Category Archives: Monthly Newsletters

January Ministry Update

The past month and a half has been quite full of many new exciting ministry opportunities for us. I fear that if I begin writing about all of them, then this newsletter will quickly turn into a long essay ; )

I have tried my best to be brief so that you can get a sense for what has been happening. However, if you would like more info. then I would recommend subscribing to our day-to-day newsletter by clicking HERE.

  • I started a one-on-one evangelistic bible study with Luis, a student from Senn High School. He has been reading the bible each week and always sounds eager to meet with me. He has not yet repented of his sins so please do pray that God will grant him repentance. Continue reading

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5 Photos of 5 Places in Edgewater to Pray For

Photo # 1 – Preaching at Edgewater Baptist Church

Please pray for Phill as he will be preaching at Edgewater Baptist Church this Sunday (December 16th) on Luke 2:14. We ask that God would use this sermon to strengthen the members of the church and rescue the visiting unbelievers.

Photo # 2 – Neighborhood Party at Our House

Please pray for the neighborhood holiday open house that we are hosting this Sunday afternoon and evening. The last two weeks Elly, Gracie, and Phill went around door to door to meet our neighbors and invite them over to our house for this party. We ask God would use this party to help us build meaningful relationships with our neighbors and that we would have wisdom and boldness to share the gospel.

Photo # 3 – Phill’s New Job at the Broadway Armory

A couple weeks ago we started looking for a good “tent-making” job that would not only help support our family financially, but also help us get connected with more people in our community. By God’s grace, we believe we found a great job for Phill. He recently got hired as a sport’s instructor with a small business called “We Got Game.” This picture below is of the Broadway Armory that is just two blocks from our house in Edgewater. The armory is one of several places that Phill will be working at. Please pray for opportunities for the gospel to spread as Phill interacts with his co-workers, the kids he is coaching, the families of these kids, and the many teachers and administrative staff at the various places Phill will be coaching at.

Photo # 4 – Evangelism & Discipleship at Loyola University

Thank you for all of your prayers this last month because the Lord has recently helped us get connected with several students on Loyola’s campus. A couple weeks ago Phill had the chance to meet with the school’s protestant chaplain. Their meeting went really well and the chaplain was very welcoming of the idea of Phill coming to their weekly gatherings, meeting students, finding some students to disciple, and working together with those students to do evangelism on the campus. Alan & Jackson are two of the students that Phill has already connected well with. Please pray for them to help us share the gospel with hundreds of Loyola students who desperately need to hear the gospel.

Photo # 5 – Evangelism at Senn High School

Phill has been the assistant coach to the men’s varsity basketball team since November 1st. The Lord has used this position to open many doors for the gospel with students on the team. Phill is having spiritual conversations and sharing the gospel on a regular basis with several different students and players on the team. Please pray specifically for one student named Luis who said he really wants to know more about the Bible, he has been to our church the last two weeks, and told me he would like to do an investigative bible study through Mark’s gospel to learn more about Jesus.

Thank you for your prayers and Merry Christmas!!!
– Phill & Christine Howell

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October Newsletter

“This is from the LORD”
— Genesis 24:50

This morning I read the story in Genesis 24 that explains how Isaac’s wife, Rebekah, was found. Abraham sent one of his servants to find a non-Canaanite woman for Isaac. Abraham’s servant began his mission by asking God to give him success and his prayer was immediately answered. When the servant was telling Rebekah’s brother, Laban, the story he said that before he could even finish praying Rebekah greeted him (Gen. 24:45). When Laban heard the way God answered his prayer, he said, “This is from the LORD; we have no choice in the matter…Take her and go.” (24:50)

When I read Laban’s response those words jumped out to me! Certainly, the ancient Jewish culture was different than ours today, but I can only imagine all the different thoughts and feelings Laban had about his sister leaving with some stranger’s servant to marry a man he has never met! Yet, regardless of how Laban may have been feeling we do know that when Laban heard how God answered prayer he could not deny this was from the LORD.

I think we can relate a lot with what is going on in this story. This past month we have experienced a vast array of emotions. We began the month with great excitement about finding our new home in Chicago. Then we experienced all the highs and lows of packing and moving. There have been plenty of sad days, as we have had to say our goodbyes to all our friends and family in D.C. There have also been plenty of joyful days as we have met new friends and reconnected with old ones in Chicago. Continue reading


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September Newsletter

“Indeed these are the mere edges of His ways.”
— Job 26:14

Does God Answer Prayer? 

In last month’s newsletter we explained that our target move date was December because we were trying to figure things out with our housing. So we asked you to be praying this month that God would give us wisdom and that he would provide for these needs. Should we be surprised one month later as we look back and see that God has in fact answered these prayers? Don’t we serve a God who delights in answering the prayers of his people?

There are a dozen or more stories that we could share with you from this past month about specific ways God has answered prayer. Early in September we spent a week in the Chicago area meeting up with many different people and sharing our vision for planting a church in the city. All throughout this trip God was so faithful to answer our prayers. We had many encouraging meetings and added several new prayer and financial partners. We see that entire week as one big answer to prayer.  Continue reading

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August Newsletter

“He determined the allotted periods and boundaries of our dwelling place.”
— Acts 17:26

Summer Summary

When the school year ended in May, our 1-year commitment with Campus Outreach at George Washington University ended as well. Once that happened our focus immediately shifted to putting a big dent into the 39 credits Phill had left for his seminary degree.

So we came up with a plan that would enable Phill to earn 21 credits in just over 2 months! It involved us living in North Carolina for 2 weeks, taking a test at a gas station while we were droving out to awedding in Illinois, and spending a few days in Atlanta for a church planting conference. It was very challenging, but we did it! Now there is finally light at the end of the seminary tunnel!
Continue reading

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