Munich Adventure

Nathan, Rada, Anya & Aleksa's move to Munich…

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9 Reasons to be a Food Delivery Rider

A post from Nathan

Which famous figure said this about the capital of France…?

Fantastic bike ride through Paris. I cannot say this enough: to truly appreciate a city, get on a bike.

Answer at the bottom of the post!

Since March I’ve been earning part of our family living by riding around Munich delivery restaurant food to offices and apartments.  Here is a list of 9 reasons why this is a great job…

  1. Learning about local culture.  If you were to move to a new city and you enjoy riding your bike then there are few things I’d recommend more than signing up to work with a restaurant delivery company like Deliveroo or Foodora*.  You see all parts of the city centre from 11am until midnight and are absorbing all the details of how people interact and how the city works.
  2. It keeps you fit.  I have only been running once since I started the job, yet I am the lightest (and presumably fittest) I have been for years.
  3. You learn to appreciate tipping.  I have always been a fan of tipping service staff but now I am an all out champion for being generous with your change.  I know industries could do away with tipping by paying decent wages in the first place but nevertheless there are few better feelings than climbing to the top of five flights of stairs, wet and cold, handing over a bag of fast food and then receiving a smile and a few euros.  By the way, I wouldn’t want to start an argument but in my experience men are twice as likely to tip as women and sushi eaters hardly ever tip!
  4. Beautiful Sights.  I guess some cities are better than others but Munich is a stunning city to cycle around.  The river, the architecture, the bridges, the churches, the streets, the unique skyline.  One favourite of mine is riding across the mostly deserted festival ground for Oktoberfest when it is out of season.

    The festival ground for Oktoberfest during a quieter part of the year

  5. No boss and no employees.  My boss is a smartphone app that never gets annoyed with me and I am responsible for nobody.
  6. Spending part of your life outside.  One of the worst things about the world of work is that you are likely to spend most of your time either in the office or in the car.  With this job you are outside, seeing the sunsets, feeling the sun, the wind and the rain.  Even though you are in the middle of a big city you feel connected with creation.
  7. It keeps you humble. Riding around in pink uniform or, worse, falling off your bike whilst wearing pink, certainly help one to keep an appropriate opinion of oneself.
  8. People watching.  What better way to maximise your people watching than to ride around on a bike?  You see hundreds of people everyday and every shift there are multiple fascinating things to see….people getting arrested, nudists, surfers, musicians, beer sozzled tourists, road ragers….and the list goes on.  Below is a video of a guy I found surfing on the river during the recent high water levels.
  9. It gives you a passion for the city.  As a church planter the passion you feel for your mission field is really important and cannot be stirred up on demand.  It is a great privilege to spend a chunk of time in the city, seeing the people and everyday life and dreaming of what God will do.

*Other food delivery services are available!

The answer to the question at the top is none other the Austro-American politician and celebrity….Arnold Schwarzenegger 


If you can’t have fun doing it, then it’s not worth doing!

A post from Nathan on having a great time and church constitutions!

Question:  Do you know how to make writing a church constitution a more palatable experience?

Answer:  Do it in a Bavarian Biergarten!

Let me introduce you to a new hero of mine.  This is Andi.  Andi and his wife, Annika, have been rocks for us these last nine months that we have been in Munich.  They really really know how to love and care for people and have done everything they can to make our transition to Munich easier.

Andi and I have been trying to make the time to sit down and work on the legal constitution for our church plant.  Of course this is not a glamorous exercise but Andi made it a much more memorable and fun experience by suggesting we work on it in a Beer Garden and then he brought along a feast of traditional Bavarian food.  It was actually quite a profound feeling to be surrounded by rich Bavarian culture whilst working on a document that is aimed at reaching out to the people of Munich.

One of the first lessons of Church Planting is that the whole thing needs a huge dose of fun.  You can’t afford to take yourself too seriously otherwise you will soon end up demoralised and burnt out.  And who wants to join a group of people who don’t enjoy themselves?  Our task is deeply serious but we intend to have a great time along the way.  I am so grateful to have people like Andi and Annika with us who love us and help us make sure that we keep life and ministry fun and light.

Of course, we are on the look out for like minded people to join us on this journey!  Do you like to have a good time??  Do you have a passion for the local church??  If yes, then what better way to spend your time than helping a church plant in the wonderful city of Munich get started.  You will be having a historical impact on the city of Munich and beyond, and will be having a ball along the way.  Get in touch!


Why Djoković is more useful than Federer

Rada outlines why Novak Djoković is more useful in life than Roger Federer!

If you saw our little video from yesterday, you will know that we have been on a weekend away with a church near Basel, Switzerland.

It’s not a secret that I’m a big fan of Novak Djoković.  So this weekend I have largely avoided any tennis references because I just don’t think my good friends from Basel (home town of Roger Federer, the Moriarty of Nole’s fans!) would have seen my point of view and also because my love for Nole might cause them to disregard anything good I might have to say. My friend Becky, the world’s number one Roger fan, certainly would not have taken anything I had to say seriously!

Life is a little bit like a tennis match.  Most of the time it is fairly mundane, just passing the ball over the net, plodding along, fighting for every point, every game.  Sometimes it even gets exciting. An occasional slide across the court for a fantastic return, sometimes a brilliant point at the net and other times just an amazing finish after a long rally…you get the picture.

Anyway, back to Djoković. I just love his passion for the game, his skill and determination, his fighting spirit and not giving up when it’s hard. When the game doesn’t go to plan, he mutters to himself, shouts at his coaches, hits himself on the head, throws a racket in frustration etc. He also has a head coach who is closely watching his every move, rejoices with him with every won point, sympathetically nods when it’s hard going, knowing ultimately that he taught him everything he needs to know to play a perfect match.

What I love the most about Djoković is his fist pump! It usually happens after a particularly difficult point or when he gets back from behind, and finally when he wins the match!!  His coach and the team would do a fist pump in return.  I also give God, my head coach, a fist pump every time I manage to get up after a fall, every time I remember what he taught me, every time I pick up the racket I threw down in frustration and carry on playing, and every time I win a game. When times are hard, I look up to my box and see him nod at me in approval, sometimes gently shaking his head when I mutter and shout but he is always there, always looking after me. So, my life is like a game of tennis, the only difference is that I know that I will win this match, not because I’m so amazing, but because God has won this game for me already.

Recharging & Receiving

We’re so happy to have joined Regio Gemeinde (from near Basel) for their Ascension Weekend Away.

These guys really know how to be hospitable, have fun and worship sincerely in the presence of God.

We’re really privileged that a team from King’s Arms Bedford are here serving with ministry and teaching. It’s been an amazing time of releasing and refreshing.

We love being part of the body of Christ and couldn’t be doing this without our wonderful brothers and sisters.

Munich Life Update

It is eight months to the day since we arrived in Munich and time for a brief, general update.

We finally have a Kindergarten place for Aleksa to begin 1st June.  The downside is that it is almost a two hour round trip to get there.  Nevertheless, we are really grateful and looking forward to him having regular contact with German peers.  He has been a real star patiently waiting for this – he was last in education in July last year.

After the Easter holidays Anya was informed that she will be permitted to enrol as an official Gymnasium (Grammar School) student in her school next year.  This is a great achievement as only 7 of the 23 in her beginners German class are allowed to remain in the school.  This would be a great relief except that we hadn’t realised her place in the school was in any doubt!

Rada is beginning to volunteer helping a refugee with English language once a week.  As a result of Aleksa’s lack of Kindergarten place Rada’s opportunities have been extremely limited.  Nevertheless, Rada has used much of this time to absorb many books and preaches.

Nathan has been working delivering meals on his bike for two months now.  Though a basic salary he is really enjoying the work, getting to know Munich well, and even loosing a little weight!  He got back to his youth work roots with two weeks of children’s camp employment over Easter.

We continue to meet regularly in our apartment for prayer, worship, study and shared food.  We are in the process of finalising a name for the church plant and plotting some activities for the autumn….watch this space!

Celebrating Rada’s little brother’s wedding in Montenegro

From Vauxhall to Volkswagen & the Fear of Bureaucracy/Man

A blog post from Nathan…

It wasn’t possible to find some clear information about what the law said but we knew we couldn’t keep our UK registered car in Germany for ever.  So, we decided to make use of the lack of any forthcoming Kindergarten place for Aleksa and go on a father-son road trip back to the UK with a view to getting our Astra sold.  Within a few days of returning we had managed to buy our first ever German car (a VW Golf – you know ‘when in Rome, live as the Romans’ etc!).

7:15am – Queuing outside Munich council offices

There was just the simple task of re-registering the car in our name.  Surely, that just requires a slip of paper to be popped in the post?  Nope.  This was to be one of the seemingly never-ending tasks that are subject to German bureaucracy.  Of course, German paperwork and public workers have a certain reputation but I must be honest that sometimes the simplicity of a process can surprise you and, generally, the helpfulness of office staff is outstanding.  However, more often than not reality lives up to reputation and you are left with hours of your life sacrificed and a little more hair torn out.  This was one such case….

Nevertheless, after the phone calls, internet searches, face to face advice, queuing in the open air from 7.15am, formally defacing the old number plates in the council office, then nipping to the bakery(!) next door where you have the new number plates made and paying 76 euros for the pleasure of it all we were the proud owners of a Munich registered car!

Munich plates!

Our apartment comes with an extra garage space which we are trying to rent out at the moment so this morning I was sticking up posters in the neighbourhood and putting flyers on cars parked outside.  Every time I heard somebody come out of the  apartment block I noticed an anxiety in myself, similar to the feelings endured in the council offices at various points over the last six months.  The feeling that I was about to be told I was breaking some rule and must stop at once otherwise I will face the penalty.


Reflecting on this I don’t think it would be fair to blame my trepidation on German culture.  As an immigrant there is genuinely a feeling that you must negotiate all the processes perfectly without guidance otherwise you will be in trouble.  However, I am sure this is not deliberate and that most Germans, whilst they don’t enjoy sitting in waiting rooms any more than the next person, are quite comfortable with the system. (I’d be interested what Germans think?)

So what is the root of my anxiety?  I think it ultimately comes down to a personal weakness of ‘Fear of Man’ – or worrying about what others will think of me.  I know I am not alone in this but I believe it is a trait that holds us back from achieving our ambitions and obeying God in the big and small things of life.

One example of this fear holding me back is in how I interact with the community around us.  We live in a neighbourhood that is saturated with families, students, Germans, new immigrants and established immigrants.  Many interesting and wonderful people that we would love to get to know and participate with in community life.  We believe we are in Munich because we have something to offer to the local community but it is often a real challenge to break the ice and start talking with strangers.  Yes, our limited German is a genuine obstacle.  However, I observe that beyond that for me is this ‘fear of man’.  I am sometimes more concerned what a stranger might think of me if I started talking to them than I am of the potentially positive consequence of our encounter.

I write this not to be self-deprecating but because I think a little accountability to those who support us and are interested in us is helpful.  Also, because I believe this is not a weakness unique to myself and I believe that it is God’s desire that we are not held back by such fear.

The Bible records the story of Pentecost.  After Jesus had ascended to heaven the disciples were gathered, fearful in a house unable to begin the the mission that he had called them to.  But then the Holy Spirit came and filled the place where they were and filled them too.  They were equipped to go out and proclaim the Good News of Jesus and make disciples of all nations.  That promise of the Holy Spirit is for all Christians.  It is so helpful to make it a daily exercise to recognise that the Holy Spirit dwells within you and to ask that you would be equipped to do all you need to do to be a disciple of Jesus.

You can read this first hand in the book of Acts, chapter 2.  In the meantime, please do keep praying for us and praying that, whether we find ourselves sat in a council office waiting room or walking through our neighbourhood, we would be engaging with the Holy Spirit so that we can impact the communities around us and that God’s kingdom would be built.


 A post on faith from Rada…

I love books! I’m not quite sure where this love of reading came from but I remember devouring the writings of most famous Yugoslav writers.  After that I discovered Russian authors and that was the point that sealed my love for reading. Dostoyevsky remains my most favourite writer of all time.  Apart from the amazing descriptions and deep understanding of historical realities, his ability to capture the psychological make up of the human race is staggering.  It was from Dostoyevsky that I first understood the complexity of human nature as I was trying to analyse and identify with some of his characters.  I found this to be an exhilarating and deeply troubling process.  Not that I knew it then but the verses from Psalm 14 picture the state of humanity Dostoyevsky wrote about:

The Lord looks down from heaven on the children of man, to see if there are any who understand, who seek after God.  They have all turned aside; together they have become corrupt; there is none who does good, not even one.

Fyodor Dostoyevsky

But it is enough to read about Alyosha Karamazov, his search for God and finally his enlightenment, to realise that there is hope.  I found this hope one sunny day in a park while my friend passionately introduced me to the one who lived, was dead and is now alive, Jesus Christ. Hungry to find out more about this love, I read the Bible a lot which served me as a manual for life, provided great historical narratives, captured my heart by beautiful poetry and tickled my imaginations about the world to come with its apocalyptic writings.



Moving to England and learning English was so exciting not least for opening up the whole world of Christian literature (a word of caution here; there are lots of weird and not so wonderful things out there, so if you’re just starting out, ask for advice). I lost the count of the books I read but I always remember details from the biographies of Christians who sacrificed everything they had to follow Jesus and serve him.  They are so inspirational, awe worthy and challenging. I have never read one and was left feeling that I’ve got it sorted or that my relationship with God is something to be taken lightly or that it doesn’t really matter how I live my life.

George Müller

Apologies for such a long winded introduction to what I really wanted to talk about, and that’s two books I reread again recently, the biographies of great heroes of faith Hudson Taylor and George Müller. I guess these two are particularly close to my heart because they both were foreigners in the countries where they were serving, and since I’m a foreigner in every country I set my foot in (now including my birth country) you see the appeal.  Apart from these two things, serving God and being foreigners, any similarity between the two men and me ceases to exist, to my dismay.  Taylor and Müller’s ability to present the gospel clearly AND passionately with humility and empathy is a thing to behold! Their love for the poor was all consuming.  Their close fellowships with the friends, co-workers and spouses is breathtaking and something to aspire to.  The number of virtues and gifting of these men is too long to even list.

Hudson Taylor

But there is one gift they excelled in that I absolutely love and eagerly desire and that’s the gift of faith.  What else one can dream of but to be able to completely and utterly rely on God for absolutely everything, from the clothes on your back and your daily bread to being satisfied if you lack them, for the health of your family to being able to commend them to the Lord if they are to die, from the workers you need for the task before you to the promise that God will build his church and lastly from the hardship of this life to the hope that one day every tear will be wiped off, every sickness healed and every broken heart mended.  These two men don’t have to strive anymore, they ran a good race and finished it well. My hope is that although I’m a slow learner, by the grace of God I’m getting better at this and one day I’ll master it, although not on this side of eternity. I’m looking forward to meeting Taylor and Müller one day and sharing funny stories about our lives as foreigners. But before that I might even write a blog about it.

Calling All German Students!

We are beginning to gather a Core Team that will be the beginning of the Church Plant here in Munich.  One of the no-brainers to gathering a Church Planting team is that if you have students in the city then they can be invaluable when it comes to providing the energy, creativity and hardwork required to get a Church Plant off the ground.

Do you know anybody studying German as a foreign language who will need to do a year or six months in Germany?  Maybe Munich could be an option for them?

Or do you know any native Germans who are in their last year of school and planning to move to Munich for further studies?

If the answer is yes to either of these questions they might be interested in getting involved in a pioneering ministry in a beautiful and exciting city then PLEASE do put them in touch with us.  Drop them a message NOW before you forget.  You don’t know what difference the contact could make to us, to them, to Munich…..

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We have had a great Christmas in Germany hosting a good number of friends for a Christmas Day Brunch, as in Germany the main Christmas celebrations take place on Christmas Eve night.

We then spent New Year in the UK where we attended a special wedding and spent precious time with family.  Now we are back in Munich and the temperatures are plummeting with -18 degrees forecast for overnight this weekend.  Our location really is beautiful though and it so pleasant getting out and about.  Every day is different but there is a sense of routine building with the most regular activities being language learning and job searching.


Catalyst Video Blog

We are really privileged to have been featured on Catalyst’s social media today.  We were asked to put together a video of our journey so far.  See the video below and the text from the Catalyst Facebook page:

“When God calls people to new towns, cities and countries it can all sound very exciting. And most of the time, that’s exactly what it is! We often forget however, the challenges that our friends who move away may face once real life sets in. 
We caught up with Nathan Adams and Rada Koprivica-Adams who moved to Munich from Wolverhampton in Summer this year. With their first term nearly over, and their first Munich Christmas in full swing, we wanted to share how they have been getting on. Have a watch of this video! Thanks Adams for sending it, and good luck for the new year!”

We are very grateful to be part of such an inspiring network as Catalyst.  There are so many churches and individuals within Catalyst who have been so supportive, thoughtful and generous.  Thank you to all of you!

Video Credits:  Camera – Janet Johnston, Child Distraction – Andy Johnston

Work in Progress

A blog post from Rada:

View from our new loungeWe have been in our new flat for five weeks now! It’s a big place, full of light and warmth, set back from the main street in a quiet pedestrian area, full of playground segments, paths and trees.
It’s particularly beautiful in the evening as the neighbours decorated their bushes and trees with Christmas lights. We are really close to beautiful parks and the Isar River, less than a mile from a zoo and ten minutes away from the city centre on the Underground.

Yet, the last five weeks have been full of challenges, from broken beds to a washing machine flood, to walls that can’t be drilled, to language difficulties, to troubles with health insurance and kindergarten spaces…to mention just a few.

As humans we would always opt for an easy life, void of challenges and difficulties, but I believe that would leave us quite empty and shallow.  It comes as no surprise that life is a synergy of hard and beautiful.  If it was just beautiful, we would not appreciate it.  If it was just hard, we would give up.  If you are older than 16, you would know what growing pains are, a necessary ingredient in order for our bodies to achieve full maturity and make us ‘fully grown’ (apologies to anyone under 5ft 5in!)

img_1331So it is with the pains of everyday life, obstacles, disappointments, relationship difficulties; without them we cannot grow properly and be who we are – special, beautiful altogether with our scars, limps and bandages.  But these difficulties can also teach us about what we think about and cherish the most – ourselves! When you squeeze a tooth paste, the only thing that can come out is what is already inside.  At the moment I am learning, probably more than ever, about what my values are, where they are coming from, where my security lies, who do I trust in, etc.   Some of the things I’m finding out and realising about myself are great, others range from slightly disappointing to plain ugly!  There should be a huge ‘Work In Progress’ sign on my head and on yours probably as well!

You know that feeling when you read something that you wholeheartedly agree with, but the person who wrote it is much more eloquent and smarter than you, so you just point and say ‘that!’.  So I will leave you with one such sentence that I don’t only agree with, but am so desperately trying to make it truth in my life and wish the same for you….because life is hard but it’s also beautiful!

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.    James 1:2-4


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