Light in the Darkness of Puerto Rico

When dusk descends on Puerto Rico, a familiar hum rises from barrios and businesses across the Caribbean island. It’s the sound of generators producing electricity for Puerto Ricans still sitting in darkness after Hurricane Maria ravaged the island in September.  By late 2017, at least a third of the territory’s 3.4 million residents were still waiting for the lights to come back on. The darkness often brings malaise. Scores of people flock to San Juan’s mega-mall where power is restored and locals find a few hours of diversion at movies or restaurants like Olive Garden and Cheesecake Factory. Life seems normal at Plaza Las Americas, but when crowds leave the packed shopping center, they make their way home along streets where traffic signals don’t work and drivers take turns threading through dangerous intersections. For many poorer Puerto Ricans, there are no trips to the mall or generators to crank on. There are lanterns and flashlights, but most of the time the sunset simply brings ... Read more

Contemplating Short-Term Missions?

Have you considered serving on a short-term mission trip but were unsure how to get involved? Perhaps you want your children to gain the experience but no one in your congregation is going. Perhaps your church is too small to organize and fund a trip. Should you join a presbytery-sponsored trip? When OP pastor Joe Keller was in college, he and his late wife, Jean, each served on short-term mission trips to Kenya and Australia respectively. He fondly recalls how they gained new perspectives on the world and broadened their interest in missions. Later, they hoped their six children would have similar opportunities. So far, their daughter Hannah has served the OP mission in Uganda three times and Rebekah and Ruth once. Catching the bug for missions, Naomi and Ruth also served on non-OP mission teams. Those trips were far more than sightseeing. Keller, pastor of Christ Covenant OPC in Dallas, Texas, encourages his congregation’s young people to go on short-term mission trips as a way to appreciate their ... Read more

OPC Short-Term Missions: 2018 Opportunities

Asia : Teach English to University Students Haiti : “Team Haiti” – VBS Programs Japan : Community Center Outreach and Work Projects Key West, Florida : Evangelism Training and Experience Naples, Florida : Local Outreach and Service Projects Quebec : “English for Kids” Bible Camp and “English for Teens” Bible Camping Trip Uganda : Education Outreach to Young Children San Antonio, Texas : Local Outreach and Service Projects South Korea : Teach English to Missionary Trainees Wildwood, New Jersey : Boardwalk Chapel – Evangelism, Outreach, Drama, Music Zoar, Wisconsin : “Venture Missions” – VBS on Menominee Reservation Hurricane Relief Work in Texas , Florida , and Puerto Rico Contact : David Nakhla, OPC Short – Term Missions Coordinator OPCShortTermMissions@opc.org Utah 2017 “After completing the third Team Utah trip, I can easily see the fruit of our trips. First and most obviously, the OP church building in Magna is in much better shape. The office is ... Read more