I'm Going to Nepal. Here's Why...

Hello Anthem Church!

In a little over a week (September 2nd), I’m going to be joining Steve Larson out in Nepal for almost two weeks, and I wanted to let you know why I’m going so you can be praying for us and to have awareness of what the leaders of your church are up to!

For any of you who are unaware of our involvement with ministry in Nepal, we have partnered with a group called Touch Nepal, which is led by Mark Avery from our church in Thousand Oaks. Mark and a few friends developed relationships with a few pastors and leaders in Nepal over a decade ago, and have continued to watch those relationships grow and grow over the years.

This will be my first trip out to Nepal to visit the guys we support, and Steve’s third trip (I believe). Steve is actually on a plane on his way out there now!

The three guys that we primarily support out there are named Babu, Beki, and Bikash. You wouldn’t believe all the fruit that has come out of these three men’s lives! For more info on what they’re up to, visit

So, why I’m going to Nepal:

  1. To see - We believe that it’s uniquely important for the leaders of our churches to have first-hand experience with the ministries that we support. Time and time again, God has awoken our hearts for His global mission on trips like this. I hope to come back with a renewed heart for the people of Nepal, and an even greater appreciation for the work that Jesus is accomplishing through these guys.

  2. To support - To support - The work that these guys do can be exhausting. I’m excited to come and encourage them, hold their arms up, and build them up. Also, I’m glad to be a wingman for Steve as he’s out there laboring in teaching for the majority of the trip. Steve will be teaching for almost two weeks straight on Christology, homiletics, and many other topics.

  3. To teach - Speaking of teaching, they’ve asked me to do a little teaching also. Somehow, by the grace of God, I’ll be able to teach on finance in the church in their context. Please pray for this! They’d also like me to share my testimony and invest in some of the other guys on the ground in Nepal.

  4. To record - I’m going to be taking a camera out with me, and am hoping to come back with plenty of footage and stories of what God is doing in the people of Nepal. This is perfect timing as we’re gearing up for another season of Celebrate Generosity.

Please be praying for my family while I’m gone! I should have somewhat decent access to WIFI, but it’ll be almost two weeks. Tricia and the boys are excited for what I’ll be up to, but we could still use prayer!

Please also be praying for our team while we’re out in Nepal. You may have seen through Touch Nepal or on the news that the monsoon season was especially brutal for Nepal this year. Lots of landslides, lots of lost homes, roads, etc. We should be fine while we’re out there, but we’re very aware that we’re entering a very wet situation.

Jesus loves the people of Nepal, and I can’t wait to come back with stories to share with each of you!

Thousand Oaks Monthly Update - July

Thousand Oaks Monthly Update - July

July has been a very fun time with Anthem Thousand Oaks. We have seen a lot of new faces with us during our Sunday gatherings. Many of our community groups have been meeting up at cafes, coffee shops, doing beach days, and just spending time with each other throughout the summer. We love knowing that people in our church are growing in relationship with one another.. It is fantastic to see! 

Ventura Monthly Update - July

Ventura Monthly Update - July

God's doing some incredible things through his church in Ventura! Not only are we hearing about crazy cool things happening with other churches in the city, but we're seeing God grow us in maturity, health and our worship of himself! It's been amazing to see this dynamic of existing friendships and relationship going deeper, while simultaneously seeing new folks getting welcomed in really well! 

Thousand Oaks Monthly Update - June

Thousand Oaks Monthly Update - June

June has felt like an incredible time with Anthem Thousand Oaks! As we have been in our Matthew teaching series it really has felt like the Lord has been speaking directly into the life and culture of our church. Our Sunday’s have been sweet times of worship and hearing from God’s word and I really feel like I’m seeing our community shaped more and more by God’s word.

Ventura Monthly Update - June

Ventura Monthly Update - June

This past month has been an exciting for us in Ventura. We are loving what God is doing, and continuously thank you for your prayers and support! The Lord is building his church, and each week we are growing in him, growing in our health as a church and discovering more and more what God has for us in Ventura.

Thousand Oaks Monthly Update - May

Thousand Oaks Monthly Update - May

With “June gloom” around the corner it has really felt like the seasons are changing. Many of us have just finished up a semester, our kids are getting close to summer break, and I’m sure a lot of us dreaming about the next time we can get away for a camping trip. May was an awesome time together at Anthem T.O. Here are a few highlights from the month of May.

Camarillo Monthly Update - May


Each month, we are posting updates from every church to better keep those part of one church more closely connected with those in the other churches. As we grow as a family, these are important moments to celebrate, pray for, and support what Jesus is doing in these communities. These updates will included updates, stories, prayer requests and a little glimpse into the life of the church. We hope these updates are encouraging to you! 

This past month has been great! For some reason or another God has been drawing new people into Anthem Camarillo on a regular basis, as well as deepening our love for one another in a real way. We haven’t seen 70 people baptized yet, we’ve seen 2 and we praise God for those 2 and at least one more in May. It has been amazing to watch God begin to realize that it’s time to begin to put this amazing love that God has given us on display to those that are far from him.

Community Groups are regularly praying that God would draw people to salvation. People aren’t just praying though they are asking God for opportunities, and we are actually seeing people respond when those opportunities come up. Whether it's a party, or a softball team, a beer at Institution, a group of guys going to play basketball at the Youth Correction Facility, a camping trip etc. We are seeing people look at these events and rhythms differently and specifically see them as opportunities to engage with those far from God and introduce them to the family of God, and I’ll just tell you that puts such a huge smile on my face. 

I want to share a story with you that has been such an encouragement to me. A friend of ours Tim who goes to Anthem Camarillo has been ministering to young men for a handful of years now at the Youth Correctional Facility off of Central:

On the 31st Tim invited a handful of guys to come out and play basketball with him, and minister to the youth there with him. Most of which had never stepped foot in a jail in their life. But there was one who went who it was quite surreal for, our friend Loyd. Loyd was baptized Easter this year. God has done an incredible work in his life, and the joy of the Lord is now pouring out this guy. But he hasn’t had the easiest life. In fact he was one of those guys that actually knew what it felt like to be in a facility like that, but not as a visitor. Loyd, since he came to know the Lord has wanted to be able to help other people, but didn’t necessarily feel like he had the right words, or right people to share with. Well, that all changed after the basketball game. After the game was over everyone gathered together, and Loyd shared his story with these young men. He boldly and vulnerably shared his struggles, defeats, mistakes, but most importantly he shared with these young men how amazing Jesus is and how He has changed his life. I love stories like this where we see men like Loyd come to know Jesus later in life, and then turn around and pour into the very type of person he used to be, praying and hoping that some of these young men will like Loyd give their lives to Jesus and be changed forever. 


Third Thursday

We had an incredible time at Third Thursday at Anthem Camarillo. We’re praying for 70 people to be baptized this year, and we want to make ourselves available to the Lord to use us to share the gospel with those in our lives in hopes of seeing people give their lives to Jesus. So we spent time talking about how the Holy Spirit has been given for the sake of mission.  Even the disciples who touched, ate with, slept next to, cried with and sat under the teachings of Jesus were instructed to wait until the promise of the Holy Spirit had been poured out.

Then we broke up into groups of three and prayed over one another that the Lord would empower us, give us boldness, for the sake of helping people find their way back to God. It was a beautiful time to pray, sing, and align our hearts with God’s heart. Our next Third Thursday will be June 16th at 7pm. 

Women's Brunch

We had our first women's gathering in Camarillo at the Lazy B Ranch. Our gals got together for an incredible brunch where they laughed, cried, ate incredible food, and put the love of Jesus on display with one another in a powerful way.

Our next women’s gathering is going to be June 11th stay tuned for more details or contact Christy Bailey for more information at

Coming Up in May 

Memorial Day Campout 

We are gearing up for our Annual Memorial Day Campout in May. This is our third year going now, and it is always such a blast. There is practically no cell service, which is phenomenal so we can actually shut off, and rest in Jesus’ completed work together. New friendships are formed old friendships are deepened, and this year we are capping it off with at least one baptism while we're out there.

We will not be meeting at our normal time and place in Camarillo on May 29th.

But we will be meeting together in Los Padres National Forest at a watering hole to celebrate Jesus together through baptism.  Every year it’s grown and this year we’ve already maxed out. If you are interested in going contact for details and he can get you on the waiting list and answer any questions you might have. And if you are unable to make it this year mark it on your calendar for next year. We are already scoping out larger locations so that we might engage more folks and use this trip to help people find their way back to God. 

Foster Emergency Fund

We have started a Foster Emergency Fund drive, that will go through the end of June. We are providing essential goods, and gift cards to youth who are transitioning out of standard foster care into extended care ages 18-24. This is often a very challenging time for Foster Youth and we are grateful to partner with Dark to Dawn to help provide essential goods in a time of need.

There is a collection bin placed in the main auditorium every Sunday at the Boys and Girls Club in Camarillo if you would like to participate. If you have any questions about how to get involved contact John Franklin at

Things to be praying for

God Has been doing great things in Camarillo and we earnestly want to continue following after Him as he leads us. We would love it if you would consider praying for us. Here are a few things to be praying for:

  • 70 baptisms in Camarillo 
  • Children's volunteers 
  • Future community groups and leaders.

Thousand Oaks Monthly Update - April

Thousand Oaks Monthly Update - April

It’s April and California looks so amazing and green right now. Springtime is here and we experienced a fantastic month of March and we’re looking forward to what God is doing in the coming months. We have continued to work through the book of Nehemiah as a church and God has continued to teach and guide us as we’ve gone through his word together.