Summer 2016 Update

Women are Better Together <<<<

I (Lindsey) have been busy this year with The Exchange, a ministry to women in Cape Town. This year we have had a One-Day gathering and a full weekend retreat. A big thank you to so many that donated towards these events.

Women around the world carry a heavy load but in South Africa it seems to be almost overwhelming. The magnitude of what they carry in their families, churches, communities and work place is huge. For example, most women care for their own children as well as many other children in their extended family… and all on their own. They also deal with a very high level of isolation and just personal safety issues that is unique to this country. Their family situations can be incredibly complex and stressful. 

The goal is to renew their hope, strength and courage. We have times of worship and teaching but also really emphasize times of laughter, pampering and encouragement. One women said, “Every other time someone has prophesied over me, it has been to recall all my sins from the past. To tell me how terrible I am. Only at this retreat do I hear that God has good things for my future and is pleased with me.”

I’m looking forward to continue to develop these gatherings as well as other avenues to bless the women of this city.


Ending Bible Poverty >>>>

Chris has been very busy with the School of Biblical Studies here in Muizenberg as well as across the continent. We had the honor of hosting a leader from Togo, West Africa on our campus. Moise spent a month with our team as we continued to build our partnership.

Currently there are 9 School of Biblical Studies in Africa. Three more are expected to start in the next few months. In a continent with fifty plus nations, we have a lot of work to do! We long for the day when Africa is a missions sending continent, taking God’s word to the world.


Between the Headlines

Travels & Teaching
We say it a lot but we continue to teach both locally and beyond. A large part of what we do is teaching and preaching. If you are discouraged about the future, a view from our eyes might help. We are engaging with hundreds of young people in their 20’s and 30’s who are passionately committed to Jesus and following after Him. The future is bright!

Paper-Work and more…

Want to know what it is like to be in missions? Paperwork… all the time. There has not been one moment in the last 10 years in South Africa where we were not applying for or waiting on documentation we needed due to being foreigners. It is just a part of our daily and weekly lives.

We are proud that last year we became “Permanent Residents” of South Africa (like having a Green Card). Recently we got our South African Identification books… well, Lindsey is applying for an amendment due to being marked as “Born in the United Kingdom”:) Next up, South African drivers license… it never ends!

Local Church

Two years back we felt God ask us to give more time in our schedules to our local church here in Cape Town. We attend a wonderful church that is a big blessing to our family. We have been serving on the preaching team for Sunday services and helping teach in leadership classes. Lindsey was recently asked to join the church leadership team that serves the Senior Pastor in moving the church forward in it’s vision. These are all just voluntary roles. We have enjoyed the relationship immensely.

Family Update

On a personal side, we are all doing very well as a family.

In 5th Grade, Garett continues to excel on his school’s rugby team. He also started learning his 3rd language, Xhosa. When he’s not doing sports or homework, he normally is reading or playing Minecraft on the weekends.

Thabo is in 4th Grade and enjoying history this year in school. He started drum lessons and tried out for the school play. We are so proud he got the lead role of Mowgli in The Jungle Book! He loves to act and sing.

We are excited to travel as a family to the States this summer to connect with friends and family.


2015 Highlights

Here are a few highlights from our latest newsletter! Merry Christmas and we wish you the best in 2016

Ending Bible Poverty <<<<

It has been a fruitful year with the School of Biblical Studies in Africa. Chris leads the Hub for these schools in the African continent. This role includes providing support, encouragement, and training to the schools on the continent.

This year he was able to visit Rwanda, Uganda, Togo and two schools here in South Africa. Togo was a highlight as they had a Hub Gathering, bringing together leaders and staff from 6 different Bible Schools across Africa. It was a gift to strategize with so many faithful men and women who are longing to see an end to Bible poverty in Africa.


The Exchange <<<<

It was exciting to see The Exchange women’s retreat finally take off this year! Women in South Africa carry a massive load in their churches, families, work and communities. This retreat was a time for them to come together and find fresh strength, hope, and courage in Jesus.

It was an amazing time of  relationship, laughter, teaching, worshipping, pampering, and of course eating!  We had such amazing and lovely women come to rest and receive. Almost all of them had never experienced anything like this before. On one afternoon we did manicure, pedicure and massages. So many of them had never had a massage in their life. It was a blessing for them not just receive spiritually but also physically and relational. One lady commented, “Just to be out of my community for two nights was amazing.”. She lives in a very intense and impoverished community and was able just rest away from her day-to-day


Light Shines in the Darkness >>>>

We often try to avoid telling the stories that might perpetuate the negative images that people have of South Africa. No nation is a sum of the negative stories. We always seek to be looking for places where God is at work. But, all nations have times of struggle and this was a year of struggle for South Africa. The government is facing the reality of rampant corruption. The massive divide between rich and poor is causing emotions to run high and hope to run low. Unfulfilled promises have caused overwhelming frustration resulting in widespread protest and sometimes violence.  A shortage of electricity and water is looms daily in the life of this nation.

With these challenges comes opportunity. Christmas reminds us that it got darker, darker and darker… and then Jesus was born. Darkness and difficulty is always an opportunity for light to shine brightly. We value your prayers for South Africa. 

Between the Headlines

Visiting Team
In October, we had the huge blessing of hosting an outreach team from the Worship Center church in Pennsylvania. What a massive blessing they were. The women on the team served at The Exchange retreat; cooking, cleaning and pampering the women! They also served youth, gave input to men, encouraged young fathers, and did a painting project to bless a widow. They were an amazing blessing in every way!

Reaching Every Location

  • The School of Biblical Studies is in 9 countries in Africa.
  • Chris or other co-workers from the Hub office, have been able to visit all of these locations for support and encouragement.
  • There are plans to plant 3 more Bible Schools in 3 new African countries.
  • Our local school has 31 new students currently studying the Bible verse by verse. Reading the entire Bible 5 times through in 9 months!


One big thing we do which can’t be photographed or put in to a statistic is mentoring. Both of us spend a lot of our time meeting one on one with people. A lot of is simply listening, encouraging, and praying. No matter how big the vision; relationships is always the primary strategy of Jesus modeled for us to follow.

Family Update

Another year is in the books for Garett and Thabo. In December they finish Grades 3 and 4. They both are doing so well, really working hard, and showing a lot of determination.

Both boys played Rugby and Soccer this year.  They love sports and seem to have boundless energy. Both boys are learning Afrikaans. Garett especially is immersed in learning this local language.

At 9 and almost 11 years old, we feel we are in such a sweet season of seeing who they are becoming.

This year we also celebrated our 13 wedding anniversary. It’s fun to be teenagers again!


Thank you so much for your prayers, support, and friendship!

Equipping the Saints

In 2015, both of us had a major new project we were working on. Here is an update!

Bible School Leaders Gather in Togo

Hub Gathering Togo

One of my (Chris)  main roles is serving as the School of Biblical Studies Africa leader in Youth With a Mission. This role allows me to influence and encourage the Bible School programs located in Africa with YWAM.

In August, I was able to travel to Togo for a gathering of our leaders. This is an event which began as a conversation in late 2013. We had people from 12 nations present, including all but 2 of our current schools on the African Continent. This was the first ever gathering of its kind in Africa.

It was a wonderful week to build relationship, hear the stories of both victory and difficulty, and learn from each other. We tackled difficult issues such as finances and disunity. There was such a sweet spirit of togetherness as we provided equipping and training. 

Many of these leaders serve in areas with little or no support. To feel like they are “known” and they have been “heard” was a huge morale boost.

We also took time to think strategically for how we can continue to grow in Africa, identifying some targets for future expansion. In a land of over 50 nations and literally thousands of languages, there is much work to do to reduce “Bible poverty.” 

This was a personal highlight for me to see this event start as an idea, grow into a fundraising effort, and culminate in something which exceeded my expectations. I am already looking forward to our next such gathering. 

The Exchange


I (Lindsey) have a huge heart for the women in this nation. Truly, they carry a massive load in their communities, places of work, churches and families. Time after time I am amazed at the challenges women face in leading their communities forward.

In October I will finally see a dream become reality of a weekend retreat for women to gain fresh strength, courage and hope in Jesus. A time for them to step away from all they carry and receive from God. This retreat is called, “The Exchange”. Please be praying for this time and these women!

Many of the women come from extremely challenging situations where the cost of this retreat would be too much. If you are interested in sponsoring, it costs $30 for one woman for the entire retreat. Please e-mail me and let me know!

Rwanda Twenty Years On…

I recently returned from a trip to Rwanda. This was the fulfillment of 6-7 years of prayer and preparation to plant a Bible School at the Youth With A Mission base.

I had a wonderful time teaching students from the region in both the Discipleship Training School and the School of Biblical Studies.


I met students and staff who had witnessed their families being slaughtered during this dark period of history.

In spite of this, it was impressive to see how far the nation of Rwanda has come in the last twenty years since a genocide killed more than a million people in just a few months.

Rwanda, like South Africa, used the power of forgiveness to bring transformation.


Rwanda in many ways has exceeded South Africa as they continue to implement forgiveness as a continual act.

Today Rwanda is one of the fastest growing African nations economically, is virtually free of corruption, and is peaceful enough to walk the streets alone at night.


It truly was a joy to see this nation “rise again” after such horrible events. I look forward to a return some day and continuing to see our Bible School grow and flourish.

Rwanda Flag

A New Chapter

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!newhouse

The end of every year is a time of reflection and looking ahead to upcoming events.

This has never been more true than in 2014 for us. Here are some highlights and previews of what is to come.

We moved into our HOUSE! 

After years of prayer, attempted purchases, and even times of giving up; this dream became a reality. We purchased a small house in Cape Town and were able to do some renovations to it. We are so happy to have celebrated our first Christmas in our own home!

Campus Growthkitchen done

2014 saw us train more students and send them be missionaries than ever before. 2015 will be a year of fundraising and trusting God to provide new property to house and feed our students as well as run the campus operations. This will be uncharted territory for our campus!

New Ministries

2015 was a year of passing off some of our old responsibilities to faithful people we’ve been able to raise up. Both of us (Chris and Lindsey) are now able to turn our attention to developing some new ministries which have been growing in our hearts over the last
few years.  Stay tuned for news about ministries to the women of South Africa and further training of Bible school staff throughout
the continent of Africa.malawi

The Boys

As of January, we have a 10-year-old! How did this happen to people as young as us? Garett will start Grade 4 and Thabo, 8 years old, will begin in Grade 3. Both are doing very well in school and enjoying multiple extra-curricular activities.



A Huge Thank you to all who have prayed, given, and walk with us through 2014. We could not do this without you! 

Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and we wish you a fantastic 2015!

Family Christmas photo

Training the Whole Man

Who knew Grace and Internet Technology went hand in hand?

Today I had a great opportunity to disciple some young men using my book on grace, Death of the Modern SuperHero.

Some friends started a ministry called Together Tech. They pair Biblical training and IT skills with the focused outcome being sustainable employment. It is a grassroots mentorship movement for young men under 30 in Cape Town, South Africa. Bridging the digital divide to tackle big issues like extreme poverty and believing in the model of Jesus to go far with a few people at a time.

together tech

While not teaching the gentleman internet technology skills, I have an impact in their lives when they read my book to complete some of the spiritual discipleship they engage in.

I was able to meet with them for a few hours today to build relationship as well as discuss the book. I was so impressed with all the questions they had from the content. Even more it was fantastic to see them being inquisitive about how to apply the truths to their lives.

We plan to connect several more times over their internship. To read more about this great program, Together Tech – CLICK HERE. Or to see a video promo for the ministry CLICK HERE.

We are so excited to be training the whole man, not merely their spiritual lives.

tt working

It was so great to see an “out-of-the-box” way the book has been able to impact lives. On our last trip to the USA, I received a number of encouragements as to how the book is being used. These ranged from counseling centers dealing with perfectionism to many reports of individuals being challenged and encouraged.

When you write something and put it out there, you often wonder about its impact. At times you question if anyone is actually reading it! So to hear these reports are very encouraging.

If you are interested in a copy of the book or want to read more about it head over to There is even a video overview! Thanks! Together with Project Grace you are helping to train the whole man in South Africa!

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Back to Africa

Hello friends

We have returned  to South Africa from a wonderful summer spend in the United States.   grandpasmith

Some Highlights:

Seeing family! We had a wonderful time reconnecting with Grandparents, Cousins, and Aunts and Uncles. The kids loved all the swimming and soccer time.

Missions Homecoming at the Worship Center. We were able to reconnect with one of our home churches as well as the other 45 missionaries from around the world.

Special events and good food. There was far too many to count.

Traveling to 10 states including a free trip to Disney World and visiting Lindsey’s grandfather for the first time since we’ve been married.


Coming up:

Both Lindsey and I teach shortly after returning in the Discipleship Training School in Muizenberg. All the schools are underway and we are training 125 student this term. Chris will teach on Grace and Lindsey on Relationships. Chris will also be teaching Romans in the School of Biblical Studies

The kids will finish up their school year in Grades 3 (Garett) and 2 (Thabo)epcot

We will be MOVING into our new house after a few minor renovations are complete.

Chris looks forward to travel to other African School of Biblical Studies as part of his role in the Africa hub.

To all we saw and gave generously to us, THANK YOU for making this the best summer! 

Stay tuned for great news coming out of South Africa


Mission Accomplished

 It is hard to believe we are in our 8th year in South Africa. Time sure does fly.

Shortly after we arrived, we embarked on jobs and projects we felt God lead us to. Chris took on the School of Biblical Studies and Lindsey stepped into the role of Training Director, seeking to bring cohesion to all the different programs.

At the time the campus was small, with 30 full-time staff, training approximately 70 students per year. DSC09849

Through the years, we’ve seen explosive growth; outgrowing our classrooms and needing additional housing. From 30 staff we now have 150 full-time staff, from 70 students we now have 260 students coming through our doors to be trained each year. God has been good and gracious!!

Recently, we were able to hand off many of our responsibilities to some faithful men and women we have had the privilege of seeing rise up. Every leader’s greatest hope is that what you build will outlive you. It is wonderful to see this transition take place!

With all this growth, we had become swamped with more responsibilities than we could handle.This transition gives us the freedom to continue to develop leaders, teaching and preaching, as well as helping to lead the ministry of YWAM. We are excited to be even more focused on what we are good at. Exciting times!

photo 4

Prayer Requests
With growth, we find our campus desperately in need of additional facilities. We need more housing for students, additional classrooms and dining space, as well as a large corporate meeting area. Please Pray!!

Answer to a Long Standing Prayer Request
For those of you who have journeyed with us for a long time, you know it has been our desire newhouseto plant roots in South Africa through the purchase of a home. We’ve had a number of false alarms and disappointments over the years. God recently dropped a house in our laps! In a matter of 3 days, we found a house and bought it. Even better, it is only two doors down from our current rental. The boys will not need to adjust to a new neighborhood or make new friends. Thank you to those who stood with us in prayer all these years!


After Mandela As you are aware, South Africa lost its “Tata” (father). The nation continues to mourn but also looks forward, recently holding elections. Pray that this nation would walk in the spirit of Mandela. Violence is still an issue. Just this week, 8 people were killed, blocks from our home, in gang and drug related violence.!

Thailand Lindsey taught on Relationships in Thailand to students from all over Asia, even some from unreached people groups. A highlight was a discussion on “dating” as a Christian. Many students shared that in their culture they “date” by kidnapping the girls from their homes (also known as bridal kidnapping). This was an enlightening experience where the students asked the question, “What would a follower of Jesus do?” !

Reproduction of Leaders One of our desires is to multiply leaders throughout the African continent. We recently sent out someone to Burkino Faso to work with Bible schools in West and Central Africa and another to pioneer a Bible School in Rwanda

Permanent Residents We have been granted Permanent Residency status in South Africa (like a Green Card). This means no more Visas, we stay or leave on our own terms. We do not need to renounce our US citizenship. This gives us an extra layer of security and longevity.

IMG_20140405_083012470_HDRBoy-land The boys are 8 & 9 years old and in Grades 2 and 3. They both attend a local South African school. They have great friends, are doing well at school and learning the language of Afrikaans. Like boys, the highlight of the week is sports. They play soccer, rugby and cricket. Thabo also sings in the school choir!! Both of them are very excited about this upcoming trip to the USA where they plan to eat as many hamburgers as possible and drink as much root beer as we allow:)

OnlineWe are both blogging! You can find Chris’s writings on Grace, Leadership and the Bible at:

Lindsey writes about love in the areas of friendship, dating, marriage, parenting and sex at:

Contact Information

If you would like to receive a paper copy of our newsletter published about once a year, let us know.

Chris and Lindsey Lautsbaugh linds and i

Donations processed through:
The Worship Center
2384 New Holland Ave
Lancaster. PA 17601

or Project Grace at

Heading Stateside!

Hello and greetings from COLD South Africa. Yes, Africa does get cold. With no central heating we have been bundling up and wearing multiple layers.

In just a short while we will be heading to America for a few months.   linds and i

Some of our highlights will be:
– Family vacations.
– The Worship Center’s mission conference in Lancaster.
– Meeting extended family for the first time.
– Warm summer weather activities.


We would love to reconnect during our time. Please let us know if you are interested.

We will spend the month of July in Washington State and the month of August in Pennsylvania.

A newsletter will be coming your way soon to update you on all our ministry and personal news, including the purchase of a home here in South Africa!

See you soon!


What Will You Do Now?

Greetings from summer in South Africa!

You read that right! December and January in South Africa are the height of summer. The kids finish the school year and have a six-week summer holiday. Both the boys did excellent in school and will begin grades 3 and 2 in mid January.

The theme of our recent lives has been leadership.

By: BK

You are all aware that South Africa and the world lost one of its greatest leaders with the passing of Nelson Mandela. It was amazing to be here as the country embarked on a journey of mourning, celebration, and remembrance for what Madiba fought for and accomplished. I have never seen such a world-wide outpouring for any one individual.

The world is asking South Africa, “What will you do now?”

Our hope and prayer is that this nation embraces the values of Mandela even more in the coming years.

On a much lesser scale, both Lindsey and Chris have embarked on some leadership changes recently.

Due to the continued growth of the ministry, we have begun to restructure our leadership team. This change has allowed Lindsey to pass off many of the things she was overseeing. This is a good change. What started as a position able to be filled in a part-time role, grew to the job of 3-4 individuals. This change will be complete by March 1st.

photo 4Chris has also been able to pass off his responsibilities in the Biblical Studies team. In late November, we had a handover to the new leader, Nick from Zimbabwe. It was a wonderful time of celebration, remembering the past, and anticipating even greater growth in the future.

As news of these changes breaks, the very first thing on people’s lips is, “What will you do now?”

The answer is simple. The same things we were doing, only more of it! Instead sitting in endless meetings and logistical gatherings, we will embark on even more teaching, leadership development, coaching, counseling, and mentoring.

These changes will actually serve to make us more effective in using our gifts and abilities to serve in South Africa. One thing both of us are excited about is the ability to engage even more with local churches and ministries, rather than solely Youth With a Mission. We see this as an expansion of our ministry and effectiveness.

One final update is that of our pursuit of a house.

As many know this has been a long journey, filled with ups and downs. What will we do now regarding a house?

We feel that in the course of the next two years the time is right for us to buy. We’ve grown and learned things through the trials and past attempts. We were protected from a bad decision or two. But we feel now is the time. Twenty plus years of paying rent on a missionaries income has become wearisome 🙂 We have some set aside (including all past gifts) for a down payment. We are trusting for either the full amount, or a way to gain a small loan from an individual or institution in the US (since we cannot finance in South Africa) to make up the difference. (approx. $50,000)

Please pray with us in these next few months and years to see this happen. Thank you so much for all your prayers and support during the past year. Great things have happened in South Africa!

Merry Christmas!

The Lautsbaugh’s – Chris, Lindsey, Garett, and Thabo