Welcoming Refugees in the Name of Christ

Last December, a twenty-seven-year-old shared his testimony during the Sunday school hour at Redeemer OPC in Atlanta, Georgia. He spoke in Tigrinya, the language of his native Eritrea, and a church member translated. “This morning, I’m here before you to tell you the story, not just about me, but about the work God has done in my life,” Amanuel quietly began. A Refugee’s Inexpressible Joy Amanuel (not his real name) grew up in the capital of Eritrea. His dad, a Christian, led the family in worship every evening. When Amanuel was in high school, his dad was imprisoned and detained for several years for his faith. During the imprisonment, Amanuel’s father became paralyzed from rough treatment. Amanuel knew, as all young people in Eritrea know, that the government had a shoot-to-kill policy for anyone caught crossing the border into Ethiopia, at that time its enemy, and severely punished anyone caught crossing into Sudan. “But at the end of the day,” Amanuel said to New Horizons ... Read more

From the Resurrection Comes Mercy

Spring 2020 arrived in a way no one could have foreseen. When government shutdowns began to occur in mid-March due to COVID-19, life changed dramatically. Like many churches, ours—Christ Covenant in Midland, Michigan—was conflicted about the best path forward. Initially we shut down, then we reopened using an FM radio transmitter to conduct worship in our church parking lot. Everyone, it seemed, had an opinion about face coverings, social distancing, and when to resume worshiping the way we did pre-COVID. Neither the elders nor the congregation were united on the best path forward. Shepherding God’s people under such conditions is not easy and can make one despair. Then, on top of it all, a historic flood hit Midland in the middle of May. The Fall and Natural Disasters When Jesus was crucified two thousand years ago, the disciples faced a crisis of much greater magnitude than our flood. Out of that hopeless situation, God did the unexpected by raising Jesus from the dead three days later. ... Read more

The "True Fans" of Disaster Response

An OP missionary, home on furlough, gives a presentation to your church about life on the mission field, reaching the nations for Christ. You feel a tug and wonder if you could get involved. You read and hear about church plants around the country, about new people, new converts, and new churches—churches that seem to always be embarking on the adventure of finding a place to worship. You wonder whether, if the opportunity were to arise, you would go and serve them, or stay where you are comfortable. You hear of OPC Disaster Response heading into difficult places where people have lost homes and livelihoods. Would you go help? Should you go help? And these amazing gospel opportunities are just within the OPC! Add to them the local pregnancy center ministering to hurting young women, the local school that needs tutors, and the refugee ministry or homeless ministry that needs volunteers. You hear the stories. You hear the amazing opportunities. You want to serve. You know you should serve. But how do you ... Read more

Fifteen Years of Disaster Response: A Labor of Love

Almost from its beginning, the Orthodox Presbyterian Church has been concerned with bringing “a cup of cold water” in the name of Christ to those affected by disasters. Yet most would agree that it was Hurricane Katrina in 2005 that served as the catalyst for our current form of disaster response. The Lord used the devastation on the Gulf Coast caused by that hurricane to impel the church to action. Initially, that action came through the offering plate as OP churches and individuals gave more than $450,000 for ministry to those suffering in Mississippi and Louisiana, most of whom had no affiliation with the OPC. Ruling elder David Haney was then called upon to head up the disaster response effort on behalf of the OPC, initially overseen by the Committee on Home Missions and Church Extension, later by the Committee on Diaconal Ministries (CDM). He reached out to the Presbyterian Church in America to coordinate with the OPC, visited the disaster sites, organized teams, acquired equipment, and placed ... Read more


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