kenny clewett - madrid, Spain
I grew up in the Clot neighborhood in Barcelona, Spain, after having moved there at the age of 7 as part of a missionary family. At 18 I moved to Madrid, Spain, where I studied Humanities (Alcalá de Henares and Durham, UK), met Marta, who is now my wife, and developed a career in supporting social entrepreneurs with Ashoka, and started “Jóvenes Changemakers,” an organization to inspire, network and support young changemakers in Spain and around Europe. This work was a fundamental training block that God used for me to develop a love of the city and a desire to strategically contribute towards its flourishing, especially for the poor and marginalized. It was also a time where I began to see a need for the hope of God’s gospel, which had slowly transformed me, to be heard by many more in the city.
My worst nightmare was to become a pastor, yet in 2011 my wife and I moved to Chicago where I obtained a Masters of Divinity at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, having felt a desire and a call to return to Spain and contribute to building and multiplying the local church. During that time, and the two years afterwards that we spent in Kansas City, where I worked as an assistant pastor at Christ Community, God brought us both together to understand a much wider and deeper reality of his gospel and how it reaches every single inch of our existence, bringing hope to all, and especially to those who have been ignored and pushed aside by society.
This July we returned to Madrid, our home, where we plan to be indefinitely and our church, Amistad Cristiana. Our desire is to live out the radical hospitality that the gospel requires of us and to contribute towards the strengthening and multiplication of local churches that preach the gospel and receive, minister to and affirm all kinds of people. My hope is that, in parallel to new church plants, many of the historical Spanish churches find their passion to multiple re-kindled in order to see local leadership (Spanish and those who have come to live here permanently) leadership taking ownership of what feels like a new movement of church planting.