Joseph Woodard

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Hello friend! 

This July I am returning to Eastern Europe to share the good news of Jesus’ story through teaching, evangelism, discipleship, community-building, and encouragement. As you may remember, last year we (“Albania +”) first sent teams to Hungary and Poland to participate in ministry projects there. In 2019, I will be joining two teams: Albania and Poland.​

This will be the 7th year that members of Watermark Church have done ministry in Eastern Europe. I've been blessed to be part of it for 5 years. This year (2019) is special because it represents a joining of two ministries that I’m passionate about: Albania Team and the Re:generation program. Through these I have seen first-hand how God is working both in Dallas, Albania, and Poland.  ​

Where I'm Going

Since 2015 I've spent time each summer doing evangelism through high-school camps in the Albanian cities of Elbasan (2015-2016) and Korça (2017-2018). I've seen a lot of fruit from those projects, including seeing young people grow closer to God, some getting involved in their local church—and even some going on their own mission trips to places like Macedonia and Turkey. My goal this year is to work with the other Directors of the “Albania+” ministry to have discussions with Cru and local church leaders in Tirana (the capital city) to determine how we can best serve them.

Last summer we sent a group to Warsaw, Poland to host a week-long re:generation conference. Then, in October 2018, members of Cru Poland launched 3 groups (about 28 people) to start the 12-step curriculum. The Warsaw small groups are led remotely by leaders in Dallas, who use Skype to videoconference for one hour every Tuesday at noon. I have been helping with organization, planning, and translating the 900-page curriculum into Polish. 

After my week in Albania this July, I will fly up to Poland to celebrate with the first Polish commencing class. Then, we will do leader training and host another conference for local churches with the intention of launching the first autonomous Polish-led 12-step groups.

Why I'm Going

A while back, the Apostle Paul traveled to Albania (see Romans 15:19). He went there after finding true community and learning about true purpose in life: worshiping God and sharing his message of grace and salvation through Jesus Christ. Even though Paul was imperfect, he was able to have peace with God because of what Jesus did, and he sought to share it with others. 

I can relate to Paul because my nature is to follow rules and clear explanations to get to the finish line of life. However, I can't follow God's rules perfectly, and for much of my life I was separated from God. I lived a life of self-promotion, fear, comfort-seeking, and trying to please others. However, because God sent Jesus to take the punishment for my sins, I have peace with God. Today, I am forgiven, at peace, and look to please God instead of men.

How I’m Going

In order to go this summer, I need prayer and financial support. Will you pray for me? Will you give financially? Each of these are important as I prepare for July, provide leadership for the team, and travel to Eastern Europe. Here are the specifics:

  • Pray. (1) For safe travel. (2) That we will have fruitful discussions and that relationships with Albanians and Poles will be strengthened. (3) That the re:generation leader training and conference will have many people raised as leaders and participants. (4) That the Dallas team will be focused on the mission and not distracted by the enemy. (5) That the Dallas team we will be equipped and effective as a team. (6) That Cru in Albania, Hungary, and Poland will be faithful to their mission; and (7) that the local church in those countries will grow spiritually. 
  • Give. The cost for this summer’s travel and lodging is $3,500, with 1,$700 due by May 11. This covers airfare and in-country costs. To give online, select the "Give a Gift" button at the bottom of this page. 
  • Thank you!

    Thank you for giving me your time in reading this, and for considering giving. I would love to hear back from you about how you are doing. Please reach out if you have any questions or encouragements. 

    Joseph

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