We checked in with Rachel and Blake Tucker, who relocated from Cape Town, South Africa, to Antananarivo, Madagascar, 6 years ago to plant a church. This amazing group of people, Tana City Community Church, recently celebrated the 5th anniversary. Read along for some of Rachel and Blakes’ processing, highlights and some of what God has taught them along the way.
Tell us what made you and your family uproot form Cape Town to Madagascar 6 years
As a married couple we always felt a pull towards mission work but weren’t sure how God could take us from where we were at the time to where we felt he had wired us for. When the opportunity arose, we knew it was God making a way.
(Watch below for an amazing account from the Tuckers on their process on deciding to plant a church in Madagascar).
Let’s talk church planting – what are you most grateful to God for as you look back on the last 5 years?
The way He has sustained us as a family. Cross cultural transition is not easy and sometimes taxing on family but by God’s grace he has carried us through and I feel we are richer for it. The diverse community that he has given us. We really feel that this is something that is His doing. We have people from all walks of life. Rich, poor, married, single, young, old, educated, not educated and not only local people but people from many nations around the world. It is a beautiful picture of what heaven will be like one day and reminds us that the gospel has the power to transcend all divides. We’re grateful for the solid relational foundation that God has built and that there is life in the church and we’re humbled that He has used us in different ways to bring this about.
If you could choose just one – what is the biggest thing God has taught you/shown you over
That He builds His church. We initially came with our own ideas as to how things would look and how we would plant. However, these were changed and moulded as we allowed God to lead us and show us how he wanted us to plant. One example of this was that we were wanting to plant an English only church but after seeing that many couples had only one competent English speaker we decided to have an English and Malagasy focus. So, all our sermons are live translated and our prayer and worship times feature both languages too.
Anything you’d share with those who have church planting in their hearts?
It has been an incredible journey for us as a family. At times, not an easy one but there is nothing we would rather do with our lives than be serving the Lord in this way. If church planting is on your heart, we would encourage you to start to equip yourself in any way you can. Be faithful in serving where you currently are and pray that God would open the right door at the right time in the future.