Tag Archives: Nebraska

Steadfast in Scottsbluff: An Unwavering Love for the Lord and the Lakota

Louise Deines

By Carl Stagner

Louise Deines is ninety-eight years old. That hasn’t stopped her from continuing to love the Lord and the Lakota people. Her ministry through the Church of God in Scottsbluff, Nebraska, has stretched fifty years across both seasons of challenge and blessing. Though she was never ordained as a minister, her ministry of presence, teaching, and encouragement has proved vital to home missions in the region. While her qualifications could have taken her anywhere, her heart is with Native American ministry in Scottsbluff. Accolades aren’t what matter to Louise, though she was recently honored for fifty years of home missionary service. What really matters to Louise is love. Continue reading

Multicultural and Countercultural: Native American Ministry in Nebraska

Photo: The installation service of home missionary Jonathan Ervin. Photo courtesy Anita Miller.

By Carl Stagner

The other side of the railroad tracks. That’s where, at the close of World War II, the Native Americans of Alliance, Nebraska, were required to live. A few years earlier, in 1942, extra hands were needed at the Alliance air base. The Army recruited Native Americans as civilian workers for the duration of the war. But eight Native American families remained in town after the war ended, segregated to a four-by-four block section on the south side. Even then, the Church of God took steps that were counter to the culture. Instead of remaining segregated, land was purchased in the heart of the Native American neighborhood to build the Indian Mission Church of God. It was 1952, and the pioneers of Church of God Native American Ministries were unwilling to stay separate from a people that needed the love and saving grace of the Lord Jesus Christ. Continue reading

Opportunities on the Home Front: Scottsbluff, Nebraska

Photo: Young Eagles at Scottsbluff, Nebraska.

By Sherman and Kay Critser

Editor’s note—Sherman and Kay Critser serve as operations directors for Native American Ministries of the Church of God. Their base of operations is Intercultural Chapel Church of God in Scottsbluff, Nebraska. Recently they wrote about the many opportunities God has opened up for them to spread the hope of the gospel. The following are a few of their stories.

Memorial service

We have been at Intercultural Chapel Native American mission in Scottsbluff, Nebraska, for four years, and had never officiated a memorial service until February 2017. On a Sunday morning, a call was left on Kay’s phone, which she had left at home, by one of the Native American ladies in the chapel, to pray for her sister-in-law who had been taken to the hospital. Before we would know about this call, however, let alone the request, we received another call to say that she had died just after noon that same day. Continue reading

Brother Mink’s Fight for a Cure

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Photo: Don Mink (courtesy Renita Buss)

By Renita Buss

I look back at my nine-year old self and remember the first day that my mother and I moved to Alliance, Nebraska. My mother and I moved to Alliance with very little, but my mom continued to have big dreams for both of us. Our hope seemed to spark from the moment we both met Rev. Donald Mink of the Indian Mission Church of God. This is where I was blessed to hear the story of this man’s battle with prostate cancer. Blessed, you may say, is a strong word to use in this scenario, but to me, it’s not a near powerful enough word. Continue reading

Marriage Honored, Vows Renewed at Indiana Church

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Photo: Couple renews their wedding vows.

By Carl Stagner

At first, there were just a few. Then seven couples wanted to participate. Finally, there were thirteen participating couples at the modest-sized country church in Nebraska, Indiana. On Valentine’s Day 2016, the Church of God at Nebraska, Indiana, took intentional steps to publicly honor the sacred institution of marriage in a culture that increasingly does the opposite. As a part of their worship service, a remarkable thirteen couples—from seven years to fifty-nine years married—renewed their wedding vows. The unique service not only reaffirmed each couple’s love for each other, but also made a few dreams come true, as well. Continue reading

Rev. Don Mink on Family Ties, Testament, and Turtles

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By Denice Phillips
Times-Herald Writer

ALLIANCE — Reverend Don Mink came to Alliance [Nebraska], he said, “On the last day of 1970,” and has become a familiar and welcoming presence here over the last 42 years. Continue reading