The battle for France is in full force at Christ Lumière des Nations (CLN) in Eragny, where worship is spiritual warfare--with dancing, running and waving banners. Marc and Anne-Marie LeBrun started their church in 1991, preaching to their four children and only two other people. Today CLN has about 250 members.
"We are fighting a battle to come through the spiritual oppression and into the presence of God so we just worship until we get there," Marc LeBrun said. "Our priority is not technique but contact with God."
CLN is a leading apostolic church in this spiritually dry nation--where as many as 36,000 towns and cities have no evangelical witness. With a vibrant worship team, a new Bible school and publishing and humanitarian ministries, the church has been part of the French revival movement for more than five years.
"Some churches in France are starting to look to us for help for ministry, " said Marc LeBrun, who works with churches in Rennes, Colmar and Strasbourg. CLN's purpose is to restore the church in France and to take the gospel worldwide. To nourish that, the LeBruns regularly bring in internationally known teachers and evangelists and hold a seven-week revival every summer.
"We believe God will raise up new servants for the revival which is coming," said David Chauveau, co-leader of CLN's Bible school, Ecole Biblique Zöe (EBZ). "These students hunger and thirst for God."
Students intercede for and evangelize the community and hold Tuesday night meetings in Paris. As many as 10 people come to Christ each week through street evangelism or at church meetings.
EBZ originated out of a six-month revival at CLN in 1998, when the church held five meetings a week. During that time 235 people came to Christ, and many were healed.
The LeBruns had been seeking revival since they began evangelizing in the south of France in the 1980s. In September 1994, they dedicated Sunday nights for "revival meetings" to preach and pray for revival.
A life-changing encounter with God during a trip to the Toronto Aiport Vineyard Fellowship changed everything for the LeBruns. God's power fell on CLN during their first meeting after the LeBruns' return from Canada.
"Since that time, the church has never been the same," Marc LeBrun said, adding that many people left CLN, but many others started to come.
"We don't even know where these people came from," Anne-Marie LeBrun said. "Out of 120 people, maybe 100 were new."
People came from all over France and beyond to CLN's weekly renewal meetings. Many received inner healing. A year later, the church doubled in size and moved to a new building and later rented the adjacent building.
Revival at CLN also brought broken relationships with local pastors, the betrayal of church workers and rumors. God is restoring many of those relationships, according to Marc LeBrun, especially through the church's magazine La Moisson (The Harvest), which publishes teachings about revival and circulates to 3,500 French and French-speaking people, he said.
The LeBruns have been unable to get a loan to buy a larger building for CLN and EBZ. Several banks, while acknowledging the ministry's credit is good, have repeatedly denied their loan requests, for unknown reasons. Last August, the ministry's bank closed their account without cause.
Despite the growth, the LeBruns have a clear direction for their ministry.
"You have big meetings and, of course, that's important. But it's not the big meetings that are going to sustain the revival. It's the local church," said Anne-Marie LeBrun. "The life has to be in the local church because there is the intercession and people being raised up in ministry."
--Michèle White in Eragny-sur-Oise, France
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