New Minister for East Gate Union Church in Louth

On the 2nd September Eastgate Union Church celebrated the Ordination of the Reverend Jonathan Greenwood as a newly accredited Baptist Minister as well as his Induction as the new Baptist Minister at Eastgate Union Church.

The service was presided by Dr Rev Nick Ashton, the Regional Minister for the East Midlands Baptist Association (EMBA) and Rev Colin Bowden who has acted as the Moderator for EGU whilst the church has been without a Minister.

Jonathan has recently moved to Louth with his wife Ewelina and children Elijah, Ezekiel and Elisha.

During the service Jonathan was welcomed by several local churches as well as the Rev Cecil White (URC) who bought greetings from the East Midlands Synod. Both his previous Baptist churches from Peterborough and Long Sutton were represented.

Cllr and Mayor of Louth, Julia Simmons, also welcomed Jonathan and stated:

"It is a new and exciting chapter in the long history of the extremely valued Ministry both here and also in the wider community. On behalf of myself and my Consort Alan, we wish them all the best for the support, love and continued great fellowship within our wonderful Town."

EGU supports local community initiatives including Trinity Food Bank, Barnardo’s Leaving Care Service and the Lighthouse. 

Rebecca Harris, the local manager of Barnardo’s, stated:

"It has been a privilege to welcome Jonathan and his family to Eastgate church family and to the wider community of Louth. The support that the fellowship provide to Lincolnshire Care Leavers is a true blessing and we look forward to working together in the future."

Jonathan’s story!

It has been a long journey getting to Louth, and I’m not referring to the Lincolnshire Road system! I am of course referring to God leading me here to Eastgate Union Church as a Pastor.

As a small boy that there were only two things that I really wanted to do with my life; One was to be a professional footballer the other was to be a Minister in the Church. I’ve always known that God was there, but it was at 6 years of age that my Mum led me to Christ at a campsite on the Isle of Wight. I realised that it wasn’t just about reading the bible, saying prayers it was about following and having a relationship with Jesus.

I continued belonging to the Church and growing in my faith and was baptised by the Rev. Michael Ridgeon who was not only my Pastor but a hero of mine. I felt blessed when God gave me the opportunity to play football at a high level. In the early 90s I got to play for Gillingham Football Club Under 18s which was a wonderful experience but in my second season, God told me to give it up as he wanted me to train for the Ministry. I did give it up and the night I did, God showed me in an amazing way that I made the right decision.

Eventually, I went to Moorlands College and was there for 4 years. Colin Bennett was my Tutor and inspired me in my Ministry. After college, I worked at the local YMCA as a night security officer and trained to teach English abroad. I then spent 3 years in Poland as an English Teacher teaching at a high school in Wisla in the south of Poland followed by a wonderful Year in Poznan working for Dale Taylor an English missionary. It was in Poznan that I met my wife Ewelina and we got married in 2006.

I came back to England in 2005 and went straight into Youth Work, which led me to Lincoln Baptist Church where I worked with Children, Young People and the community for 7 and a half years. As we moved on a couple prayed for us saying that the next place will be an Emmaus Road experience, a road between one place to our eventual destination. God took us to Park Road Baptist Church in Peterborough which was an amazingly encouraging Church. We were without a Minister for many years which meant I was able to get involved with more work with the main Church. At this time God started to prompt me about training to be a Minister and at although I had always put it to the back of my mind God kept speaking to me about it through others and through speakers at events. I tested this call with the Church and then with the local association and everybody was in agreement that God was leading me to train as a Minister and so I stepped out in faith and trained for 2 years at Long Sutton Baptist Church whilst studying with Regents Park College.

At the end of my training, I was moving on. I searched, prayed and applied to various Churches and I saw that Eastgate Union was looking for a Minister. Having already worked in Lincolnshire with two Churches I was drawn to this Fellowship and so I applied. The love and care that My family and I were shown was amazing and it became so clear that this is where God wanted my family and I to be.

My personal journey, has taken me from Kent through Dorset, Poland, Lincolnshire, Peterborough and eventually here in Louth. I am now looking forward to what God is going to do and working with such wonderful people.

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