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Across the country: toys for toddlers, coat drive and other quick grabs

Across the Nation is our monthly digest of news stories, links and quotes from Churches of Christ across the United States. Do you have an idea for this column? Email Audrey Jackson at [email protected]

Featured image (above): the North Bronx Church of Christ leaders cut the ribbon outside the new church $1.5 million building At New York. The Christians gathered on a recent Sunday for the dedication.

Shadrack Oppong — a student preacher at the Memphis School of Preaching, which is associated with Churches if Christ — gave a bilingual sermon dedicating the space to the work of the Lord. Reading a passage from Isaiah 2, he stopped and repeated, “The house of God is established.

The decision to buy a building came from a place of conviction.

The church, which was founded in 2015, has always been a mobile congregation – made up mostly of Ghanaian immigrants – who met in rented spaces on Sunday mornings.

Spaces also used, according to Minister Paul Oppong, by secular groups to party on weeknights.

“Indeed, the reason for the purchase was that our congregation felt it was inappropriate to rent out time spaces on Sunday mornings that were used in a way that was very disrespectful to the Lord,” Oppong said.

The 120-person congregation had partnered with the Solomon Foundation, a nonprofit that helps churches in the United States and Canada with loans and investments, to purchase their own permanent worship space. The North Bronx Church paid the initial $200,000 deposit to the former owners, a Bronx branch of Jehovah’s Witnesses.

“This church is truly impacting people’s lives through caring activities and preaching the gospel.”

And the congregation is already using the space wisely for its community. Boxes of relief items – clothing, food and water – are stacked in the church auditorium, waiting to be delivered to victims of the recent Bronx apartment building fire that killed 19 people and left others injured 44 others.

“This church is truly impacting people’s lives through benevolent activities and preaching the gospel,” Oppong said.


ROCHESTER Members of the Church of Christ of Rochester care for and help pregnant women – more than 8,500 miles away.

In partnership with the Malawi Project, a nonprofit organization associated with the Churches of Christ, the Rochester congregation is preparing bags full of necessities for women in Africa who have limited access to medical supplies and postnatal care. Care kits also include a faith brochure.

The effort – led by Rochester church members Glen, Mickey and Frank Davidson – has brought major relief to hundreds of families in Malawi.

Care packages for pregnant women in Malawi, Africa include childbirth necessities.


COLOMBIA – North View Church of Christ recently served as the Maury County distribution center for a “Toys for Tots” campaign.

Working with David Bailey, the fundraising coordinator, church members participated in three phases of the campaign: collecting toys in bags in neighboring Giles County, delivering and organizing the 260 bags of toys at the North View Church auditorium and distribute them to the Columbia community.

The congregation has also added its own addition to the disc: a Bible for each family. On the inside cover of the Bible, church members placed labels with service hours and contact information for North View Church.

Members of the North View Church of Christ place bags of toys in the auditorium.

Members of the North View Church of Christ place bags of toys in the auditorium.

JACKSONStudents at Jackson Christian School, which is associated with the Churches of Christ, collected more than 600 coats at a recent coat drive to distribute to Jackson-Madison County schools for the winter.

The number was double the estimate of what the initiative raised when it was launched three years ago by Ava Jerman, who was then in sixth grade.

“I noticed that several students on the school bus weren’t wearing coats, so I asked our Bible teacher to help me start a coat drive,” said Jerman, who is now a college student. freshman year in high school, in a press release.

This school year, she logged 11 hours of community service volunteering with the coat drive.

All ages participate in the fundraiser – elementary through high school – then Jerman sorts the inventory into bags according to size to distribute within the community. This year’s collection took two trips to donate all of the coats collected by Jackson Christian’s student body.


HIRING: Skyler sexton as the new youth minister of Chapel Hill Church of Christ in Chapel Hill, Tennessee. Josh Ketchum as pulpit minister for Beacon Church of Christ in Parsons, Tennessee. He will continue to teach the Bible at Freed-Hardeman University. Hunter Wiederstein as Youth and Family Minister for Alameda Church of Christ in Norman, Okla. Joshua DuBoise as the new minister of the Church of Christ at the Vineyard congregation in Phoenix.

NOMINATED: Matt Vega as Dean of the College of Business at Freed-Hardeman University in Henderson, Tennessee. Ken Jones as Chancellor and Brandon Tatum as executive vice president of Oklahoma Christian University. Joe McCall, Narlon Clemons and Jason Nicholas as elders of Cold Springs Church of Christ in Lancaster, Texas.

quote of the month

“You start with your neighbor,” Penny Wade Smith said of helping Tornado relief efforts in Mayfield, Ky. “You turn to the person closest to you and help that person.”

Read the story of how she and her family helped their neighbors here.

Filed under: Across the Nation Bronx fire Coat drive Ghanaian Congregation Jackson Christian School National News The Malawi Project Top Stories toys for toddlers