in need of church planters interested the vastly under-reached region of Southern CT. We are also in our final stages of solidifying a new church plant in Zambia and in re-engaging our church planting initiative and expansion in the Mirebalais region of Haiti. 
  • Additional anchor churches.  Currently, all of our churches except one is a “mission church.”  From a recourse perspective, they are receiving and not giving into MA financially (yet J).  We need additional anchor churches who would be interested in both support of and leadership in our growing Total Christ network and collaboration.
  • 100 new prayer/financial supporters, and 50k of new financial support.  This is in order to accomplish modestly ambitious goals for the fiscal 2015-2016 year.

And may God bless you in His mediatorial presence within your own local church in the experience of a Total Christ! 

"The Word was made flesh and tabernacled among us; to that flesh is joined the church, and there is made the total Christ, head and body." 
- St. Augustine, On the Epistle of John


Rev. Dr. Preston Graham
Executive Director, Mission Anabaino
Sr. Pastor, Christ Presbyterian Church New Haven

May 4-6 2016 Annual Collaborative Registration
Imagine the grill is smoking with sizzling hot dogs and hamburgers.  Tables are set with various salads, some fruit, a few homemade dishes, and, of course, cookies. You notice a handful of people milling about the park, some are sitting on benches, and children with their parents watching are climbing on the playground. You recall that most of these enjoying the park are broken and live rather messy lives. You’ve already made the rounds to introduce yourself as the pastor and in a few minutes a meal will be ready. “Come join us when you hear me shout, ‘The hot dogs and hamburgers are ready!’”
You’re hoping for a good crowd, but at first you don’t see a high turn out this evening. But, in time, that changes. Our grill person says, “We’re ready.” You shout out, “The food’s ready. Come join us!” And in a few moments a small crowd of teens, children, and adult appear around the tables. Some even know you’re going to preach a little; but, yet, they still come. You are now surrounded by 30+ families and parentless teens. You welcome them and tell them, “we are Christ Presbyterian Church in The Hill and thank you for letting us be your guests in your park this evening.” You open your Bible to Psalm 23 and begin, “The Lord is my _____________.” And, the crowd without being asked fills in the blank: “Shepherd.” You continue: “I shall not _____________.” They add, “want.” And then, you declare, “Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of _________.” “Death!” they fill in. “I shall fear no ___________.” “Evil,” they shout without hesitation. You identify with them: “We all have seen too much ‘death’ in our neighborhood. We all know what “evil” looks like.” They all nod in agreement. Some even say, “Amen.” You have their attention. You let them know there is a Shepherd who wants to walk with them through that valley of the shadow of death so they can brave and even deliver them from that “evil.”
This happens every Wednesday evening, with different messages, throughout the summer. For nine weeks Christ Presbyterian Church in The Hill shares a BBQ meal in a nearby park. For some, its their only meal that day; for some, the only meal in a few days. For many, just a nice chance to be loved and to have conversation. This is what we call our “In His Midst” ministry—to show up where Jesus is already working, seeking to change lives. The good people of CPC in The Hill is in that park to share the love of Jesus over a meal, spending time listening to their stories and offering a prayer, sometimes a scripture, and, mostly, encouragement. This year we have had many more intentional conversations about God and what Jesus has done for them. The “In His Midst” ministry is a natural megaphone to our community that CPC in The Hill cares about our neighbors. I even receive some calls during the week with requests for prayer or just to talk. Pray that the relationships we are developing in that park move toward Jesus, the Shepherd who ready and open to change their lives.

CPC the Hill
New Haven, Ct

Interim Pastor Rev. Chip Anderson


Christ the Shepherd Presbyterian Church
Danbury, CT
Rev. David Hutchinson


CPC Fairfield
Fairfield, CT
Rev. Andrew Holbrook

Christ Church Milwaukee continues to see God's blessings in many ways through this summer. We've finished our small group bible studies in homes and are preparing to launch services in September. We'll have 2 "preview" services in August, and then officially launch on Sept. 13th! Please be in prayer for that date. We have a great team in place to start with, but we're hoping to keep growing of course. We'll be meeting in an elementary school that's right on campus of UW-Milwaukee, which is another key demographic we're hoping to reach. Thanks for praying and supporting CCM!

Christ Church Milwaukee
Milwaukee, WI
Rev. Jon Talley


Glory San Francisco
San Francisco, CA
Rev. Christopher Robins

Hope Presbyterian Church
Bloomington, IN
Rev. Dan Herron

Coram Deo Presbyterian Church
Spokane, WA
Rev. Kyle Parker

New City Presbyterian Church
South Bend, IN
Rev. Luke Potter

New Hope Haitian Church
Mirebalais, Haiti
Rev. Marcel Baptiste
In 1 John 5:14-15, we are reminded that when we ask anything that is according to God's will, that God uses prayer as one of the means to accomplish his will.  We are assured in scripture that church planting is God's will (even if the specifics are left to God's continued wisdom).  Please pray for Mission Anabaino - that it will be about Christ, his glory, his life giving presence, and his harvest on earth as in heaven!

We also know that Paul wrote perhaps his greatest treatise on the gospel, at least in part, as a support letter in his vision to plant churches in the unreached area of Spain “by way of you” (Rom. 1:15:14-28). Ever since, church planting has been “by way of” (Rom 15:28) those who are willing to invest their time, talent, and treasure.

In short, Mission Anabaino cannot proceed with its ambitious church planting and empowerment plans without financial partners. An investment in MA either through general support or designated to one of its specific projects is indeed an investment in the very epicenter of Christ’s saving presence on earth “against which even the gates of hell will not prevail” (Mt. 16:18)!

If interested you may give online or by check mailed to “Mission Anabaino” at 135 Whitney Ave, New Haven, CT 06510. 
For questions or comments please contact:
Annie McHugh
Executive Assistant
Mission Anabaino

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