Anna and Chris Hembury - Britain

We live in an area of Hull where people are known for their no-nonsense attitude and honest vulnerability, an area suffering from high unemployment, child poverty, addiction, mental and physical health problems, prostitution and increasing racial tension. People feel a crippling lack of self-worth. But it’s an area full of buried treasure, untapped potential and dormant creativity.

We support a group who are living in a CMS house for mission and serving our local community. We help look after a community garden and a sort of drop in/sofa-church in our neighbourhood. We help run Orts, a sewing collective where women from all walks of life can support each other, learn and create together. We work alongside the Hull Youth for Christ (YFC) team, supporting children, young people and families.

Call

To share life with those on the margins, who struggle to know their worth but have much to teach us; to help usher in God’s Kingdom.

Role

To listen, learn, imagine, provoke and create; supporting people to connect with themselves, each other, the planet and God.

More about Anna and Chris Hembury

Chris was born on Jersey. He spent 16 years working as a butcher, several years drinking and drug-taking and a number of years as a biker. At age 26 he became a Christian, not long after his father died. After four years of volunteering with youth and then training at Oxford Youth Works, from 1997 to 2015 he was team leader with Hull YFC.

Anna was born in India, into a Syrian Orthodox family. She spent her childhood at boarding schools in various parts of Europe, Africa and South East Asia. She did a degree in theology, followed by a diploma in youth ministry. In 1993 she began working for Oxford Youth Works and joined Church Mission Societyas a mission partner. She helped develop and taught on the CYM degree course. We got married in 1999, and have adult children, Elijah and Kavita.

We love living in Hull and are proud to champion an area that has largely been ignored or written off. The words of Isaiah 58 have shaped our calling, and we enjoy and embrace the ongoing adventure.

We feel we get CMS and they get us. We share CMS’s passion for mission; we are grateful to work with an organisation that is about people and about Jesus; we feel freed to live out our calling because CMS trusts us enough to allow us to imagine and pioneer where we sense the Spirit.

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