Ludie Creech, his wife Barbara and their family moved to Ireland from the USA in December 2008. Since that time, Ludie has transitioned through multiple roles within OM Ireland. After developing the Philippian Project–a programme for long-term couples and families to serve with a local church–Ludie switched from promoting the ministry to becoming part of it. But rather than joining a pre-established church, Ludie, along with others, planted a new church in a new town with the hope of seeing God’s kingdom expanded.

The religious statistics in Ireland give a clear picture of the need for the gospel. “There are numerous town with populations of over 5,000 that do not have a gospel-centred church,” Ludie shared. “I had a couple days in my work week to focus on church ministry, and after a while, I started to think that this idea of church planting had a nice ring to it.”

Ludie and Barbara’s church, Grace Community Church, had been reaching out to Longford for nearly ten years. Two families from the church were already living there and agreed to be part of a new church plant if it came to be. “We wanted to plant this church as part of a team and God graciously put people around us who said, ‘We’ll go with you,’” Ludie said. “We’re not just sitting there by ourselves trying to figure it out. There’s history, intelligence and support to build on.”

As they wanted to be intentional about reaching the community, Ludie and his co-planter Tim Coyle spent time going door-to-door, setting up a literature table on the sidewalk in town, offering movie nights and holding community discussions about ‘Big [Life] Questions People Ask.’

“It’s not just sitting back and preaching on Sundays,” Ludie said. “But really reaching into the community with the gospel.”

Longford boasts a population of roughly 27,500 people within a 12km radius from the town centre. Ludie shared how they decided to “boldly ask God for one per cent of the population to come to Christ through the proclamation of the gospel. That’s 275 people in the next year or two. It sounds crazy and huge, but we believe that God saves people and He does it through the preaching of His word. …We don’t want to just see people [come to salvation in Christ]. We want to see them discipled and embracing Christian living in every area of their life. It won’t be an overnight thing, so it requires investment into people.”

In addition to their Sunday morning service, Ludie’s family and their team are finding ways to be involved in the community. As they see it, being good neighbours and citizens is all part of the platform to share the gospel. A team from Ludie’s church in the USA travelled to Ireland and helped clean about six miles of highway. Such community service helped establish relationships as well as their own identity as a church group.

“As God gives you the opportunity, preaching the gospel to them, whether that’s over coffee, on the street corner, at the literature table, in a church service … we’ve got one message to bring to people: only God can save. All we’re told to do is preach the gospel and trust God to bring about the increase from that.”

The name Hope Community Church holds deep truths for its members and the community. Ludie defined the different parts of the name as follows:

Hope: “We’re living in a land where everything folks placed their hope in (people, relationships, finance, health, even the church) has let them down and will let them down. We want people to know that there is hope in Jesus. No one is beyond hope.”

Community: “We’re a people of community. We love coming together because we’re created by a God who’s been in community for all eternity. We want to create that place for people to come together.”

Church: “The church [the people] is the highest form of community. We don’t have to get crazy ideas about fulfilling the Great Commission because He’s already given it to us: the local church where people can live in the light of the Gospel.”

The Hope Community Church family meets at 11:00 in the Longford Arms Hotel each Sunday morning. For more information, see their Facebook page HCC Longford or contact Pastor Ludie.

Share this Resource

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on email
Share on print

Leave a Reply

You might also like:

Finance Assistant Ireland    Go & Live    As soon as possibleAs a finance assistant serving on the mission field, you will provide much-needed support to the finance manager on the OM team, and you will fulfil a vital ministry role toward the purpose of seeing more vibrant communities of Jesus followers among the least reached. We are looking for knowledgeable, detail-oriented individuals who will handle the paperwork associated with OM's business and ministry transactions, including petty cash, data entry, bills, accounts, banking and record keeping.
Full Details
St. Patrick’s Vision (online opportunity) Ireland    Go & Visit    14 March 2021 - 19 March 2021Every year we want to use the context of St. Patrick's Day to remind the people in Ireland of the message that St. Patrick brought to the country long ago and its relevance today. Join this opportunity to engage with missions in Ireland despite the physical restrictions; to experience some of the Irish culture, learn about St. Patrick and meet some of the team. We will share about what God is doing in Ireland, the ministries and partnerships OM is involved in and how you can come alongside!
Full Details
National Director Ireland    Go & Live    As soon as possibleExists to give overall leadership to the ministry, resources, people and networks in the Republic of Ireland, in order to ensure the vision and mission of the Field is accomplished in alignment with OM mission and vision. This is done with the support of the Field Leadership Team.
Full Details
Partnership Director Ireland    Go & Live    As soon as possibleAre you great at building relationships and linking the right people to each other? Do you have vision to see Christians work together to build God's kingdom? Come and help us build partnerships with churches, organisations and trusts, so together we can work on seeing vibrant communities of Jesus followers here in Ireland!
Full Details
Communications and Marketing Worker Ireland    Go & Live    As soon as possibleShare the story of what God is doing in Ireland and the world and effectively implement our strategies to do this well within our context. Use your own creative skills, and build relationships with others, as you help to create a clear and inspiring online and offline presence. Use your gifts and talents to inspire and encourage people to become involved in God's work!
Full Details
Missions Mobiliser Ireland    Go & Live    As soon as possibleAre you enthusiastic about short and long term missions? Is your heart's desire to see more serving internationally? We are looking for someone who enjoys opportunities to share about God’s Kingdom work and excites others to get involved. If you are a recruiter looking to use your gifting in ministry in Ireland please read more!
Full Details
Hospitality Coordinator(s) Ireland    Go & Live    June 2021Do you have a heart to make others feel welcome and at home? Do you enjoy meeting new people? We are looking for someone, or a couple, that are handy, love to roll up their sleeves and who want to serve God and others in a practical way. Come and take care of our OM base at Lacken House, Co. Roscommon, and oversee all guest services.
Full Details
IT Administrator Ireland    Go & Live    As soon as possibleAs our IT Administrator you’ll be assisting the IT Coordinator in a multifaceted range of responsibilities. You will be managing the email network, provide MS Office help desk and other user support, provide network maintenance and support to a multinational team and system administration with Linux-server, Windows 7 and  10.
Full Details
Bus Driver/Evangelism – Big Red Bus Team Ireland    Go & Live    As soon as possibleThe Big Red Bus is an amazing ministry tool that is very well known among the Irish community, and YOU could become it's driver! You will be responsible to take the bus and it's team members to different places, and will be involved in it's practical ministries: kids clubs, street evangelism, youth meetings and coffee/tea bars. You'll also be responsible for the general maintenance of the bus and the safety of it's passengers.
Full Details
Maintenance & Development Worker Ireland    Go & Live    As soon as possibleAre you task oriented with a servant's heart and passion about practical work for the Lord? Come and help us in the upkeep and development of the OM Ireland five acre property including all buildings and grounds.
Full Details