One Big Holy Family

by J. P. March 9

When you think about your church family, who do you think of? When I answer this question my thoughts drift to our pastors, the people sitting beside me (six feet away) in the pews, those serving alongside me in the nursery, my small group, and my Sunday school class. My mind quickly goes to those I see and talk to regularly. Rarely do I grasp the reality of just how big my Church family is.

Every Sunday at Tenth, we confess that we believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church. This means we believe in the Church as one body stretching through all of space and time. Now, I don’t know about you, but I find it difficult to remember and celebrate the fact that I am part of such a large body of believers. It is hard to know how to participate in such a large community and how to love and serve my neighbors around the world.

Each Easter, the Tenth family has the opportunity to support the global Church through our Easter Sacrificial Offering (ESO). I see this as an opportunity to grow my roots in the holy catholic and apostolic Church a little deeper. As you consider giving to these ministries, please also consider the opportunity to pray faithfully for these projects. Pray that God would use the practical gifts we offer as a means for his grace. In a few months’ time, we will check back with you and tell you about the fruits of these labors. Give and pray knowing that God’s word does not go out and come back empty.

This year the ESO will be going to five separate projects.

The first project is a growing hospital in Ethiopia. Our partner, Dr. John Kempen, has asked for our help in providing critical eye surgeries for the poor in the surrounding villages. Many of these people will go completely blind without intervention but are unable to pay for surgery. Our donations will allow John to help restore their sight and provide him with more inroads to share the gospel.

The second project is a hospital in Niger. Our partners, Matt and Tara, have asked for our assistance in funding the construction of a new general medical ward to increase the hospital’s capacity. This hospital provides care to many who could not otherwise afford it and provides spiritual care to those whose hearts are prepared.

We will also be supporting  our partners in the Middle East providing food to Sudanese refugees. Many of these refuges have lost the little work they had due to COVID-19 and are not sure where their next meal will come from. Our partnership will feed hundreds of families. As a result of the food boxes that have already been distributed, one man observed that the Christians were caring for him in ways his Muslim neighbors were failing to. Let us join our partners in showing the great hospitality of Christ and pray that God would give these refugees their daily bread.

Throughout the time of COVID-19, many wealth disparities have become even more apparent. As we have become more dependent on digital communication, our partners at the Lausanne Movement noticed that Christian brothers and sisters in developing countries do not have the technology to participate. In partnering with Michael Oh, who is the CEO of Lausanne, we hope to provide pastors and church leaders in the majority world with the technological resources they need to lead their congregations well.

Our final project is a partnership with Gethin Jones and the UK Presbytery of the International Presbyterian Church to help fund their building projects. It has become very apparent in the last year that churches in the UK need their own buildings for worship and places for their pastors to live. Pray that our financial help enables these churches to build or find the spaces they need to grow and continue their ministry.

During the Lenten season, prayerfully consider joining Tenth and the Church worldwide in these partnerships by giving financially and by praying for each of these projects. Pray that the gospel would go out and that many would hear it and receive it!

Give to the Easter Sacrificial Offering online or by designating gifts for the ESO.

© 2021 Tenth Presbyterian Church.

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Please include the following statement on any distributed copy: By J. P.. © 2021 Tenth Presbyterian Church. Website: tenth.org