News from Europe
As a young girl growing up in America I was enamored by European culture. America felt bland by comparison. The mysteries and exotic allure of this ancient “old” world held my imagination, and at 21 I went to Paris for two weeks (I didn’t know anyone or speak the language) to discover the “continent.” Everything in me wanted to make it home. Though I was intent on coming back, I never imagined that I would return in this capacity – married to a pastor/church leader and overseer of the C3 Europe region for the C3 movement. I had other things in mind. I might marry royalty, live in a splendid little apartment on the Left Bank, maybe summer in Provence.
It’s cool how God intervenes to disrupt our best-laid plans…I’m on a different kind of adventure now, one that I never expected – whisked out of New York City where I run a PR business (still do) to the never-ending metropolis of London to co-run a church and oversee Europe with my husband Simon McIntyre. And it's the very best kind of adventure. Want to know what part I love most? I get to do it with some pretty amazing women. C3 Europe rocks! Literally. What a privilege to be in the company of women that are as gutsy as they come, beautiful, courageous women—all of them. People keep saying Europe is dead spiritually, no way, not when we're here! I love these women, each one of them. We’re a movement of risk takers, the entrepreneurs of the Christian world. I’ve run a business for years and there are so many similarities. The biggest one: faith. If you want to do something that you’ve never done before, it’s definitely wise to step out with some faith in your back pocket. Our women definitely have this, however wonderful some days, however imperfect on other days. It’s the perseverance that counts.
There are too many wonderful things happening in this region to mention them all, but here are a few highlights. Watch this page because there are many more to come!
Lizby Warren took the ultimate step of faith to leave her home in England and assume co-leadership of the movement’s C3 Amsterdam church in The Netherlands, with her husband Steve. This year they’ve put a major stake in the ground; purchasing a building for their church, which is currently being refurbished to the hilt.
Marianne Moehr and her husband Theirry have broken through the 750-member mark at C3 Lausanne, Switzerland. What seemed impossible in their culture is happening, a real miracle of faith and perseverance – a true church revival. Their vision for their city is happening!
Martina Schwartzkopft and her husband Manfred are celebrating their 10-year anniversary in Hanau, Germany. They own a great building and are currently acquiring more space because their church is growing! It was back at the Singapore C3 Global conference that Martina knew they should plant a church – and look what they’ve done in only a decade!
Jen Gilpin, who launched Hope City Church in Sheffield, England, over 20+ years ago and has 10 church plants under their banner, has recently joined the movement with her husband Dave. Jen runs a fantastic women’s conference and notably has developed a highly respected collection of homes to protect battered and trafficked women called City Hearts. Such a blessing to have her in the family!
C3 Europe women are involved in planting churches across the continent in countries that include The Netherlands with Nicola de Vreugd, Finland with Katia Leinonen, Switzerland with Sara Spalinger and in Norway with Helen Meyers. More to come!
Valerie, who hails from New York, has spent the last twenty years creating high impact communications campaigns and revenue streams for clients that range from prestigious cultural organizations to global lifestyle brands. She worked for several of the city’s top public relations firms before heading up an in-house communications division for Toth Brand Imaging.
Valerie founded Brand Building Communications in January 2007 in NYC and launched her LA office in 2008. In addition to pioneering a WOM practice, she created a community-based news platform, 24Savvy. She is currently a Board Member of charity:water– an influential non-profit providing water for communities throughout the world.
Valerie is a very gifted communicator and writer. She is a great inspiration to women, particularly in the business world - she gets it. Valerie has been a member of C3 Manhattan for the last 9 years, in this time she has been vitally involved in church life: in Pathfinders, as a connect group leader and discipler of women. She loves people, big cities and London.