October 4 - October 19

We're delighted that you will participate in the 2017 International Church Planter Intensive. This will be your "web home" while you're in New York City, so please continue checking back here for the latest information. 

During the International Intensive you'll take part in seminars led by Redeemer City to City (CTC) faculty, Tim Keller, and other leaders. On Sundays, you'll visit different New York City church plants and have an opportunity to interact with NYC pastors. Many Intensives (what CTC calls participants) keep in touch with one another - and us - years after their training is completed. 

Everyone at CTC looks forward to meeting you.


Each participant of the Intensive is housed in corporate apartments either in Hoboken, New Jersey or Jersey City, New Jersey. These apartments are beautiful, clean and very accessible to the Redeemer offices. Each apartment comes equipped with a full kitchen and there are grocery stores within walking distance.

Housing begins: The evening of Monday, October 2
Housing ends: The morning of Friday, October 20

Redeemer City to City will cover the costs of your individual housing during the Intensive. Your spouse and children are welcome in New York City during the Intensive; however, you must cover the additional cost of housing them.

If you come to New York by yourself, you will be housed at no cost to you in a shared room with another participant of the program - either in a one-bedroom or two-bedroom apartment.

If you come with your spouse, you will be housed in either a one-bedroom or two-bedroom apartment with another couple.

If you come with children, we will work out the arrangement with you individually - either to share an apartment with another family or to be housed in an apartment by yourselves. Below is an average breakdown of what you can expect to pay if you decide to bring a spouse / children.

• If you request a one-bedroom apartment for you and your spouse [and infant if applicable] the cost to you will be between $4,100 - $4,600.

• If you request a two-bedroom apartment to share with your spouse and one other couple, the cost to you will be about $2,100.

• If you request a two-bedroom apartment for you and your family, the cost to you will be between $5,600-$6,100.

Note: We have found that being accompanied by a spouse during the program is very beneficial. It helps alleviate homesickness and also can further draw you and your spouse together as a team in the church planting process.

Bringing small children adds to cost and also comes with challenges due to travel, foreign housing and adjustment to life in New York City. It will be a rewarding experience, but it is good to be aware of the challenges ahead of time so you can be mentally and emotionally prepared.

When do I come? When do I go?

Housing begins: Monday, October 2 at 5pm you cannot move into your apartment before this time.
Housing ends: Friday, October 20 at 12pm you must be vacated from your apartment by noon.

I'm at my airport. Now what?

There are 3 New York City airports you can fly into and out from:

Newark International
JFK International
LaGuardia International Airport

The best transportation from the airport to your housing will be by taxi cab, chauffeured car (which will cost about $100) or shuttle service.

If you have an Uber account, you can also use Uber and request a car once you land in New York City.

If arriving to JFK International, you can take the subway into the city. Please see this website for more information and current prices


I'm in NYC. Now what?

Redeemer City to City will cover the costs of your subway transportation (only you, the planter) during the Intensive. Make sure you buy ground transportation only up to Orientation on October 3rd. Your transportation cards will be given to you during the Welcome Orientation.

For more information about public transportation - Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) - please see the official website.

Who will feed me?

We provide a few lunches during training sessions. On average, you can expect to spend about $30 per day / per adult on meals in New York. You can lower this cost if you buy groceries and prepare your own food.

Who can attend training sessions?

Spouses are welcome at all training sessions. Infants and children are not permitted in the training sessions.

what to wear?

You will be in New York during the beginning of fall. It's a lovely time of year. Bring cool weather clothes such as jackets, sweaters and long pants /jeans but a few items for those last few days of summer weather as well. Visit this site for more detailed information about New York City weather.


Everyone should attend the Welcome Orientation that will take place on Tuesday, October 3rd.

You will receive the official schedule at orientation. However for planning purposes, sessions will be held Monday - Friday from 9:00 am - 5:30 pm. Saturdays will be free days and visits to NYC church plants will take place on Sundays. 

What if I have more questions?

Please contact Meredith Denton - Intensive Project Manager - with any additional questions you may have. 

 You'll meet all City to City staff at the Orientation on Tuesday, October 3, 2017. 


Marwan Aboul-Zelof

Beirut, Lebanon

I was born in Kuwait to a Catholic family. My father is Lebanese/Palestinian and my mother is Chaldean Iraqi. My family and I were vacationing in the U.S. in the summer of 1990 when the Gulf War started; we weren’t able to return to Kuwait. It was in the states that I first heard the gospel and the Lord saved me.

I grew up in San Diego, and it was in my early teenage years that I felt called to ministry. I didn’t really know what that meant, but knew I loved to serve the church. It was in my college years that I knew the Lord was calling me to take the gospel to the nations.

I was drawn to the Middle East because Islam was growing and many Christians were leaving. Less than a hundred years ago in Lebanon the far majority of people considered themselves Christian; today, less than one percent are following Jesus. Because so many have left, I felt called to return.

I have been married to Marci for seven years; we met in San Diego, CA at a missions program. She shares my love for the gospel, the lost, and the local church. We moved to Dubai so I could take part in a pastoral internship and church planting residency at Redeemer Dubai. It was there that we welcomed our first child, Noah, in the summer of 2015, and are looking forward to welcoming baby boy #2 this November! We are currently in Beirut and eager to see the Lord build His church! 


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Warren Leung

Los Angeles, California

I will be coming in for the Intensive from Los Angeles, CA. I am married to Wendy and we have two small children, a 3-year old girl (Karis) and a 17-month old boy (Roman), both miracles in our lives.

I was born into a non-Christian immigrant family and spent most of my early childhood in Hong Kong and Philly Chinatown. I was saved by grace through an outreach ministry at the Chinese Christian Church and Center in Philly. I happened to forget to bring a bottle of water during a basketball tournament one day, walked into the church for a sip of water, and ended up in the middle of a Cantonese bible study. From that day on, God has taken me on a journey of discovery and learning how the gospel works to rehabilitate, remake, and reshape very broken and messy people like me.

I am currently serving at Pacific Crossroads Church in Los Angeles in the area of mission and church planting. A year ago, we planted a church in the San Gabriel Valley area and it has been an eye opening experience, learning how God works through our bloopers and mistakes.

I love the gospel, I love meeting and learning from all kinds of people, and I have a passion to learn about what God is doing in cities. It is a real privilege to be joining the Intensive this year and I am looking forward to meeting all of you soon!