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Vol. 4: Issue 1
March 24, 2016

Diaconal Outreach to
Victims of Flint Water Crisis

The city of Flint, Michigan, has been much in the news lately due to the crisis brought about by the contamination of their drinking water.  The deacons at one OP church in Michigan saw this as a wonderful opportunity to show the love of Christ in a very tangible way, and rallied their presbytery to action.

And so, on Saturday, February 20th,  2.5 tons of water, along with 250-300 Christian books, booklets, and tracts, were distributed in Flint by OPC teams!

Deacon Douglas Vos summed it up: “Orthodoxy and orthopraxy.  Preaching the good news and doing works of mercy.  Hearts and hands.  Adults and children.  Loving God and loving our neighbor.  Giving a cup of cold, clear water in Jesus’ name.”

Read the full story at


Missionary Doctor Needed
in Karamoja, Uganda

The tenure of OPC Missionary Doctor Jim Knox has ended and he has moved back to the USA!   While plans have been made for other doctors to fill in for Jim short-term, the search continues for his long-term replacement.

The CDM has committed to funding the new doctor, who will carry out an important aspect of the diaconal side of the labors of the Orthodox Presbyterian Uganda Mission.   Now, we just wait for that one of the Lord's choosing.

If you know of a medical doctor who is committed to the Reformed faith, would like to be able to spend more time with patients and speak with them about Christ, and might be interested in serving Christ with our missionaries in Karamoja, please have him or her contact:

Rev. Douglas Clawson
Associate General Secretary
Committee on Foreign Missions


Japan Work Teams Filled
for April 2016

Two teams have been selected from among the many excellent applications we received from volunteers interested in traveling to Japan in April to repair and paint the exterior of the Nozomi ("Hope") Center in Japan.  The building  underwent major interior reconstruction by OPC teams following the tsunami of 2011, when it was established as a community outreach center by the OPC and its affiliates. 

Several members of this spring's teams were part of the original reconstruction teams, including Raun Treible, who wrote, "I feel greatly honored and excited to be able to return to Yamamoto, Japan, to help complete some needed maintenance on the Nozomi Center and see how the Lord has blessed all the hard work put into that project."

Team #1 (April 4-15, 2016):

  • Brian Murphy, Team Leader (Fredericksburg Christian Fellowship, Fredericksburg, TX)
  • Patrick Lewis (Harvest OPC, Wyoming, MI)
  • Liviu Marhao (First Romanian Pentecostal Church, Hickory, NC)
  • Petre Pindic (Hickory Romanian Baptist Church, Hickory, NC)
  • Noah Rice (Christ Covenant OPC, Amarillo, TX)
  • Gelu Vasiu (Hickory Romanian Baptist Church, Hickory, NC)

Team #2 (April 15-28, 2016):

  • Raun Treible, Team Leader (Lake Sherwood OPC, Orlando, FL)
  • Nick de Ru (Sovereign Grace OPC, Oak Harbor, WA)
  • John Flynn (Lake Sherwood OPC, Orlando, FL)
  • Stephen Lauer (Lynnwood OPC, Lynnwood, WA)
  • Josh Miller (Berlin Baptist Church, Marne, MI)

Please pray for these teams, and stay tuned for reports on their work!


Upcoming Presbytery Diaconal Conference:
Presbytery of the South

Presbytery of the South (in blue)

"Stirring Up the Gift"
April 29-30, 2016
Tallahassee, FL

This conference will focus on the diaconal responsibilities presented in the OPC's secondary standards and Book of Church Order, with the goal of "prompting men to take ownership of their office as a deacon in the glorious church of the Lord Jesus Christ."  

Speakers will include Rev. Nathan Trice (Vice President, OPC Committee on Diaconal Ministries) and Rev. John Sharpe, and topics will include:

  1. The office of deacon as a calling
  2. Qualifications to be a deacon
  3. Vows of the deacon
  4. Ordination
  5. Examples of things we are responsible to know as deacons, but perhaps do not know

A disaster response planning round table discussion will also be held.

Contact: Matt Avery

Register for the conference:


OPC Contributes to Refugee Relief in Greece


On March 7th, the Disaster Response Subcommittee of the CDM moved to contribute an initial $6,000 towards the efforts of the Greek Evangelical Church in Greece as it ministers to the needs of  refugees fleeing from the Middle East as they pass through Greece on their way to Germany.  

Twice a week, the church makes more than 1,000 sandwiches and distributes them to some of the more than 10,000 people delayed at the northern border of Greece.  They also knit caps and scarves for distribution to many of the women and children who have been ill-equipped for the near freezing temperatures.  Pray for this church as it strives to bear witness to the compassion of Christ.  

Pray for the CDM as it explores other such avenues of ministry to refugees.


Diaconal Principles Documents
Available at

Principles of Diaconal Ministry

"The heart of God for the poor is the reason for the diaconal ministry of the church. The church ministers to the poor and needy because of the very character and ways of our God..."  Read more here.

Principles for the Ministry of Mercy

"The ministry of mercy of any particular board of deacons is inherently connected to a local congregation (“serve tables”), is always in support of the ministry of the Word (“devote ourselves to prayer and the ministry of the Word”), and is under the oversight of the local session..."  Read more here.

Additional resources for deacons available at


Please Pray for the Meeting
of the Committee on Diaconal Ministries

Back Row (l to r):  Chris Sudlow, Ron de Ru, Seth Long, John Voss, Jr., Al Zarek
Front Row (l to r): Ron Pearce, Lendall Smith, David Nakhla, Nathan Trice  
(Bob Wright, Jr. - not pictured)


The OPC's Committee on Diaconal Ministries will meet 
at Bethel OPC, Wheaton, IL, March 31-April 1, 2016


Mark Your Calendars!
Future Diaconal Conferences

2016 October 6-8:  Presbytery Diaconal Summit III (Geneva, IL)

Each presbytery is invited to send two representatives from its Diaconal Committee to the Presbytery Diaconal Summit III.  The CDM covers travel, room, and board for each attendee of this important meeting.  (Note: this event was previously referred to as the "D17" Summit.)

2017 June 15-17:  National Diaconal Summit III (Wheaton College, Wheaton, IL)

All deacons, deacons-in-training, and other interested church officers are invited to attend the National Diaconal Summit III.  Local diaconates are urged to budget for travel, while the CDM covers room and board.  The scheduled speaker is Dr. David Apple, author of "Not Just a Soup Kitchen."  This encouraging conference will likely not be held again until 2022, so don't miss this opportunity to attend!  


What Are Deacons Doing Locally?

Deacons, would you like to hear what other deacons in the OPC are doing?  Do you have a project you that you think would be helpful for other deacons to hear about?  Are there particular issues that you would like to discuss?

Please write to and we will see if we can include these ideas, questions, or suggestions in a future edition of the Mercy Minute.  We look forward to hearing from you!


Editor: David P. Nakhla
Administrator, CDM
(562) 760-7606

The Mercy Minute is a quarterly newsletter of the Committee on Diaconal Ministries intended to keep the deacons of the OPC informed.  It could include sharing the work that one local diaconate or presbytery diaconal committee is doing, bringing awareness to a need in the OPC, or simply bringing a word of encouragement.

The Mercy Minute is being sent to all OPC officers with whom the CDM has contact with the hopes that it is forwarded on to more deacons. 

Officers who would like to be added to the distribution list are encouraged to email such a request to the Editor.