At The Sanctuary Fellowship
living as “Catalysts of God-honoring change in all areas of life for…”
TSF History in Jenny Lane
At The Sanctuary Fellowship, we have a vision that the Lord can and will change lives in Jenny Lane which is why we have been serving since the church was started.
We are praying that we can be catalysts of God-honoring change in all areas of life for the residents of Jenny Lane. We have a desire to impact their Spiritual, Social, Physical, Financial, and Educational lives.
The proximity of Jenny Lane to our church truly allows us to foster ongoing intentional ministry. We are able build intentional relationships and see genuine community transformation occur. This however requires that we devote time, energy, and resources to this ministry, not in order to give a hand-out, but rather to begin empowering the residents of Jenny Lane to break the chain of poverty.
Join us at one of our upcoming events at Jenny Lane, and see how the Lord moves in your heart for the amazing residents that live there.
Easter is the day where we remember the most significant event in all of human history – Jesus’ resurrection. We take this opportunity to pour the Gospel into the community at Jenny Lane. Easter of 2015 the children and their families journeyed through 12 stations of the Easter story – getting their “Easter Passport” stamped along the way. Each station was interactive and designed to help people truly connect with the resurrection story. The 2016 Easter Celebration was built like the Amazing Race – where children visit stations and complete challenges of the cross.
After the gospel stations, children are sent to hunt the ever elusive Easter Eggs and get some candy. This event is a blessing to the families year after year, and perhaps even a greater blessing to those who serve! Be at Jenny Lane this year as we carry the Gospel back into Jenny Lane for the fourth year in a row!
Each year, we conduct a four day VBS at Jenny Lane. We bring all of the supplies necessary, and run a full VBS for the children of the community. This has been an incredible time to share Christ with the children and connect with their parents who come with them.
On the last day of VBS, we typically do a drive of some sorts that will bless the community. We have done clothing and shoe drives before, but in 2014 and 2015 we handed out backpacks that were fully stocked with school supplies that the kids will need for the upcoming school year.
The VBS for 2016 is scheduled for July 25th-28th. Mark your calendars and be with us as we pour the gospel into children and families!
Trunk or Treat
Trunk or Treat is our annual “Fall Festival” for Jenny Lane. Our Life Groups host booths that the children can visit to play games, get candy, and show off their costumes. Our goal is to provide a fun and safe environment where the children and their parents can get together with TSF people and those in their community. During the event, we halt all of the games and share the gospel with the community. Typically, it has involved a craft that will help the children remember what God has done for them. Whether we are using wordless bracelets or sending them home with a pumpkin that will remind them that God wants to clean us up from the inside out and make us happy in HIM, we want people to know that God loves them and wants to have a relationship with them!
This year, Trunk-or-Treat will be on October 30th, 2016 and we hope you will make plans to be with us!
Thanksgiving is meant to be a time of rejoicing with family, celebrating together all of the ways that the Lord has blessed us and provided for us. For many in Jenny Lane, this time of year comes with the added stress and reminder that there isn’t quite enough money to make all of the ends meet. TSF wanted to step into the gap and help in a small way – alleviating the financial burden of purchasing a Thanksgiving feast. Each year at Trunk or Treat, residents sign-up to receive a full Thanksgiving meal, complete with a large ham and all the fixings. TSF members and guests sign up to “sponsor” a family, and will purchase all of the sides necessary for a full meal. TSF purchases hams for everyone and we meet out at Jenny Lane as a church family, and begin to distribute the meals.
Through this event, we have had the privilege of leading several people to Christ, praying for people who are in troublesome times, and simply loving on people.
Interested in serving the people in Jenny Lane in this way? We will be taking sign-ups starting in November 2016 and will meet at Jenny Lane on November 23rd at 10:00AM to distribute meals!
TSF History in Penitas
Since 2008, our church has been taking mission trips to the Rio Grande Valley. It wasn’t until 2010 that we began to work in a small neighborhood in Penitas exclusively, and has now become the main source of our efforts.
Each year we take several trips to Penitas, TX to help the marginalized and oppressed! From building houses and clothing drives to spreading the Gospel at sports clinics or VBS we are committed to making a difference in the Colonias. We have partnered with Buckner Border Missions and have worked extensively with their Family Hope Center located in the community where we serve.
Since 2010, our church has had the privilege of conducting VBS; distributing clothing, shoes, blankets, coats, and hygiene kits; painting dozens and dozens of homes; doing construction on existing homes, completing several new-home builds, doubling the size of a home, and completely building two homes from the ground up.
We are praying that the Lord would allow us to do so much more than this, but ultimately, we want to see people respond to the Gospel and come to know Jesus as their Lord and Savior!
- Literacy Rate – 58%
- Unemployment Rate – 32%
- 1 of every 3 of these families have incomes at or below poverty level
- Avg. Household income: $18,000/ year
- Penitas is a Colonia
- Essentially colonias are illegal subdivisions
- Many of them lack basic infrastructure
- Near the border
- Sold to “owners” through financing, but can be revoked for missed payment. (Deed is given once payment is made in full)
- Houses are “portable” and pieced together
TSF History in Uganda
The Sanctuary Fellowship has had a connection to Uganda since our church’s inception. We raised money to meet the needs of the Ugandan people, including sending bicycles for pastors to visit their congregations, Bibles for those that didn’t have one, and support for churches that were seeking to bring light and life to the Ugandan people. In 2011, TSF took our first team to Uganda, where we did evangelism in the villages and worked with the leaders in a local church. There were 13 people that went on that first trip, and since then, we have taken a team every year. We have had the privilege to serve alongside Pastor James Luwaga and Jubilee Fellowship to begin intentionally discipling young Ugandans who are trying to make a difference in their country. In 2012, we conducted our first Ugandan Bible Camp where we utilized chronological Bible storying to help God’s Word come alive for the young people. Each year, we have had around 25 Ugandan students who attend the camp, many of whom are unchurched and participants with false religions and even witchcraft. Through our Bible camps, we have seen many young people come to know Christ, being rescued from Islam, ancestral worship and animism, and witchcraft. We have also seen young Christians matured into passionate followers of Christ who are leading others into a full and abundant life in Christ. In 2015, we launched a child sponsorship program that empowered 65 Ugandan children to begin going to school. These children, without sponsorship, would have no other option but to begin working to support themselves or become street children who live a life of crime. Since we launched in September of 2015, 95 children have been sponsored, and it has been incredible to see these children “come alive” and see that they truly have a future to look forward to!
Since the beginning of our ministry to Uganda, we have sought to reach others through intentional relationships. We have facilitated these relationships by conducting a Bible camp with young people that are somehow connected with Jubilee Fellowship. We are able to host around 25 Ugandans at the YWAM facility outside of Jinja. Of these 25, some of them are members of Jubilee Fellowship, others are members of other churches, but many of them are unbelievers who are friends with the Christian youth. During the Bible Camp, we utilize chronological Bible-stories, some of which are dramatically portrayed, to share the Gospel and begin interacting with the Word of God. This has afforded us some amazing theological conversations with the young people as they seek to understand the Bible. Because of the fact that the team from TSF is spending the entire week with the Ugandans, there is ample time for them to begin sharing life with one another. Relationships are built quickly, and conversation will center around the life that we find in Christ. We have found that this is one of the most natural ways to share Christ with the Ugandans and it has proved to be effective. Since we began this camp in 2012, we have seen the majority of the campers plug into active roles at Jubilee Fellowship. We have also had the pleasure of leading many of these campers into a relationship with Christ – and we pray that we will have the opportunity to lead many more! Most recently, The Sanctuary Fellowship has begun a child sponsorship program to minister to children in Uganda. Together with Destineville Community School (started out of Jubilee Fellowship), we have sent 95 underprivileged children to school. Individuals at TSF have committed to providing the funds necessary to provide for tuition fees, school supplies, uniforms, shoes, and a hot meal every day. Amazingly, this is accomplished for only $305 annually, and we have seen tremendous growth in the children that have been sponsored!
James was born on October 23, 1969. He grew up poor in a polygamous family of 25 children, his father being from the Muslim background. At the age of 8 James was moved to St. Moses Children’s Care Center as a vulnerable child where he attained education up to high school and later joined Youth With A Mission graduating with an Associates Degree in Christian Ministries (majoring in Biblical studies and leadership/management). He has also attained a variety of Social, HIV/AIDS and financial management trainings with Infectious Disease Institute, Center for Disease Control and Makerere University. James doubles as an experienced social worker and organizational manager and is currently the founding Pastor of Jubilee Fellowship – a growing church in Bukaya a fairly new semi urban settlement area in Njeru Town Council. He also oversees the Kiryowa and Bulyankuyege Fellowships – church plants of Jubilee Fellowship and is the founder and Board member of Supportive Initiative for Development – a social development agency that runs Destineville Nursery School (currently with 35 children, 15 needy orphans), Walper Destineville Community School (currently with 250 children, 85 needy orphans), and a socioeconomic empowerment community program that supports needy vulnerable children and their caring households. James is also the coordinator of the “Njeru leaders conversation” a new initiative to support leadership development and peer counseling for Christian leaders. James has worked as an associate pastor of Life Giving Stream Tabernacle (Nile Evangel Church) for 7 years before taking on the role of pastor at Jubilee Fellowship. During the same period as associate pastor he worked as the Country Director for AIDS Orphans Education Trust (AOET – Uganda) where he was responsible for strategic and business planning, development of policies and procedures; and Human resources management. James has also worked as a program coordinator, ministry leader and base manager for Youth with A Mission Uganda. He has a wide experience and exposure having trained and experienced leadership and management in Uganda, South Africa, Europe and New Zealand. James also worked on several Youth with A Mission projects in Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania, and South Sudan between 1998 and 2002.
The Sanctuary Fellowship currently supports the Cokenour family who are serving as full-time missionaries in Budapest Hungary.
Terry and Christina Cokenour have a passion for exemplifying Christ’s model of servant leadership and are excited to engage Hungarian culture in what God is doing.
Terry was raised in Southern California. After seeking fulfillment through a career in technology, he began reading the Bible he was given as a youth. He accepted Christ at age 25 in the heart of Chicago, Illinois.
Christina was born and raised in Houston, Texas, but she is Hungarian by heritage. She accepted Christ at age 22 after being led to the Lord by Terry’s sister-in-law, who introduced them. The Cokenours married in June 1999.
Terry has always had a passion for traveling, but never knew that would involve missions until the idea of living and serving in Budapest, Hungary, kept coming up over a two-year period. He and Christina decided to visit the city on their 10- year anniversary and see if it was more than mere curiosity behind the idea. “We were both quickly convinced that God had shaped us specifically to serve in that city at this point in time,” adds Christina.
The Cokenours find the most rewarding aspect of being missionaries is embracing the fact that their family is truly in the hands of God. “As missionaries, we are not superheroes. We are patients desperately in need of Christ’s care. The amazing thing is that we see the ongoing advance of God’s Kingdom happen by the power of the gospel through our weaknesses.” says Terry.
The Cokenours also feel God has uniquely equipped them for this ministry. Christina’s Hungarian heritage and language ability gives them instant credibility with a people group that is averse to leadership and skeptical of change. Their previous church planting experiences in the U.S. and Terry’s backgrounds in teaching, music and web development give them many avenues to form relationships with nationals. “We are here to serve, to see Hungarian Christians take ownership of new church plants and cross-cultural ministry efforts.”
Please pray for the Cokenours as they devote their lives to the ministry of the gospel among the Hungarian people!
We must be moved with compassion for women and children that have been caught up in the dark world of sex trafficking and sexual exploitation. Matthew 9:13 tells us that Christ desires compassion over sacrifice. Colossians 3:12 commands us to put on compassionate hearts and 1 Peter 3:8 says we are to love one another and be compassionate.
Compassion is the fuel for the fire behind Liberty Haven Ministries. Compassion is what motivates us and is the core value in our Compassionate Care program to restore women in their holistic healing and independent living process.