Malaga, Spain

Planting a life-giving International Church amongst 1.7 million Spaniards, expats, and foreigners.

Our Story

We are Mark and Heather, international church pastors in Barcelona and future international church planters in Malaga, Spain. All that we are, all that we have, and all that we will ever be is because of Jesus Christ. He has put a dream in our hearts by inviting us to be a part of what He is doing in the lives of people in Spain. We invite you to take this journey with us, to read through the stories on this site, and to allow God to speak to your heart about how He would invite you to be a part of what He is doing both here in Spain and right where you live.

Our story began back before we ever met, when Heather and I were teens, and God called both of us into the ministry and eventually to the mission field in Europe. From 1993 until 2016, God led us to serve as youth, discipleship, and missions pastors in three amazing churches in the US, and from 2017-2020 as part of the pastoral team at the International Church of Barcelona. We’ve been blessed to pour our lives into thousands of amazing people in very diverse and beautiful, Christ-centered communities. We have two adult daughters, Ashley and Allie. Ashley attends a medical college in the midwest and Allie makes her home in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, with her husband Joey. It's our privilege to love and serve the city of Malaga and to watch Christ do what only He can do; to bring hope, healing, and life to all who would put their faith in Him.

Our primary task will be to lead a team of missionaries and local leaders to establish a vibrant, ethnically diverse, and life-giving international church in Malaga that lifts up the name of Jesus. We believe that God is in the business of doing impossible things. We believe that He is and will continue to reveal to people who are far from Him that He is close and that He will give life and hope to hearts that receive Him. We believe that God loves Malaga and that He has a beautiful purpose for this city and the people there. And we believe God may be inviting you to be a part of what He is doing there through giving, praying, or even going.

 

Mark and Heather McKinstry

Our Strategy ... Love People

CONNECT with the CITY. We are in our city and for our city. We LOVE Malaga. We will be a generous, hospitable, life-giving church to our city, reflecting Christ's work in us to those around us. Because we are committed to building long-term relationships with those around us, we will: 1) LIVE in the neighborhood where we will plant the church doing life with those around us, 2) ESTABLISH a comfortable community touch point for connecting with those around us, and 3) CREATE an outreach ministry that serves our city and meets the needs of our community while lifting Jesus Christ high in all we do.

CREATE a FAITH COMMUNITY. We will be a church with many front doors. Each of our team members will lead a Community Group. These Community Groups are committed to being a place of deep transformational discipleship. They will operate as a place to 1) SOCIALIZE where people can be authentic, 2) STUDY God's Word together through mutual encouragement and accountability, 3) SUPPORT each other celebrating the good and helping in life's challenges, and 4) SERVE the city together through hospitality, compassion, and generosity. Together, as Christ transforms our lives, we will reflect that work to those arounds us, meeting needs while pointing people to Jesus, the true life-giver.

COME together CORPORATELY. We believe in lifting up Christ together. Jesus said, "where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them" (Matthew 18:20). We will meet corporately in three stages: 1) As our community groups grow, we will all GATHER MONTHLY for worship through singing, prayer, preaching, baptism, and communion, 2) Once we see momentum, we will MEET WEEKLY for Sunday worship and ministry team training, and 3) Host an official CHURCH LAUNCH at the right time. We expect and desire this church to become self-governing, self-supporting, and self-multiplying so that it may further impact all people in the city and region for many generations to come. 

Why Spain?

The greater Malaga metro area is a beautiful region filled with almost 2 million people, the vast majority of which have never received an adequate gospel presentation. They are plagued by deep wounds, relational brokenness, and spiritual disinterest. But this is changing, a new generation is emerging in Europe and Spain. Right now, there is an increasing wave of curiosity and desire for spiritual connection and heart transformation that we are witnessing here in Spain and other parts of the continent. Europeans that were once, in large part, offended by the church are now sincerely interested. Many here in Spain who first experience a life-giving church say, “I’ve never seen anything like this. If this is the church, I’m in!” And when they hear a clear, authentic gospel message, they say, “This is what I’ve been searching for all my life!”

We will partner with the Assemblies of God World Missions, the existing church in Spain, and the Fellowship of European International Churches to plant a new church in the center of Malaga amongst a people where there is almost no access to an evangelical church. Our four-fold strategy includes: 1) connecting to the city through regular service and compassion outreach, 2) building Christian community through weekly small group discipleship, 3) joining together in monthly worship and prayer nights, and 4) worshiping together as a whole church community on Sundays. In Luke 15, Jesus spoke of leaving the 99 sheep who were safe in order to search for the one who had strayed from the fold. In Spain, those statistics are reversed and we are literally partnering with the one percent to reach the 99 that have yet to be introduced to a God that loves them and His Son who died for all of us. With God’s help and your partnership, we believe we will see God change lives.

To connect with us personally and find out how you can be a part of our growing team, fill out the form below.

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