Trust Him Who Began the Work

English for Teens 2014 - photo 31 from Alexander Patocs
Published on September 16, 2014
by Alexander Patocs, Calvin OPC, Phoenix, Arizona (September 2014) with Audrey Southgate, First OPC, Portland, Oregon     NOTE: Alexander Patocs was one of several young men and women from the OPC who traveled to Quebec this summer to help conduct an “English for Teens” Camping Trip, sponsored by St. Marc’s Reformed Church in Quebec City, of which OP Missionary Rev. Ben Westerveld is the Pastor.  Alex provided the following retrospective on the experience, with a contribution from his teammate, Audrey Southgate. Quebec: Canada’s Prodigal Province Quebec is unique compared to the rest of Canada. While the rest of Canada speaks English, Québécois speaks French. While the rest of Canada is influenced by Protestantism, Quebec has Catholic roots. It may seem ... Continue

Cohesiveness as a Team – A Great Blessing

2014 Zoar -  CROPPED 2 - photo from Anne Lehan
Published on September 15, 2014
by Anne Lehan, Bethel OPC, Wheaton, Illinois (September 2014)   NOTE:  Anne Lehan, a member of a short-term missions team that reached out to two local Indian Reservations this summer, tells her story and shares her thoughts, below. In July 2014, Pastor Karl Thompson and Pastor Gordon Oliver led a Vacation Bible School on the Indian Reservations at Menominee and Stockbridge, Wisconsin. It was my privilege to spend my 5th year in Zoar with about 25 of my brothers and sisters in Christ from several Illinois and Wisconsin OP churches as we shared the Gospel with the children on the reservations. The team lodged in the Zoar church for the week and was quickly knit together as a family, something that ... Continue

Life as a Disciple of Jesus

Chapel with tram (2)
Published on September 13, 2014
by Elizabeth Horst, Calvary OPC, Schenectady, New York (September 2014)     NOTE: Elizabeth Horst was one of a group of young men and women who served as full-time Staff at the OPC’s Boardwalk Chapel in Wildwood, New Jersey, living and working there from June through August, 2014. Below, Elizabeth shares her reflections on her summer at the Chapel. It is 3:20 PM on an ordinary July weekday at the Boardwalk Chapel. I stumble up from a rustic nap across three ancient chairs and walk barefoot across the boards to slump down on the closest bench. I glance back toward the Chapel. Our evangelism leader talks enthusiastically to a couple who stopped at the Heaven or Hell Machine and his ... Continue

Sowing the Seeds of the Gospel

2014 Team Praha - GROUP PHOTO CROPPED - photo from Leah Baugh
Published on August 28, 2014
by Leah Baugh, Escondido OPC, Escondido, California (August 2014)   NOTE:  Leah Baugh was a member of two short-term missions teams that were sent by the Presbytery of Southern California to the Czech Republic during the summer of 2014:  “English Family Camp” and “Team Praha.”   Leah spent a total of one month serving in the Czech Republic, and here she describes her experience and encourages others to consider short-term missions themselves! ENGLISH FAMILY CAMP English Camp is one of those camps where you really feel the urgency and importance of proclaiming the gospel message. The gospel we proclaim is a life and death matter, more important than anything else. English Camp really brings you back to that truth. We are not ... Continue

I Learned A Lot About Evangelizing

Bill Welzien prepares his presentation
Published on August 27, 2014
 by Aaron Cathey, Grace and Peace Presbyterian Church, California, Maryland (August 2014)   NOTE: In July 2014, Pastor Edd Cathey of Grace and Peace Presbyterian Church in California, MD, led a group of young men on a trip to Key West to learn evangelism with Pastor Bill Welzien of Keys Presbyterian Church.  We are pleased to share the following personal testimonial received from team member, Aaron Cathey. My experience at Key West was a different one. I had never been on a trip with a church group to learn specifically about evangelism. In addition, I wasn’t aware that we would be out in public actually physically doing the evangelizing. When I learned this would be the case, I was a bit anxious at first. But once we got ... Continue

I Was There To Serve Him

Czech Republic (photo credit: Stacy Nelson, English Camp 2013)
Published on August 25, 2014
by Kristina Mellon, Trinity OPC, Capistrano Beach, CA (August 2014)   NOTE:  In July 2014, Kristina Mellon joined the team that was organized by Bayview OPC (Chula Vista, CA) and traveled to the Czech Republic to present the gospel in the form of an English Family Camp. Kristina shared with us the following letter, which she sent to friends and family upon her return from the short-term mission trip. Thank you for your prayers and various means of support for me to go on this mission to the Czech Republic. I have been back in the U.S. one week and I have spent part of that time thinking about what to say and how to sum up the mission trip to ... Continue

Relationship Growth with God and Each Other

KEY WEST 2014-07 CROPPED -- KEM Intern John Gildersleeve and Joshua Gardner
Published on August 21, 2014
by Joshua Gardner, Grace and Peace Presbyterian Church, California, Maryland (August 2014)   NOTE: In July 2014, Pastor Edd Cathey of Grace and Peace Presbyterian Church in California, MD, led a group of young men on a trip to Key West to learn evangelism with Pastor Bill Welzien of Keys Presbyterian Church.  We are pleased to share the following personal testimonial received from team member Joshua Gardner. This summer, I was blessed with the opportunity to visit Keys Presbyterian Church in Key West with four other members from our own church, Grace and Peace OPC in Southern Maryland. The focus of our trip was evangelism and relationship growth with both God and each other. The experience I had there was incredible and I definitely grew ... Continue

Reflections on My Trip to Key West

KEY WEST 2014-07 Key West group from California, MD with Bill Welzien
Published on August 18, 2014
by Tom Sills, Grace and Peace Presbyterian Church, California, Maryland (August 17, 2014)     NOTE: In July 2014, Pastor Edd Cathey of Grace and Peace Presbyterian Church in California, MD, led a group of young men on a trip to Key West to learn evangelism with Pastor Bill Welzien of Keys Presbyterian Church.  Read an overview that Rev. Cathey provided on the trip by clicking here.  We are pleased to share the following personal testimonial received from team member, Tom Sills. I am very glad that I was fortunate enough to visit Bill Welzien in Key West for a week with a group of men from my church. During this time I drew closer to God, deepened relationships with the other men, and challenged myself ... Continue

“English for Kids” Camp: A True Mission Field

Team Photo CROPPED - English for Kids - St Georges, Quebec, Summer 2012
Published on June 26, 2014
by Schylie La Belle, Presbyterian Church of Cape Cod, Barnstable, Massachusetts (June 2014)   During the summers of 2012 and 2013, I spent one week in Quebec helping at an English for Kids Camp in Saint-Georges de Beauce. Our team from the US helped the members of a Christian Reformed church (Église Chrétienne Réformée de Beauce) with their annual camp for children. Some of the children attending this camp come from Christian families or attend the host church, but most come from un-churched families, sent by parents only interested in them learning English and having fun. Knowing this, we saw these children as a true mission field and this camp the channel into their hearts. The week at camp was ... Continue

The Lord’s Grace Shining Forth

"Rejéan is a delight of the church in Saint-Georges. He was one of the translators for us, a man who cares for the kids, for the English staff, and for the Truth of the Bible, for the Church, for Christ's Bride. He was a great encouragement, besides being a lot of fun."
Published on June 24, 2014
by River La Belle, Presbyterian Church of Cape Cod (OPC), Barnstable, Massachusetts (June 2014)    NOTE: The following testimonial was recently received from River La Belle, the 18 year old son of OPC Pastor James A. La Belle (Presbyterian Church of Cape Cod, Barnstable, MA), who served as an assistant at an “English for Kids” Bible Camp in Saint-Georges de Beauce, Québec, during the summers of 2012 and 2013.  River communicates his youthful zeal for missions in a compelling way which we hope may inspire other young men and women to consider opportunities for short-term missions in the OPC. I believe Saint-Georges might be compared with Boston – containing plenty of little urban shops, several stately old buildings, homeless men ... Continue

A Personal Reflection on Ministry at the Chapel

Chapel skit '13
Published on October 1, 2013
by Caroline Grout, Summer Assistant at the Boardwalk Chapel (Summer 2013)   Life at the Boardwalk Chapel in Wildwood, New Jersey, is filled with witnessing, conversations, fellowship with fellow believers, learning, praying, the necessities of life (sleep somehow wanders in).  Amidst this burst of physical exhaustion, the Spirit fills us up.  On a personal level, there is no way to survive the summer intact without fleeing to the feet of the God we walk the boards to proclaim.  This reliance on Christ as well as our brothers and sisters in Christ brings joy-filled fellowship even relieving the staff as a whole of individualism as we focus on Christ together.  This draining of emotional, physical, and spiritual energy is all by the grace of God ... Continue

Evangelism Training in Key West

Bill Welzien prepares his presentation at Mallory Square in Key West
Published on July 26, 2013
by Ann Burden, New Hope OPC, Frederick, Maryland (July 2013)   In July 2013, 6 teen boys and 3 adults from New Hope OPC in Frederick, Maryland, traveled to beautiful Key West, Florida, to experience first hand the ministry of Bill Welzien and Keys Evangelistic Ministry. We really didn’t know what to expect when we first set out but were so blessed by Bill and his ministry that we are hoping to go back again soon.  We were given a wonderful place to stay and trained by Bill each morning in sharing the gospel with boldness. In the evenings our group went out to Mallory Square to participate with Bill in sharing the gospel with the people that would walk by ... Continue

Good Interactions in Quebec

Pharaoh - St-Georges, Quebec 2013 - photo from Olivia Durham
Published on July 21, 2013
by Olivia Durham, Covenant OPC, Barre, Vermont (July 2013)   “The Lord cares for those who trust in Him.” (Nahum 1:7b) This was the key verse for our week of English immersion camp June 29th – July 6th, 2013.  Our theme was “Camping” and our Bible studies covered the deliverance of the Hebrews from the slavery of Pharaoh.   [Believe it or not, there is a link: the people were CAMPING in the wilderness after God delivered them, and Moses was CAMPING in the wilderness after he ran away from Egypt the first time!]  We had a great time, and the Lord did care for us all! This year marks the fifth year of “English for Kids” in Saint-Georges de Beauce, ... Continue

Thanks From The Hopps In Haiti

Hopps Addition
Published on April 19, 2013
from Rev. Ben Hopp, OPC Missionary to Haiti (April 2013)   The Hopp family rejoices in a full year of enjoying their home in Haiti in its newly refurbished condition, significantly enlarged in April 2012 through the efforts of several short-term construction teams.  They were also particularly thankful for Mike Leep’s tireless efforts to coordinate the teams and for Lloyd Osterink’s coordination of the project.  The majority of the work was completed in just 2 weeks time! Click to view the “Thank You” flyer from the Hopps

Fresh Light on Difficult Circumstances

Germantown bldg - med small
Published on October 5, 2012
by Rev. Bill Snodgrass, Pastor, Grace Fellowship OPC, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (October 2012)   Grace Fellowship OPC, in the Germantown section of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, has been hit hard in the past two years.  We have endured a flood, multiple moves, family hardships of many kinds, economic difficulties, and much more.  Discouragement had begun to show on people’s faces.  Their steps were slower.  Some came to worship less often.  Others left. Then, we had a wind blow in from the North – our Spirit-filled short-term crew! Where there was mildew, they brought water and paint. Where there were holes in the walls, they sealed them. Where there was discouragement, the crew brought encouragement and fellowship (especially to the pastor and his family!) Where ... Continue